That Time Jimmy Olsen 'Hilariously' Slapped His Girlfriend Around

In this feature, "Things That Turned Out Bad," I will spotlight plotlines by writers that probably weren't a good idea at the time and have only become more problematic in retrospect. I'll try to stick with stuff that's more ill-conceived than flat-out offensive (like racist stereotypes of characters during the 1940s).

Today we look at "Olsen the Roughneck," from "Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen" #61 (by Robert Bernstein and John Forte). In it, Lucy Lane and Jimmy are eating dinner when Lucy makes a comment about how some women don't mind a guy getting rough with them if they're attracted enough to them...

Lucy has weird views

She should have never said, as fate was about to take a hold of poor Lucy and subject her to some hilariously physical violence.

First up, there's a spider on her face!!

Watch out for that spider!

Jimmy goes to the zoo for an assignment and actually is followed home by a kangaroo, who then follows him to Lucy's apartment where she is playing a game of "Pin the tail on the donkey," but since she is blindfolded, she doesn't see the kangaroo and gets another punch to the face...

kangaroo jerk

Jimmy is on a plane where Lucy is working as a flight attendant. He gets jealous when he sees her holding hands with a stranger (she was just checking his pulse, but Jimmy is kind of stupid) and comes over to her with a jack in the box which, of course, opens up and punches her in the face...

After the plane lands, a crate with a deadly snake escapes and it is attracted to loud shrieks, so Jimmy has to keep Lucy from shrieking...

Obviously, Bernstein wasn't actually advocating for violence or anything like that, but come on, it's a bit sketchy to have the story predicated on Jimmy constantly accidentally punching his girlfriend. It just wasn't a good idea for a story. Great Forte art, though.

That’s it for this installment! If you have a suggestion for a future edition of Things That Turned Out bad, drop me a line at bcronin@comicbookresources.com

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