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Adventure Comics 123
"Adventure of The Antelope Boy!"


Story: Don Cameron Art: Mort Meskin

The antelope's incredible speed is legendary in the African veldt. When a human can run as fast - and even faster - it is a foregone conclusion that he will meet the King of Speed - Johnny Quick. It is then that the most amazing chase of all time will begin in - "Adventure of the Antelope Boy!" On the splash page, the Antelope Boy races by his namesake, just as Johnny Quick begins to leap at him in the jungles of Africa...

African tribesmen are startled to see the strange boy who runs alongside the antelopes, with his two legs as fast as their four... even the crafty hare is no match for the lad. A thousand miles away, Tubby Watts is in a race of his own to catch a plane! Johnny Chambers, the ace cameraman of "Sees All - Tells - All News" waits for his assistant, and tells him that they have to be faster than that to take pictures of the African Antelope Boy! As they walk to their seats, Tubby is knocked aside by a fellow passenger, and Johnny recognizes him as Mobs Bracket, the Racket King!

The transport plane crosses the Atlantic, then heads for the interior of Africa... with Johnny wondering what Mobs is up to... The pilot makes an emergency announcement that the plane is out of gas... and that they'll have to crash-land - which Mobs Bracket smiles, for it was he who punctured the fuel tank, and he straps on a parachute to flee the flying coffin! He is determined to catch the Antelope Boy before the two newsreel cameramen! Tubby sees that Bracket planned his escape well, while the passengers begin to panic! Johnny Chambers whispers the super-speed formula and Johnny Quick leaps outside, in time to see the plane heading for the trees! Mob Bracket's gang have been waiting for him on the tall grasses of the Veldt...

Mob Bracket changes into safari gear and his gang prepare to set up the trap - ! On the outside of the falling plane, Johnny Quick spins the propellers with blinding speed! With all four props working, the plane makes a safe landing on open ground, and the king of speed changes back to Johnny Chambers! In the afternoon, jungle porters follow Bracket's orders in spreading the traps, and prepare to scatter the rabbits! Hours pass, and their quarry falls into a pit while chasing a fleeing rabbit! The jungle porters carry the bound Antelope Boy, and Mob Bracket plans to train him, as well as teach the boy their language for their purposes.

Days later, Johnny and Tubby learn from the krall that furnished the jungle porters that the Antelope Boy has been taken! Weeks later, the chief of Sees-All-Tells-All News complains to his two cameramen that they should be like Johnny Quick, who would surely be swift enough to catch the story! Johnny and Tubby are determined to redeem themselves, and the assistant cameraman feels so bad that he isn't hungry! In another part of Gotham City, Mob Bracket's gang commits a robbery at a jewelry store... Hearing the sirens approaching, Mob gives the loot to "Feets," who is to meet them at the hide-out.

The police car chases after the swift Antelope Boy, who loses them when he runs through an alley where they can't drive! In the following days, the fleet form of "Feets" is seen carrying the loot for Mob Bracket, and in his apartment, he asks his gang if they now see why it was worth catching the Antelope Boy. The tracks of the Antelope Boy and the king of speed are fated to meet... and one evening... Johnny and Tubby are dining outdoors when the sounds of a passing police car gets their attention! "3X2(9YZ)4A!" It is now Johnny Quick who follows the speeding police car...

Three blocks later, Johnny sees the speeding Antelope Boy traveling faster than 60 miles an hour! "Feets" head for a place where his pursuer can't catch him - the city arena, where the bored crowd watch listlessly as several figures continue racing around the track... Suddenly, the people in the crowd become interested as the fleet form of the Antelope Boy dashes past the track runners, with Johnny Quick close behind him! Even though he could have overtaken the lad - the king of speed hopes that "Feets" would lead him to Bracket's hideout!

One judge is in disbelief that anyone could run that fast and another judge wonders if he means the boy in the leopard skin or Johnny Quick? The king of speed brings "Feets" to a halt and sees that his quarry is the Antelope Boy! He tells Johnny that he was trapped by Mobs, brought here, told to run fast with the bag, and not to get caught. He is fed and taken care of. Since the boy is not aware of the law, Johnny is certain that the police won't hold him, and he prepares to make them a proposition. At the police station, Johnny Quick is told that the D.A. agrees to grant the boy immunity - if he can bring in Mobs and the whole gang! At his apartment hideout, Mobs nervously paces the floor, and wonders if the cops have caught "Feets"?

Mobs Bracket is relieved when he hears the knock at the door, but that swiftly fades when he sees Johnny Quick instead of "Feets!" Bracket takes it on the chin from the king of speed's swift left hook, and the gang scatter, believing that some of them will get away! Since the police sergeant told him to bring them all in - Johnny Quick delivers knock-out punches to all of them in no time flat! Later... Johnny and Tubby learn that the Antelope Boy is going to college. When Tubby asks how this can be when the lad has no money, "Feets" tells them that fifty-seven college men saw him run at the arena, and he got fifty-seven offers to be on their college track teams!

Don Cameron has also written stories for Batman.

Mort Meskin was also the artist on Sheena and Vigilante.

The Antelope Boy is a lad in a leopard skin.

Tubby Watts is sidekick and comedy relief for Johnny Quick, as Woozy Winks was for Plastic Man, and Fat Man was for Mister America.

Tubby is always seen eating in every other panel, even when the transport plane is about to crash, and the passengers begin to panic, this fails to intrude on his repast.

Gotham City was also the base of operations for Batman & Robin, as well as the Golden Age Green Lantern.

The Antelope Boy can run faster than 60 miles an hour, but Johnny Quick can run rings around him.

This story was reprinted in Flash #160 (80 Page Giant #21).

Steve Chung
"Review of The Antelope Boy!"