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Jimmy Olsen 113
"The Betrayal of Superman"

COVER IMAGE NOT FOUND (80 Page Giant #50) August - September, 1968

Story: Unknown Art: Unknown

Just imagine Jimmy Olsen being less than a pal to the man of steel. Unlikely as this may be, it is what happens when the Daily Planet cub reporter assumes the role of a private investigator, hired by his client to learn Superman's secret identity! You'll be amazed to see the reasons behind... "The Betrayal of Superman"

On the splash page, the cub reporter-turned private eye has collected all the data necessary to write in the name of the man of steel's other identity. While Jimmy's client prepares to hand over the money, the man of steel is unable to stop his friend from revealing his secret, because it isn't against the law! (Holy Ingersoll, Batman!) On a slow news day, Jimmy stops by the office of Dick Crane, private detective, and hears moaning coming from the other side of the door. At his desk, Crane tells the cub reporter that he had been warned by doctors about needing an operation-- he kept putting it off! Jimmy makes a quick call for an ambulance.

Once the call has been made... Jimmy learns that Crane postponed the operation because it was expensive... and needed money -- he took the case! The client paid him a $100 retainer fee... and promised $1,000 more when the job was completed! The detective was unwilling to break his record... he'd always finish a case! He doesn't know what this one is, but it should be an easy and safe one... Crane asks the cub reporter to do it for him! Jimmy knows that he's no private detective, but since he's Superman's pal... the man of steel can help him find the missing person! Aside from the money, Dick Crane would be devastated at missing out on a case! The cub reporter promises the detective that he'll take care of the case, just as Dick Crane is carried by ambulance attendents on a stretcher. After opening the sealed instructions, Jimmy sees that the assignment is to track down Mr. X -- the missing person who is the man of steel's secret identity! It is signed by Bart Gordon, 18 Oak St. In his apartment, Jimmy wonders if he should take the case, he'll double-cross his pal, but if he drops the case, Dick will be disappointed!

The cub reporter decides to start the case, and track down the man of steel's identity... after he's made certain arrangements. The next morning finds Jimmy donning the disguise of a trained Scotland Yard sleuth, complete with bowler hat, monocle, and coat. Knowing that English police authorities frequently ride bicycles, so shall Sir James Cedric! (Holy Ellis, Batman!) When the disguised cub reporter meets with Gordon, he tells the client that Dick Crane has been hospitalized -- but as his assistant, Junior Inspector Cedric of Scotland Yard will be at his service! (Holy Junior G-Man, Batman! Jimmy should have his head examined... errrr... inspected!) The young inspector is determined to uncover the other identity of Super-Chap, while the client corrects him about the name, and studies the young, oddly-dressed boy in sleuth's clothing. When Sir James Cedric asks him about why he wishes to know about Supergent's secret identity, Gordon assures him that there's nothing criminal about revealing Superman's other self! Of course, the client wishes to learn the secret so that he may threaten the man of steel into making him a millionaire! To cover himself from any mishaps, Gordon wants Sir Cedric to sign the terms of which he promises to show him the real deal -- or not receive the thousand dollar payment!

Sir James signs the agreement that he'll bring the man of steel's identity in person! When he points him out to Gordon, Superman will not be wearing any mask or disguise of any kind! He will not be a mannequin or in a shadowy room! He will be stuck without escape -- except by revealing his super-powers! Sir James promises to provide a photo of Superman switching identities! The inspector is to present his findings to his client each day, and if he doesn't succeed in a week, the deal's off! Jimmy plans to use his spare time to tail the man of steel, and wonders who his pal really is! Unbeknowst to the cub reporter, mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent is really Superman, and meets Jimmy at the Daily Planet offices! Having made his weekly schedule for public appearances as the man of steel, Clark gives it to Jimmy to write up. Using the list, Jimmy hopes to gather clues about who "Mr. X" is! At the first clue, "Sir James Cedric" dusts for prints on a cornerstone, after a dedication ceremony at Metropolis Orphanage! To entertain children, the man of steel stood on a scale to show that he weighed 4226 lbs, and by subtracting each rock held aloft by his pal, Jimmy will know the exact weight! After launching a river boat, the man of steel has left his footprints in the muddy ground! A plaster cast will be made by "Sir Cedric!" After Superman finished wrecking an old building, Jimmy measures the "cut-out" which his pal made when he crashed through the brick wall!

Superman doesn't seem to be aware that he is being shadowed by his pal, who takes the opportunity to snap a detailed picture of his face! Near the end of the week, Bart Gordon is unimpressed by the collection of clues which "Sir Cedric" has turned up! The client wants to know the secret identity of Super-Chap! The inspector corrects his client about the name, and presents Gordon with samples of touch-ups of the face enlargements! Peering at the pictures, "Sir Cedric" sees the man of steel wearing a mustache, a beard, different styled hair, and... eye-glasses! The inspector appears to have recognized one of the pictures, and intends to follow him to make sure he's "Supersir!" Gordon tells him to phone in when he's made contact! Later in the day, Daily Planet reporter Clark Kent is heading for the model of The Glass House Exhibit! "Sir Cedric" shadows "Mr. X" and knows that there's no windows for him to leave through, as he goes to alert his client!

The inspector phones Gordon, and tells him that "Mr. X" is in the model glass house at the square -- trapped within! The client soon arrives, and declines to give "Sir Cedric" the money until he has seen him -- in the event that "Mr. X" escapes through trickery! The client is assured by the inspector that the terms have been adhered to! Inside, Gordon enters, with Clark checking out the furniture, with his back to the client! Gordon draws a gun and fires! Seeing that the bullet has bounced off "Mr. X," he has all the proof he needs! Gordon is now taking aim with a camera, announcing his intention to snap Superman's face when he turns around! "Mr. X" admits it...

Instead of turning around, "Mr. X" smashes through the wall, and Gordon failed to anticipate this super-feat, not to mention failing to see the man of steel's face! In an alley, "Mr. X" changes to Superman, knowing that he'll repair the wall later, and that Gordon only saw his back! His secret is safe, and Dick Crane's "assistant" can collect his fee! As he changes clothes, the man of steel's picture is taken by "Sir Cedric!" Minutes later... Gordon still knows nothing about Superman's identity, but soon receives his promised picture! The client sees in the picture that the man of steel isn't wearing a disguise on his face, just that he's wearing a regular orange business suit... and Gordon already knew that! The now-disgruntled client tears up the picture, while "Sir Cedric" insists that he's lived up to his part of the bargain of presenting a picture where the man of steel is changing identities!

Observing from a distance with his telescopic-vision, Superman knows how close Jimmy came to actually revealing his secret identity! If he hadn't removed his glasses at super-speed when the cub reporter snapped the picture, he could only hope that Jimmy hadn't noticed them! As Bart Gordon refuses to pay, the man of steel arrives, and points out that his pal did identify "Mr. X" without any tricks! Hiding his face with his back turned wasn't covered in the terms. The client is amazed that the man of steel was there all the time! To give Gordon something for his money, Superman reveals that "Sir Cedric" is really Jimmy Olsen! The man of steel knew that the cub reporter would never reveal his identity, and since trying to find out who he really is wasn't a crime, Gordon is free to go! Jimmy bids his former client a "Pip-Pip, Super-Chump!" Both are pleased that their scheme has worked, especially since it was the only way to help Dick Crane without betraying one another! The disguise was to keep Bart Gordon from learning that it was Superman's Pal he was dealing with.

Jimmy had only pretended to shadow Superman so that it wouldn't arouse Gordon's suspicions. The cub reporter only saw "Mr. X's" back -- not his face! The glass house was the perfect place to set up the stunt. At the hospital, Dick Crane is recovering from his operation. He receives his operation fee and is happy that his perfect record is still intact! The detective regrets putting both Jimmy and Superman in such a spot. It just so happened that the man of steel was more than willing to help out his pal! The following day at The Daily Planet, Jimmy tells Clark how he destroyed the "clues" he used to compile on Superman. Looking at a picture of Superman with glasses on his face, the cub reporter is sure about one thing! The mild-mannered reporter wonders if Jimmy has learned his identity before answering... Jimmy laughs and tears up the photo... telling Clark that he's a poor artist when he drew the crooked glasses on the picture! Clark is grateful that he has nerves of steel, too! With the man of steel's secret identity safe once again, Jimmy begins to wonder who his pal really is, while Clark gives a knowing wink to the reader, and admits that he, too, wonders about that, as well!

It's interesting that it's legal for a client to hire a detective to shadow someone and find out what they're up to. I wonder what Bob Ingersoll would have to say on the subject. Do the people who are being watched have any rights to privacy, and are those rights being violated? Is that criminal in itself? Inquiring minds wanna know!

It's not revealed what kind of operation Dick Crane had, but I suspect it was something he ate, by the looks of it. Either that or he didn't want to appear in the story at all!

Odd that Bart Gordon didn't recognize the red-haired cub reporter, who was wearing a bowler hat, a monocle, a deerstalker coat, and no doubt sporting the most improbable English accent ever! (Holy Rathbone, Batman!)

Bart Gordon resembles Robert Shayne, who played Inspector Henderson on "The Adventures of Superman."

Clark abandons his normal blue suit for an orange one, but still retains his white hat! Even if Gordon hadn't seen his face, he'd just have to look for a man with a white hat and orange coat! (Holy Orange Julius, Batman!)

People in glass houses shouldn't shoot bullets.

Steve Chung
"The Review of Superman"