After several summers of “theme” trivia quizzes, this year, I’m right back where I started, with a potpourri of questions from Silver-Age DC Comics.  I’ve commented before on the increasing difficulty I experience every year in putting one of these challenges together.  Yes, with each one, I use up more material, but the greater problem is the expanding knowledge base accessible to search engines.  Bits of information which were too obscure for the Internet ten years ago now pop up in multiple places with a simple Google search.  And if the answer is too easy to find that way, I toss the question out.


Fortunately, I’ve had some trivia questions in my back pocket for years.  I had planned to use them for this year’s quiz.  Unfortunately, a Google check of each of them last month revealed that the answers to four of them were too readily uncovered on line.  So I had to reject those and come up with four new ones.  Then, at the last minute, I discovered the answer to one of the new four got several hits when I ran them through the search engine.  Fortunately, I was bailed out by our old pal, Eric Sofer, the Silver Age Fogey, who provided me with some material.  One of the questions this year was provided by him.


I know that most of you know the rules to my Silver-Age challenges, but just in case someone stumbles onto this page by mistake and decides to give it a shot, here are the rules of engagement:


1.  All of the questions, and answers, are drawn from Silver-Age material. That is, anything produced by DC from the publication of Showcase # 4 (Sep.-Oct., 1956) to December, 1968, which I demark as the end of the Silver Age.  If your answer comes from outside that period, then it is invalid.  For example, if I were to ask “What is the space sector patrolled by Tomar Re, the Green Lantern of Xudar?” and you answered “Space sector 2813,” you would be wrong.  During the Silver Age, Tomar Re’s space sector was “9”; “2813” was a Bronze Age revision.


The Silver-Age limitation is a tricky thing to keep in mind.  Even the veteran quiz-takers here slip up sometimes.  (Remember the “Per the Legion Constitution, who is the only person that the Legion Leader is answerable to?” fiasco?)


2.  I’m definitely not infallible, also something to which the veteran quiz-takers will attest. I might have missed something, somewhere, in twelve years of DC publication.  If you come up with an answer that meets the criteria of the question and can cite the Silver-Age reference, then I will gladly award you credit.  “But I always thought . . . “ explanations won’t cut it, though.


3.  I’ve got no problem with anybody using a search engine to look for answers. I try to make my questions as Google-proof as possible.  The right answers are difficult to find with a search engine, though I cannot say impossible.  At least once, I tripped myself up when an article I had written for another site contained the answer to a question from that year’s quiz, and one of the players found it.


4.  There are no prizes. You’re playing for bragging rights.


Everybody got it?  O.K., then, here we go!  As always, I’ll start off with a lob . . . .


1.  For most of the run of the Manhunter from Mars series, members of the Middletown police department comprised the supporting cast. But who was the never-seen-but-occasionally-referred-to police commissioner of the Middletown police department?  His last name will be sufficient.

2.  Name the biggest/tallest building in Central City.


3.  What was---or I guess, technically, what will be---the civilian identity of Superman’s great-great-great-great-grandson, Superman VII?


4.  When Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson are lounging around Wayne Manor, what signal alerts them to an intruder in the Batcave?

 5.  The Blackhawks didn’t spend the entire Silver Age going after cheesy costumed crooks like the Hoopster and Mister Safari. For a brief time, they tackled serious missions handed to them by their contact at the United Nations.  Who was he?


6.  This alters a super-powered Kryptonian’s physical form into specifically whatever he’s thinking of at the time. What am I talking about?

7.  Who was the first DC character of the Silver Age to be introduced in his own title, rather than be given a try-out in Showcase, The Brave and the Bold, or another magazine first?

8.  What was the name of the boyhood club to which Ray (the Atom) Palmer belonged?


9.  An examination of the stories about Superman’s boyhood on Earth show that Martha Kent knitted baby Clark two playsuits from the blankets swaddling him in his rocket from Krypton. One of the playsuits was eventually repurposed into his Superboy costume.  What happened to the other playsuit?


10.  What feature is provided in the council room of the Secret Sanctuary to keep Aquaman alive when Justice League meetings run longer than an hour?



I’ll provide the answers next month.  In the meantime, I look forward to your responses and the commentary that always results from them. 


Good luck!

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  • Relying on memory I will take a shot at the two that I believe I know before more knowledgeable folks chime in.

    Number 3 - Klar Ken T-5477 (in full disclosure I needed to look up his number designation)

    Number 7 - Captain Storm (you didn't specify a super hero so I think Storm may be it.)

    Looking forward to finding out the correct answers on these.

  • For Number 3, I think you got the name right, doc, but I'm not sure that's the right answer.

  • more for guess for today -

    Number 5 - The Blackhawks received orders from Mr Cipher.

    That's pretty much it for me on this group of questions. 

  • Hmm... we shall see.

    The Baron said:

    For Number 3, I think you got the name right, doc, but I'm not sure that's the right answer.

  • #10--There was a shower installed above his seat that sprayed water on him. 

  • #6--a cloud of Red Kryptonite "gas" in deep space.

  • #4--a lamp in their living room would flash on and off.

  • #1. I’m going with Commisioner Meade.  Diane Meade, the comissioner’s daughter, is introduced in Detective #246 as a probationary policewoman.  She is reintroduced in #275 after which she becomes a series regular.

  • I'll answer No. One and then restrain myself.

    Diane Meade was the commissioner's daughter, so the commissioner's last name is Meade.

  • 3.Kanton K-73 (Action Comics #338)

    5.Mr Cypher (Blackhawk #196)

    7.From memory, Scooter.

    9.It became Beppo's costume.

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