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Detective Sergeant Carey (Early Golden Age)


Detective Sergeant Carey and his sidekick Sleepy continue their four page stories.  There is nothing remarkable for the first few months apart from a decent tale of a university professor who dresses as a giant bat to test his substitute blood on sleeping students.

Issue 59 deals with stolen Chinese War Relief funds, and Carey finds the saboteur ruining test flights of a new war plane in 61, and then from issues 63 to 67 Casey is dealing only with foreign spies and saboteurs.  He finds them everywhere.  He finds an enemy sub when he and Sleepy go fishing.

And perhaps because the writer so clearly felt this worth talking about, these are some of the better stories in the entire run.  In issue 63 Carey goes to investigate a supposed haunted house down on the waterfront, and discovers a plan to destroy the Pacific fleet as it sails through the “canal” (and they seem to be referring to the Panama Canal).  Carey pilots a plane down, intercepts the foreign agents, and flies his plane into theirs, exploding both as he parachutes down, with an aerial view of the canal below.

Sin Fu makes a return appearance, kidnapping Diana Dart, the daughter of the police captain, to lure Carey into his hands.  The squad saves them, and Sin Fu heads back to prison.

In his final story, in issue 72, Carey is ordered to protect a chinese banker who has flown over to negotiate a war loan, but the man is killed by poison gas.  Carey tracks the killers, and when he finds them shoots through the window from the fire escape, hitting the gas canister, causing it to explode.  The room is destroyed, and Carey is blasted as well, falling off the fire escape.

In the final panel we see him in the hospital, heavily bandaged.  That he survived at all is amazing, and I am certain his series ended because he was now incapacitated for life.

Detective Sergeant Carey:  More Fun Comics 51 – 72 (Jan 40 – Oct 41)

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Detective Sergeant Carey


This series begins as Detective Sergeant Carey of the Chinatown Squad, and almost the entire sporadic run in New Adventure Comics would consist of a serial that sends him and his partner, Sleepy, to China to find and rescue a kidnapped heiress.  The first few chapters do take place in some city’s Chinatown (the city is never specified, but appears to be on the east coast).

After a number of people go missing in an empty boarding house on the Lane of a Thousand Bleeding Dragons, Carey and Sleepy are sent to investigate.  The house has a secret passage, through which chinese operatives of Sin Fu emerge to kidnap people – and they grab Carey and Sleepy.  While prisoners, they spot Lola Manners, the missing girl, who frees them, but in trying to escape the underground chambers they run right into Sin Fu and his men.  A squad of police siege the house, and Sin Fu escapes, with Lola.  Carey and Sleepy are sent to China to retrieve her.

There seems to be a missing chapter at this point.  The instalment in issue 23 has then being sent to China, but in issue 24 they are already there, with Chinese government operative Lee Fun, whose house has been set on fire after they have all been attacked by Sin Fu’s men.  After a brief sea battle with Sin Fu’s men, the Chinese Army get involved as well. Sleepy literally falls into Sin Fu’s cave hide-out, and after they rescue Lola the army destroy the base, capturing Sin Fu.

The last instalment in New Adventure Comics has Carey and Sleepy sailing back to the US, when they get a message from the San Francisco police that there are drugs being smuggled on the ship.  Carey has little trouble finding the doctor who is behind this, using a seemingly dead patient as his mule.

The series then moves over to More Fun Comics, as they fly back to their unnamed home city, and catch a fugitive murderer on the airplane.

No sooner are they home than they are sent on vacation, heading to the “north woods” where they discover the cabin they rented is being used by counterfeiters.  This story is clearly meant to continue into the next chapter, but instead the series amends its title to Detective Sergeant Carey, and he is back in the city, solving a murder at a museum.

For the duration of this era, his stories would be all self-contained, mostly running four pages.  There are two that are only two pages long, but these end with no resolution, and it seems they were written as four pagers, but only the first two were published.  Very strange.

The stories and art are decent, but few are memorable.  A murderous movie theatre usher, a murdered painter who was painting over a stolen masterpiece, a phony ghost, a political assassination aboard a royal yacht.  All are tied up quickly and easily by Carey.

In the last story of the period, Carey investigates a case in which jurors who sent a men to the electric chair are being killed.  Though the rest of the force believe the man has come back from the dead to seek vengeance, Carey discovers it’s the man’s father who is the culprit.

Detective Sergeant Carey continues in the Early Golden Age

Detective Sergeant Carey:  New Adventure Comics  14 – 17 (Mar – July 37),  19 – 20  (Sep – Oct 37),  23 – 24  (Jan – Feb 38),  26 – 28  (May – July 38)

More Fun  35 – 50  (Sep 38 – Dec 39)

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