Black Dragon Society (comics)

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For the real life version see Black Dragon Society
Black Dragon Society
Black Dragon Society, art by Tom Grummett
Publication information
Publisher DC Comics
First appearance All Star Comics #12 (August 1942) (DC)
Master Comics #21 (Fawcett) (December 1941)
Military Comics #24 (November 1943) (Quality)
Created by Gardner Fox (writer)
Jack Burnley (artist)
In-story information
Type of organization Terrorist
Leader(s) Dragon King

The Black Dragon Society are currently a group of fictional DC Comics ecoterrorists originally introduced in 1942's All Star Comics issue #12 (August 1942) as Japanese saboteurs. They were created by Gardner Fox and Jack Burnley.

Publication history[edit]

The Black Dragon Society is based on a real world WW II organization of the same name; however, this society wasn't nearly as sinister as its comic book counterparts. Three different comics companies used the Black Dragon Society as villains in the 1940s, they were National Comics (DC Comics), Fawcett Comics and Quality Comics.

Interesting enough DC Comics came to own the other two companies so all the different incarnations of the Black Dragon Society now belong to them. The Fawcett Comics version debuted in Master Comics #21 (December 1941), it had Minute-Man fighting against the Society, and was created by Bill Woolfolk and Charles Sultan. The DC Comics version debuted in All Star Comics #12 (August 1942) and was created by Gardner Fox and Jack Burnley, it had the "The Black Dragon Menace" in which a Japanese spy ring called the Black Dragon Society of Japan steals eight American inventions and kidnaps their inventors. And the Quality Comics version debuted in Military Comics #24 (November 1943), and was created by Ted Udall and Vernon Henkel.

Fictional team history[edit]

Justice Battalion[edit]

The Justice Battalion are given orders to retrieve eight stolen military weapons, and subdue the agents of the Black Dragon Society who had orchestrated the thefts. Starman took on a huge dirigible which acted as a flying aircraft carrier and the planes it housed. The Society, loyal to Imperial Japan, was to use the planes to attack an American city but Starman prevented this. Because of Johnny Thunder's bumbling the whole Battalion was transported to the American HQ of the Black Dragon Society and, after a quick fight and a call to the US Army, the threat posed by the Black Dragons was over.

Other Battles[edit]

The Black Dragon Society as an anti-U.S. organization also fought Minute-Man in the pages of Master Comics # 21, the Black Condor in Crack Comics # 28, the Sniper in Military Comics # 24, and Johnny Everyman in the pages of Comic Cavalcade # 10 during World War Two.

Dragon King[edit]

The Dragon King was a Japanese national and scientific genius who struck off from the Society early on. He broke away and setup his own splinter faction. It was the Dragon King using a combination of the Occult and Super-Science who created the forcefield that protected the Axis countries from the superhuman operatives of the Allies. He somehow was able to combine the energies of the Spear of Destiny with those of the Holy Grail to accomplish this. At some point after the war he develops an immortality serum that transforms him into a reptilian humanoid.

Black Dragons in action
art by Tom Grummett

Modern Dragons[edit]

The modern versions of the Black Dragon Society show up in the pages of Power Company #1. This version appears to be made up of fanatical, east Asian Eco-terrorists with the stated intention to put an end to the exploitation of Pacific oil fields by the west. They take the executive board of Petroil hostage, and kill all their security and support staff. A superteam known as the Power Company shows up and shuts down the Black Dragons before they can kill their hostages.

However, at the end of the story, it is revealed that this was only a TV commercial for the Power Company. The Black Dragon Society in the set consists of dressed-up actors. Whether the commercial was based on a real incident, and if the Power Company ever battled the real Black Dragons, is not known.

Other DCU Criminal Organizations[edit]