Tex Thompson (far left) debuts as Americommando in Action Comics #52.
Action Comics #1|
|Alter ego||Harry "Tex" Thompson|
|Notable aliases||Mr. America, Americommando, The Coordinator|
Well trained spy|
Great hand to hand combatant
Use of a whip and a chemically altered carpet
Tex Thompson is a fictional superhero owned by DC Comics who has used the costumed identities Mr. America and The Americommando. Created by Ken Fitch and Bernard Baily, his first appearance was in Action Comics #1 (June 1938), the same comic that introduced Superman.
Fictional character biography
Thompson is originally a blond-haired Texas boy who leaves a possible future as an oil baron to pursue a more adventurous lifestyle with his friend, Bob Daley. This changes in 1940 when the Nazis sink an American liner carrying food to Europe. Thompson is watching over this liner and is believed dead. The disaster inspires him to don a patriotic costume, dye his hair black, and wield a whip to fight for his country as Mr. America. He also had a flying carpet which doubled as a cape. His friend Bob Daley dons a homemade costume (similar to that of the original Red Tornado) and becomes his sidekick Fatman.
Mr. America was a member of the All-Star Squadron, but his main contribution to the war effort came later; Thompson is asked by President Roosevelt himself to go battle the Nazis in Germany as The Americommando. Thompson does this by becoming "Hauptmann Riker" and infiltrating the Gestapo. His most frequent adversaries are Mister Ito (also known as The Little One), a German/Japanese diminutive assassin, and The Queen Bee. He works for the Americans for several years behind enemy lines.
His last appearance as The Americommando is in The Justice Society Returns: National Comics #1: Mr. Terrific encounters Thompson during the bombing of Dresden and the two work together to save innocent German lives. After Thompson reveals to Mr. Terrific that there are no munitions factories in Dresden for the Allies to bomb, Thompson enters a burning building to save a small girl. The building collapses around him and he is never seen again.
Once again Thompson managed to escape death; he later emerges to create the Hero Hotline organization. While leading this organization, Thompson goes by the name The Coordinator. He only appeared as a shadowy figure on a communication screen, so no one knew that it was Thompson until it was revealed by the writer of Hero Hotline, Bob Rozakis.
Powers and abilities
Tex Thompson has no superpowers but he is a well-trained spy and a great hand-to-hand combatant. He sometimes used a whip as his main weapon and a carpet that he altered with chemicals which allows him to fly and doubles as a cape when not in use.
- In Freedom Fighters #7 (March 1977), the villainous Silver Ghost poses as a fictional Americommando, leader of the Crusaders (a parody of Captain America and the Invaders). This version of the character was the inspiration for the Earth-8 version and the modern Freedom Fighters villain.
- In Lord Havok and the Extremists #1-6, the Earth-8 version of Americommando is leader of a group called the Meta-Militia, an analogue of the Avengers.
- In Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters, a new Americommando appears as an agent of S.H.A.D.E. and its field leader. He kills his own speedster, Spin Doctor, for talking back to him.
- In Kingdom Come, an Americommando appears as a minor villain. After the destruction of Kansas, Americommando, along with Braintrust and the Minutemen, attempts to stop all immigration to the United States. He and his team are stopped by Superman and the Justice League.
- In Justice Society of America (vol. 3) #1, a new Mr. America — Trey Thompson, an ex-FBI agent who took justice into his own hands — debuts in the first issue and dies in the same issue. It is implied by Dr. Mid-Nite that Trey was related to the original Mr. America, when Mid-Nite says that Mr. America's bloodline was gone. However, Trey's former FBI contact, Jeffrey Graves, is later seen donning Mr. America's mask after he is fired when his connection with Trey is discovered. He later joins the Justice Society, and remains an active member. He also uses a whip, which is later upgraded by Mister Terrific so that the tip explodes on impact.
- Tex Thompson played a central role in the Golden Age miniseries. In this story, he is a crime-fighter who disappeared from the American eye in 1942 to fight the Nazi threat from within. He kills the German superhero Parsifal and Adolf Hitler himself. He returns to America as a hero and becomes a senator with presidential aspirations. Then he organizes a program to defend America from the Soviet menace with a new group of superheroes. He rallies The Atom, Robotman, and Daniel Dunbar to his cause. He uses a group of scientists to transform Dunbar into Dynaman, "a super-hero for the new age." The heroes of the story discover that Tex Thompson had actually been killed in the war; the man who returned was the Ultra-Humanite. The Ultra-Humanite told Hitler that Thompson was a spy, so they killed Thompson and put Ultra's brain into his body. The experiment which created Dynaman was in reality the Humanite putting Hitler's brain in Dunbar's body. The Ultra-Humanite is stopped by Manhunter, who had witnessed the operation, but suffered from memory loss after hitting his head trying to escape.