UNO

 
Full Name: Blake, Jim
Nationality: American
Organization: United Nations
Occupation Agent

Creator: Charles A. Winter
Time Span: 1946 - 1948
ABOUT THE SERIES

       Uno is an agent for the United Nations.
       Technically he is Jim Blake, the U.N.'s "trouble-shooter".
       As stated in the first recorded adventure: "When the United States beat the Axis into surrender and emerged victorious from the most colossal war in history, they formed the United Nations Organization (U.N.O.) to help keep the world peace. But knowing there would be problems whose solutions would require unusual tactics and handling, the Security Council of the U.N.O. has secretly hired famed trouble-shooter Jim Blake! Known only to a few members of the Security Council, Blake operates under the name of 'Uno' - the United Nations Trouble-shooter!"
       So Blake assumes that codename and it is by that he is best known though he does not especially try to hid behind it. After that first adventure, it appears as though he has been busy because people seem to know him, as Uno, wherever he travels. Usually he is welcome by the powers that be because of his ability to help them out of trouble but sometimes there is hesitation, explained by him when he stated once "where I show my face it usually means trouble".
       Uno is a hands-on kind of operative, though fist-on might be more accurate. He has no qualms about jumping into a fray and letting the bad guy have it with a left or a right. He, unfortunately for his skull, is on the receiving end of things as well.
       Though we do not have a large number of adventures of Blake/Uno, those we do have show him in the company of beautiful women and showing appreciation for their presence which is reciprocated. One lady on the side of the bad guys, when Uno is revealed, commented "So that is the great Uno! Well, well -- he is a handsome dog, is he not?". Later he will run into an undercover female agent on his side who shows her happiness as seeing his having escaped a nasty trap by planting her lips squarely on him. Uno, being a 40s man of action, though, will chide her "Easy, honey! Don't let your enthusiasm run away with you! There no time for that now!" Later he encounters the bad side woman again and entreats her to "come over to my side, beautiful. I can do more for you". When asked what he could do, he is the one doing the lip-planting. Apparently it works because she switches sides with a "mmm -- it's had quite an effect." [Note to bad side ladies falling for Uno. It did not work out well for her though her dying request was for him to kiss her again. Must have been some kiss.]

COMIC BOOKS AND GRAPHIC NOVELS

Number of Stories:9
First Appearance:1946
Last Appearance:1948

       Ace Magazine was a company created, according to Wikipedia, by Aaron and Rose Wyn using the A. A. Wyn's Magazine Publishers company as the foundation. It got into comics in 1940 and stuck around until 1956 where it was used as one of the shiny examples of excessive violence and other unsavory influences on the boys of the country. It had in its life a pretty impressive lineup of comic book titles running the gamut from superheroes to romance, westerns to futuristic.
       The imprint Super-Mystery Comics was one its most successful lines. It was in that magazine that the popular (for a while) Magno and Davey whooped bad guys on a regular basis. Each issue had two or three other storylines, one of the best of which was, IMHO, Mr. Risk. The comic came out bi-monthly giving the readers 6 issues a year.
       Uno came along in the second half of the magazine's life, there for all of year 6 and half of year 7 before vanishing.

Note: the titles in quotes are my own invention.

1 'The Mystery of the Missing British Diplomat' 'The Mystery of the Missing British Diplomat'
Published by Ace Magazines
Contributors: Charles A. Winter (possible writer and artist)
Copyright: 08/1946

From Super-Mystery Comics v6-1 - 11 pages - In Vienna, former Nazi agents kidnap a British diplomat who they think has plans for the atomic bomb on him. Uno flies to Austria to find and free the man.

2 'The Mystery of the Pocket Watch' 'The Mystery of the Pocket Watch'
Published by Ace Magazines
Contributors: Charles A. Winter (possible writer and artist)
Copyright: 10/1946

From Super-Mystery Comics v6-2 - 12 pages - A world-wide organization intending to reestablish fascism around the globe is up to no good in South America. A pocket watch handed to a foreign correspondent plays an important role and it is enough to send Uno to Rio. From there things get quite confusing.

3 'The Mystery of the Sacred Slipper' 'The Mystery of the Sacred Slipper'
Published by Ace Magazines

Copyright: 12/1946

From Super-Mystery Comics v6-3 - 12 pages - The sacred slipper of Mohammed, "greatest treasure of the East" was being moved from a vault in Istanbul to its rightful shrine when it is stolen. Fearing a religious war, Uno is sent to Baghdad to find it.

4 The Baron's Last Banquet The Baron's Last Banquet
Published by Ace Magazines
Contributors: Ken Battefield (artist)
Copyright: 02/1947

From Super-Mystery Comics v6-4 - 10 pages - A Baron representing numerous smaller nations is giving a speech to advocate on their behalf but the head of an opposing force is determined to undermine his work. Uno is ordered to safeguard him.

5 The Mystery of the Missing Memoirs The Mystery of the Missing Memoirs
Published by Ace Magazines

Copyright: 04/1947

From Super-Mystery Comics v6-5 - 9 pages - The late Prime Minister of the kingdom of Balkania has written an important memoir which has now gone missing. Jim Blake, Uno, as been brought in to find it before it is destroyed.

6 'The Mystery of the Balkan Ambassador' 'The Mystery of the Balkan Ambassador'
Published by Ace Magazines

Copyright: 07/1947

From Super-Mystery Comics v6-6 - 10 pages - To foment war between two Balkan nations, agents from another nation have killed one ambassador and sent a look-alike to a UN meeting to kill the other. Uno must stop a war from resulting.

7 Treasure For Conquest Treasure For Conquest
Published by Ace Magazines
Contributors: Ken Battefield (artist)
Copyright: 09/1947

From Super-Mystery Comics v7-1 - 11 pages - A half-billion dollars of money and treasure had been hidden in a Balkan castle in case the Nazis lost power. Now that they have, a group of them want to get it to mount a return. It is Uno's job to get to it first.

8 'The Mystery of the Stolen Nuke' 'The Mystery of the Stolen Nuke'
Published by Ace Magazines

Copyright: 11/1947

From Super-Mystery Comics v7-2 - 11 pages - The US is giving the UN a nuclear bomb for testing and for clearing land in Brazil's Matto Grosso region. A group of Nazis are planning on stealing it to get power back.

9 'The Mystery of the Kidnapped Sheik' 'The Mystery of the Kidnapped Sheik'
Published by Ace Magazines
Contributors: Ken Battefield (artist)
Copyright: 01/1948

From Super-Mystery Comics v7-3 - 12 pages - When the sheik of an oil-rich region of the Middle East refuses to sign with former Nazis, they kidnap him knowing his abduction would bring about riots and hopefully destroy the oil derricks. Uno is sent to get the sheik back.

MY COMMENTS

       This was an short but interesting series which showed one person's hoped for vision of how the United Nations would work, presaging but a half decade the same sort of tales John Drake, Danger Man, would give on television. Nowhere near as good of storytelling but similar globe-trotting fix-it man for the U.N. Calling him UNO seemed a bit much but ....
       These were worth the few minutes it took to read each one and they provided entertainment but I can see why the character did not stick around. Fair but not compelling.

GRADE

My Grade: B

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