Full Name: Alex Dartanian
Series Name: The Protector
Nationality: American
Organization: Inner Court Executions
Occupation Agent

Creator: Rich Rainey
Time Span: 1982 - 1985

       Alex Dartanian is the lead agent with I.C.E.
       He was for several years an agent for the CIA until he decided to go into business for himself. Rather than become a freelance agent, however, he started a protection service catering to the rich and powerful. His new enterprise proved to be a considerable success. Within a relatively short time, the company was over 100 employees strong and occupied a ten-story office building in New York City.
       The Dartanian Security Service had an interesting employment plan, an almost revolving door policy that allowed its people to take time away to work for the various governmental agencies they used to be connected with. In fact, the company's headquarters was described as a 'clearinghouse' for departments such as the CIA, NSA, and DEA which often used the firm as a front for its people. In appreciation, these bureaus were quite forthcoming when it came to loaning credentials and other bonafides.
       To the public, the name of Dartanian was synonymous with security, so much so that the press referred to him as the 'Protector', a nom-de-guerre that was both amusing and quite good for business.
       But in addition to running a security company working closing with the Intelligence community, Dartanian also was the head of an elite task force dedicated to fighting the enemies of the United States both foreign and domestic. The men and women who worked with him at the Inner Court Executions were known to be the hardest, meanest, deadliest of people in order to survive the many secret missions they accepted. Dartanian was even better.


Number of Books:6
First Appearance:1982
Last Appearance:1985

1 Venus Underground Venus Underground
Written by Rich Rainey
Copyright: 1982

The kidnapping of a U.S. Senator's young daughter brings ICE into the affairs of an international white slavery outfit.

2 The Porn Tapes The Porn Tapes
Written by Rich Rainey
Copyright: 1983

The gorgeous sex idol Melonie Grand was a stunning double for the late Marilyn Monroe and as such, much sought after by movie producers. Someone, however, wants her as dead as her predecessor and that takes ICE into the sleazy world of pornography.

3 Hit Parade Hit Parade
Written by Rich Rainey
Copyright: 1983

Something has got the KGB up in arms and determined to eliminate every CIA agent it can find. When the Agency seems incapable of mounting any sort of defense, it becomes the task of ICE to head to Vienna and freeze the opposition.

4 Cult 45 Cult 45
Written by Rich Rainey
Copyright: 1984

When three CIA agents go bad, organize a large band of mercenaries, and prepare to destroy the American government, they quickly prove they have the training and the resources to bring it off unless ICE can stop them.

5 Nightmare Network Nightmare Network
Written by Rich Rainey
Copyright: 1984

The technology for transplanting healthy organs into sick bodies has reached such a high level that a crime organization steps in to help the wealthy with the much needed organs, even if the original owners aren't done with them.

6 The Dragon Slayings The Dragon Slayings
Written by Rich Rainey
Copyright: 1985

A Soviet-trained psychic has gone into business for himself. By infiltrating the Defense Department's psychic warfare program, he is either turning his victims or killing them. The government calls in Dartanian to stop the slaughter.


       Other than the idea of a rich agent able to do things the government can't, a plot line I have always enjoyed, there isn't too much for a spy-fi fan to latch onto. For a very successful businessman, the idea of finesse or subtlety doesn't seem to occur to the main character who would rather blast his way into somewhere with his Skorpion M61 than knock. The action is certainly there but not much else.
       And it is a shame because the background that the author created had so much potential. Still, the books were published by Pinnacle which was never known for anything other than action so it is not a surprise. Just a disappointment.


My Grade: C-

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