swift_rex_cb_03 swift_rex_cb_01 swift_rex_cb_02
Full Name: Rex Swift
Series Name: Swift Of The Secret Service
Nationality: American
Organization: Secret Service
Occupation Agent

Creator: Unknown
Time Span: 1939 - 1940


Rex Swift is an agent with the American Secret Service.

As is not uncommon with tales told back in the late 30s and early 40s, the exact agency for whom Swift works is a tad up in the air. In the three recorded missions that exist for this heroic fellow a good case could be made that he was an agent with the then Treasury Department's Secret Service. At the same time it would not be hard to believe that the term Secret Service is being used here for the generic meaning of an intelligence agency. Hence the inclusion of Swift in this compendium.

The first item I noticed in reading these tales is the anachronistic depiction of the Chief of whatever organization Swift worked for. While Swift is shown in a suit and tie (always) his boss is wearing a military style officer's uniform complete with frilled epaulets and a bicorne hat which went out of style towards the start of WWI. That really has no significance to the jobs that Swift carries out but it is interesting.

We are told that Swift is the "Ace of the Secret Service" from which we gather that he is their best agent. References made to many cases before our meeting him, all successfully concluded by Swift, back that up. His range of cases is quite wide, too. In the three that we know about he deals with murder for profit, gem smuggling on an impressive scale, and currency counterfeiting. 

Swift is a moderately tall man in good physical shape, broad shouldered and earnest looking with a cragged, ruggedly handsome face atop of which is a bushy mane of blond hair brushed backwards. As mentioned above he is typically dressed in a suit and tie, even on vacation.

One interesting aspect of Swift's methods, shown in the third adventure, is the extreme lengths he will go to solve a case or complete a mission. In that instance he flies a single-passenger plane out over the ocean to catch up to a ship, purposefully ditching the plane into the drink and almost killing himself. He then will later have another plane fly over dangling a rope ladder to enable his escape. All to then 'appropriate' a motorcycle to race after a fleeing car, complete with a mad dash in front of a speeding locomotive and then a death-defying leap over a raised drawbridge to reach that car and leap onto it for force it to fly off a cliff. Cost: 1 crashed and sunken airplane, 1 stolen and crashed motorcycle, 1 crashed and demolished convertible, 2 dead suspects. Gain: he stopped the smuggling of a $1 mil worth of gems into the country. Would the tariff on these gems have paid for that cost?

At the end of that last mission, Swift tells an inspector how tough that assignment had been but was told in reply, "Swift, if there was no excitement in your job, you wouldn't do it, would you?"


Number of Stories:3
First Appearance:1939
Last Appearance:1940

1 Murder By Sock Murder By Sock
Published by Archie Comics
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1939

Printed in Top-Notch Comics #1, Dec. 1939 - 6 color pages.
Rex Swift sees what looks like a killing and with the help of his father goes after the man who did the deed.
Click here to read the story.

2 Against Murderous Couterfeiters Against Murderous Couterfeiters
Published by Archie Comics
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1940

Printed in Top-Notch Comics #2, Jan. 1940 - 6 color pages.
Rex Swift, the ace of the Secret Service, is given the mission of finding a gang of counterfeiters that are a murderous lot.
Click here to read the story.

3 The Smugglers The Smugglers
Published by Archie Comics
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1940

Printed in Top-Notch Comics #3, Feb. 1940 - 6 color pages.
Rex Swift is give the mission of stopping the unlawful activities of some smugglers.
Click here to read the story.


No one would read these stories these days and think anything good about them. Considering that while the comic book line in which they appeared continued for quite some time and the character did not shows it likely nothing good was thought about them 80+ years ago, either.

The artwork is not very good- though it is granted that a lot of the artwork back in those nascent days of comicbooks is that impressive.

The stories are rushed beyond reason to apparently throw in as much action as possible without worrying any about how much sense it made.

Still, it would have been a good learning platform for what does - and does not - work.


My Grade: C


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