Lee Falk’s Phantom

 

Phantom is perhaps one of the most popular comic character that is still ruling the comics world for past 75 years. He is immortal, really immortal. Phantom also called the “Ghost who walks” was born from the imagination of Lee Falk, the great visionary writer.

Phantom is a sophisticated avatar of “Tarzan” who lives in dense jungle of Africa, fighting the criminals, pirates and smugglers prevailing in the society. Phantom debuted in the world of comics on February 17th 1936 and became an instant hit in just one go. Even though Phantom was inspired by Edgar Rice Burroughs fictional character “Tarzan”, Lee Falk’s Phantom was completely different from Tarzan. When gaming consoles were nowhere in picture, comics were the hottest entertaining medium for kids.

The Phantom comics released by Kings Feature Syndicate were immediately sold in bookstores and the demand for Phantom comics was very huge as similar to the new released book of Harry Potter Series. Times of India Publication released the stories of Phantom in form of Indrajal comics in early 80’s and thus Phantom became a popular comic hero even in India.

Introduction and Origin of Phantom – The origin of Phantom dates back to 1525 where a sailor named Christopher Walker is found fatally wounded on the beach of bengala. When the sailor regains his consciousness, he realizes that his ship was attacked by Singh pirates and his father was brutally murdered in the pirate attack. He also recollects the incident where a severe tornado has also perished the ship of pirates. Seeing the bloody destruction inflicted by the pirates, Christopher Walker pledges to become a masked crusader and protect the human race from the pirates and his coming generation will also follow the oath.

Thus Christopher Walker becomes the 1st phantom and becomes a threat to pirates, smugglers and international terrorists operating in various nations. After the death of 1st Phantom, his next generation continue the legacy of becoming Phantom and vanquish the crime from the world.

Every Phantom story written by Lee Falk was unique in its own. Lee Falk even included prominent personalities such as William Shakespeare and Abraham Lincoln in his stories to make the Phantom stories more realistic and entertaining. All the Phantom stories written by Lee Falk were fully packed with thrilling action, suspense, romance, emotion, conspiracy and adventure. Moreover, reading Phantom comics was like seeing a Hollywood blockbuster movie. Presently Kit Walker is the 21st Phantom who lives with fiancée Diana Palmer in the skull cave and is continuing the legacy to fight against crime and piracy.

Movie Adaptation – A 1997 Hollywood motion picture featured actor Billy Zane as Phantom, who has to stop deadly criminals from finding a mysterious skull. Even the motion picture was equally entertaining. I hope someday a new motion picture comes up on Lee’s Falk Phantom with Mel Gibson as Phantom as Catherine Zeta-Jones as Diana Palmer.

I am really a die-hard fan of Phantom and I still take a timeout to read the graphic novels of Phantom during my free time. Hope you love this post.

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Prashant Badiger

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