DC Comics History
DC Comics History: Pow-Wow Smith (1960 - 1964: the Silver Age)
By Deejay Dayton
June 3, 2017 - 16:48

DC Comics



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As Pow-Wow Smith’s series drew to a close during the period 1960 – 1964: the Silver Age, a romantic subplot was introduced. Although probably not intended, this served to bring the series to a strong, happy conclusion.

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Gardner Fox and Carmine Infantino serve up a good Pow-Wow Smith story in Western Comics 82, with a nice bit of a twist at the end. The plot deals with Smith pursuing thieves who have robbed the assaying office, and the Sioux lawman is alerted to the crimes, and to the whereabouts of the men he is after, by mysterious smoke signals.

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Only at the very end, after he has captured the bad guys, do we discover that the smoke signals are being sent by Fleetfoot, a young Sioux woman hoping to win the affections of Pow-Wow Smith.  As the story ends, she feels that she has failed in her task.

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Fleetfoot returns, with a much larger role, in the Pow-Wow Smith story issue 83. The shaman of Fleetfoot's tribe gives her a number of charmed items, which she is to give to Pow-Wow Smith, and which will cause him to propose to her. While the romance does not go exactly as Fleetfoot had hoped, the two do spend a lot of time together, and grow much closer over the course of this story. 

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The objects each get used by Smith as he catches a few bad guys along the way, but the crime part of the tale is very much secondary to the romance plot.

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Western Comics 84 introduces Pow-Wow's Smith's twin brother, who he never knew existed. Fleetfoot is the first to meet Horse Hunter, who shows up dressed as his older brother.  He explains that the Sioux regularly gave away younger twins, and Fleetfoot backs this up, so perhaps it's even true.  But Smith is suspicious of this hitherto never mentioned brother, and suspects he is a phony.

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As a result, when the pair go after some bank robbers, Smith misinterprets Horse Hunter's actions, certain that he is in league with the criminals.  He's not, and Pow-Wow Smith figures this out in time to save his brother's life.  We also discover that Horse Hunter is already married, which sort of gives some impetus to Fleetfoot to get Smith to marry her.

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Western Comics 85 sees a happy conclusion to Pow-Wow Smith's series.  Playing off the events in the previous few issues, Smith and Fleetfoot participate in an odd engagement ceremony, one which takes place over a couple of days.  In the middle of this, Smith has to deal with bandits, which delays him from showing up for the second part of the ceremony.

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But the man he aided comes to his defense, explaining the situation, and the series ends with Pow-Wow Smith and Fleetfoot engaged.  Let's just say they are married.  There is no reason to think they won't be.

Pow-Wow Smith makes a couple more brief appearances in the DC Universe, the next in Detective Comics 500, in 1980.

Pow-Wow Smith: Western Comics 79 – 85 (Jan/Feb 60 – Jan/Feb 61)

Next up – Roy Raymond, TV Detective!



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DC Comics History: Pow-Wow Smith (1960 - 1964: the Silver Age)
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