The Phantom Detective

The Phantom Detective
The Phantom Detective.jpg
Third issue of The Phantom Detective (June 1933)
PublisherThrilling Publications
First appearanceThe Phantom Detective (February 1933)
Created byD. L. Champion
In story information
Real nameRichard Curtis Van Loan
AbilitiesExcellent detective, master of disguise and escape.
Supporting charactersFrank Havens
Muriel Havens
Steve Huston
Chip Dorlan
Jerry Lannigan
The Phantom Detective
PublisherThrilling Publications
ScheduleMonthly (#1-108)
Bi-monthly (#109-152)
Quarterly (#153-170)
GenrePulp hero
Publication dateFebruary 1933 – Summer 1953
Number of issues170
Creative team
Writer(s)"G. Wayman Jones"
"Robert Wallace"

The Phantom Detective was the second pulp hero magazine published, after The Shadow. The first issue was released in February 1933, a month before Doc Savage, which was released in March 1933. The title continued to be released until 1953, with a total 170 issues. This is the third highest number of issues for a character pulp, after The Shadow, which had 325 issues, and Doc Savage, which had 181. In western titles, Texas Rangers would have around 212 issues of their main character, known as the Lone Wolf.

Publication history

The Phantom Detective in America's Best Comics #26 (1948)

The series was published by Ned Pines' Thrilling (also known as Better or Standard) Publishing. Ned Pines had a comic book imprint, which collectors usually refer to as Nedor Comics, and The Phantom Detective had a series in their title Thrilling Comics.

Stories were credited to several pseudonyms. The first eleven Phantom Detective stories were published under the Better house pseudonym of "G. Wayman Jones", and were largely written by D. L. Champion, a.k.a. Jack D'arcy. The rest were published under the pseudonym "Robert Wallace". These were largely written by Edwin V. Burkholder, Norman A. Daniels (36+), Anatole F. Feldman, Charles Greenberg, George A. MacDonald, Laurence Donovan and C. S. Montanye. Lesser contributors included Paul Chadwick, Norvell W. Page, Paul Ernst, Emile C. Tepperman, Henry Kuttner, Ray Cummings, Ralph Oppenheim and others. Ryerson Johnson is credited with #46, The Silent Death.

There have been several reprints of Phantom Detective stories over the years. Soft porn publisher Corinth Books released the most, with 20 titles.

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