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Coming soon

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Fred Hembeck

The Atom
Uploaded January 28, 2000

It's a double-shot of the Atom!

He's so small, I figured that I should throw him in twice...

Like so many other heroes created in the 1950s, the Atom was a scientist in his day-to-day life. He obtained the power to shrink himself down to sub-microscopic size by experimenting with an incredibly dense fragment of a white dwarf star. In addition to manipulating his size, he could also change his weight at will from his normal 180 lbs. down to next-to-nothing. The latter allowed him to glide along air currents, to achieve a semblance of flying.

Another favourite transportation trick was to make a phone call, and then travel across the line at sub-microscopic size to arrive at the destination in an instant. It's a good thing he never dialed a wrong number; you can imagine the results. You're alone in your apartment when the phone rings; as you pick up the receiver, a costumed man explodes towards you out of the receiver. Heart attack time!

The Atom was an early member of the Justice League of America, joining shortly after Green Arrow. I've never quite understood why they brought in someone who could get taken out just by the villain-du-jour not watching where he's walking, but it's not like I had any say in the matter.

Yes, I know, he took out Dr. Light. That's true, but hardly exceptional.

Oh, that Randy Newman person he's complaining about above? Randy is best known these days for his songwriting and film scores, including his recent Golden Globe win for 'Toy Story 2'. Back when Fred drew this strip, Randy had a novelty hit with the song 'Short People'.

As in, "Short people got no reason to live."

You understand now why the Atom might get upset.

- NP

The copyrights, trademarks and publication rights to Fred's cartoons belong to DC Comics, Marvel Comics, and Fred Hembeck where appropriate. Proud Robot Productions graphics, site design, cartoon re-coloring and commentary copyrights belong to Neil Polowin and Proud Robot Productions.

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