Public Domain Super Heroes


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Torque leading battle for prison ship

Real Name


First Appearance

City of the Living Dead (1952)

Original Publisher

Avon Periodicals

Created by

A.C. Hollingsworth


Torque and other prisoners were being transported from a Caribean (sic) Penal Colony on a penal ship. Torque leads an escape and insurrection to kill the crew and secure the ship while it travels in the Gulf of Mexico. He orders the ship ashore.

The ship wrecks when it strikes a reef. Torque and the other criminals escape, taking refuge in the ruins of the ancient Aztec city of Quetana. In the city, they discover a vast treasure trove of gold Aztec relics. The men begin to die from yellow fever.

Once they are all dead, Quetzal, the Aztec God of Justice, appears to deliver punishment to the criminals for their transgression of his sacred city.

Quetzal turns them into undead, shambling remnants of the men they once were, cursed to wander as the living dead residents of the city.

A half-century or so later, Professor Bob Martin enters Quetana in search of Aztec artifacts. Anne Martin, his wife, accompanies him, along with his assistants Red and Grogan. When they discover the treasure, they are seen by some of the Living Dead. They escape, but Red and Grogan, who followed to kill the Martins, ran into a group of the undead and were killed for their blood. "Blood! Blood we must have!" they say.


Torque ordering the Martins's fate

The undead who attacked Red and Grogan were discovered to have drained the bodies by their comrades. Undead Torque says to the attackers, "You took more than your share!"

In reply, one of the undead informs Torque and the others that the Martins remained. Torque orders them captured, which is summarily accomplished. Torque manages the doling out of the blood, ordering Professor Bob Martin donate his portion first, keeping Anne chained for later.

Quetzal appears, and tells the Living Dead to knock it off. "Stop! Evil ones--go back to your eternal sufferings! Back, I say!" Quetzal lets the Martins go, because they were not as evil as the others. Red and Grogan are re-animated, and stay on as permanent residents of the City of the Living Dead.


Torque is a natural leader, a ruthless fighter, and handy with a sabre.

Public Domain Appearances

City of the Living Dead one shot

See Also

Story on the Digital Comics Museum

Also on Fandom

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