August, 1985

An exceedingly clever mini-comic, I first encountered DISHMAN when the first six installments were compiled into a single regular issue by Eclipse. It made me want to read more, and I eventually managed to hunt down the first 10 issues of the minicomic. If anybody has any further issues that they’d be willing to part with, they should drop me a line.

DISHMAN was an intelligent send-up of the whole super hero genre, yet managed to employ many of the best elements of that genre to good effect. When  schoolteacher Paul Mahler discovers that long-term exposure to his radioactive dished (which was based on a true fact about a particular brand of dishes at the time), has given him the power to clean and replace soiled dishes with a wave of his hand, he’s inspired to become a super hero. From there, he has to contend with such problems as having a costume made (two–for when one’s in the wash) and the attendant cost, taking the bus into the city where there’s likely to be more crime, getting back into his apartment after he’s locked himself out (no pockets in his uniform to hold his keys, of course), and the fact that his fiancee thinks he’s out of his mind. Creator John MacLeod even came up with a brilliant way in which Dishman could use his powers to foil an actual mugging.

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