While the Golden Age (1938-1954) supplies such non-luminaries as the Red Bee, The Black Dwarf, and Doctor Hormone, the book also presents some of the most ridiculous heroes from other eras.
Earlier decades gave us Marvel truck-driving hero U.S. 1 and DC's dadaistically ridiculous 'New Look' Blackhawks and the Metamorpho-wannabe Ultra the Multi-Alien.
|CTE forced an early retirement|
Most of these heroes had fairly short runs, demonstrating that the marketplace sometimes knows what it's doing. Some are absurdly offensive (Mr. Muscles conquers polio by working out a lot). Some are awesome and recognized as such (Joe Simon's Prez got a terrific return appearance in Neil Gaiman's Sandman in the early 1990's).
Some have even moved into the mainstream (Steve Ditko's hilarious Squirrel Girl). Some are truly screwed-up product advertisements (Marvel's NFL Superpro, who really deserved a crossover with Marvel's Kickers, Inc., a team of crime-fighting professional football players).
There's now a second volume of this focusing on goofy super-villains. I'll have to pick that up. In any case, hours of fun and education make this Highly Recommended.