Last week, I mentioned that the DC hero Wild Dog became a supporting character in a Young Animal imprint series called Cave Carson Has a Cybernetic Eye. I even read and reviewed the first trade for that series.
So, who the heck is Cave Carson?
I am glad someone theoretically asked.
Back in 1957, DC Comics had some success with a group of guys in purple jumpsuits called the Challengers of the Unknown. They didn’t have any special powers. They were just a brave bunch of guys who explored the weird stuff that was constantly happening in their world, surviving and saving the day as needed. Not bad for a group whose only superpower was being created by Jack Kirby as a potential forerunner group to the Fantastic Four.
But the success of the Challengers led DC to try some more explorer-type heroes. These guys tended to form small groups of adventurers that specialized in some area of exploration, such as the Sea Devils and their deep-sea diving or Rip Hunter and his time travel. These groups then tended to meet weird stuff that almost certainly doesn’t exist in the real world, but comic book readers of the era didn’t care, so why not?
And then there was Cave Carson who, with a name like that, obviously explored caves and other underground tunnels and structures. He first appeared in Brave and the Bold #31 in August of 1960, and he is unique amongst all these other explorer characters for one reason: he was the only one who never got his own series back in the day.
Yeah, that actually made finding pictures of the guy with the neat beard and the helmet with a lamp on it rather difficult outside of the current, aforementioned Young Animal series. He’s the guy other DC heroes call up when they need to know something about stuff happening underground, and that doesn’t happen very often. He’s helped lots of heroes in various brief cameos, and sometimes even joins a superteam like the Forgotten Heroes, but there’s never really been a Cave Carson series.
You know, until now.
Then again, with a name like “Cave,” that probably does limit his career choices. It’s a good thing this is the DC Earth. There’s probably all kinds of weird things underground.