December 1963

summary written by Lou Mougin (

"The Return of General Immortus" (17 pages)
Cover: Bruno Premiani
Editor: Murray Boltinoff
Writer: Arnold Drake
Artist: Bruno Premiani

Character Notes

Villain: General Immortus


Cliff Steele is finally officially referred to as "Robotman" on the cover and in the story. Elasti-Woman is first named "Elasti-Girl" in this story. Some foreshadowings are given here of the Chief's origin, and his earliest meeting with General Immortus, revealed in DOOM PATROL #88.


When Robotman mentions reading of the theft of two of the Stones of Babylon, The Chief reacts with unexpected fear and anger. Then he calms down and admits to his three associates that he has learned, via computer projection, that General Immortus is probably still alive. (The villain avoided the destruction of the spacecraft through an escape capsule.) Since Immortus is, by the Chief's admission, ancient, he is the most obvious choice to benefit from the lore concealed in the Stones.

When Robotman, Negative Man, and Elasti-Girl try to stop Immortus's thugs from stealing the third Stone, Cliff finds himself unable to control his robot body. Immortus reveals to The Chief via closed-circuit transmission that he has overridden Cliff by a powerful radio signal. Larry and Rita are unable to stop Cliff from leaving with Immortus's men.

In his lair, Immortus connects a bomb to Cliff's metal head and implants a wire there which leads to a control box in his hand. He also dips Robotman in molten lead to seal him off from other radio transmissions, thus foiling any attempts by the Chief to thus free him. Immortus uses Robotman to uncover the great tomb of Sumu-Abu, an ancient Babylonian ruler, which contains great statues of gold he intends to use to finance his operations.

Larry and Rita arrive on the scene and begin battle with Immortus and his men. When Immortus triggers the charge that will explode the bomb in Cliff's head, Negative Man races the charge, beats it due to the resistance in the wire slowing it down, and disconnects the wire just in time. Immortus uses the opportunity to escape.

Reviewer Comments

Above-average story, by a sight. This is the beginning of Drake's really good run on DOOM PATROL. Immortus is a good villain, the Anti-Chief, and he flatly implies- -as much as he could in those stronger-Code days--that he murdered many slave workers in his diamond mine, the source of much of his wealth. We learn that Immortus is centuries old, and The Chief's fearful / angry reaction to the knowledge of his involvement is a foreshadowing of The Chief's origin story in four issues' time. Nice character bits: The Chief's aforementioned reaction, and his strain on page 11 to think of a way through their crisis.

The Doom Patrol is a licensed trademark of Jost Enterprises and, of course, DC Comics.
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