How can I help (the rich become richer)?
Hopefully everyone grows up with a sense of right and wrong. Fairness. Some people look at the inequalities in our world and say no more. I will not stand for that. I will dedicate my time and money and devote at least part of my life to eradicating these large-scale social problems. Other people see inequality, the rising gap between the rich and the working class, and say how can I help...make that worse? Inequality? More of that please.
In addition to politicians and CEOs everywhere, Robbing Hood, AKA the reverse Robin Hood, wants to make the wealth gap between the richest of Americans and the rest of us even wider.
Branding-wise, you have to hand it to Robbing Hood, the Reverse Robin Hood. You understand instantly what his whole deal is: he robs from the poor and gives to the rich. He does so in an opera cape, top hat, and suit. Like, he's trying to look the part of 1800s robber baron in the 1940s. He was behind a wave of robberies in tenement buildings in New York City during World War Two and earned the attention of the heroes Airmale and Stampy.
Now, there are better names for heroes than Airmale - spelled air male...because he's a flying man, an air male. Yeah. And Stampy, the child side-kick that apparently wanted to make stamps, the stickers that you put on letters, even less threatening. Still, the names were the least of their issues.
Careers in Superscience!
Ken Stevens, AKA Airmale, was an impoverished biology professor working on flight fluid, an antigravity serum. He was also not great at multitasking. He was in a hurry to get to a costume party while running the final tests on a dangerous, experimental serum (as we all do from time-to-time) and he spilled some flight fluid on his hand. The ability to fly and the costume he was wearing gave him ideas, and instead of using profits from an antigravity serum, revolutionizing our world, and helping the allies to win the war, he decided to become a crime fighter...but not before dosing a child with the formula, more specifically, his young cousin, Bobby.
The problem with giving children the ability to fly and then immediately putting them in dangerous situations without training or backup...other than any part of that sentence...is that it's super easy for them to get beaten up, even by a guy dressed like rich uncle penny bags. Stampy, hot on the trail of Robbing Hood, found himself over matched by the lanky, high concept villain, who beat him and then took off.
Robbing Hood, having stripped five apartments clean from all the stuff the normal, working-class people needed to live, decided that even with Airmale and Stampy after him, he wouldn't be deterred from his singular purpose: quote, "to rob the poor to give to the rich! What a mission."
When you look the part, it can be fairly easy to con people into thinking you belong, which is what Robbing Hood did at the Morganbilts, an old-money New York family which definitely wasn't a clumsy mash-up of Morgans and Vanderbilts. He got past the doorman to present the lady of the house with his bag of stuff stolen from New York's most poverty-stricken neighborhoods.
I think you should leave
And...she didn't want it. Maybe she was put off that it was stolen. Perhaps she liked theft systemic and not-so-literal, but she had Robbing Hood, the reverse Robin Hood, beaten and thrown out onto the street. Notice that she didn't report the theft or anything, she just wanted this weirdo and all of his icky poor person stuff out of her brownstone.
Regardless, for some reason, Robbing Hood was undeterred. He would not be swerved from his sacred mission! He would, quote, take from the decadent poor and give to the righteous rich...showing that he didn't understand some very crucial words in that sentence.
Look, Robbing Hood...is not well. No one wants him to keep doing what he's doing, but he keeps doing it. The people he is doing it for have him beaten and thrown out. There's something admirable about standing up for what you believe in no matter the obstacles in your path...but not if what you believe in is bad and wrong. We don't have a beginning--an origin story for Robbing Hood--but we do know how he ends. Kind of. After being kicked out of so many aristocratic residences, Robbing Hood decided to mix up his metaphors a bit and start playing Santa Claus with his bags of junk. He was defeated not by Airmale and Stampy...but by a chimney, when he got stuck trying to deliver his goods.
It's telling that Robbing Hood was finally arrested and imprisoned not for robbing countless apartments in impoverished neighborhoods...but for trying to break into one rich guy's home. To give him stuff. Nothing to read into there.
Want more of the most ridiculous comic book villains of all time?
Disclaimer: Robbing Hood and every other character mentioned in this post are owned by Prize Comics and all images are reproduced for educational and historical purposes.
That being said, I'm not sure Prize Comics are still a thing or if they renewed the copyright. If you want to use this character, first: why? Second, you'll probably want to do some research. Excited about your Robbing Hoodaissance, though.
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