When last we left the Shield's origin, Joe Higgins, having discovered the secret of the SHIELD formula, strapped himself down on the Table of Pain and Pleasure for 12 hours to become THE SHIELD.
With no one to witness it except his faithful sidekick, the Green Chinese Lamp, Joe Higgins transforms into THE SHIELD. Even more amazing, the fluoroscopic rays interact with the chemicals to dye his blank costume into an American flag pattern, to which he need only add stars.
Joe tests his powers as the Shield using every-day objects you find around the house, such as....
The Flame RoomThe Kodak Insta-matic Machine GunThe Crushy-Walled Room and International Shadows Project InstallationAnd, last but not least...
the World's Largest Open WindowNo doubt a souvenir of his Dad's stint in Cy Coleman's Defenestration Follies of 1940.
Now confident in his superpowerhood, the Shield reveals himself to J. Edgar Hoover by changing clothes in front of him. And, no, I will not show you the panels; this is a family blog.
This is followed by an extended sequence of setting a trap for bad guys, then beating the crap out of them and hanging them off flagpoles, in order to reach the Big Bad: Hans Fritz.
As previously mentioned, the action quotient in Shield stories is high, but the level of discourse is not. So when Fritz escapes via a trap door (inGENious!), the Shield has clearly not yet prepared himself with a signature saying (as I have)."Hey!" Joe, you really are a stupid American swine.
So, Joe simply kicks in the trap door with his famous pointy-toes of justice, then goes skittering along the underground passageway looking for all the world like Penelope Pitstop running from the Hooded Claw:
Then the Shield captures Hans Fritz in one of the great comic book sequences of all time...
First of all, to get out of the passageway, Joe doesn't just remove the exit door with his superstrength. No, no. This is THE SHIELD we're talking about here. To the Shield, there's only one way to deal with such an obstacle:If Geoff Johns does not at some point reveal that the Shield is related to Hal Jordan, it shall be a tragically missed opportunity.
Follows then the Shield's patented "running leap at a plane taking off" maneuver.
The villain, however, is unimpressed and says the Golden Age equivalent of, "So, hang on the plane; whatever, dude." Then the Shield pulls another Shieldtastic trick that ranks just below setting himself on fire and launching himself at an enemy ship:
Maybe somebody else has done that, but I've never seen it. And did they do it with their legs, while humping a nosecone and snarking? I think not. The Shield rocks, people.
Having captured the men who framed his father, Joe offers his on-going services to J. Edgar Hoover, who accepts, provided Joe passes his "examination". Ahem.