Adventure Comics becomes, on the cover only, Weird Adventure Comics, for issue 443 (June 1974) and the following four issues. “Weird” was clearly a popular word in the early 70s, as DC also had at this time Weird Western Tales, Weird War Tales, Weird Mystery Tales and Weird Worlds.
The Spectre story by Mike Fleisher and Jim Aparo in this issue is highly reminiscent of a story from the character’s 1940s run in More Fun Comics, both of which feature a phony swami taking advantage of bereaved women, and in both cases the Spectre’s romantic interest winds up getting involved in the scam.
The Spectre’s attempts to make Gwen forget that she saw him transform into Jim Corrigan clearly failed, as Gwen seeks out the Swami in this story to help her deal with the situation. Coincidentally, Jim is investigating Swami Seelal after the murder of the husband of one of his followers, when he decided to stop contributing to him.
The Swami uses Gwen to try to set up Corrigan to be killed, but his plan backfires terribly. The Swami never believed Gwen about the Spectre, and so seriously underestimated Corrigan.
Captain Fear gets a really great logo for the final instalment of his serial, by Steve Skeates and Alex Nino.
Fero is rescued from the pit by escaped African slaves, and reunited with his friend Mupo. Together, they plot revenge against the plantation owners, but Fero has seen too many revolts fail to want to stay on the island afterwards.
They attack the plantation, and force Senora Hernandez to accompany them to the docks, where they commandeer a ship.
The story ends with a great shot of Captain Fear as a pirate king. Essentially, this entire serial has dealt with the events that lead Fero to become Captain Fear.
The character would return 7 years down the road, in a back-up feature in Unknown Soldier. But in my eyes, none of the later Captain Fear stories can really hold a candle, art wise, to Nino’s work on this run.