The character is of some historical significance by virtue of the lawsuit that resulted from his only appearance.
Fictional character historyEdit
Wonder Man's secret identity is Fred Carson. During an excursion to Tibet, an old monk bestows Carson with a ring that gave him the power to fight evil when the need arose.
Wonder Man was created by Eisner for Victor Fox, an accountant who previously worked at DC Comics and wanted to get into the comic book business. Following Fox's instructions to create a Superman-type character, and using the pen name Willis, Eisner wrote and drew the first issue of Wonder Comics. Eisner protested the derivative nature of the character and story.
DC Comics brought a copyright infringement lawsuit against Fox, due to the character's similarities to Superman, as well as story and illustration elements that were similar to previous Superman adventures. The case was brought to court in Detective Comics, Inc. v. Bruns Publications, Inc., 111 F.2d 432 (2d Cir. 1940), forcing Fox to drop the character after just one issue.
This was the first copyright lawsuit in comic book history and set a precedent for DC Comics' vigorous protection of its characters (see also National Comics Publications v. Fawcett Publications).
- Wonder Man entry at Toonopedia
- Wonder Comics #1 - A Wonderful Prize? Article on Wonder Man ring prize from Wonder Comics #1
- Article by Mikel Midnight, from material by Ron Goulart
- Judge Hand's Side-By-Side Comparison for Superhero Infringement where Judge Hand compared Action Comics #1-11 (the first published adventures of Superman) with Wonder Comics #1 (the only published adventure of Wonder Man) and found infringement.