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Appearing in "The Terrified Tribe!"Edit

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Synopsis for "The Terrified Tribe!"Edit

In a frontier town, the Black Rider discusses with the local sheriff about the whereabouts of wanted criminal Ton Ransome and his gang, and learns that he has disappeared without a trace. Suddenly a Native American of the Nagali tribe rides into town. He is fatally wounded, but before he dies he tells all gathered that Ton Ransome and his men are hiding among the Nagali people at their village within Needle Pass. This troubles the sheriff because it is a narrow pass and would make it easy for Ransome's men to slaughter them. Despite this risk, the Black Rider leads a posse into the pass in order to try and ferrite out Ton and his men. As predicted, Ton's men are well situated in the pass and begin picking off the posse, forcing them to retreat, with the Black Rider telling the sheriff that he will find another way to get at Ton and his gang.

When the posse returns to town they find the Black Rider's alter-ego, frontier doctor Matthew Masters waiting for them and he treats them all. After finishing his rounds, Masters then rides off for the Pass of the Needle. He then surrenders to the gang and learns, to his luck, that Ransome has been poisoned by one of the Natives and requires medical attention. After convincing Ransome that he will not kill him, Masters has no choice but to treat Ransome for his condition, curing him.

Just then, a Nagali woman named Rose Petal storms into the room and attacks Ransome for murdering her people. This excites Ton and he decides to make Rose Petal his bride. When she refuses, he then has his men take three men hostage, including her brother Bear Paw, and threatens to kill them if she does not agree to marry him. When Masters tries to stick up for the girl, Ton punches him in the face. He then tells the doctor that he is going to stay in the village as he might be needed later and orders one of his men to lock him up in a cabin and keep guard. Once inside the cabin, Masters changes into the Black Rider and knocks out his guard. He then sneaks into the teepee where the cheif of the Nagali is and gets him to help out in stopping Ton Ransome and his men by playing into Ton's superstitious nature -- they then come up with a plan to convince Ton that the Nagali have placed a curse on him.

To this end, the Black Rider switches back and forth between his identities. When acting as Matthew Masters he lures members of Ton's gang into a compromising position, then changes into the Black Rider, knocking them out. Then with the aid of the Nagali people, make it look like Ton's men were the victim of a "lion god" that the Nagali "worship". This begins to work, however Ton becomes so afraid for his life that he kills the Nagali medicine man thinking it will stop the curse. The Black Rider then steps up his plan, subduing the majority of Ton's gang so that he Nagali outnumber them. When the Black Rider leads the Nagali in retaking their land, Ton tries to flee into a nearby cave. When the Black Rider follows after him, he corners Ton in the cave. Before Ton can fight back a mountain lion comes out of the shadows and mauls him to death. With Ton dead, the Black Rider and the Nagali take his men out of Needle Pass and turn them over to the authorities.

Appearing in "The Deadly Double-Cross!"Edit

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Synopsis for "The Deadly Double-Cross!"Edit

Branch Vegger and his men are carrying a stage coach full of silver when they are held up by two masked individuals who steal the coach and flee the scene. Happening by is the Black Rider who sees the robbery and goes after the robbers unaware that Branch and his men find a great deal of humour that the Black Rider is helping them.

The Black Rider stops the coach and the thieves surrender, revealing themselves to be John Litch and his daughter. Litch explains that he found the silver mine for which the stolen silver came from. However after his discovery he soon caught Branch Vegger and his men snooping on his property and forced them to flee. However the next day the claims office burned down destroying all the paperwork for his claim and Litch soon found himself thrown off his own stake when Branch returned with new papers naming him the owner of the silver. Consumed by hatred ever since being robbed of his fortune, Litch and his daughter plotted the robbery to get what is rightfully theirs back. After hearing the story, the Black Rider tells Litch that he has to return the stolen silver because he cannot prove that Vegger swindled him out of the mine stake, but promises to try and prove that Vegger owns the mine illegally. The Black Rider then returns the coach to Vegger and his men who laugh over their victory.

Later, the Black Rider goes to check out Vegger's operation and realizes that he has no experience or safety on site for his mining and many are being injured. Seeing a means to get the information he needs, the Black Rider changes into his alter-ego of frontier doctor Matthew Masters and offers his medical assistance when some more workers are injured in a mine blast. There he treats some of the injured men and lets sleep that he knows what they did to obtain the mine. The men try to silence Masters, but he reveals that Veggers "intends" to silence them and that the blast in the mind is proof of this. He further cements this idea by suggesting that he over heard Vegger tell his other men that he plans on shooting them. That night, Masters fires at them in the darkness, giving the two injured workers all the "proof" they need of Veggers trying to double cross them. As they try to leave the camp they are shot at, but they make it into town with the Black Rider following behind them. The two men confess to the sheriff before dying.

The Black Rider then leads the sheriff and his posse to the mine where another blast has gone off. As the posse attacks, Veggers and his surviving men all seek shelter in the mine. However, one of the injured workers wishes revenge against Veggers and sets off another blast of TNT that causes the mine to collapse killing them all. In the aftermath of the battle, the mine is turned back over to Litch and his daughter who thank the Black Rider for his help.

Appearing in "The Waiting Death"Edit


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Synopsis for "The Waiting Death"Edit

Western story.

Appearing in "The Secret in the Sand!"Edit

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Synopsis for "The Secret in the Sand!"Edit

In the town of Brimstone Pass, Weed Meaghen and his gang shoot the local sheriff and flee into Brimstone desert to escape. Matthew Masters treats the sheriff for his bullet wound and hears how there is a posse being formed to go after Weed and his gang. Masters slips away to change into the Black Rider, following Weed's back trail he is shocked to find that they are headed into the Brimstone desert where there is no water and temperatures get as hot as 105 degrees Fahrenheit. However, the Black Rider soldiers on into the desert anyway, confident that the heat and lack of water will make it easier for him to capture Weed and his men. Eventually the sun begins to take its toll and the Black Rider seeks shelter in the skill shaped Death's Head Mesa so he and Satan can drink some water.

Meanwhile, Weed and his men leave one of their horses to die in order to conserve water. Eventually the weakest member, John, begins to succumb to the heat, and in order to have more water between the rest of the gang they shoot John dead. However, Weed betrays his minions when he takes the two last horses and most of the water and rides off. Wrench and Butch are left with one canteen, and Wrench gets it when he pulls a gun on Butch and ties him up with leather strips. However, Butch ends up kicking over the canteen leaving Wrench to die as well. Eventually the Black Rider passes through and finds all three of Weeds men dead from sun stroke. He then comes across Weed himself, having gone insane from too much exposure to the sun. When Weed passes out the Black Rider takes him prisoner and rides back to the edge of the desert where he finds the sheriff and his posse just arriving.

Appearing in "The Tough Hombre"Edit


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Synopsis for "The Tough Hombre"Edit

Western story.

Appearing in "The Strange Man!"Edit

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  • Logan

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Synopsis for "The Strange Man!"Edit

In the town of Kelville, the local saloon singer Miss Lilly is being hassled by the locals in particular Logan, one of the local business men. Coming to her aid is Jean De Grieux a French immigrant. But his inference causes a bar fight and Jean finds himself knock out. Logan and his men then string him up on a noose and are about to hang him when the Black Rider interrupts. The Black Rider shoots the noose and tells Logan that he is under arrest for assault and battery and has the barkeep get the sheriff. Logan scoffs at the law, telling the Black Rider that he will be out of jail soon and he'll get revenge against the Frenchman.

The Black Rider, Lilly and Jean's friend carry Jean back to his home. The Black Rider then slips away to "get" his alter-ego, frontier doctor Matthew Masters. Masters treats Jean's wounds and learns that he came to America to escape Napoleons tyranny in his home country. Masters leaves, warning Jean to look out for Logan.

The following day, both Jean and Masters finds that someone had broken the window to Jean's shop and inside is a locked trunk that Jean had never seen before. Moments later, the sheriff enters the shop to arrest Jean for the murder of Joe Fentell. During the confrontation, Masters slips away and changes back into the Black Rider and pleads Jean's innocence pointing out that there is no proof or body to pin the crime on Jean. The Black Rider manages to get the sheriff to stand down so they can leave.

Suspecting Logan's hand in this they go and inspect his mine. However, Jean, feeling disenfranchised about the freedoms America promises decides to leave. Soon gossip about Joe Fentell's murder spreads around the town and a mob storms Jean's shop and they force the trunk open. The Black Rider turns them all away, but when another one of Logan's partners is reported dead the mob returns, this time forcing the trunk open and revealing Joe's body inside. A fight breaks out, but Jean arrives to inform everyone there that the key to his trunk (containing nothing but soil from France's shores). The army soon arrives to break things up and feeling the pressure Logan tries to flee, dropping the key he stole from Jean's shop, implicating him in the murder. Jean is cleared of all charges and soon marries Lilly. On their wedding day, Jean gets some good news as well: That Napoleon was removed from power. However, having finally found his place, Jean decides to stay in America instead of returning home.

  • The final of this story glosses on some French history. Given the time frame of Marvel's Western heroes (late 1880's) this is likely a reference to the rule of Napoleon III who ruled France from 1852-1870 when the French monarchy was overthrown. This historical fact puts this story happening sometime after September 1870.


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