Classification: Terrestrial flora; possibly Deviant mutate (see comments) (1950s era)
Location/Base of Operations: A jungle in the Congo, Africa
Known Members: Inapplicable
Enemies: Jann (Jane Hastings), Pat
Mahoney, "Higgins" (see comments), Hob
First Appearance: Jann of the Jungle#16/5 (April,
Powers/Abilities: Somewhat resembling an orchid
flower , the Black Orchid was a large, approximately 15' long, carnivorous plant. At
its center, it had a 2-foot long spear-like "fang" which it could shoot
at its prey; the poisonous "fang" would cause paralysis and eventual
death unless it was quickly removed. After it launched its "fang,"
it took an unknown period of time to grow a new one. Presumably,
the Black Orchid would stun its prey with its "fang," then use its
animated petals to pull it into its center for digestion (see comments).
There was also a smaller variety of black orchid with similar attributes.
History: (Jann of the Jungle#16/5 (fb) - BTS) - The origin of this variety of Black Orchids is unknown (see comments), but they grew in the jungles of the Congo, where the deadly plants gained a reputation amongst the inhabitants of the area.
(Jann of the Jungle#16/5) - Pat Mahoney was on a
"photographic safari," taking pictures of African wildlife, and Jann
accompanied him to prevent him from stumbling into trouble--she had just
saved him from being bitten by a poisonous snake. Suddenly, a
native tribesman named Hula came staggering up to them, begging for
help--he had a 6-inch poison quill stuck in his chest, which Jann
recognized as the "fang of the Black Orchid". Jann pulled the
poison spine out and Hula recovered. The Black Orchid had never
been photographed, so (despite Jann's warning) Pat was determined to
find it ("I'll make a mint if I get a picture of it!") even if he had to
find it himself. Hula pointed Pat in the general direction, and
the photographer trekked through the jungle (with Jann stealthily
following him, swinging through the trees, to keep him out of
danger). But "Higgins" and Hob were nearby and overheard Pat when
he mentioned how valuable a picture of the Black Orchid would be, and
they figured the actual plant itself would be worth even more; they also
followed Pat, intending to grab the rare flower for themselves after he
Pat eventually came upon the Black Orchid, and as he stood
before the huge flower, adjusting his camera, the Black Orchid shot its
spear-like "fang" at him; but Jann (overhead in the tree branches)
jumped down and pulled Pat out of the way, just as the "fang" flew past
the photographer and hit Hob in his chest. Hob staggered forward
and fell, paralyzed from the poison, begging for help. Jann pulled
the "fang" out and reassured Hob that the poison would seep out and he
would be alright. Just then, "Higgins" stepped out with his gun
drawn, thanking Pat for leading him to the Black Orchid--now he wouldn't
have to share any profits with Hob. "Higgins" tied a vine around
the Black Orchid and tried to pull the gigantic flower out of the
ground, and Jann told Pat to get his camera ready because he was about
to get a picture of a "man-eating orchid". "Higgins" suddenly
found himself engulfed by the Black Orchid's petals, and as he cried for
help, Jann and Pat came to the rescue, pulling the ebony petals from him
and freeing the nefarious man from the giant flower.
After having saved "Higgins," Pat wondered why the Black
Orchid's "fang" was so big when the one that hit Hula was tiny, and Jann
pointed out a smaller variety of black orchid growing nearby, which was
actually the one that Hula had found.
Comments: Created by Don Rico (writer), Al Williamson (artist), and Ralph Mayo (inker)
The Black Orchid didn't have any "mouth" or "teeth," so my
guess is that it would digest its prey similarly to a venus
Profile by Ron Fredricks.
The Black Orchids have no known connections to:
"Higgins" has no known connections to:
Hob has no known connections to:
"Higgins" and Hob
Two criminally-inclined men armed with handguns, the mustached "Higgins" and red-haired Hob were in the jungles of the Congo for undisclosed reasons. They spied upon the jungle-girl Jann and photographer Pat Mahoney when the two were conversing about a rare Black Orchid flower. When they overheard Pat mention the money he could make by just getting a picture of the flower, they figured the actual flower itself would be even more valuable, so they secretly followed Pat as he searched for the plant.
But when Pat finally came upon the Black Orchid, Hob was hit in the chest by the huge flower's poison "fang"; fortunately, Jann was there to pull out the spear-like projectile. "Higgins" later found himself trapped in the Black Orchid's petals, but Jann and Pat freed him before he was digested by the monstrous man-eating plant.
--Jann of the Jungle#16/5
Smaller black orchid
Similar to the larger Black Orchid, it grew in a tree near the larger variety. It had a 6-inch poison "fang," which it launched at Hula, a native tribesman.
--Jann of the Jungle#16/5
images: (without ads)
Jann of the Jungle#16/5, p3, pan5 (Black Orchid, Pat Mahoney in foreground)
Jann of the Jungle#16/5, p3, pan6 (Black Orchid shooting "fang" at Pat Mahoney)
Jann of the Jungle#16/5, p5, pan4 ("Higgins" engulfed by Black Orchid's petals)
Jann of the Jungle#16/5, p2, pan7 ("Higgins" and Hob)
Jann of the Jungle#16/5, p5, pan6 (small black orchid in foreground; Jann, "Higgins" and Pat standing in front of Black Orchid)
Jann of the Jungle#16/5 - Don Rico (writer), Al Williamson (artist), Ralph Mayo (inker)
Last updated: 07/23/15
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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