Pierre Garou (1950s, Journey into Unknown Worlds puppeteer)

Real Name: Pierre Garou

Identity/Class: Human (1950s era)

Occupation: Puppeteer

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Citizens of Le Bain

Enemies: Three unidentified hoodlums

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Mobile throughout France; temporarily in Le Bain

First Appearance: Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6 (March, 1957)

Powers/Abilities: Pierre Garou was a talented puppeteer who traveled in his tour bus and performed puppet shows.

He utilized a secret formula to reduce humans in stature--although his usual method of dispensing the formula was unrevealed, he used a bowl of grapes laced with the secret formula in at least one instance. The effects of the formula were apparently temporary, and individuals shrunken by it would return to their normal size within a year's time (as per Garou).

Garou fastened marionette strings to the shrunken people's limbs and used them as life-like "puppets" in his performances; he seemed to limit the use of the formula to shrink only those whom he deemed to be greedy.

Height: 6 ' (by approximation)
Weight: 210 lbs. (by approximation)
Eyes: Unrevealed
Hair: White

History:
(Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6 (fb) - BTS) - The past of Pierre Garou is largely unrevealed, but at some point he discovered a formula which could shrink humans. Under unspecified circumstances, Garou secretly shrank an unspecified number of people and began to use them for his "puppets"; he traveled throughout France to perform his puppet shows, appearing at least once in the small French city of Le Bain.

(Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6) - One day, Garou returned to Le Bain and began to set up his tent to put on another puppet show; there was much excitement amongst both the children and the adults of the city--the youngsters were always entranced by the marionette show, while their elders marveled at the life-like quality of Garou's prancing puppets.

   At nightfall, Garou and his puppets put on a show in the tent that entertained the entire audience. During the intermission, three hoodlums entered the tent--they did not come there to see the show, but were hiding from the police. A man in the audience offered Garou 100,000 francs for one of his puppets, but the puppeteer firmly refused the offer--overhearing this, the hoodlums figured that a manufacturer would pay them a fortune to learn Garou's process for making his remarkably life-like puppets, so they were determined to steal it from him.

   When the show was over and the crowds went home, Garou went into his tour bus to relax for the evening. Suddenly, the three hoodlums entered and threatened Garou at gunpoint, demanding to know how he made his puppets. Having no choice but to cooperate, Garou told them he used a secret formula, but claimed he couldn't recall the ingredients from memory, so he went to his stove and began to mix the formula while he repeated the ingredients aloud so the hoodlums could write them down--while they waited, the hoodlums sat at the table and helped themselves to a bowl of grapes.

   As Garou stirred the bizarre concoction in a caldron on the stove, the hoodlums continued to eat the grapes. Then the trio of criminals complained about feeling peculiar and sick; Garou smiled, for he had only been stalling for time--seeing that his plan had worked, Garou told the hoodlums that his secret formula was actually in the grapes that they had been eating!

(Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6 - BTS) - Garou gathered the three shrunken hoodlums and added them to the collection with the rest of his "puppets".



(Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6) - The next evening, the audience at Garou's puppet show was entertained and delighted by three new puppets that looked remarkably human.

   While he considered that the effect of the serum was only temporary, and the hoodlums would return to their normal size in a year, Garou consoled himself with the fact that there were plenty of greedy people in the world to keep him supplied with more "puppets" for the rest of his life.

Comments: Created by Carl Wessler (writer) and Reed Crandall (artist).





Maybe that secret formula in Garou's grapes included the size-altering Pym Particles.

Profile by Ron Fredricks.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Pierre Garou has no known connections to:


Pierre Garou's tour bus

Garou's home-on-wheels, he used it to travel throughout France to perform his puppet shows; it carried a tent and Garou's collection of "puppets".

The interior of the tour bus was equipped with a cooking stove, and a table and chairs--on the table was a bowl of grapes laced with Garou's secret shrinking formula.

--Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6


Pierre Garou's "puppets"

The "puppets" were actually living people who had been shrunken by Garou's secret shrinking formula--they were reduced to the height of perhaps 18 inches. The effects of the shrinking formula were only temporary, and the "puppets" would grow back to normal size in a year's time (as per Garou).

The exact number of "puppets" was unrevealed, but they included a ballerina, a soldier, and a clown--later, three hoodlums "joined " the group.

--Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6


Pierre Garou's grapes

A seemingly normal bowl of grapes sitting on a table within Garou's tour bus, the grapes had been laced with Garou's shrinking formula.

The grapes were unwittingly eaten by three hoodlums when they tried to force Garou to reveal his secret of making life-like puppets. The hoodlums later shrunk down to puppet-size and became part of Garou's show.

The effects of the shrinking formula were only temporary, and anyone exposed to it would grow back to normal size in a year's time (as per Garou).

--Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6


Citizens of Le Bain

The inhabitants of the small French city of Le Bain, both children and adults alike enjoyed watching Pierre Garou's puppet shows--they were unaware that Garou's life-like "puppets" were actually humans shrunken by Garou's secret formula.

--Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6


Three unidentified hoodlums

A trio of French criminals on the run from the law, they went to Pierre Garou's puppet show in the city of Le Bain to hide.

When they heard a man in the audience offer Garou a great deal of money for one of his puppets, the hoodlums were determined to learn the puppeteer's secret of how he made such life-like puppets so they could sell his secret to a manufacturer.

After the show, the hoodlums broke into Garou's tour bus and forced him to mix some of the formula he claimed he used to make the puppets--as they waited, the hoodlums helped themselves to a bowl of grapes sitting on Garou's table.

But as it turned out, the formula was actually in the grapes, and the hoodlums were shrunk to puppet-size.

The next evening, the shrunken hoodlums found themselves with strings tied to their limbs, and they were forced to entertain an audience as performers in Garou's puppet show--they would remain at puppet-size for at least a year, at which point they would return to their normal size (as per Garou).

--Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6


images: (without ads)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p4, pan1 (Main Image - Pierre Garou standing over stove, pretending to mix secret formula for hoodlums)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p4, pan2 (Headshot -- Pierre Garou speaking to hoodlums)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p2, pan3 (during intermission, Pierre Garou (with clown "puppet") refuses to sell puppets to man in audience)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p4, pan6 (Pierre Garou)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p1, pan1 (Pierre Garou's tour bus drives into La Bain)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p3, pan7 (Pierre Garou's tour bus, parked with tent)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p2, pan6 (interior of Pierre Garou's tour bus; Pierre Garou (seated), armed hoodlums (entering, right))
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p1, pan3 (audience watches performance of Garaou's ballerina "puppet" and soldier "puppet")
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p2, pan2 (Garou holds soldier "puppet" (left); hoodlums (right))
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p3, pan4 (bowl of grapes at center of table, being eaten by three hoodlums (seated))
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p4, pan4 (citizens of Le Bain watch performance of three hoodlum "puppets")
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p2, pan4 (three hoodlums plot to steal Garou's method of making puppets)
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6, p4, pan5 (three hoodlums shrunken and performing as "puppets")


Appearances:
Journey into Unknown Worlds I#55/6 (March, 1957) - Carl Wessler (writer), Reed Crandall (pencils and inks), Stan Goldberg (colors), Stan Lee (editor)


First Posted: 07/27/2018
Last updated: 07/27/2018

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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