ALFRED KURT

Real Name: Alfred Kurt

Identity/Class: Human technology user (Reality-5391, 2075 AD)

Occupation: Scientist/surgeon

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Half-People

Enemies: Captain Speed Carter, Junior Cadet Johnny Day

Known Relatives: Wanda (daughter)

Aliases: "Ruler of the star Hyades" (as called by Half-People); "Daddy" (as called by Wanda)

Base of Operations: His laboratory on the star/planet Hyades (see comments)

First Appearance: Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2 (November, 1953)

Powers/Abilities: A highly intelligent but extremely eccentric scientist, Professor Kurt developed a surgical procedure whereby he utilized a rotating circular blade to cut a living individual in half from head to groin (ouch!). After the body was split down the middle, he used "plastic flesh" to seal the incision on both sides -- as a result, both still-living body halves could then function independently.

Kurt was armed with a handgun that fired "freeze bullets" (these did not kill, but only temporarily paralyzed individuals for an unspecified number of hours); he commanded a small squad of Half-People who were similarly armed.

After Kurt fell into the circular blade and was split in two, his daughter saved his life (lives?) by applying the "plastic flesh" to both body halves. While Kurt's left-side had a benevolent personality, his right-side possessed an evil disposition -- this split-personality was due to an unspecified illness in the right-side of Kurt's brain, which no longer affected his left-side after separation.

Height: 5' 6" (by approximation)
Weight: 160 lbs. (by approximation)
Eyes: Unknown
Hair: Brown (balding)

History: (Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2 (fb) - BTS) - The past of Professor Alfred Kurt is largely unrevealed, but because of his experimentation in cutting a human in half, he was committed to an insane asylum -- one night he escaped (as reported in the Space Gazette newspaper). Accompanied by his daughter Wanda, he eventually set up a laboratory on the planet Hyades. Kurt continued his experiments and created a small army of Half-People.

(Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2) - Captain Speed Carter and Junior Cadet Johnny Day of the Space Sentinels police force had to land on the planet Hyades to make repairs when their rocketship developed engine trouble. They were attacked by four bizarre Half-People, who fired "freeze bullets" at them. The Half-People carried the two paralyzed spacemen to Professor Kurt's laboratory.

   When Speed and Johnny revived, they were greeted by Wanda, who introduced them to her father. Speed commented that Professor Kurt looked familiar, so the scientist handed him a newspaper clipping he saved after he'd escaped. Upon reading the news article, Speed remembered Kurt's notorious reputation, and he then understood how the unusual Half-People came to be. Kurt explained that he created the Half-People to build an army to attack first Earth, then all other planets, and he told Speed and Johnny he would make them into Half-People as well, to add to his forces. The mad scientist ordered the Half-People to bind Speed and Johnny, then the two spacemen were placed on a conveyor belt headed for the whirling blades -- Kurt assured them it would be quick and painless, and soon the two of them would be four!




   But Wanda had a change of heart and couldn't let her father continue with his mad experiments, so she deactivated the blades in a nick of time. While the angry Kurt slapped Wanda aside, Speed and Johnny took advantage of the distraction and jumped off the conveyor belt. With his hands still bound, Speed kicked Kurt on the backside, knocking the scientist to the floor. Kurt stood back up and pointed his freeze gun at Speed, but before he could pull the trigger, Speed charged at him and head-butted him in the gut; the mad scientist fell backwards, first hitting the lever that reactivated the whirling blade, and landed on the conveyor belt -- Kurt was sliced in twain, the victim of the same fate he had planned for Speed and Johnny.

   Wanting to help her divided Daddy, and having learned how to apply the "plastic flesh" from watching her father use it on others, the tearful Wanda repeated the surgical procedure on him, and Alfred Kurt was now in two living halves. But while the left-side of Professor Kurt displayed a kindly nature, the right-side was aggressive and malevolent. The right-side of Kurt punched his other half; the left-side fell to the floor and recovered the dropped freeze gun, then shot the right-half. Kurt's left-side explained that his right-side had the sick and twisted portion of his brain that made him create the Half-People in the first place. Since his mental illness had been removed from him, Wanda told her father's left-side that they could now return to Earth; the remorseful left-side of Alfred Kurt told his daughter that she was free to go, but he would remain on Hyades with the Half-People he was responsible for creating -- perhaps he could find a way to make them whole again.

   After making the repairs, Speed and Johnny left Hyades with Wanda and returned to Earth.

Comments: Created by Hank Chapman (writer) and Joe Maneely (artist)

Throughout this story, the characters continuously referred to Hyades as a "star" -- since it would be impossible to live on the surface of a star, I assume the writer meant "planet" (Not that the writer seemed to be too concerned about scientific accuracy!) -- maybe Hyades was the name of both the star and the planet which orbited it.

Considering the Half-People's pale skin-color and non-human appearance, I'm guessing they were natives of Hyades, and Kurt's lab was probably one of their buildings that he appropriated.

Considering the detrimental effects of slicing a human body in half (Not that I'm speaking from personal experience, you understand!), the "plastic flesh" seemed to be more than just a "band-aid" because it appeared to be able to actually help sustain life -- maybe it had "living" qualities similar to the Leader's Plasti-thene, or the "Plastoid Birthmatrix" used to create Alkhema's Bio-Synthezoids.

Well, I think I've spent quite enough time with this totally ludicrous story...

Profile by Ron Fredricks.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Professor Alfred Kurt has no known connections to:

Wanda has no known connections to:

The Half-People have no known connections to:

The star/planet Hyades has no known connections to:


Wanda

The beautiful daughter of Professor Alfred Kurt, she lived with her father on Hyades and tolerated his mad experiments in creating Half-People. But when Kurt was about to cut Speed Carter and Johnny Day into halves, Wanda had a change of heart and saved the spacemen.

After her father had fallen into the circular blade and was cut in two, Wanda saved the lives of both body halves by repeating her father's surgical procedure and used "plastic flesh" to seal the incision.

Wanda later accompanied Carter and Day when they returned to Earth.

--Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2






Half-People

Humanoid beings who had been cut in half by Alfred Kurt, they were armed with guns that fired "freeze bullets". Kurt created them to build an army to conquer Earth and other planets.

(Only a total of four Half-People were shown, and they were all left-sides, so presumably there were four more right-sides somewhere. Exactly how the Half-People got around is unspecified -- maybe they did a lot of hopping.)

--Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2











Professor Kurt's laboratory

A complex of buildings located in a forest on the planet Hyades, it was where Professor Kurt conducted his hideous experiments.

--Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2










Circular blades

Dual rotating surgical cutting instruments mounted on a conveyor belt, they were used by Professor Kurt to separate individuals in half.

Speed Carter and Johnny Day were tied to the conveyor belt and sent toward the blades -- they would have been cut in half if not for Wanda's intervention. Professor Kurt later fell on the blade and was subsequently cut in half himself.

(Since they seemed to make such clean cuts, it's possible they were more than just ordinary saw blades -- possibly they could cut down to the molecular level.)

--Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2








"Plastic flesh"

A chemical mixture that was used by Professor Kurt; it sealed the incisions after he cut bodies in half with the circular blades to create Half-People.

Wanda later used the "plastic flesh" when she performed surgery to save her father's life after he'd fallen into the circular blade and was cut in half.

--Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2








images: (without ads)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p3, pan6 (Main Image, Professor Alfred Kurt)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p3, pan3 (Speed Carter holding newspaper article about Professor Kurt)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p5, pan5 (Kurt's right-side punches his left-side)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p5, pan7 (Kurt's left-side shoots his right-side with freeze gun)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p2, pan8 (Wanda)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p4, pan8 (Wanda)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p1, pan1 (four Half-People (carrying freeze guns) attack Speed and Johnny)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p1, pan4 (two Half-People shoot Johnny with freeze guns)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p3, pan5 (Professor Kurt's laboratory on Hyades)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p3, pan8 (Johnny and Speed on conveyor belt, headed to circular blades, as Professor Kurt watches)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p4, pan1 (Wanda stops circular blades and saves Speed and Johnny)
Speed Carter, Spacemen#2/2, p5, pan1 (Wanda's hands working with plastic flesh as Speed and Johnny watch)


Appearances:
Speed Carter, Spaceman#2/2 (November, 1953) - Hank Chapman (writer), Joe Maneely (pencils and inks), Stan Lee (editor)


Last updated: 02/05/17

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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