Swami Mordo (1950s Adventures into Weird Worlds character)

SWAMI MORDO

Real Name: Mordo (first name unrevealed)

Identity/Class: Human magic user (apparently deceased (see comments)) (1950s era)

Occupation: Spiritualist/medium

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: His unidentified guests

Enemies: Unidentified reporter

Known Relatives: None (see comments)

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: His mansion

First Appearance: Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2 (October, 1952)

Powers/Abilities: Presumably an undead spectral being, Swami Mordo used a crystal ball while he conducted his seances. He displayed the supernatural ability of sending a living person to "where the dead dwell".

To pass for a living human, Mordo disguised his skeletal features with a face-mask (see comments) and a turban.

Height: 6 ' (by approximation)
Weight: 170 lbs. (by approximation)
Eyes: Unrevealed
Hair: None

History:
(Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2 (fb) - BTS) - The past of Swami Mordo is unrevealed, but at some point he apparently died under unspecified circumstances, then he returned as one of the undead. Wearing a face-mask to disguise his skeletal features, Mordo performed seances at his mansion.

(Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2) - One night, Swami Mordo was about to conduct a seance with four guests, one of whom was a newspaper reporter who doubted Mordo's ability to speak to the dead.

   Mordo entered the seance parlor, and as he prepared to recite a chant so he could place himself into a trance, he sensed the unfriendly presence of an unbeliever--the reporter. When the reporter expressed his doubts about Mordo's power, the irate swami told the reporter that he'd show him the secret of talking to the dead, and he mystically gestured with his hands over his crystal ball. The room seemed to melt into darkness, and the reporter felt as if he were falling and spinning madly through space. The reporter found himself at the bottom of a hot, smoky pit, and all around him, reanimated corpses began to rise and shamble toward him--although he was terrified, the reporter told himself that he was only imaging the whole experience.

   Then it was over as suddenly as it had started, and the reporter was back at the seance again. Mordo asked the reporter if he still doubted his power, but the reporter was only convinced that Mordo had used hypnotism upon him. The reporter angrily told Mordo that he was leaving, but Mordo insisted that he had to remain, for once one had spoken to the dead, he could never again return to the living. The reporter denied speaking to any corpses, so Swami Mordo pulled off his disguise and revealed his true nature to the shocked reporter--the other three undead seance attendees followed suit.

Comments: Created by Stan Lee (writer) and Joe Maneely (artist).

This story was told from the narrative perspective of the reporter.

Mordo's true nature was never fully explained in this 4-page story--Ghost in the House!--so I'm assuming he and his guests were reanimated corpses and/or ghosts.

Although it wasn't clearly depicted, I'm assuming Swami Mordo also wore a face-mask like the other three guests at his seance.

And considering his profession and his surname, maybe the swami was somehow related to the family of Dr. Strange's foe (see clarifications).

Profile by Ron Fredricks.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Swami Mordo has no known connections to:


Swami Mordo's mansion

Located on the grounds of a gated estate, it was a large house wherein Swami Mordo conducted his seances.

The reporter described the swami's residence as "a spooky-looking dive".

--Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2


Swami Mordo's guests

Sitting at the table with the newspaper reporter in Mordo's seance parlor, they appeared to be an elderly woman, a young woman, and a middle-aged bespectacled man. The reporter thought that the trio looked as if they took the swami's seance seriously, although he figured they were all old enough to know better.

After Swami Mordo removed his disguise and revealed his true nature to the reporter, the three guests removed their face-masks as well, revealing themselves to be members of the undead, much to the reporter's horror.

--Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2


Unidentified reporter

A self-described ace newspaper reporter, he went to the mansion of Swami Mordo for a seance. He thought the swami looked like an out-of-work ham actor, and he doubted that Mordo could really speak to the dead.

He expressed his doubt regarding Swami Mordo's power to the other seance attendees ("How can you folks fall for balderdash like this?"), which greatly offended the mystic; Mordo demonstrated a sampling of his ability by temporarily sending the reporter to a hellish realm, where he was surrounded by reanimated corpses.

And then it was over as suddenly as it had started, and the reporter found himself back in Mordo's seance parlor.  After sending him to "where the dead dwell," the swami asked the reporter if he still doubted his power, but the reporter accused Mordo of trying to fool him with a hypnotic illusion.

The reporter was about to leave the seance, but the swami wouldn't allow him to do so, for Mordo insisted that once one had spoken to the dead, he could never again return to the living; the reporter denied speaking to any corpses.

Realizing that he had only one way to convince the reporter otherwise, Swami Mordo removed his disguise and revealed his true nature as one of the undead.  The terrified reporter turned and saw the other spectral seance attendees remove their disguises as well.

The reporter's final fate remains unrevealed (...but had this story been published by EC Comics, no doubt  his last words would have been Good Lord! *choke*) .

--Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2


images: (without ads)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p1, pan3 (Main Image - Swami Mordo)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p2, pan5 (Headshot - Swami Mordo)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p2, pan2 (Swami Mordo about to recite a chant)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p4, pan5 (Swami Mordo removes disguise and reveals his true nature to unidentified reporter)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p1, pan1 (unidentified reporter standing in front of Swami Mordo's mansion)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p4, pan2 (Swami Mordo's mansion (overview))
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p1, pan2 (unidentified reporter seated at seance table with Swami Mordo's three guests)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p4, pan6 (Swami Mordo's three guests remove their face-masks and reveal their true nature to unidentified reporter; Swami Mordo (background))
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p4, pan3 (unidentified reporter doubts Swami Mordo's power)
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2, p3, pan5 (unidentified reporter sent to "where the dead dwell", surrounded by reanimated corpses)


Appearances:
Adventures into Weird Worlds#11/2 (October, 1952) - Stan Lee (writer), Joe Maneely (pencils and inks), Stan Lee (editor) 


First Posted: 08/02/2018
Last updated: 08/02/2018

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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