Real Name: Craine (first name unrevealed)
Identity/Class: Human magic user (see comments) (1950s era)
Group Membership: Explorers' Club (see comments)
Affiliations: Sanders (first name unrevealed (see comments) )
Enemies: Burton, unidentified doctor
Known Relatives: None
Base of Operations: His home in a unidentified American city
First Appearance: Journey into Mystery I#47/1 (June, 1957)
Powers/Abilities: Apparently wealthy, Craine was a world-traveler who used the principles of yoga to place himself in a trance, and thereby separated his astral form from his physical body.
While in his ghostly spirit-form, Craine was invisible and intangible, but he could apparently interact with the material world with the force of his will. Time and distance meant nothing to his astral form, for he was able to travel to other destinations instantaneously.
Craine was a jealous and petty man who was envious of Burton; while in his astral form, Craine attempted to murder Burton. But when Burton proved to have a stronger willpower than he, Craine's own body died--as a result, Craine was left an earthbound spirit, forever suspended between life and death.
Height: 5' 10" (by approximation)
Weight: 170 lbs. (by approximation)
(Journey into Mystery I#47/1 (fb) - BTS) - The past of Craine is largely unrevealed, but he is known to have traveled to such places as the Amazon and Tibet. While in Tibet, he studied yoga with the wise men of the Far East, and thereby learned a technique to release his astral form.
Craine eventually joined the Explorers' Club, where he developed an intense rivalry with fellow member Burton, whose own experiences mirrored Craine's.
(Journey into Mystery I#47/1) - One night at the Explorers' Club, Craine sat by himself in silent rage while he listened to Burton boasting of his exploits to the other club members--Burton was getting all the attention that Craine thought he rightfully deserved. Half mad with envy, Craine's hatred for Burton churned within him, and as he left the Club to go home, he decided to kill Burton.
Having learned that Burton always practiced yoga daily and placed himself in a trance at midnight, Craine decided that it would be the perfect occasion to strike at his rival.
At his home, shortly before midnight, Craine dismissed Sanders (see comments), under the pretense that he would be doing some yoga exercises for an hour--Craine figured Sanders would be his alibi, since he would be able to attest that Craine had never left the room when Burton died.
Using the knowledge taught to him by the wise men of the East, Craine placed himself in a trance and released his astral form from his body; then he traveled to Burton's home, where he found his rival silently sitting in a trance. Craine turned his attention to the gas logs in Burton's fireplace (see comments); although he had no physical strength in his astral form, Craine planned to use the power of his will to extinguish the flames, while the gas would stay on, then Burton would asphyxiate--it would be the perfect crime, for when Burton was found dead, it would look like an accident!
Craine marshaled the strength of every bit of his willpower and directed it at the fireplace...but the flames continued to burn, as though something were fighting him. Then Craine glanced at his entranced rival and realized Burton subconsciously knew that he was there, and he was pitting his own willpower against Craine's. Determined not to let Burton beat him, Craine desperately continued his efforts, but after an unspecified period of time, he gave up--it was hopeless, for his energy was drained. However, Craine was heartened by the fact that at least Burton would never be able to prove to the police what he tried to do.
(Journey into Mystery I#47/1 - BTS) - But while Craine was conducting his psychic duel with Burton, an intolerable strain was put on his body's heart, and his physical form died. Sanders eventually returned to find Craine dead, then summoned the police and a doctor.
(Journey into Mystery I#47/1) - When Craine's astral form returned to his home, he saw Sanders talking with the police and a doctor...and the doctor pronounced Craine to be dead! After realizing that his battle against Burton had put too much of a strain on his physical body, Craine's sobbing astral form pleaded with the doctor to do something, but his cries were unheard.
At the end, Craine was left an unseen spirit, forever suspended between life and death. Burton would never prove what Craine had attempted, but there was little consolation...for Craine!
Comments: Created by an unidentified writer and George Woodbridge.
The name of the organization was depicted on a
sign as "Explorers' Club" (with
Although I have him listed as a magic user, there was no evidence that Craine had any other mystical abilities beyond astral travel.
Craine seems to have suffered a similar fate as Eric Finley.
Although it was never specifically stated, Craine must have gone to Burton's home at least once in the past, because he remembered that the fireplace in Burton's study used gas logs.
In this 4-page story--Bring Back My Body!--Sanders' exact role was never explained. He was a blond-haired man, and I'm assuming he was Craine's butler, or personal assistant, or something like that. He only appeared in two panels--Main Image, and another where he's only seen from behind--so with such limited information, I didn't bother doing a sub-profile for him.
And that panther-like statue behind Craine (see Main Image)--maybe it's a knickknack he picked up in Wakanda?
Profile by Ron Fredricks.
Craine has no known connections to:
Burton has no known connections to:
The unidentified doctor has no known connections to:
A member of the Explorers' Club, Burton (first
name unrevealed) was a world-traveler and adventurer whose
exploits mirrored Craine's. At some point, Burton apparently learned the
techniques of yoga, which strengthened his willpower--he practiced yoga
and placed himself in a trance daily at midnight in his home.
After Sanders discovered Craine's dead body, he summoned this
images: (without ads)
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p2, pan3 (Main Image - Craine performing yoga exercises; Sanders (background) )
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p1, pan2 (Headshot - Craine)
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p2, pan6 (Craine releases his astral form)
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p3, pan4 (Craine's astral form in a battle of wills against Burton)
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p1, pan1 (Burton, boasting of his travels at Explorers' Club)
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p3, pan1 (Burton sitting in a trance in his home; Craine's astral form (background) )
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p3, pan7 (Burton sitting in a trance in his home; Craine's astral form (background) )
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p4, pan2 (unidentified doctor in Craine's home (left); Craine's astral form)
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p4, pan3 (unidentified doctor pronounces Craine's physical body dead; Craine's astral form (foreground) )
Journey into Mystery I#47/1, p4, pan6 (unidentified doctor, unaware of the presence of Craine's astral form)
Journey into Mystery I#47/1 (June, 1957) - unidentified writer, George Woodbridge (pencils and inks), Stan Lee (editor)
First Posted: 12/06/2020
Last updated: 12/06/2020
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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