This Used to Be the Future: The Price of Peace!

Welcome to the exciting world of The Future! I’m your host, Dave Lartigue, and each Wednesday I’ll be taking you on an exciting and educational journey into the time to come! Sit back, pull up a cosmo chair, pour a space drink, and enjoy!

This week’s story centers on the distinguished space admiral, Rachel McAdams!

Wait, that’s not right. Rael MacAdams is his name.

Admiral MacAdams is, quite simply, the greatest military mind we’ve ever had. It is solely because of him that Earth enjoys its security, a security which is currently threatened! For you see, an unnamed alien fleet wants to take a swipe at Earth, and it’s an enemy that strikes fear into even Admiral MacAdams!

In fact, the Admiral sees only one way for Earth to escape total annihilation.

Apparently, Space President Hitler BinLadin Obama IV has publicly stated that if MacAdams ever uses Stratagem Seven, the Admiral will be relieved of command! I can’t imagine that press conference. “I assure you, we will not back down against these invaders and will use every weapon in our arsenal against them. But not Stratagem Seven, which is barbaric and cruel! No sentient being should be forced to endure it! I won’t even toler– wait, I’m thinking of SOVEREIGN Seven.”

MacAdams knows what’s at stake, but he also knows what has to be done. He sends a radargram to the President announcing his intention to proceed with Stratagem Seven. The President’s response? MacAdams is fired.

The citizens of the United Worlds don’t much care for this turn of events, either.

We then have a two-page flashback to an early moment in MacAdams’ career but I think we all get that he’s the most amazingest space admiral who ever lived, so we’ll skip that.

When we come back from the flashback, MacAdams is still moping about being fired.

He returns home to a hero’s welcome, but brings grim tidings to the Congress of the United Worlds.

And he goes on like this for hours…

And so on. In addition, these happy, playful aliens have much faster ships and powerful weapons that nothing can withstand.

He presents the aliens with a combined Oscar/Emmy/Tony/Edgar/Car of the Year award and then slinks off to retirement amid thunderous applause. Only one thing is left to do, and that’s to confront the President himself. He heads off to the Space White House to meet his political nemesis.

What’s that? “Scheme”? Oh HO!

Oh yes, my duller readers, Stratagem Seven has been a ruse! A con! A hustle! A ploy! Despite their faster ships, superior firepower, and breathtaking architecture, the aliens didn’t dare take human prisoners while Admiral MacAdams was in charge! As soon as he was publicly “fired”, they took the bait…and the prisoners!

Why prisoners? Because the aliens’ world is germless! Those POWs being brought back to Planet Unnamed are great stinking hives of Earth bacteria and disease!

Yes, the “price” of “peace” is for this guy to pretend to be fired. And, I suppose, for some of our brave soldiers to act as human smallpox blankets for the greater good.

Protecting you from happy, playful aliens, it’s Space Admiral Rael MacAdams!

“The Price of Peace!”
Strange Adventures #14 (DC Comics, November 1951)
Writer: Gardner Fox
Penciler: Carmine Infantino
Inker: Bernard Sachs
Editor: Julius Schwartz

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3 Responses to This Used to Be the Future: The Price of Peace!

  1. damanoid says:

    I have to say, the offhanded allegorical context here is fairly unsettling.

    Dear President Truman:

    Thanks for not allowing the Korean War to escalate into a nuclear exchange. If germ warfare was ever suggested as another route to victory, thanks for eschewing that option too.

    Sincerely, The Future

  2. Sniffnoy says:

    And here I was thinking that since the aliens were so perfect, the forbidden Stratagem Seven was going to be surrendering and joining them (if they weren’t the aggressors, anyway)…

  3. Brady says:

    Please deploy Full Rachel McAdams Version of this comic.