BACK in the days
when Mort Weisinger absurdity pervaded the pages of the Superman
family of books, the Space Canine Patrol Agents were created as
the canine equivalent of the Legion of Super-Heroes.
First appearing in SUPERBOY
131, the group consisted of several members who had clear
Legion analogues and possessed similar alliterative names:
Ø Mammoth Mutt (Bouncing
Boy): He could inflate to many times his size.
Ø Hot Dog (Sun Boy): As befits his name, this was a weiner-shaped
Dachsund who had heat powers.
Ø Chameleon Collie (Chameleon Boy): A shapeshifting Collie.
Ø Prophetic Pup (Dream Girl): A female with precognitive
Other members included:
Ø Tusky Husky: He could extend one of his canine teeth into
a long tusk.
Ø Bull Dog: Like a bull, he could grow horns.
Ø Paw Pooch: This canine had the ability to grow as many
extra limbs as he wanted.
Ø Tail Terrier: He had an elongated tail he could use as
a whip or lasso. He was the leader of the group at the time Krypto
joined, and was also known as Top Dog.
The first appearance
of the SPCA.
Unlike the Legion, the canine
conglomerate was based in the present. The stories were not without
some of the sense of drama and pathos that characterized many Legion
tales of the time.
Mammoth Mutt, for example, was killed in the line
of duty, only to be replaced by his girlfriend who had the same
powers, Mammoth Miss.
Another member who sacrificed his life was Beam
Beagle, who possessed searchlight vision.
Mammoth Mutt is tragically
The SCPA memorial to
previous members includes a statue of Beam Beagle.
Like the Legion, who was inspired
by Superboy, the SCPA was often led by Krypto, Superboy's pet. In
the first appearance of the SCPA, Krypton adopted the guise of a
flying dog named Air Dale, as the group battled the Canine Caper
And of course, the members (and associated allies
and villains) all could communicate with each other in their very
own language, but the speech was translated into English for the
reader to easily comprehend.
Other villains the group confronted were the notorious
Phanty Cats, feline pets of Phantom Zone villains; and the evil
Cat Crime Club.
But not all purry personalities were on the wrong
side of the law: there was also the Space Cat Patrol Agents, a crimefighting
group whose members included Crab Tabby (super claws), Atomic Tom
(nuclear powers) and Power Puss (lightning vision).
The SCPA, whose headquarters is shaped like a
doghouse, also boats a rallying battle cry they proclaim each time
they meet : "Big dog, big dog, bow wow wow! We'll fight evil,
now, now now!". (Big Dog is the name of a constellation.)
The battle cry of the
The SCPA only appeared in three
issues of SUPERBOY in the 60s, and the stories are fondly remembered
for their utter silliness.
The Phanty Cats notion is ridiculous enough, but
we also observe that the SCPA members initially went about their
duties in the nude, often fighting upright-walking canine and feline
villains who all had a sense of decorum and wore clothes.
Krypto, meanwhile, in an attempt to disguise himself,
once donned a pair of Clark Kent glasses he just happened to keep
in his cape.
And on another instance, Krypto was summoned to
a meeting to help the group raise funds because it was "Help-A-Dog-Agent
With the dawn of the 70s and a more "relevant"
theme to comics, the SCPA faded into obscurity.
They never featured again in a DC Comics story,
but did appear in ANIMAL
MAN 25, where they were in superhero limbo, a place where
DC characters written out of continuity reside.
It was a sad cameo, with the members shown grizzling
at each other and scrapping like angry dogs.
In 2014, an issue of SANDMAN
OVERTURE 3 featured a cameo of a version of the SCPA,
named the Space Canine Patrol Corps, but little else was shown about
In 2016, the team unexpectedly appeared again,
in an apt team-up with SCOOBY
The sad return of the
SCPA in ANIMAL MAN 25.
The Space Canine Patrol
Corps, from SANDMAN OVERTURE 3.
The SPCA team up with
Scooby, G'nort, Ace, Krypto and the Canine Commandos in
SCOOBY-DOO TEAM-UP 18.
The group was given a revamp
in the KRYPTO
THE SUPERDOG television animated series, but the name
was changed to the Dog Star Patrol.
The membership was essentially the same, consisting
of comic book regulars Tail Terrier, Mammoth Mutt, Hot Dog, Tusky
Husky, Paw Pooch and Bull Dog.
In the series, the team was led by Brainiac 5
analogue Brainy Barker, a female who possessed powerful psychic
abilities, appeared in pruple and green, and rode on a pillow instead
of walking. They operated out of a floating satellite shaped like
a fire hydrant, a less-than-funny doggy joke.
here for a style guide for the TV show!
Members of the Dog
Star Patrol, with Streaky as a member as well.
One notable character introduced
in the TV series was Drooly, who had the power of super-drooling,
able to create streams of saliva, using it as projectiles or as
He was made a reserve member, as was second season
debutant Stretch-o-Mutt, who could contort his body like a canine
Plastic Man, and ostensibly included for comic relief, being a Gomer
Pyle-esque member of a military guard dog patrol.
the day by imitating the Dog Star Patrol members.
In the series, Krypto often guest-starred
with Streaky the Supercat and Ace the Bathound against recurring
villain Mechanikat, and the two allies were later made honorary
The series was promoted heavily in various forms
of merchandise, including jigsaw
puzzles, coloring books, posters, a
line of Fisher-Price toys, and a
six-issue series from DC Comics. Some of the TV episodes
were also released as DVDs.
The canine crusaders were brought back in a number
books which were part of the DC Super-Pets line and featured
original stories of the Dog Star Corps, bringing back characters
such as the Phanty Cats and the Cat Crime Club.
One of the stories, the Amazing Mini-Mutts, introduced
Corp cadets, who included Pound Paulie, Pyro Poodle, Husky the Hurler,
and two miniature canines named Luna Moon and Sprightly Steve, the
latter two admitted as members after helping the group defeat Brainikat
(a feline version of Brainiac).
A page from the DC
Super Pets Character Encyclopedia.
A page from the DC
Super Pets Character Encyclopedia.
In 1990, Kitchen Sink produced
series examining what it felt were the top 10 worst comics
of the past 25 years.
The SCPA were contenders for worst group and featured
over a couple of pages, but they didn't make the cut. While the
concept of humanoid cats and dogs was indeed ludicrous, it was also
entertaining in a campy 60's Batman fashion. To have the SCPA in
the list would have been a travesty.
* The top three worst comics were
Todd McFarlane's Spider-Man 1, Neal Adam's Skateman,
and Kirby's Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers.*
BUT WAIT, THERE'S
A MASTER model maker
who calls himself Monitor Earthprime, and whose sculpts are well-known,
took it upon himself to create some SCPA/Dog Star figures. The results
speak for themselves.
Tail Terrier and Paw
Hot Dog and Mammoth
Tusky Husky and Chameleon
Bull Dog and Drooly.
Brainy Barker and Beam
And the best for last:
Tricky Tom and the Phanty Cats!