The Costumes of Captain Atom

As mentioned elsewhere, Captain Atom, published by Charlton Comics, was my childhood hero. The comic is notable in that the artwork was done by Steve Ditko, before he became known for his pioneering work on Marvel's Spider-Man. While I have most of the individual Captain Atom comics, his stories were reprinted in Action Heroes Archive, Volumes 1 and 2.

In his brief run from 1960-61 and 1965-67 there were nine variants of his costume. Here are the first three.


The blue and mauve costume and ginger hair is from his first appearance in Space Adventures #33. It's likely this was a coloring mistake, as his costume is orange and gold
on the cover. The next issue shows the familiar orange and gold and the Captain has his trademark silver hair. The blue in the belt lasted one full issue and alternated between blue and black in Space Adventures #35. With Space Adventures #36 the blue was gone for good as typified by the third picture, from Captain Atom #80. The uniform is made from "Diulustel", which contains his radioactivity. Note the pointed boots.
The orange and gold changed to red and gold in Captain Atom #83. This change was short lived because, in the next issue, Captain Atom was given a new look. The change in costume went along with a reduction in his power to make his battles against his enemies less lopsided. The new costume is based upon a liquid metal which was sprayed on and absorbed by his skin. It contains his radiation at all times, so that he can now live a normal life. When Atom activates his powers the material becomes a silver metallic layer over his skin and this layer is overlaid with the red, blue, and yellow design. Note, too, that the boot tops are no longer pointed with either costume.



In Captain Atom #85, the atom symbol is contained in a yellow circle.



A red collar was added in Captain Atom #86. In issue #87, the chest insignia changed, but this change was short lived. The lines denoting the orbiting electrons are missing.


In issues #88 and #89, the insignia was back to the atom symbol, without the surrounding yellow circle.



Captain Atom's own comic ended with issue #89, although he subsequently appeared in Charlton Bullseye and DC Comics Presents #90.

More information on Captain Atom
here and here.
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