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Jacob Goldenkranz, Creator of Agent 236

Agent 236 first appeared in 1938 and was conceived by Jacob Goldenkranz. Jacob, a recent immigrant and proud Bostonian, could often be found drawing at the famous G & G Deli in Dorchester Massachusetts. His Back Alley Comics company introduced Agent 236, along with his arch nemesis, the Phantom Shadow, to the world.

The Famous G&G Deli

In 1940, Agent 236 became Agent 236: Agent of Freedom, a radio drama broadcast from WTHX Radio on 226 Tremont Street in Boston.  The show featured local news announcer Philbert  J. King as the narrator. Agent 236 himself,  was portrayed by famed voice actor Edison Preston Carlson. And Janet Tucker portrayed nearly all of the supporting women characters. The show proved so popular it was soon rebroadcast-ed across the nation.

Philbert J. King
Edison Preston Carlson
Janet Tucker
The ultra rare, Issue #1 of Agent 236 comic book.

Kids were encouraged to send in a nickel along with 3 proofs of purchase from their favorite chocolate milk powder. In return, the kids would receive the Agent 236 Secret Decoder Wheel, and the official Agent 236 Secret Society Manual.

 

Each week, Agent 236 would provide a secret coded message as part of the show. And ask each listener to recite the Agent 236 credo: Truth, integrity, and justice.

Unfortunately tragedy struck in 1952. The Back Alley Comics headquarters in Roxbury Massachusetts burnt to the ground. Inside, were all of the archives of the radio recordings, and comic books.

Agent 236 had been lost to the world.  Today, Agent 236 memorabilia fetches a high price for collectors.

However, in 2011, the Goldenkranz estate granted director-producer Mark Ross the exclusive rights to revive Agent 236 and bring his stories to a new generation.  Curse of the Phantom Shadow is the first new Agent 236 adventure in over half a century and marks Agent 236's triumphant return.