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The Mermaids of Melo Straits (daily story)

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The Mermaids of Melo Straits
The Mermaids of Melo Straits (daily story).jpg
Start date: November 12th, 1945
End date: February 16th, 1946
# of strips: 84 strips (14 weeks)
Writer: Lee Falk
Artist: Ray Moore
Original colorist: N/A
Preceded by: "The Wild Girl"
Followed by: "Princess Valerie"

"Mermaids of Melo Straits" is the 26th Phantom daily story. The story was written by Lee Falk and drawn by Ray Moore.

Plot summary

The Phantom is travelling with Diana on board a ship to America. The crew spots a raft with a castaway on it. The castaway [AKA Tattoo Ted] reveals that his boat was lured into Melo Straits, by mermaids. The boat reaches the U.S, and the man is hospitalised. A reporter spreads the story of the incident, which is read by the perpetrators of the attack. They make a murder-attempt at the man, then kidnap him instead. The Phantom finds him missing, and decides to go to Melo Straits. Diana stows away with him on the ship. After encountering the Mermaid crooks, Diana, The Phantom and the crew of the ship are taken hostage in Fort Diablo, and the scheme is revealed. Diana is invited to join the gang, but refuses. The Phantom convinces her to join. Diana double crosses the group and is left to die in the ocean. Meanwhile, the Phantom escapes with the crew, ties up the group and saves Diana.


Recurring characters

One-time characters

  • Captain Crag
  • Tatoo Ted
  • Red
  • Queenie
  • Platinum


  • Fort Diablo
  • South Africa (mentioned)




  • Belle of the Ball
  • Belle of Balboa (mentioned)


Old jungle sayings

Behind the scenes

  • The title "Mermaids of Melo Strait" appears in the last panel of the preceding story, and the title "The Mermaids of Melo Straits" appears in the first strip of the story itself.
  • Due to the poor quality of the story, there is some existing speculation that the story is not attributable to Lee Falk and/or Ray Moore, and it may have been sourced externally.[citation needed]
  • The Phantom's costume is referred to as grey.

Related stories

Remade as


This story has been published in the following publications:

Mini argentina.gif Argentina

Mini australia.gif Australia

Mini brazil.gif Brazil

Mini canada.gif Canada

Mini denmark.gif Denmark

Mini finland.gif Finland

  • "Kuolemankarikon merenneidot", Kaleva March 24, 1948 – July 6, 1948
  • "Merenneitojen salaisuus", Sarjakirja #39 (1982)
  • "Kalmansalmen merenneidot", Ilta-Sanomat November 6, 2017 – November 28, 2017

Mini france.gif France

Mini italy.gif Italy

Mini jamaica.gif Jamaica

Mini mexico.gif Mexico

  • "Las sirenas del estrecho de melo", El Informador January 5, 1946 – April 16, 1946

Mini norway.gif Norway

Mini nz.png New Zealand

Mini spain.gif Spain

Mini sweden.gif Sweden

Mini uk.gif United Kingdom

Mini usa.gif USA

Mini yugoslavia.png Yugoslavia