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The Founding of the Jungle Patrol

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The Founding of the Jungle Patrol
Founding of the Jungle Patrol.jpg
Start date: July 5th, 1964
End date: January 24th, 1965
# of strips: 30 pages
Writer: Lee Falk
Artist: Sy Barry
Original colorist: KFS staff
Preceded by: "The Giant Bird of Gandor"
Followed by: "The Great Web of Spidera"

"The Founding of the Jungle Patrol" is the 64th Phantom Sunday story. It was originally published in American newspapers from July 5th, 1964 to January 24th, 1965.

The story was written by Lee Falk and drawn by Sy Barry.

Plot Summary

The Jungle Patrol has fought evil since 1664, but none of its members know who the commander is, nor do they know how it was founded.

The Phantom starts telling the story of how the Jungle Patrol was founded to some Bandars:

in 1664, Bengali was unsafe, with a lot of pirates, in Sanloi, the chief of all pirates resides: Redbeard. Redbeard took half of what they gained and was willing to fight with anyone about the leadership, but noone dared. The Phantom of 1664 hears about it and decides to take the challenge. He boldly walks into Sanloi and challenges Redbeard. Redbeard, however, wants first to see what he is made of and makes him duel his champion Black Bart with antique axes. The Phantom wins, but when Redbeard is ready to fight, another one of his men interfer, Salla. Salla reminds Redbeard that even though he takes a challenge from any opponent, the challenger has to be one of them, he then offers to duel him with his sword. A fat chinese by the name of Crusher also wants to fight him, but Redbeard chooses Salla. The Phantom lets Salla fight on, merely blocking his attacks, until Salla is totally exausted, then he finishes the duel.

Redbeard is again ready to duel, but after taunting the Phantom, the Phantom loses his self control and attacks, Crusher steps in between them and then manages to let Redbeard to have him duel the Phantom without any weapons. Crusher tries to boast a little by claiming that he crushes men's heads like eggs, crushing an egg in his fist to prove his point. The 6th Phantom flattens him a bit by crushing a coco nut in his hand, then hitting another coco nut in his hand, crushing that one too, Crusher lamely claims that he can do that too.

At this point in the story, the Phantom takes a break and tells the Bandars that they will continue tomorrow. The Bandars, however, stalks him until he resumes the story telling.

The duel with Crusher starts with the Phantom hitting him in the stomach, getting the feeling of punching soft dough. An enrages Crusher takes a grip on him and starts to crush him, but he continues to punch until the Crusher is out.

Redbeard is now ready to duel and the Phantom let him pick the weapons. Redbeard chooses saber and dagger and the duel starts, going through the entire town, finally ending up at a ship, Redbeard's own, there the 6th Phantom, was temporarily distracted by the sight of the most beautiful lady he had ever seen, being behind bars. Redbeard used this one moment of distraction and knocked his saber of, thinking the victory was his. The Phantom, however, used a stool to make Redbeard lose his saber, then they went into close fight, one hand wielding the dagger, the other holding their opponent's dagger hand, suddenly, the Phantom lets go of his dagger and starts punching Redbeard until he is down and defenseless. Everyone then expect him to finish Redbeard off, when he realizes this, he refuses, and every eye is filled with tears, since they all had forgotten that there existed such a thing as mercy.

The Phantom then goes carefully forward, releasing the beautiful lady and is informed that she is Queen Natala of Navarre whom Redbeard had captured and planned to demand a ransom for. Questioning Redbeard, he learns that there are totally 500 men under arms in Sanloi and that around 100 of them will follow orders without questioning. He then have everyone leave their weapons in two huge piles, then he let Redbeard and Black Bart, Salla, and the Crusher pick 25 reliable men each. The selected men then all pick weapons from the piles. When those who wasn't selected asks what is to be with them, the Phantom reveals that all piracy now have ended and the unarmed men storms towards the piles of weapons. The Phantom then orders the selected men to stop them and they obey.

The Phantom then reveals his plans to form an organization that is to fight the piracy, he makes Redbeard Colonel and Black Bart, Salla, and the Crusher becomes his closest men with the rank of major. After ridding the unarmed men of the worst scum, such as murderers and the like, he makes them seamen aboard a new Royal fleet of Navarre, consisting of twelve of the totally thirteen ships that are in Sanloi, the thirteenth he keeps for himself. The new Royal fleet is a compensation for the ships that Queen Natala had lost.

Then he takes care of the funding, by having Redbeard bringing all leaders of the coast cities to the Skull Cave, something that is done with a lot of threat. The Phantom then explain his plan for them and asks them to fund the patrol without having any influence. After some thought, they all agree and sign a document.

Queen Natala then accompanies the Phantom to the Skull Cave and sits in the Skull Throne. Both are totally in love with each other, but the Phantom cannot leave the jungle, and Natala has her Kingdom. Finally, as her new fleet is about to depart, the Phantom says that if she had not been a queen, he would have asked her to marry him, then he quickly jumps overboard before she has been given any time to answer.

Queen Natala of Navarre goes home to her Kingdom and tries not to think of the Phantom, but she misses the calmness and joy if the Deep Woods, being terrified of the violence in Europe. Meanwhile, the Phantom also misses Natala as he fights evil.

Finally, Queen Natala abdicates and gives the throne to her brother, then she travels to Bengali and surprises the Phantom. The Phantom is quite speechless, but then Queen Natala explains that according to European law, a queen must propose to her future husband, she then asks if he want her. The Phantom accepts without hesitation.

They are happily married in the Skull Cave.


Recurring characters

One-time characters

  • Bill
  • Bill's girlfriend
  • The 12 coastal kings
  • The jungle chiefs
  • Natala's brother




Old jungle sayings

Related stories

Referenced in


This story has been published in the following publications:

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  • "Az őserdei járőrszolgáöat története", Fantom #7 (1989)

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  • Vikan February 11, 1965 – September 2, 1965

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  • "الشبح وقصة أجداده" (romanized as "Alshabah wa kessat ajdadeh"), Samir #482#496 (1965)

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