A super-hero created by Scott Cunningham
for DC Comics
first appeared in More Fun Comics #56
first appeared in Action Comics #224
Congo Bill is the only name by which we know this legendary
adventurer and explorer. He was known for his compassion with
animals, never killing an animal unless he had a choice. Rather,
Bill would trap the animals. He became well-known to both
the authorities and people of Africa.
Bill had many adventures in his life prior to the encounter
that would change his life. On one of his adventures, Bill
saved the life of Chief Kawolo, a local tribal chieftan.
To thank Bill, Chief Kawolo gave him a ring that he told Bill
would allow him to trade places for one hour with the great golden gorilla
that was the tribe's guardian. Bill accepted the gift, but did
not believe the story.
Bill later found himself trapped by a landslide and unable
to free himself. Knowing he was doomed without help and
desperate for freedom, Bill rubbed the ring and found himself
in the body of the golden gorilla. He was able to use the
strength of the gorilla to dig himself free of the rubble.
So began the adventures of Congorilla.
Congo Bill was never a A-list hero, but did have a number of
adventures over the year. He was brought together with other
lesser heroes by Dr. Mist to fight Vandal Savage as the
so-called Forgotten Heroes.
The one piece of information and potential storyline that was
never pursued by the writers of the Congo Bill
stories was what did this great golden gorilla do in Bill's body
for an hour. One can imagine the shock and confusion of this
huge ape when it finds itself in the body of an aging adventurer,
complete with Banana Republic safari
garb and a pith helmet
One can imagine that Bill often returned to his body to find it naked
at the top of a tree, but the Comics Code Authority
scarely let that story out.