Tales Of Suspense #9: "I Saw Diablo! The Demon From The Fifth Dimension!"

Tales Of Suspense #9
"I Saw Diablo! The Demon From The Fifth Dimension!"
May, 1960

Story: Larry Lieber
Pencils: Jack Kirby
Inks: Dick Ayers

The legend had come to life. The legend of a monstrous creature who
dwelled within the mountains. Now, it was no longer a legend, but real.
Now upon its arrival, it was Doomsday! The natives would flee from the
demonic monster who had come to destroy them. They knew that nothing
could stop Diablo, and for one man, he knew that the legends were true.
Diablo lives.

One year ago, in a Trinidad cafe, two men are arguing about a village
where the natives claim that a demon dwells high up in the mountains. A
guide and adventurer, the third man asks them about the mountain-dwelling
demon. The Aztecs claim that a giant demon made of smoke makes his home
in the Sierra Madre Mountains. The guide has been from Singapore to
Siam, and has never heard of such a thing. Since he's interested, the
guide is given a map, and is shown the location. The guide is next seen
hopping a freighter from Trinidad. Assuming it isn't some sort of
wild-goose chase, and if there is such a creature in the mountains, he
will make a million dollar discovery. Docking at Veracruz, the guide
travels northeast, and reaches the Aztec village. The natives are fleeing
for their lives, and tell the newcomer that Diablo is coming down from
the mountain.

Alone in the Aztec village, the guide wonders what manner of beast Diablo
could possibly be. Sensing something behind him, he turns and looks upon
a living nightmare swirling before him. He does not move as the giant
figure draws closer to the deserted village. What he does hear is in his
mind, not his ears. His mind is being probed and he can't keep the smoke
giant's thoughts out. Diablo will empty his mind of irrelevant thought,
and reveal his secret.

Age ago, the alien participated in the great experiment. With his world
overcrowded, Diablo traveled through other dimensions in search of a new
home for his race. Time and space were his to control. Centuries later,
planets were created and worlds died, but still the alien continued on
his journey. Stumbling across the puny, three-dimensional world of
Earth, he had found what he had sought. Diablo remained silent for ages.
Gathering strength and harnessing the energy of the elements, Diablo
would once again be the master of time and space. Now, he was ready to
strike, and destroy all of mankind.

The guide is convinced that he is having a hallucination, but the alien
offers a small demonstration of his power. The hapless human finds
himself caught in the smoky mass which comprised Diablo's hand. He is
unable to breathe, and is made aware of the alien's might. Diablo does
have power, but so do those who dwell on Earth. They are not all as
helpless as the hapless natives. The alien does not regard the clumsy
weapons of Earth as a true threat. His very name has sent terror
throughout the galaxies themselves. The hand weapons of terran soldiers
would be as threatening as gnats to an elephant.

The weaponry of the three-dimensional world would not harm the alien.
They who are from the Fifth Dimension are as so much smoke. He could not
be destroyed by bullets and bombs. Even atomic weaponry would fail, for
he could drift from city to city, and millions would be destroyed in a
nuclear attack. Planes would be unable to drop their bombs without
harming those who dwell below. Once his mission was completed, Diablo
would summon the others from the Fifth Dimension, and Earth would be
theirs. The green hills of the planet would tremble at the coming of his
brothers on their new home.

The guide trembled at the mental images he had been receiving, but while
the alien had been painting it, he had gotten an idea. There was only a
slim chance for survival and it had to be taken now. The fate of the
world was depending on his next move. Pointing a finger at the smoky
giant, he informs the alien that there is a weapon that he is not aware
of. Intrigued, Diablo would see it before he crushes the human. The
guide will show him the power he has. A power which all on Earth possess
and one which could destroy Diablo at will. The alien witnesses the
human creating a creature of smoke, and then trembles at what he
witnesses next. Now it is the alien who turns and flees back to his own
world. The planet Earth will never be invaded, for how could they have
known. The guide's gamble has succeeded. Diablo fled for the mountains,
and by the time the natives returned to the village, the alien had faded
from sight. It was a lit cigarette lighter that did it. When Diablo saw
the smoke coming from the flame, he thought it was another alien like
himself. As he watched, the guide blew out the flame, and the smoke
vanished. Figuring that the human could do the same to him, Diablo fled
in fright, and plans for a fifth-dimensional invasion of Earth went up in

This story was reprinted in Monsters On The Prowl #30 (October, 1974).

The legend of Diablo describes a monstrous, hulking thing.

In the Silver Age of Marvel, the legends of the Hulk and the Thing came
to pass.

The aliens from the Fifth Dimension must be extremely long-lived.

If the gambit had failed, the people of Earth would be reeling from the
Platters's tune, "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes".

On the mighty world of the Fifth Dimension, the aliens wear headsets, and
their receivers have the necessary accessories in Kirby brand equipment.

On the fifth page and the seventh page of the story, readers are treated
to the sight of the planet Earth, as terran and alien continue their
verbal duel for the fate of a world.

Steve Chung
"I Reviewed Diablo! The Demon From The Fifth Dimension!"