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The Scarecrow Walks (Monsterbus p.450)

A beautiful tale of a golem, well told. The slow, careful thoughtfulness of the creature and the pleasing structure (growing to write a wrong the shrinking back to the new status quo) together with the powerful art (emphasising ponderous scale) gives it an ethereal quality that I find mesmerising.

Kirby's fingerprints

The final text box looks like Lee: breathless and needless repetition. I suspect that Lee also wrote the opening box, though that might be Kirby. The body of the story is confident: it shows that this event did happen, and all we can do is watch in awe. But the opening box snot confident, it sounds defensive, and confrontational, "it might happen, you can't prove it didn't!" To me that sounds more lie Lee. it was common for Lee to edit the start and end, aiming at younger readers who don't like ambiguity.

Otherwise, the story is basically of the Jewish Golem, the kind of story Kirby would have heard at his mother's knee (whereas there is no evidence of Lee writing stories like that). It relies on a curiosity about new science: note the reference to tons of radioactive air, massive energy, delta rays, atoms, expansion, etc. And the frustration with people above you taking money that is rightfully yours: something Kirby experienced again and again: at the time he had lost money setting up Mainline comics and was looking to lose money on Sky Masters.  Kirby was like the hard working farmer who never got a break, and his endless line of editors were like the banker skimming of the profits, or at least (in the case of Mainline) ensuring a failure did not cost them too much (Joe Simon, the financial brains, came out of the disaster with a very nice house intact: Kirby came out with nothing but debts.)

In summary, the ambiguity, the folk tale context, the science obsession, and the Kirby-versus Lee parallel makes me think that this story, like practically all the others, is by Kirby.

Kirby the prophet

Note that the townspeople vowed to say nothing. The villain would quite likely try to get the money back, but without the townspeople backing up his story he had little chance. This is an eternal principle: society's norms matter.

An alternative reading of this  story is as "The Telltale Heart", where the scarecrow is a reminder to the evil banker, and the rest takes place in his imagination, forcing him to return the money. As with all great fables, this story is really about morality, and alternate readings are possible.

The science

This story may appear absurd, but Kirby is careful to refer to delta rays. These are slow electrons, typically produced from an atom after it is it by something faster (alpha, beta or gamma radiation). Kirby may have connected the idea with delta waves, or high amplitude brain waves, that may be connected with memory formation. (Wikipedia references Hobson, J. , & Pace-Schott, E. (2002). The Cognitive Neuroscience of Sleep: Neuronal Systems, Consciousness and Learning. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 3(9), 679-693.)

What happened was so unlikely that Kirby said it required massive energy, infinite space and endless time before it could happen by chance.

But still, how could it happen even then? Given the contest of other monster stories, the simplest explanation is that some bigger technology was involved. Something unexplained picked up on the ideas in human minds: that the scarecrow is like a human, designed to scare off beings who would steal your work.  So my best guess is that in some parallel universe (or this one), aliens left the technology for golems like this, and it was triggered by the energy of the explosion.

There. Clear as day. And still a great story.