Public Domain Super Heroes
Black Venus
Black Venus.jpg

Real Name

Mary Roche

First Appearance

Contact Comics #1 (July 1944)

Original Publisher

Aviation Press

Created by

Charles Tomsey


Mary Roche was originally an exotic dancer at a Paris night club. She was known as "Black Venus" because of her beauty and the black curve-hugging bodysuit. She was engaged to Jean Cartier, a Parisian lawyer. Unfortunately for Jean, her dancing captured the attention of Yamato, an attache to the Japanese embassy in Paris. Upon learning of Jean's existence, he arranged to have him assassinated. When Mary discovered what happened she swore vengeance on Yomata and the Japanese people in general.

Her quest for vengeance led her to study flying. Under circumstances that weren't entirely clear, Mary wound up becoming a hostess at a serviceman's canteen on an American-held South Pacific island off the coast of Australia. She put her flying skills to use by masquerading as Black Venus, a black-suited aviatrix who flew a black customized Lockheed P-38 long-range interceptor. By that point, Mary got a new boyfriend - Lt. Bill Evans, a pilot who was stationed at the base where she worked.

As Black Venus, Mary fought against Japanese pilots with ruthless proficiency. In fact, she was so proficient that the Imperial government issued a large reward for her capture. She eventually learned that Yamota (who, by that point, rose through the ranks of the Japanese military to become a colonel) was stationed at a Japanese base nearby, she deliberately got herself captured so that she may get close enough to get revenge. Realizing that Yamato still had feelings for her, she offered to have dinner with him. With no weapons at hand, she improvised by grinding the glass in her goggles into shards and tossing them into his drink - a painful, but, in Mary's view, perfectly justified death. Getting her revenge did not slow her down - if anything, it made her even more determined to keep fighting as the Black Venus.

Public Domain Appearances

  • Contact Comics #1-11


  • It is unclear just how secret Black Venus' secret identity really was. While most members of the American military didn't know that she and Mary were one and the same, a few clearly did. Yamato seemed to know exactly who Black Venus was before he got a chance to see her in person - presumably, he made the connection between the aviatrix that beguiled his forces and the dancer he was once infatuated with long before that.
  • Yamato's name was spelled several different ways in Contact Comics #4.

See Also