His Sporting Lordship
Real Name: Henry D'Arcy Percival Nobbins, Seventy-Second Earl of Ranworth
Identity/Class: Normal human
Occupation: Sportsman, Earl, former labourer
Affiliations: Jarvis (his butler)
Enemies: Mr. Parkinson, Fred Bloggs
Known Relatives: Lord Harbell (unspecified relation)
Aliases: Lord Henry
Base of Operations: Castle Plonkton, Kent
First Appearance: Smash! (IPC, 15th March 1969)
Powers/Abilities: Natural sportsman.
History: Henry Nobbins loved a good fight, despite always losting, and was always in trouble as a result. He was a labourer for T. Bumpton and Son, working on their building sites in northern England until he was approached by solictor Mr. Wimpole. Having already tracked down and checked eighty-seven other Henry Nobbins, he was delighted to confirm that this one had the middle names D'Arcy Percival (which Henry usually kept quiet about, believing he'd get laughed at) and had a five-pointed star birthmark on his upper right arm. Following Wimpole's instructions, Henry travelled to Castle Plonkton in Kent the next day, where the reasons for the solicitors strange questions were revealed: Henry was the sole legal heir of Lord Harbell, Seventy-First Earl of Ranworth, and had inherited not only the title, but the castle, complete with its staff, and five million pounds. But because his recent predecessors had let down the family's long history of being exceptional sportsmen, the last Earl had placed a caveat in his will. Before Henry could access the money, he had to redeem the Ranworth reputation by becoming a champion at several sports, specifically achieving every sporting target the last few Ranworth's had failed at. Worse, failure meant he would not only not inherit, but that the staff would all be fired and the castle given to rival claimant Mr. Parkinson, who planned to turn it into a glue factory, and was quite willing to use underhand means to ensure the somewhat dim Henry failed. Unfortunately for Parkinson, and his dubious minion Fred Bloggs, Henry proved a natural sportsman despite lacking previous experience, and with the aid of his cunning butler Jarvis and the ghosts of past Earls, manifest via their portraits in the castle's long gallery, he gradually worked his way through the will's list of sporting achievements.
Comments: Created by Barrie Mitchell. The series survived Smash! being cancelled and merged with Valiant in April 1971, before coming to a conclusion on 25th December 1971. His Sporting Lordship did continue to appear in Smash!'s annuals, stealing the covers from 1972 through 1975.
While inheriting £5,000,000 (five million pounds) would still be a life changing sum even today, per online calculators that sum in 1969 equates to over £57,500,000 (fifty seven million, five hundred thousand pounds) in 2018 money.
CLARIFICATIONS: Not to be confused with
any other Lords or sportsmen
Any Additions/Corrections? Please let me know.
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