Phantom Troubadour (Namora enemy) (Timely Marvel Comics)

Phantom Troubadour


The majority of villains appearing in the early adventures of Namor and Namora were ordinary mobsters with some minor visual gimmick, such as wearing thick sunglasses or looking like Bluto.

The Troubadour is closer to the tropes of the super-villain though, having a costume, mask, some gadgets, an origin, etc.. Therefore, he is a good example of a run-of-the-mill 1940s comic book villain.


  • Real Name: David Larnum.
  • Other Aliases: Phantom Troubadour, Troubadour of Terror.
  • Marital Status: Unrevealed.
  • Known Relatives: None.
  • Group Affiliation: Former member of the Viennese Quartet.
  • Base Of Operations: Unrevealed.
  • Height: 5’9” Weight: 158 lbs.
  • Eyes: Brown Hair: Black


Powers and Abilities

The Troubadour is quite athletic, and robust enough to take a punch from 1940s Namor. He could set his lute (which may have been a mandolin. Or maybe a guitar) to explode, and throw it at opponents to cover his retreat.

Less theatrically, he also :

  • Packed a pistol.
  • Had access to a small submarine.
  • Surrounded himself with hired gunmen (though not very good or driven ones).


Larnum, a professional musician and composer, was part of a quartet. When a boat he and his colleagues were on sunk in an accident, he was thought dead. He actually got out alive, finding refuge on a desert island and surviving on his own for years. Apparently, he went rather mad during this time.

Larnum eventually made his way back. Hhe discovered that the other former members of the quartet had become famous, successful musicians. In Larnum’s opinion they owed much of their success to the use of a masterpiece he had composed shortly before his reported death, Death in Venice.

The mandolin-mastering murdering musical maniac dressed up as a… colourful troubadour for unrevealed reasons. He then recruited some gunsels and lowlives, and went on the warpath. He intended to murder the three other musicians in quick succession.

Namor and Namora stumbled on the first murder and gave chase. Though they couldn’t prevent a second death, they stopped the Phantom Troubadour before he could murder the third performer.


See illustrations.


The Phantom Troubadour is obsessed by the fact that his former colleagues “stole” his fame and his music, and that he should have been a great musician and a genius composer had fate not robbed him. He cares for nothing else (though he has to steal stuff to keep his gunsels paid) but his maniacal revenge over imagined slights.

Otherwise he was a typical 1940s antagonist, though a bit heavier on quips (music-related, of course).


“Behold ! My musical signals called forth these charming gentlemen ! And they will soothe the savagery from your souls ! Farewell !”

“The original music sheets for Brosch’s piano concerto should be worth a fortune ! I care not for such trifles – but it will please the greedy fools who serve me !”

DC Universe History

Most antagonists in Namor and Namora stories are indistinguishable from, say, then-contemporary Batman villains. The most straightforward thing would be to turn them into villains for the Golden Age Aquaman.

Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG

Tell me more about the game stats

The Troubadour of Terror

Dex: 04 Str: 03 Bod: 04 Motivation: Psycho
Int: 04 Wil: 03 Min: 02 Occupation: Avenger
Inf: 04 Aur: 03 Spi: 03 Resources {or Wealth}: 002
Init: 014 HP: 015

Acrobatics (Athletics)*: 04, Artist (String instruments, Composer): 05, Vehicles (Land, Sea)*: 04, Weaponry (Firearms)*: 04

Connoisseur (Music-related matters only), Lightning Reflexes.

None demonstrated.

Minor Psychological Instability, Minor Rage.


  • Mandolin [BODY 04, Bomb: 09, Grenade Drawback]. The Troubadour has extra guitars (or were they lutes ?) stored in his vehicles to replace detonated ones.
  • Luger P08 [BODY 04, Projectile weapon: 04, Ammo: 08, R#2].
  • The Troubadour also had access to a submarine that could carry a half-dozen persons.

By Sébastien Andrivet.

Source of Character: Human Torch Comics #31 (1948).

Helper(s): Darci.

Writeup completed on the 24th of Dezembro, 2010.