Stooge Viller

Appeared from Tuesday, January 3, 1933 to Monday, January 8, 1940

Panel from January 5, 1933

Stooge Viller was the king of the pickpockets and a sleight-of-hand wizard. He had black hair and sleepy eyes. Stooge Viller was called to the city by Ribs Mocco to frame Tracy and discredit him with the authorities.

Stooge deftly planted counterfeit money in Tracy’s wallet, his coat and his apartment. The scheme worked. Tracy used the money to buy new clothes for Junior. The chief dismissed Tracy from the force and Tess, believing him guilty, broke their engagement. Stooge was not satisfied. He next arranged a meeting with Tess, dated and proposed to her. Tess was ready to leave town with Stooge when she discovered a wireless message that Stooge had sent which revealed that he had framed Tracy. As Tess was telephoning Chief Brandon, Stooge shot her in the shoulder.

At the hospital, Tess told the Chief all about Stooge and cleared Tracy. Meanwhile, at the railroad station, Stooge was trying to make a getaway. He was recognized by Junior, who was there to leave town with the disgraced Tracy. Stooge tried to shove Tracy onto the train tracks, but Tracy fought back and finished off Stooge with his fists. Tracy arrested Stooge who was then sent to prison. There, Stooge met Steve the Tramp, whom Tracy had captured earlier. Together they plotted to break out and get revenge on Tracy. Using naphtha, cotton waste and a red-hot bolt, Stooge blew a hole in the penitentiary wall and he and Steve escaped. Arriving at Hank Steele’s ranch in Colorado, they found it empty because Tracy had moved Hank and Junior, along with Pat Patton, to safe place on an ocean liner in the Atlantic.

Returning to the city, Stooge and Steve hid out with Stooge’s sister, Maxine, who was a jewel thief. After Tracy had arrested Steve and Maxine’s “fence”, Gyp Reed, he and Officer Milligan broke into Maxine’s apartment. Maxine tricked Milligan into breaking open a walnut, which was a poison gas bomb. In the confusion that followed, Maxine and Stooge got away, stole an airplane and flew to Nova Scotia, Canada. Meanwhile, the ocean liner carrying Junior, Hank Steele and Pat was dashed to pieces in a storm, but all three were among the survivors who were brought to a pier in Halifax. Stooge and Maxine were at the same pier and Stooge, seeing this chance for revenge on Tracy, lured Hank, Pat and Junior to an old warehouse.

Stooge’s plan was to kidnap Junior, so he knocked Pat out. When he went to grab Junior, Junior’s father, blind Hank Steele, came to his son’s defense with his cane. Caught off guard, Stooge pulled the trigger and killed Hank. In a panic, Maxine and Stooge fled the scene. Pat recovered and shot at Stooge, who faked his own death in the waters off Halifax Bay. While hiding along the wharf, Stooge was shanghaied and taken aboard a boat in the harbor owned and operated by Old Mike who was a drug smuggler. Stooge quickly made a deal with Old Mike to help him kidnap Tess Trueheart and send a ransom note to Tracy demanding $50,000. Tracy tracked Stooge to an old boat in the harbor, chased and boarded it, and found Stooge hidden in the boat’s figurehead. Tracy sent Stooge back to the penitentiary, for a very unhappy reunion with Steve the Tramp.


Part 2: A Treacherous Ex-Convict

Tuesday, October 24, 1939 to Monday, January 8, 1940


Stooge Viller was released from prison after serving his time. He formed a new gang that included Iggie Munny, Professor Emirc and Burny. Stooge Viller started to sell Professor Emirc’s inventions to other gangsters; a pocket sized acetylene torch, a gun that shot an unmarked bulled and a car attachment that shot tear gas out through the car’s exhaust. Stooge and Professor Emirc then arranged for the murder of Jimmy Epod by letting a drying pig tendon pull the trigger of a gun. Tracy accompanied Marson, a butcher, on his delivery of pigs feet to Professor Emirc’s laboratory, but Stooge got the drop on him there, killed Marson and set the laboratory on fire. Stooge tied and gagged Tracy and suspended him inside an abandoned well, out in the country. Tracy managed to cut his bonds with his broken wrist watch, pull himself out of the well and collapse in the woods.

Stooge’s daughter, Binnie Viller, who was a member of Tess Trueheart’s Girl Scout group, found Tracy in the woods, and she and Tess saved his life. Tracy discovered who Binnie was and he also realized that Binnie hated her father and his criminal ways. Angry that Tracy was still alive, Stooge told his men to drive past police headquarters and machine-gun Tracy when he came out the front door. Stooge was watching and was horrified to see that when Tracy came out, Binnie was with him. Not wanting his own daughter killed Stooge shot Iggie, who was driving the car. The car overturned and when Iggie had his wounds bandaged he and the rest of the gang were taken to headquarters for questioning and then released. Iggie and Professor Emirc angrily confronted Stooge and kicked him out of the gang.

Stooge then kidnapped Binnie and planned to leave town. Binnie refused to go with him. Tracy surprised Stooge at his apartment and they began a fist fight that ended up out on a fire escape with Stooge ready to push Tracy off. Binnie grabbed a gun and threatened to shoot her father. Stooge tried to escape by jumping into the river, and Tracy had to rescue him as he was about to sink. In the hospital, Stooge told Binnie to “stay straight”. As Stooge’s condition worsened, Stooge made Tracy promise to keep an eye on Binnie and to tell her that her father was sent to prison and not to tell her that he had died. Tracy agreed. Stooge and Tracy shook hands and then Stooge died of gangrene poisoning.



Reprinted with permission from the author Victor E. Wichert “The Dick Tracy Encyclopedia Oct. 4, 1931 – Dec. 25 1977″

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