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Spike Smith
SpikeSmith01

First Appearance:

August 7th, 1949

Also Known As:

Spike Dyke

Known Relatives:

Mrs. Dyke, Wife
Spike Jr., Son

Created By:

Chester Gould

Can Be Found:

The Complete Dick Tracy Vol. 11
The Complete Dick Tracy Vol. 17

Spike Smith was an entertainer and musician, whose band played comical music. He was previously know as "Spike Dyke". Spike had wavy hair, light eyes, and a pointed nose and chin.

Dick Tracy Meets "Spike Dyke"Edit

Spike helped Dick Tracy track down Sketch Paree. Paree had previously been employed by Spike as a costume designer, but Spike had fired Paree when he showed increasing signs of mental instability. Paree stole one of Spike's prop guns and used it to murder Talcum Freely.

When Sketch learned of Spike’s cooperation with police, he tried to kill him during a show but Dick Tracy (who was hidden in Spike’s band) shot Paree dead first. The watching crowd thought the shooting was part of the show.

A recording of Spike & his orchestra's rendition of the song "Cocktails for Two" was a significant element in the case of Spinner ReCord.

Some time later, Spike and his orchestra (which included Spike's wife) inadvertently aided the fugitive Kitten Sisters. He discovered Dick Tracy's 2-Way Wrist Radio among the Sisters' possessions and used it to contact Tracy. Spike was abducted and held hostage by the escaping Sisters, but he was able to use the Wrist Radio to keep the police informed of their movements. When the police disabled the Sisters' car, Spike managed to get their gun away from them and held them until the police could take them into custody.

The Return of SpikeEdit

Spike002
Years later, Spike (now going by the name "Spike Smith") contacted Tracy and asked him to intervene with Spike's son, whom Spike feared had become involved in illegal activities. Tracy agreed, and the investigation led him to an encounter with Cueball, Screwball, and Putty Puss.

Spike's son was not implicated in the criminal acts.

Appearances in Other MediaEdit

1990s Feature Film ContinuityEdit

Spike does not appear in the 1990 Dick Tracy feature film. He is a character in the 2 original follow-up novels written by Max Allan Collins.

In Dick Tracy Goes to War, Spike and his orchestra are a featured act at Vitamin Flintheart's Stage Door Canteen. Their raucous music is used at the novel's climax to cover the sound of Tracy's shootout with B-B Eyes.

In Dick Tracy Meets His Match, Spike and his orchestra were a part of Ted Tellum's popular television variety show. Spike was briefly a suspect in Tellum's murder, but was cleared of any wrong-doing.

Plans were made for a fourth novel entitled Dick Tracy on the Beat, the plot of which would have featured crime and corruption in the music business. Spike was planned to be a character in the book, but it was ultimately not produced.

NotesEdit

  • Spike was apparently inspired by the popular novelty recording artist Spike Jones. One of Jones' signature tunes "Cocktails for Two" was heavily referenced during the Spinner ReCord storyline and in Dick Tracy Goes to War.
  • There is no apparent connection between Spike Smith and the various other characters named Spike (typically criminals) that have appeared in the strip.
  • When Spike re-appeared in the strip in 2011, his last name was changed from "Dyke" to "Smith". This is mostly likely due to increased awareness of the word "dyke" being used as a harmful slur against lesbians.

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