Charles Atlas was a bodybuilder whose picture Lewis sees a picture of in a comic book advertisement promoting his muscle building program (The Figure in the Shadows, 44).


Charles Atlas, born Angelo Siciliano (1892-1972), was the developer of an exercise and bodybuilding program that was best known for its advertising campaign featuring Atlas's name and likeness[1]. The iconic advertisements were printed in many comic books from the 1940s, and were variants of a theme: a skinny young man (usually accompanied by a female companion) being threatened by a bully, returning home, getting angry, and sending away for the free Charles Atlas book. Shortly thereafter, the newly muscled hero returns to the place of his original victimization, seeks out the bully, and beats him up- rewarded by the swift return of his girlfriend, too.


  1. Wikipedia: Charles Atlas