Base of Operations: Keystone City, Kansas, later Pleasantville.
First Appearance: All-Flash #15 (Summer 1944)
Ebenezer Jones was a born worrier. He would worry about the consequences of failing a test, and the consequences of passing it.While he was a child, his family’s friend Professor Haman studied him, determining that his anxiety was caused by a biological agent. Instead of publishing, he decided to enhance the germ, make it contagious, and develop an inoculation against it.
Now that Jones’ case of anxiety was contagious, simply being around him would make people start worrying, often with disastrous consequences. He had a hard time holding down a job, and eventually people began taking advantage of the effect he had on others. A gang of criminals, working with Professor Haman’s inoculation, began following him around, committing theft amid the chaos left in his wake. During this crime wave, he met up with the first Flash, who developed a serum to counteract the effects of the disease. The Flash stopped the gang, and brought the rogue scientist to justice. (All-Flash #15, 1944)
The serum wore off, and Jones went back to worrying again. The Flash provided him with some “happiness pills” that stopped him from worrying. He foolishly took the entire bottle at once, putting all of Keystone City into a happy delirium until the Flash found him and found a way to drain the charge. (Flash Comics #76, 1946)
The Worry Wart traveled around, spreading worry, and eventually decided he wanted to stop the effect he had on people. He returned to Keystone City, where he found he had a salable skill: a department store owner paid him to spend time in his rival’s store, scaring away shoppers. After that fiasco, he was paid to “worry” a trio of reckless siblings into playing it safe through college. (All-Flash #24, 1946)Text by Kelson Vibber. Do not copy without permission.
- All-Flash #24 (August–September 1946) - Martin Naydel
- All-Flash #15 (Summer 1944): “Worry, Worry Everywhere,” Gardner Fox
- Flash Comics #76 (October 1946): “The City that Couldn’t Stop Laughing,” Gardner Fox**
- All-Flash #24 (August–September 1946): “A Saga of Sadness,” Gardner Fox
No known post-Golden Age appearances.
** While “A Saga of Sadness” has an earlier cover date than “The City that Couldn’t Stop Laughing,” “Saga...” makes reference to the pills developed in “City...” The stories appear to have been published out of sequence.
According to “Secrets to DC Cover Dates” at Mike’s Amazing World of Comics, during the 1940s, the cover dates on DC’s monthly books lined up with the first cover date on their bimonthly books. So All-Flash #24 would have appeared the same month as Flash Comics #74, two months before the Worry Wart’s previous appearance.
- Pro(to)zac (on the subtext of Ebenezer Jones’s treatment)