Kid Chameleon (comics)

Kid Chameleon was a weekly 2-page colour comic strip appearing in the British Comic Book Cor!! from its first issue in 1970 until 1972. It was written by Scott Goodall and drawn by Joe Colquhoun, both uncredited.


Stranded in the Kalahari Desert by a plane crash, a British boy is raised by lizards as a feral child, and weaves himself a skin-tight suit of transparent lizard scales which covers his entire body except the top of his head (to avoid the appearance of complete nudity, he also wears a pair of flesh-coloured briefs underneath). Only one strip shows how the suit comes off. It consists of two pieces: a top that opens at the front, and leggings. The suit allows him to camouflage himself like a chameleon by making the scales change colour, although how he does it is never explained.

When he reaches adolescence he is told by his only human contact, an ancient Bushman, that the wreckage of the plane contained the bodies of his parents, who had been shot. The only clue to the murderer's identity was a silver skull brooch.

Subsequent strips trace Kid's journey across Africa and beyond as he searches for his parents' killer and uses his camouflage to help people (often other teenagers in trouble) along the way. The actual effect of his camouflage is achieved by superimposing his black-line image on a coloured background, so that he appears semi-invisible. As one correspondent pointed out, the main weakness in his camouflage is his blond hair, which always remains visible, yet none of the other characters ever notices it.

The strip was cancelled in 1972 after almost two years. In the closing installments Kid finds the murderer and hands him over to the police, before returning to the Kalahari to live with his reptilian friends.

Goodall also wrote Fishboy for Buster, and there are some obvious similarities between the two strips. Fishboy is searching for his parents, while Kid Chameleon is searching for his parents' killer. However, while Fishboy was drawn in black and white, Kid Chameleon had to be drawn in colour in order to show the effects of Kid's camouflage.

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