2016: The occultist rocketeer of the real-life Suicide Squad

Photo of Jack Parsons from a 1938 edition of the LA Times. Parsons pictured w/the replica bomb he built for the Kynette trial. Image from Wikipedia. Although the Suicide Squad is best known today as a movie about a fictional group of supervillains drafted by the government to undertake dangerous missions in exchange for commuted sentences, there was a real-life Suicide Squad at Caltech in the 1940s. As I read about the original Suicide Squad, I became fascinated with the life and death of its strangest member, Jack Parsons. Jack Parsons (2 October 1914-17 June 1952) was an explosives aficionado who worked at the rocketry research lab at Caltech, who also helped establish Aerojet and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). Parsons’ devised rocket fuels that were the predecessors for the fuel that powered the NASA space shuttles, and made advancements in rocket propulsion, or jet propulsion, at a time when rockets were more […] Read More

2005: Jack Parsons

Jack Parsons was one Hell of a guy, and not just because he might have been the Antichrist. John Whiteside Parsons was born in 1914, a child of wealth and privilege in unholy Los Angeles. His father took a hike while Parsons was a teen, and like so many other kids, young Jack successfully summoned Satan to assuage his loneliness. Hey, haven’t we all been there? The departure of his father also left Parsons with an Oedipal fixation on his mother, according to his biography Love and Rockets (the author adds that later in life, Parsons is rumored to have filmed himself working through his complex through the novel approach of actually having sex with Mom). Parsons was a bit of a wunderkind in two key areas — the occult and rocket science. Parsons legitimate claim to fame was in the latter field. He was by all accounts a […] Read More