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The man called "Flipside" was a record producer and promoter. He had a particular fondness for classic rock from the 1950s, and he expressed a dislike for more modern pop music.

Flipside was a heavyset man with a receding hairline. He wore a spit curl in a spiral shape, imitating a vinyl record's grooves. He had a habit of rhyming the last word of his sentences with a name, as in "I'll work the machine, Gene".

Criminal Record[]

Flipside was involved in several illegal activities, including extortion, payola, and murder. He was suspected of being associated with the criminal organization known as The Apparatus. He first attracted the attention of Dick Tracy following the mysterious death of Jake Staxx, the owner of a chain of record stores.

Flipside coerced Staxx into buying bulk lots of records sight-unseen. Rather than the older albums by popular artists that he was promised, Staxx discovered that he had bought remaindered records by unknown and unsuccessful artists. When Staxx confronted Flipside, Flipside arranged to have him killed through the use of a "Black Sound" device that had been developed. It used sound waves to put a severe strain on the human body, eventually resulting a fatal heart attack.



Flipside then had his agents, the Stereo Brothers, approach Themesong and Garry Doll, who were the hosts of a popular rock & roll radio program on station WHUB. The brothers offered Themesong and Doll money, cars and drugs if the pair would play certain records on their program. Themesong and Doll refused. The brothers later killed Doll using the Black Sound device.

When Dick Tracy, Sam Catchem, and Lizz confronted the brothers, they tried to kill them all with their black sound device, an attempt that would've succeeded if Tracy hadn't shot the device. The detectives then confronted Flipside, who hid the brothers in his closet while denying any knowledge of their crimes. With the brothers having failed in killing the detectives, Flipside told them to leave town, as they were now wanted by the police. Flipside then decided to re-vitalize the career of one of his favorite classic singing stars- Sparkle Plenty. Flipside arranged a recording session with Sparkle through A.R. Mann, a music industry connection and sound engineer. At the session, Flipside asked Sparkle to record a classic song with modern arrangements. This was a seemingly legitimate business venture from Flipside.

Recording with Sparkle Plenty[]

While Sparkle was recording her vocals, the Stereo Brothers arrived at the studio to try to change Flipside's mind. They convinced him that Themesong was the only living person who could implicate them, since Tracy had destroyed the device they had used in their murders, so they would be out of danger if she was killed. Flipside agreed. Sparkle and Mann overheard the conversation and recorded it. Sparkle then called Dick Tracy, who arrived soon after.


Flipside surprised Tracy and locked him and Sparkle in the recording booth with the Black Sound device. He waited to enjoy his victory. Flipside did not realize that the sound vibrations would eventually break the glass windows in the studio, and Tracy used some broken glass to cut the ropes that bound him. Flipside attempted to take Sparkle as a hostage, but Sam Catchem and Lizz arrived on the scene and ambushed him.

Flipside fled through the record-pressing plant, where he stumbled and lodged his head in a press. In his struggles to free himself. he accidentally activated the device, and his head was crushed.


  • Tracy described Flipside's company as being run by "mob guys", but it is unclear to what extent Flipside was connected to The Apparatus.