Max Emus the movie mogul dies of poison on a plane while Dick Tracy is transporting Quentin Smirk from Los Angeles to Chicago. Tracy proceeds to interview a number of suspects including Bootsy Bombay, Peaches Flambe, Julian Lush, Jan Flug and Monte Bank. Unable to solve the case in the air, Tracy continues to investigate after landing, linking the murder to his own Smirk case and making an arrest.
A woman calling herself the Mistress of Death preaches anarchy to the public, raking in big donations and triggering a crime spree in the city. Reverend Righteous encourages the chief and Tracy to find cause to arrest the Mistress of Death but before business charges can be made the Mistress and her son and daughter go missing and three hoods are suspected when burned bodies are found at an old church. The chase continues when the bodies belong to the hoods and with the help of the daughter, Tracy finds the Mistress of Death in Florida calling herself the Mistress of Faith. Before an arrest can be made, the new Mistress of Faith is struck dead by lightning.
A clever, slow moving criminal named Snails first takes a risk free part in a bank robbery and gets away with all the loot after tricking his two partners into falling to their deaths. Snails then starts a new gang with equally slow moving member Sludge and a speed limit driving taxi driver named Gramps. Hiring Willie the Whiz, a criminal motorcycle courier, and paroled criminals Sid Snatch and Freddy Filch, Snails plans to create a traffic jam, allowing the others time to rob an armored car. Tracy, who’s team has been following Snails deduces the plan and witnesses events from helicopter. On the freeway below Snails kills his accomplices, the armored truck guards and escapes with the loot on Motorcycle. Tracy cleverly tracks him down at a high class Escargot restaurant and makes an arrest.
Shootout in the Snow (December – January)
Walking home on Chrismas Eve Tracy finds a man, fading fast with a gunshot wound in a snowy alley. He followes a elusive kitten into an abandoned building where another man with a gun engages him in a shootout. Very low on ammo and calling for backup Tracy learns the two are escaped convicts. Paramedics arrive while Tracy shoots it out and wrestles with the gunman, who shoots himself in the chest after falling through a floor. The convict outside, Bill Baily dies of his wounds and Tracy rescues the cat, giving it to Baily’s daughter for Christmas.