June 12th, 2010
|01:51 pm - The Forgotten Pulp Heroes|
During its hey day there were over 300 fiction themed Pulps, and while much of it has been reprinted and translated into other media with a number that size it stands to reason that quite a lot of it is lost and forgotten.
One of the genres that lasted longer than some of the others were the hero pulps, with it perhaps coming in a strong forth after the reprinting of the science fiction, mystery, & fantasy.
And yet there were quite a few of the old Pulp heroes that fell though the cracks.
The Skipper, I know next to nothing about the “Man who makes his own laws,” though I hear like many buff guys when his more active days were past he put on weight and ended retiring to a little island with 6 other people.
Gorilla Girl, the kind of girl you don’t take home to mother, but if you do Mom had better not give her any lip! There were a number of pulps that mixed Westerns and Romance, I’m betting this is the only one that did it with gangsters.
Fight Stories featured a lot of Robert E. Howard’s stories about his favorite character, not Conan, or Solomon Kane but boxer Steve Costigan.
The Masked Detective, he was a detective…. And he wore a mask.
Captain Combat, I have no information.
The Mask Rider, one of three western heroes who wore a mask, one of whom was well known, the lack of success of the other two and a couple of Masked Detectives led to The Masked Fisherman, Masked Milkman & Masked Gynecologist getting canceled without even on issue being published.
Speaking of masked detectives the Angel Detective here was another one that made it only one issue as a pulp, however the character did a little better in the comics in a blue union suit and with his underwear on the outside in the pages of Atlas / Timely (later Marvel) comics. Martin Goodman decided to give one of his comic book characters in the 40’s a try as a pulp hero, perhaps more people would have bought it if he had used the Human Torch or Sub-Mariner… or hired a better writer who didn’t just try to rip off Simon Templar the Saint.
And speaking of ripping off… The Whisperer was a little known pulp hero who was really police commissioner James “Wildcat” Gordon, not many people read the series… but I’m guessing Bob “The Bat-Man” Kane did.
February 19th, 2010
|05:46 pm - Would the Flame, Yarko the Great or the Blue Beetle lie to you?|
No, but their boss Victor Fox would.
Ad found on the inside front page of all the comics edited by Victor Fox one summer in 1940.
The idea was you send in a bottle cap from a bottle of Kooba Cola and you get a free bottle, pretty sweet deal for a kid at that time.
Trouble was there was no such thing as Kooba Cola “The Big Drink,” Victor’s plot was that all these kids who read his comics (and who, according to Jack Kirby, was given to calling himself the king of comics) would create such a demand for Kooba that he would then be able to sell the rights to the name to a bottling company.
It didn’t work.
January 19th, 2010
|06:53 am - 10 Places YOU Can't Go|
Contrary to popular belief, Disneyland has a full liquor license which is used when the place closes down to the general public to accommodate private parties. But there is one place in Disneyland that is always open to sell booze: Club 33. Club 33 is a private club located in the heart of the New Orleans Square section of Disneyland. Officially maintained as a secret feature of the theme park, the entrance of the club is located next to the Blue Bayou Restaurant at “33 Royal Street” with the entrance recognizable by an ornate address plate with the number 33 engraved on it. Fees for joining range from 10 – 30 thousand US dollars and membership comes with a car park. If you want to join the club, you have to go to the end of the fourteen year waiting list.
For the rest go to
January 3rd, 2010
|05:55 pm - Those Daffy 50's & Some Little Known Comic Heroines|
1. Hey pal shut up, I’m trying to watch a depressing movie here. On second thought, just shut up altogether.
First of a long line of public service comics put out in 1951 by of all groups the NFPA or National Fire Protection Association, after this they first went with two issues of Smokey Stover and then from then until this very day switched their own character Sparky the Fire-Dog. Sparky however has left us on our own in regard to atomic doom.
2. This is the fifth and last comic produced for the American Dental Association in 1954 by the company started by Will Eisner when he left commercial comics. Back during that era they were saying that comics caused everything from juvenile delinquency to a plethora perversions that most proper people in the 50’s were not even suppose to even know about.
And here’s proof that its true, with this one handed out for free in dentist’s offices trying to impurify all of our precious bodily fluids!
3. Further proof of the corrupting influence of comics, I’m no expert on these things, but I’m pretty sure this is some sort of fetish to SOME people, you know the ones I’m talking about THOSE people. Probably have a dozen different groups dedicated to it on Yahoogroups and any number of web pages about which I will not speak.
Not that I would visit any one them!
4. At least some comics were on the right track back then, showing how things should be.
1. Sue & Sally, The Flying Smith Sisters. Appearing in just 7 comics in 1962, not long, but it should be noted as impressive for 1962 when female comic book heroines were thin on the ground . Use to be a romance comic called My Secret Love, but the Silver-Age was heating up, and romance comics were lagging and so Sue and Sally, nurses of the Emergency Corps Rescue Team, were born. Probably about due for a retooling and reappearance.
2. From 1948 a very unusual creation from Gordon “Boody” Rogers, but then all of Boody’s creations were pretty unusual to downright weird. This comic, which survived for 11 issues told the adventures of Babe Boone, who due to her life long imbedding of lighting juice (distilled from the bark of oak trees struck by lightning) is stronger, faster, and more agile than almost anyone else in the world, turning to sports she become the first women to play major league baseball, winning two World Series almost single handed while also giving football and boxing a try (rejected because she bad about the damage she has to inflict “on all those defenseless men” to play those games. Mostly however the comic tells about her live at home in Possum Holler in the Ozarks home of Babe as well as a merman who lives on land and gets around on crutches, a three legged caveman hatched from an egg that rolled out of a volcano, patches of land that if you blunder into them reverse your gender, and a community of centaurs. think Al Capp on acid and you have Babe’s adventures.
3. From 1952 we have G. I. Jane, a comic series more 50’s normal,
In other words, condescension and sexism is so thick you could spread it on toast like butter. Nice artwork though.
4. And then we have Untamed Love.
The theme of the story based on the cover?
Guys can’t resist chicks who dress like Ming the Merciless.
October 11th, 2009
|04:53 pm - Robo Geisha & Assault Girls|
Trailers for two independent films from Japan
Robo Geisha (this looks like one messed up movie!)
Assault (more main stream, and seemingly a live action anime film)
June 28th, 2009
|03:18 pm - Web of the (lesser known) Spider Men.|
Never cared for spiders myself, however they have been the theme for a number of fictional crime fighters (and villains.) And I don’t mean just that Peter come lately.
1 - 3. In the 30’s there was Richard Wentworth “The Spider: Master of Men,” who starred in over a hundred over the top adventures that were so kinetic that at times the author would forget major plot points and characters by the time the quick 80 pages were done and New York, or the whole country, was in shambles again due to an army of giant robots or hundreds of millions of mind controlled rats on a rampage. These two covers show the two cover versions of The Spider at the time, and a 1980’s comic book reinterpretation of Mr. Wentworth.
4. DC comic’s Tarantula from 1941, never made it to a cover so I had to use an inner page.
5. Gagamba, which is Tagalog for Spider. This is a masked vigilante hero from a “komik” from the Philippines who first appeared in 1961, also appeared in at least 3 films.
6. 1965 saw the debut of England’s villain at first, and later (sort of) hero, The Spider, who wore one of the oddest costumes every.
I mean was he bitten by a radioactive dominatrix or what?
June 19th, 2009
|11:57 pm - Give it up for King Snake!|
Give it up for Nagraj: King Snake!
This just might be the most popular superhero in the world, oh really? And what about Superman, Batman, or Spider-Man? I never heard of this guy.
Well tens of millions of people in India have where, at least according to Raj Comics his publishers, something like 100 million comics with him in it have been bought.
I guess it’s sort of like the way even moderate Bollywood hits outdo even the biggest Hollywood ones.
Lot of people in India don’t you know.
Anyway, Nagraj, has been around for a little over 20 years and has what has to be the most convoluted origin stories of any superhero I have heard of.
His powers? Like many superheroes it varies with the people doing him at any given time, so he had gone from a little less than Spider-Man in the early days, to tossing things into orbit like Superman in the Silver-Age.
However some of his more interesting feats involve Him shooting snakes out of his wrists to do things like make nets and whips and such, seems instead of white blood cells he had millions of microscopic snakes!
At present he is on a world wide tour trying to wipe out terrorism.
For a little more about him check out:
June 10th, 2009
|12:38 pm - What's Black & 4-Color and Goofy All Over?|
When I was a kid the Blackhawks in the 60’s struck me as a little odd, what with their uniforms and their over the top accents and the like.
Of course when I encountered the characters it was during the 60’s when they where uncomfortably wedged in among all the Silver-Age superheroes, dealing with supervillains, not the wartime of their creation.
Years later I’ve at last found the hidden true secret of the Blackhawks…
they were comedy.
No really, according to Blackhawk co-creator Chuck Cuidera when the call for items for the soon to be published new comic to be called Military Comics came out in 1941 (and back then more strips only lasted from 6 to at most 12 pages to fill out 64 pages) all the responses sent back seemed to be in the goofy humor in the military genre.
The editor felt there had to be something that was serious to lead and be the cover feature, and the non-military Blue Tracer about a civilian in a super fast car, that he had grabbed from being put in one of their more general comics would not do, he wanted military.
So he gave Chuck a copy of one of the humor features that would be in number one, a thing by Jack Cole (Plastic-Man) called Death Patrol about 5 escaped convicts, each an exaggerated stereotype such as a cowboy, old man, oily con-artist, American Indian, etc who join a millionaire to fight Nazi with stolen airplanes, and told him to do something like that…. Only not as a comedy, and so the Blackhawks were born.
I think their being based on such an item had an effect, because let’s face it they were kind of goofy, which fit in well enough with the rest of Military Comics and their later home Modern Comics before they went solo.
Which besides the Blue Tracer, and the short lived “Sniper,” was all goofy comedy, none of which ever made it on the cover, other than as such items as the ones above where Blackhawk seems to be getting ready to give the Elephant in the title a rectal exam, “Madame Butterfly” seems to be giving Blackhawk’s allergies a hard time by dumping pollen out at his feet, and the big Swede of the group needs an amateur operation because of “the Evil of Mung” (beans?)
The lower right hand of the panel is made up of just a few of the items that made up the rest of the magazines that always had Blackhawks and Company on the cover.
They being, Death Patrol in the background, with Ezra the Archie clone, Private Dogtag, Will Bragg, and Torchy the Blonde Bombshell, floating about over them. Left out are the other long running features such as Johnny Doughboy, P.T. Boat (that was the character’s name, not what he served in), Dave of the Navy, Noodles Poodles (no really they had a back page series called that) and others.
June 6th, 2009
|04:21 pm - Grave Heroes|
A collection of dead heroes & villains from the comics, going from clockwise starting at the upper left.
Deadman (upset there are no living people about for him to possess,) Casper the Friendly Ghost, Kid Eternity’s side-kick Mr. Keeper, The Spectre, to tell you the truth I’ve forgotten who the heck this Golden age ghost hero was, the Gentleman Ghost, The Ghost, Dead Girl, Mr. Crime and Sgt. Spook behind Dead Girl and apparently about to take down Mr. Crime, if The Ghost doesn’t shoot him first… which begs the question, what happens to a ghost that gets shot by another ghost, do they become the ghost of a ghost?
June 5th, 2009
|06:53 pm - Avon Calling|
Avon was a minor comic book company that published from 1947 to 1953, they sometimes put “A Realistic Comic” on their cover instead of the Avon logo. Below are four of their gems.
1. Slave Girl Comics: (1949) Way to dodge the whole “comics are immoral sleaze corrupting the minds of our youth” thing going on at the time.
2. Television Puppet Show: (1950) Comics are among the few members of the mass media where everybody wants to be the first, to be the second to do something.
But at least they could have put a little more thought and effort into their effort to steal some of the audience from Howdy Doody!
3. City of the Living Dead: (1952) An unnumbered one-shot that seems to be trying to case in on what was going on at EC Comics.
However it has to be of note that it’s the first item that I know of to feature the whole “living dead” thing as it’s theme, which would not be seen on that scale until Night of the Living Dead years later.
Avon also put out another comic the same year called The Dead Who Walk.
4. Gangsters & Gun Molls: (1951) “Crime Never Wins,” but it sure is hot!
Avon went out of business when the Comic Code Authority, and the general attitude toward comics at the time, made things impossible for the majority of their efforts.
There version of Davy Crockett, which came out 4 years before the Disney film, and Peter Rabbit Comics not withstanding.