Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The American Crusader-Max Plaisted-1943

Max Plaisted started out in risque pulp comic strips but had a steady career in more traditional adventure strips through the forties. I really like his superhero work here on this obscure patriotic hero, especially the "Zam!" panel on the last page. You'll know it when you see it.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Angel-Sekowsky/Bellman-1944

When I first saw, in Steranko's history, how prominent The Angel had been in Timely's Golden Age, I began to wonder why the character wasn't revived in the early sixties along with those many who were. It's not that he was a great character, being essentially a costumed variation on The Saint/ Falcon style hero. Still, for a brief period in the second run of MYSTIC COMICS in 1944, he at least seemed a little livelier. GCD says this is Mike Sekowsky--later the initial JLA artist--inked by Allen Bellman, an artist who's lived long enough to be rediscovered and can be found here!

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Mad Planet-Virgil Finlay-1954

Here's something one doesn't see every day--a complete, full-color comic book sci-fi tale drawn by the legendary pulp illustrator, Virgil Finlay! The artist did a few "Just Imagine" fillers for National but virtually no other full stories other than this one from a 1954 MYSTERY IN SPACE, reprinted in 1971, the year of Finlay's death, in STRANGE ADVENTURES.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Three Stooges-Norman Maurer-1954

By the time the Three Stooges came to comics at St. John, it was Shemp in the third spot, not Curly. With delightful MAD-style art by Norman Maurer, these early tales were amazing fun! Maurer would remain associated with the Stooges throughout the rest of his life, marrying Moe's daughter, helping them revive their career through television, producing their later features with Curly Joe and keeping a hand in later, lesser comics versions. Along the way, he and Joe Kubert developed the concept of 3-D comics!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Rockhead McWizzard-Jack Farr-1949

This ALLEY OOP rip-off strip (If there's any doubt, note the "OOOP!" in the last panel) appeared in various Golden Age National titles including ALL-STAR and FLASH COMICS. In fact, this one is from an issue of ALL-STAR in 1949 but that "FL 86" on the splash panel would seem to indicate that it had been originally meant for FLASH COMICS 86. The really nice art and storytelling here  is credited to longtime cartoonist Jack Farr who apparently died months before this was published and yet who continued to have stories come out as late as 1951. 

Friday, November 25, 2011

Kitty Carson-Bob Powell-1950

I'm reading Craig Yoe's new collection, BOB POWELL'S TERROR, which is making me hunger for more and more comics work by Bob Powell. Luckily, the artist was very prolific throughout the 1950's and into the early '60's. Here's a Harvey back up strip from1950 as reprinted in 1955.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Witness-Syd Shores-1948

 The Witness was Timely's version of National's Phantom Stranger...although the sole issue of THE WITNESS was out several years earlier. The character is also similar to radio's Mysterious Traveler or The Whistler, which probably inspired all of these types of guys that turned up in comics during that period. This wordy story has art credited on GCD to Syd Shores.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Homer Ghost-Stan Lee/Tony DePreta-1957

Originally by Stan Lee and Dan DeCarlo (as "Stan and Dan"), this straightforward rip-off of CASPER THE FRIENDLY GHOST was given an almost unprecedented amount of tries. Beginning in the early fifties as HOMER THE HAPPY GHOST, the series was revived at the end of the decade as THE ADVENTURES OF HOMER GHOST and then again in the early seventies with reprints! This particular story is from the middle period and is signed in an interior panel by artist Tony DePreta who would later go on to draw JOE PALOOKA and REX MORGAN, MD.