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Just to reiterate: I didn’t dood it. Can’t say why you all would think this was one of mine. (HINT: If you find yourself offended by a specific entry, chances are I wrote it.)
And now…some random things here and there:
- Chris Sims and Eugene Ahn present a new episode of the War Rocket Ajax podcast where they interview writer Chris Roberson. BONUS CONTENT: Special guest Dr. K sits in!
- A few quick reactions to some comics I read this week:
Irredeemable #8 – I really like this comic, I can’t wait ’til each new issue comes out, but man oh man I swear it feels like it takes no time at all to read it.
Brave and the Bold #28 – Three issues of this series written by JMS, three smacks square in the head by the Moral-of-the-Story Sledgehammer. And yet I have no intention of dropping the book, because 1) I like the mixes of characters so far, and coming in the announced future issues, and 2) there is an odd fascination in seeing the characters used in these just-this-side of out-of-character ways.
Adventure Comics #4 – The more Superboy-Prime becomes explicitly a criticism of certain types of fan behavior, the more hilarious he becomes. Honestly, the panel where he exclaims “The Internet! Of course!” literally did make me laugh out loud. And that he gets his own marked-down-to-half-price action figure essentially rubbed in his face is fantastic. Yeah, I know this is very much a “comics eats itself” kind of thing, but I don’t care, I’ll take amusement where I can find it.
- Don’t know that I ever showed this to you…a drawing I received from a certain Mr. Hembeck about a year or so ago:
Fred gave us some sketches to give away with copies we sold of the Hembeck Omnibus, and included that one for me. Pretty awesome.
- Wow, Andrew came up with a Nobody’s Favorite that even I had some trouble remembering.
- Ragnell writes about recent Green Lantern events, and how she’s totally okay with what happened to one of her favorite characters, instead of starting an online petition or something.
- I asked on the Twitter for someone to step in and write today’s post for me, and Twitter-pal Toddster replied like so:
“Bleep blorp Sluggo blip bleep Swamp Thing blahdity blahdity teen magazines!”
I suspect this really is how I sound all the time. BLOOP BEEP.
I was poking through Dark Horse’s new Casper the Friendly Ghost 60th Anniversary hardcover
when I happened upon the above scene. I had no idea Casper even had
a ghostly mother. In discussing this with pals Sean
on Wednesday, the idea was briefly floated whether this meant that perhaps a ghost woman was able to be impregnated and carry to term a ghost baby. However, we quickly realized that there were too many questions and/or potential problems involved in this hypothesis unanswered and unsupported by ghostly studies. Science
tells us that we must turn to Occam’s Razor and assume the simplest explanation, the one that requires the fewest assumptions and conclusion-jumping, that Casper and his mom were two living people who died and became ghosts.
More troubling, however, is this portion of the opening panel from the very first Casper comic book, also reprinted in the anniversary book:
And Casper is, like, tooling around with guys on horseback and such, so it’s possible that the Friendly Dead Kid has been wandering the Earth for centuries
. Particularly since other stories, such as the one with Casper’s mom, take place in modern…well, mid-20th century…times. Anyway, the talk of “olden times” and “castles” had pal Dorian theorize that perhaps Casper and his mom were deposed royalty, killed by their enemies, but who can say?
It was also thought perhaps that Casper’s origins in the distant past preclude the possibility of his being the spirit of the departed Richie Rich. I’ve theorized on Casper’s origins before, and the possible relation to Richie Rich, and you know, all it would really take is for the spirit of a dead Richie Rich getting trapped in Professor Keenbean’s time machine, and getting sent back to the Middle Ages, to clear up all those potential continuity problems. Well, okay, there’s the whole thing with Casper’s ghost mom, but maybe he was ghost-adopted.
This all makes perfect sense to me.
I feel vaguely uncomfortable:
from Fantastic Four #315 (June 1988) by Steve Englehart,
Keith Pollard & Joe Sinnott
And now, some excerpts from the Brady Romance Game:
from Teen Life Vol. 14 #4 (January 1974)
ads from Teens Now Vol. 3 #12 (April 1974)
Don’t let the Riverdale kids see the “Joe Blow” story, Superguy!
Then again, looks like Superguy is asleep, there, unless he’s using his x-ray vision to peer through his eyelids and through Zap
‘s back cover to look at the pages inside, since that comic is totally being held closed.
Although now that I’m getting a closer look at the cover…is that Harvey Pekar in the corner, there? When did he become a Zap contributor?
Archie’s Pals ‘n’ Gals #38 (Fall 1966)
SLUGGO FINALLY PICKS A SIDE
IN THE GENDER WAR
from Tip Top #221 (May-July 1960)
- General consensus about that ad from yesterday is that it’s Mort Drucker, which is someone I’d actually briefly considered until I discarded that thought for no real good reason. One person had my back on my Angelo Torres guess, thankfully, so it wasn’t just me!
One person mentioned what an Al Jaffee tampon ad might be like, showing cross sections and such, but of course it would have to be a Fold-in: a full-page drawing of a bunch of people at a party or whatever, and then you fold it in and the details at the sides of the drawing suddenly form into a big pic of a tampon.
…Aaaand that’s enough tampon talk. For now.
- Chris Sims and Eugene Ahn posted a new episode of the War Rocket Ajax podcast earlier this week, where they interview the folks behind the Twisted Toyfare Theatre strips in Toyfare magazine! Also, they want letters to be read on a future episode, so get crackin’. “Dear War Rocket Ajax, I never thought this would happen to me, but….”
- Close personal internet friends have created Mangaviews, a hub for manga reviews. Manga isn’t really my thing, but this looks like a nicely designed site, and perhaps some of you folks will find something of use therein.
- REMINDER: I’m still a contributing Bureau Chief over at Fake AP Stylebook, if you want to pop on by for a few grammar laughs. It’s really taking off, and we’re having a blast doing it. Here’s a nice article on its creation and the folks involved, including lots of fairly well-regarded comic bloggers.
So there I was, going through my collection of early-to-mid-1970s teen celebrity magazines, like I like to do, when I came across something interesting and perhaps funnybook-related in the December 1973 issue of 16 Magazine.
One of the things teen mags of the time (and maybe still do, I have no idea) would feature in their mags is fictional and sometimes serialized stories of teen celebrities having adventures and/or romantic interludes or what have you. I think one mag I’ve come across involved the DeFranco Family investigating a murder mystery, of all things. So, yeah, it was basically celebrity fan fiction.
In this issue of 16 Magazine is chapter 13 of Cindi, starring a young reader-identification heroine in this ongoing serial who engages in numerous activities of the dangerous and/or romantic sort with, in this case, Donny Osmond. A brief passage, if you’d like:
“In spite of the total darkness, Donny seemed to know in which direction to swim. Cindi held onto Donny from behind, with one hand under his arm and the other across his bare shoulders. As he propelled them forward through the murky depths, Cindi could feel the movement of Donny’s muscles working under his skin, and his soft, thick hair brushing her face. With her left leg alongside his right, Cindi was able to pick up and imitate the rhythm of Donny’s kicking, so that the two of them, intertwined and struggling forward, became as one.”
That doesn’t really have anything to do what I wanted to talk about, but come on, that’s some powerful writing right there.
Anyway, here’s the image that accompanied the story:
Yes, that’s supposed to be Donny Osmond. Dreamy, wonderful Donny Osmond. That looked an awful lot like the work of veteran comics illustrator Ernie Colon to me, but there are no art credits anywhere in this mag. Colon was active at this time, and he apparently did a (very nicely drawn!) strip for a 16 Magazine
spin-off, as seen at the Stupid Comics page
. So I suppose it’s not outside the realm of possibility.
Speaking of IDing artists, I spotted this tampon ad in another celebrity teen mag from the same (ahem) period, and at first glance, it looks a bit like the work of Mad Magazine stalwart Angelo Torres:
I’m not 100% certain, and Googling “angelo torres tampon ad” didn’t result in anything other than some confused folks looking at their referral stats in the next day or so. It seems fellow Mad
man Jack Davis did an ad
for the same tampon brand, which totally didn’t look like how I pictured a Jack Davis-drawn tampon ad would. But if Davis did one, perhaps other Mad
artists did as well. But on second glance, maybe this is Davis in the ad, too. The more I keep trying to ID it, the more I keep second-guessing myself. Maybe someone out there who is a connoisseur of Mad
artists, of old tampon ads, or maybe even of both, can clear things up.
Now, about that poster from yesterday…that image was taken from the cover of Superman: The Man of Steel #49 (Oct. 1995), and, as Tom and others noted in the comments, the pic certainly evokes a Batman feel. The story inside isn’t particularly moody or Batman-ish, as it involves Superman fighting leftover Byrne villain Skyhook. But then, Skyhook’s shtick is turning kids into bat-people, so maybe that’s the connection there, tenuous as it is.
But again, like I said in the comments, it’s not as if I don’t like Jon Bogdanove. I do. I think he did a swell job during his run on Man of Steel…very loose and cartoony and fun. I realize it’s not to everyone’s taste, but hey, we don’t all have to like the same things. I didn’t even mind the image from that poster as a one-off cover, out of the half-dozen or so Superman covers DC published that month, just for a little variety. But as the image for a store to hang on the wall to advertise the Superman books? They couldn’t find anything a little more…Superman-ish?
But then again, this was the mid ’90s, near the beginning of the comics market crash, and folks were casting about for anything that worked. “You all like dark ‘n’ gritty? Here’s dark ‘n’ gritty Superman for you.”
In fairness, here’s a promo poster I did like, a double-sider Bogdanove drew tying into DC’s Zero Hour event. One side is likely familiar, as it was the cover for Man of Steel #37, with Superman facing off against a number of different Batmen in the styles of the character’s many artists:
And the other side of the poster featured an image that, as far as I can recall, only appeared here (but may have been in a house ad, too…I don’t remember), and reversed the situation:
Always thought these were pretty neat, but I wish the Supermen were more posed looking inward at Batman, like the Superman/multiple Batmen poster. Though perhaps it may have been harder to tell what style was being mimicked without seeing Superman head-on.
Anyway, here’s another nice Batman-esque pic of Superman from Bogdanove:
I might have liked that image better as a promo poster for the Superman line of books.
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