§ September 21st, 2004 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on

I’m a Mr. Monster fan from way back…I didn’t read his first appearance in Vanguard Illustrated (which, from all accounts, is colored terribly, either from poor printing or otherwise), but I did buy the first issue from Eclipse back in ’85, and followed him from publisher to publisher ever since.

Unfortunately, for the last few years Mr. Monster has remained mostly dormant, aside from occasional spot-drawings by Doc Stearn’s caretaker Michael T. Gilbert in Alter Ego magazine. However, Atomeka Press has done us the favor of bringing back into print one of Mr. Monster’s little-seen adventures, which originally saw print, oddly enough, in the Penthouse Max comics magazine. Yeah, I know, I know, but don’t worry, it’s not “naked Mr. Monster having his way with equally naked ladies.” It’s Mr. Monster fighting Nazi Martians, with not a naked lady in sight…which makes one wonder why Penthouse published it in the first place.

But never you mind that! Mr. Monster: Worlds War Two is a 48-page full-color reprinting of that story, written by Gilbert, illustrated by George Freeman, and lettered by Ken Bruzenak (who is as much a part of the crazy visual experience of Mr. Monster as any of the artists). Alas, Mr. Monster’s girl Friday, Kelly, is not along for the ride — instead we get “Acid” Annie, a “hippe” reporter for an independent newspaper investigating reports of a supposed Martian invasion. The plot is secondary to Mr. Monster fighting giant-brained Martians (or, to be more accurate, that is the plot), but that’s fine…it’s non-stop nutty adventure just like MM’s adventures used to be. Gilbert and Freeman give us a story inspired equally by EC Comics, the infamous Mars Attacks trading cards, and 1950s sci-fi films, and manages to make it all work together with a healthy dose of humor and suspense. My only minor quibble with this comic has nothing to do with the story, but rather with the pricing…it’s a $6.99 48-page prestige format comic, which seems just a tad bit pricey, but given the current state of the marketplace, and the probable size of the printrun, it’s not unexpected.

This should be out in your better comic book stores tomorrow, so if you’re an old fan of Doc Stearn, give it a look (since it’s unlikely you saw this story the first time it was published).


Jog relates his own memories of Mr. Monster in anticipation of tomorrow’s release. (And he also remembers that this story was first published in Penthouse Max…maybe it wasn’t as overlooked as I thought!)

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