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Cameo appearance by the worst Hawkman mask.

§ June 17th, 2024 § Filed under golden age § 17 Comments

So Daniel T made a joking reference to how All-Star Superman would be abbreviated, which reminded me of this panel from another “All-Star” comic, All-Star Squadron #3 (November 1981):

Oh Roy Thomas, you’re such a card! Actually, I think the Golden Age Superman would have totally abbreviated it that way and not worried about being “careful” about it. Like I was, when I used the shorted version “ASQ” at the shop the other day.

• • •

Sorry for the short Monday post, I had some family stuff to attend to, but I should have one of my usual overly-wordy entries here later in the week. Thanks for reading, pals!

The “Injury to Eye” toys kids have been demanding!

§ May 12th, 2023 § Filed under golden age, misfit toys § 10 Comments

Just a quick post to let you know that some swell new toys are coming from Super7/Reaction in a couple of months, based on classic pre-code horror comic covers, like Baffling Mysteries #7 (1952), art by Frank Giusto:

and Chilling Tales #13 (1952), art by Matt Fox:

and Ghostly Weird Stories #122 (1954), art by L.B. Cole…an L.B. Cole action figure, can you believe it?

and best of all, Black Cat Comics #50, art by Lee Elias:

Comes with its own stick of radium, it does!

These are some wild figures with beautiful packaging, and I hope they do more. I wonder if there’s some way to do the “Colorama” story in figure form?

Remember, kids, smoking can give you super powers!

§ November 25th, 2022 § Filed under flash, golden age § 8 Comments

In which the Golden Age Flash, Jay Garrick, gets his super-speed abilities by not paying attention during his smoke break:


from Flash Comics #1 (January 1940) by Gardner Fox and Harry Lampert

“Are ye gluttons for punishment?”

§ February 25th, 2022 § Filed under golden age § 4 Comments

A little bit of interesting comics trivia, via a copy of Yellowjacket #9 (Charlton Comics, 1946) provided by Customer Sean. Along with stories featuring the title character, and a story with the somewhat Wonder Woman-inspired “Diana the Huntress,” was an installment of “Tales of Terror.” Your host introducing said story: the Witch:

Not to be confused, of course, with the Old Witch introducing stories at EC Comics a few short years later:

The Overstreet Price Guide is on it, with describing the Witch and the “Tales of Terror” debut in Yellowjacket #7 in terms that make it fairly clear that the later EC Comics version was…inspired heavily by its Charlton Comics cousin:

“…Narrated by the Ancient Witch, wearing a red cloak, stirring her bubbling cauldron at beginning and end of the story, just like E.C.’s Old Witch 5 years later; tells story ‘The Avenging Hand’ similar to ‘The Maestros’s Hand’ in Crypt of Terror #18”

Sounds like this old Charlton may have introduced (or at least used previously) the story format that EC Comics would lean hard upon for their popular horror comics line. Overstreet credits the initial story to Alan Mandel, a person I don’t believe worked for EC later, so it’s not like he brought the concept to him. And perhaps the format and host character are broad enough to have been a wild coincidence, but however it happened, it remains a fun bit of comics history.

Presumably this counts as “Man vs. Nature.”

§ November 5th, 2021 § Filed under golden age, sterling silver comics, superman § 7 Comments

Found this panel while reading some Golden Age Superman books on the DC Universe Infinite app, and the casualness of the caption box made me laugh. Written by Jerry Siegel, art credited to Joe Shuster but actually drawn by Paul Cassidy, the story featured Superman taking on a hypnotist who, at one point, puts the whammy on the Man of Steel. Hence, his awkward charging through a tree…not on purpose, I promise you. (From Action Comics #25, June 1940.)

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Just an additional note letting you know that today is the 7th anniversary of the opening of my comic book store Sterling Silver Comics. Since I’ve been in the comics retail business for 33 years, that means I’ve done around 21% of it on my own. Here’s to seeing that percentage grow. And thanks to all of you for your years of support. It’s much appreciated.

Here’s the post where I first announced my plans. And here’s the post where I reported on my opening day! (Boy, my store is a lot more full now than it was then.)

Try this at home, kids!

§ May 28th, 2021 § Filed under golden age § 6 Comments

Sure, your superhero comic may be tough, but is it “showing kids how to throw a punch monthly” tough, like Lev Gleason’s Daredevil?

Oh ho, I say not, my friends. Anyway, I hope ol’ DD wins his match with grown-up Beast Boy.

Image courtesy a stack of some great beat-up Golden Age books customer Sean brought in to show me the other day. Sorry, forgot to note which Daredevil comic this was from. UPDATE: Sean informs me it’s from Daredevil Comics #5 (November 1941).

At the very least I’d like to find that last one with the ghost cover.

§ April 25th, 2018 § Filed under golden age § 7 Comments

So I was just looking on the Grand Comics Database for sumthin’ or other when I came across this title that I’d never encountered before…The Cryin’ Lion from the mid-1940s:

Images all totally stolen from said GCD, and what you see there appears to comprise the entire run of the comic. Like I said, I’ve never seen a copy of this, but even unread this may now be a contender for Favorite Offbrand Golden Age Funny Animal Comics (neck-and-neck with Spunky the Monkey).

I looked to the eBay for a physical copy of an issue, and only found one that was overgraded and way overpriced, but I had a couple of folks point out various sites only where public domain (or at least “no one’s left to defend the copyright”) comics have been scanned and posted for perusal, which I may not be able to resist looking at. (Also, said sites might be of use researching other Spunky the Monkey appearances, if any, as I’ve had no luck in the eleven years since I posted that one story.)

Anyway…The Cryin’ Lion, Exciting New Character Find of 1944 and 2018!

This site NOT commended by Parents’ Magazine.

§ May 25th, 2015 § Filed under golden age, publishing § 9 Comments

So I had a couple of comic collections come into the shop over the weekend. One was a big ol’ pile of Dark Horse Star Wars comics, which, as it turned out, was about 99% different from the Dark Horse Star Wars comics I already had in the shop for sale (i.e. the ones I had bought for myself but gave up to the shop when I opened). The other was a big ol’ pile of comics from the late ’40s/early ’50s, mostly Disney (including lots of classic Carl Barks), Little Lulu, and other various humor books, all offered up by the original owner.

In the middle of that second pile was one of these, a repackaged comic with a new cover advertising the Blue Bird brand of shoes, offered by the Gallenkamp’s shoe store (who also may be the manufacturer of the shoes, I’m unclear on that).

The comic inside is this issue of Kid Colt, Outlaw from 1953:

Looking up some info on this on the Grand Comics Database, it appears that some years later the Blue Bird repackaging moved on to printing new covers that reflected the contents (just Charlton comics at that point, apparently) and more prominently featuring the shoe store name. The Blue Bird logo from the back cover above is still present on the newer front covers.

Anyway, just an interesting artifact from the days of long ago. I think, maybe, when I was but a young Mikester, I vaguely remember getting a free comic book from the shoe store we frequented. This would have been the mid-1970s. It may have been branded with the store’s name, or a shoe manufacturer’s name, or both…it’s just on the edge of awareness, but I can’t say for sure, but I’d be surprised if it didn’t. I wonder how long shoe stores gave out free comics…or any stores. (I mean, beyond Free Comic Book Day, wise guys.) Radio Shack had their comics (apparently into the 1990s!), I remember grabbing one of these in a video store in the late 1980s. And, apparently, Big Boy made it into the 2000s? More as a magazine-with-comics than as a comic book, but close enough!

I’m sure there’s still the occasional funnybook promotion from stores or restaurants here and there, but I feel like it’s not quite the same, or as prevalent, or as amazing, as it had been.

Sometimes there’s a beauty in even the ugliest comic.

§ March 25th, 2015 § Filed under golden age § 11 Comments

Sure, this copy of Venus #10 (1950) has seen its share of hard times, but there’s a certain amount of character in a comic in “Poor” or “Fair” condition that a “Near Mint” copy can never quite achieve:

I am generally disinterested in all things Woody Woodpecker, but I shall make an exception for this comic.

§ May 26th, 2014 § Filed under golden age § 3 Comments

Found this 1953 promotional comic while just sorta randomly going through the Grand Comics Database, and now there is almost nothing I want to know more than how our friend Scotty MacTape, of the Clan MacTape, helps Woody defeat an invading fleet of alien spacecraft with rolls of Scotch Tape, new formula or no.

I’ll have to track down a copy of this for myself someday, though perhaps I can wait ’til a slightly less dear example happens along. In the meantime, I’ll just assume Scotty uses his taping powers to strap together a whole bunch of cabers into one giant uber-caber that Woody, using the immense strength borne of his nigh-infinite well of anger, tosses into the Martian forces, giving them what-for and all that.

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