Saturday, October 3, 2015

R.I.P. Jack Larson.

We sadly note the passing of actor Jack Larson, on September 20, 2015, at the age of 87.

Larson was, and will always be, best known for the role of cub reporter Jimmy Olsen, on the ultra-classic 1950s TV series THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN

As “Superman’s Pal”, Larson was perfect in the role of Olsen, exhibiting both a fine comedic talent and a great chemistry with his co-stars George Reeves (Superman / Clark Kent), Phyllis Coates and later Noel Neill (Lois Lane) and especially John Hamilton as the gruff Daily Planet Editor-in-Chief Perry White. 

Admit it… Right now, you can hear Jack Larson’s Jimmy Olsen saying “Jeepers, Mister Kent!”, or calling Perry White “Chief” – to which John Hamilton would classically respond: “Don’t call me Chief!” 

So, popular was Jack Larson’s portrayal of Jimmy Olsen that DC Comics began to publish THIS COMIC BOOK TITLE, starting in 1954 and running until 1974!

First Issue: 1954.

Final Issue: 1974.

In between, there were stops like THESE...

And, as legend goes, this would never have happened if not for the life Jack Larson breathed into the character of Jimmy Olsen!  

I didn’t  see it, but the older Jack Larson is said to have played an older version of Olsen on LOIS AND CLARK, THE NEW ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN, and don’t think I didn’t jump out of my seat with joy upon seeing Larson’s cameo in the 2006 feature film “Superman Returns”. 

Jack Larson, in more modern times, can be seen throughout the Special Features of the various DVD sets of THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN, from Warner Home Entertainment.  

It just seemed so great to have a living connection to THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN still with us, and so enthusiastic!     

The 2006 DVD feature "Superman's Pal: Jimmy Olsen - Jack Larson Celebrates his Series Character", from "THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN the Complete Fifth and Sixth Seasons" is a particular delight, and a virtual Larson / Olsen retrospective, in which Noel Neill also appears!

Jack Larson on ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN DVD Special Features.   

Most comic book readers may know Jimmy Olsen like this…

Some modern ones may know him as this…

But, classic television fans best know him as this!  

Rest in Peace, Jack Larson, and thank you for everything!  

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

R.I.P. Yogi Berra.

Perhaps the most beloved baseball player of all time, Lawrence Peter (“Yogi”) Berra, passed away on September 22, 2015, at the age of 90. 

Among Yogi Berra’s achievements as a player and later manager were:

Ten-Time World Series Champion with the New York Yankees.

Played in more World Series games than any other player in the history of major League Baseball.

Three-Time American League MVP. 
Eighteen-Time All Star. 
Considered to be one of the all-time greatest catchers ever to play the game. 
As a manager, led both the New York Yankees and the New York Mets to a world series. 

Before baseball, he even served aboard an attack transport during the WW II D-Day invasion of France!  

Beyond all that, Yogi Berra was a PERSONALITY loved by all.  His ever-quotable “Yogi-isms” have become a part of our language and culture:

When you come to a fork in the road… take it!

It’s déjà vu all over again!

Nobody goes to that place anymore, it’s too crowded!

It gets late early out here!

And, the most famous one of all:

It ain’t over ‘till it’s over!” 

And, as if even all that wasn’t enough to make Yogi Berra a forever-favorite consider this…

Without Yogi Berra, what would THIS CHARACTER have been called? 

Somehow, an otherworldly-alternate like (oh, say) “Bertram Bear” doesn’t have that same special ring…

It would really hurt, if I were named Bert!  

Rest in Peace, Yogi Berra... and thank you for all the many and diverse things you've given us!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

On Sale September 16, 2015: MICKEY MOUSE # 4 from IDW.

Search high.  Search low.  Search above. Search below.  But get yourself a copy of MICKEY MOUSE # 4 (Legacy Numbering: 313) from IDW. 

In it, you’ll find the New-to-the-USA “Mickey Mouse and the Gift of the Sun Lord” (originally from the Italian TOPOLINO # 2565, in 2005) written by the Modern Master of the Mouse Andrea (“Casty”) Castellan, with lively art by the great Giorgio Cavazzano – all brought to you by the superb translation and dialoguing of Jonathan Gray! 

Mickey attends one of those simultaneously stuffy and fascinating lectures we all wish we could attend, on the Ancient Mayans. 

As if a “Mystery Buff” of Mickey’s caliber could miss this! 

Though maybe THIS "Mystery Buff" would pass...


The lecturer’s associate is none other than Eurasia Toft, to whom we were introduced to in the now classic IDW MICKEY MOUSE # 1

Oh-oh, Eurasia’s in trouble…

Mickey and Goofy leap into action!

Have they EVER done “jungle nonsense”! 

A wonderful pun by Jonathan!  …HE’S “one in a million”! 

Waitaminnit!  "GREAT SQUEAK?!!" REALLY?!  Gray giveth and he taketh away - one panel later!  

No surprise, Pete’s involved. 

But here’s a surprise for Pete from Eurasia!  It's never that easy though, as there's plenty more villainy to come

No more spoilers, but here’s an awesome panel by Cavazzano! 

What happens inside?  You'll not find out from me!  

The issue is rounded-out by a one-page Mickey and Goofy gag by Paul Murry, from Dell Comics’ MICKEY MOUSE # 61 (1958).

So, “make an appointment” to pick up MICKEY MOUSE # 4 (Legacy Numbering: 313).  Just don’t use the Mayan Calendar, or you may be disappointed. 

As always, once you’ve read the issue, please come back and join the discussion in our Comments Section! 

Just remember, I do not speak for IDW, or anyone in its employ.  I speak strictly for myself as both a long-time fan and as a dialogue creator – and those opinions are strictly my own. 

I’ll meet you back here for another lively comment thread!  

Just don't anyone say "Great Squeak!", okay?  

And, don’t forget, Casty returns with story AND art in MICKEY MOUSE # 6… and I might be there to “help out just a little”.