Thursday, June 5, 2014

The Day Joe Cut Up a Comic Book!

Joe stands and solemnly faces a group of somber, yet seemingly supportive, individuals.

My name is Joe Torcivia… and I… and I… I…

Oh, I’ll say it… I CUT UP A COMIC BOOK!”

The Group responds as one:  Hi, Joe!” 

The Group Leader speaks in soft, warm, and trusting tones:  It’s okay, Joe… We’ve all been through it.  I cut up MY first comic book back in 1957!  In fact, you’ve even done a Blog post about it RIGHT HERE!”
Now awash with calm, Joe thanks the Group Leader, Mr. Wallace Cleaver, and finds he has the courage to tell his own story. 

The year was 1975.  The comic book was WALT DISNEY’S COMICS AND STORIES # 424…

And the OFFER was not to be believed!  (Click to enlarge on all comic images!)


Just LOOK at this stuff! 

Could you imagine what it would have been like, in those dark days of 1975, to have stuff like this? 

And this? 

And all I had to do was cut ONE TINY LITTLE COUPON!   

It’s only ONE!  I can do this…  Look at what  I could HAVE!

Oh-oh!  But, there’s a NEW Paul Murry Mickey Mouse story page on the reverse side!  Oh, wait... It's 1975!  Who the heck is Paul Murry?!

(The cut is made!)  
DAMN!  Why can’t they run ANOTHER AD on the back of an ad you have to cut!  That way no comics content is lost. 

But, eventually, I summoned up the courage and did it… and I was GLAD! 
Notice Paul Murry's (who?) Mickey and Goofy peeking through the gaping hole.

Consider that this was my first exposure to ALL these stories, save “Ghost of the Grotto”, which I’d had seen reprinted in a “BEST OF UNCLE SCROOGE AND DONALD DUCK” Gold Key Giant comic.
It was, if I’m not mistaken, the first time Carl Barks was credited in any comic from the publisher for whom he worked since the early 1940s.

And it was the first time I’d EVER seen the name of Floyd Gottfredson anywhere! 

It’s hard to believe these days, having gone through such Disney comic book publishers as Gladstone Series One, Disney Comics, Gladstone Series Two, Gemstone, and Boom! Studios, but this stuff was rarer than silver-plated platinum with solid gold filling!  ...Or, a Disney comic book in 2014 – take your pick! 

Remember these?

I still treasure those four books today – and still have the WDC&S # 424, with the coupon missing…

And have a new and complete upgraded copy of WDC&S # 424, purchased in the nineties! 

Sometimes, it just comes out “win/win”!  Though, of late, I wonder how it turned out for poor, brave Wally!   …I sure hope he didn’t get “hollered-at”!    
Here's to comic-cutting Wally Cleaver!  I salute your courage!

Don't give in to temptation, Wally!  Be strong!


joecab said...

Why the public allows scissors-wielding monsters like you to roam our streets I'll never know.

scarecrow33 said...

It all worked out, didn't it? Can't blame you for that one!

Those were indeed milestone releases for their day. However, by the time that ad appeared in comics, those books had already come to our local stores, so I was spared the agony of having to clip.

On my extremely limited budget in those days, I could only afford to purchase two at a time, but within about a 2 or 3 week period I had managed to get them all.

While the pie-eyed Mickey of the 30's had been available in merchandising for years, he had NEVER appeared in comics of the time--except for the COVER of Walt Disney Comics Digest #40, which had promised "Classic Mickey" stories but whose interior still featured only the pupil-eyed Mickey. The true "Classic Mickey" had not appeared in comics at all...not within recent memory at that time. And it's true that Gottfredson and Barks had not yet received their due from the parent company. I'm not sure they EVER truly did, even to this day.

So these books were truly treasures of their time. They still occupy an important place on my bookshelves.

This may be the first time that classic Disney comics were presented as such to the public. There had been reprints galore in the Gold Key comics, but with zero fanfare. The colors in these albums were vibrant, the paper quality was above average, and the overall treatment was very high-class. (Reminiscent of the Robin Hood albums which had appeared the year previously.)

On top of that, the quality of the stories themselves was absolutely fantastic. The "Bat Bandit" has got to rank up there among the best Mickey villains of all time--sort of a precursor to the Blot.

The Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge stories were also first-rate. I already owned a copy of "Only a Poor Old Man" but I got this one as part of the set and also because the quality of the printing was so much better than the one I had. It was my first Disney comics "upgrade."

While we're discussing the early 70's, I would also like to make mention of the fact that 1973 was a banner year to be a Disney fan, because of the "50 Happy Years" celebration. I have been looking for references to this year-long event on line and have come up with almost nothing. Yet for an entire year, Disney comics from Gold Key were stamped with the "50 Happy Years" logo, there was a special two-album record set from Disneyland records, there were several television specials and lots of "retro" Disney stuff. I'm suspecting that the Barks and Gottfredson revival in these albums might have been an offshoot of some of the Disney nostalgia unleashed in 1973.

Joe Torcivia said...

Why the public allows scissors-wielding monsters like you to roam our streets I'll never know.

At least I didn’t RUN with those scissors, JoeC! Otherwise *I* might have gotten “hollered-at”!

…I’m not sure we could say the same for Beaver and Wally!

Joe Torcivia said...


More things in life should have the sort of “win/win” outcome this incident did!

Those books were on sale in STORES? I certainly never saw them in New York! Not in the newsstands and candy stores that still carried comics in 1975 – and not in the department store toy sections that carried the Whitman three-bagged comics and coloring books.

Two at a time?! I would have begged, borrowed – and stopped just short of stealing – to get them all in one swoop. After all, in those days, when something was gone, it was GONE! You couldn’t get it as a back issue! Indeed, I was even concerned that my order might not arrive in time, before Western was sold out! Imagine that!

And, putting myself back in that barren 1975 era, there was NOTHING LIKE THAT ever before! I HAD to have those, even at the high cost of my first ever (and only) cutting of a comic book! It’s a good thing Wally Cleaver was there to offer his counsel!

*< Sighs wistfully >* …Now and again, I think of Wally and the great help he was in getting me through those trying times! I hope things turned out well for him, and he didn’t end up doing a bunch of “creepy junk and stuff”. I’d like to also use the series’ signature phrase “hollered-at” again, but I don’t think you all could stand it!

Seriously, though, on the matter of 1973 and “the "50 Happy Years celebration”… That was a time I was not very “into” comics, and was too into the female of the species (…Isn’t it great that I eventually came to enjoy them both simultaneously?), so I didn’t really see that happen as it occurred.

I can’t speak for fans of Disney animation, films, or parks but, looking back on it, the COMICS seemed to do NOTHING SPECIAL whatsoever, beyond slapping that logo on the covers. And, maybe that’s why (particularly if the other aspects of Disneydom chose to observe the occasion in similar fashion), there’s little to be found about it today.

Anyone have similar of differing views on this?

top_cat_james said...

Hold on now, Joesph - you had the $6.50 for the albums but you wouldn't spare the two bits to buy another copy to mutilate? As Wally would admonish,"What a little goof!"

And as long as you were shredding this particular issue into so much four color coleslaw, why didn't you go ahead and order those R. Crumb rip-off patches as well? Groovy! Those would have helped you get chicks!

joecab said...

I kinda miss those "disposable" days of comics before collector (or, rather, "investor") mentalities kicked in. I have a bunch of old Marvels in my collection missing those Marvel Value Stamps from the 1970s but I've never replaced them because it makes them feel a little more "real".

(Of course if I owned Wolverine's first appearance in Hulk #181 and found that stamp already cut out, II'd be tempted to go find who did it and do a little cutting myself!)

Joe Torcivia said...


If my fuzzy recollections serve, by the time I bought that issue, it was probably the ONLY copy left at my local candy store.

Unlike the ‘80s and ‘90s, when I’d tear out to the comic shop on “New Comics Day”, those were simpler and less hurried times – not all that far removed from Beaver and Wally themselves (…even *with* having survived the sixties and half-the-seventies, with all that entails)! So, a second “preservation copy” wasn’t exactly an option, even if I HAD thought of it.

…Of course, that’s not to say I wasn’t “a little goof” in many other regards!

“Those would have helped you get chicks!”

NOW, he tells me!

Joe Torcivia said...


It’s a funny thing… I have never had the “investor mentality” – and, even today, use the Overstreet Guild only as a research book – but I have always wanted flat, clean, and unsullied (whatever THAT might mean!) copies of comic books.

I never obsessed over “pristine”, (or any “junk and stuff” like that, to continue the Beaver terminology), but I liked them to look “good” (not the Overstreet GRADE “Good”, but the generally-accepted adjective – which, ironically, is better than the Overstreet GRADE “Good”) and undamaged.

But, there IS a point to what you say, with regard to authenticity – or as you describe it... “real”

When you see an issue like that, it does give you that “Beaver and Wally cut up comics” warm feeling inside, doesn’t it?

And, to close this thought on missing pieces in a really strange way… In the nineties, I bought an upgraded copy of the first issue of HUCKLEBERRY HOUND (DELL FOUR COLOR # 990). Not only was it COMPLETE, with nothing cut-out, but it came with AN EXTRA CENTERFOLD from a (presumably) then-contemporary HARVEY COMIC lying loose inside its middle. The centerfold was complete with an edition of the great AD that pictured all of the different Harvey Comics that were on sale at the time the ad was run, on the periphery of a large, centered rectangle illustration.

So, sometimes you lose something, and sometimes you inexplicably gain something unrelated back!

Dana Gabbard said...

There was a countertop display for this series. Maybe scarecrow bought his from one. Geoff Blum was at UCLA at the time and went over to Western's offices to pick up some copies for a class and said they had piles of them sitting around. Evidently they didn't sell very well. I bought mine a few years later from Bud Plant, who picked up the leftover inventory and did very well selling it to comics fans.

Blum also tells me buried in his files is a dummy ad for a second series of these books that was planned but never published.

David Gerstein has somewhere in his vast archives the covers for the deluxe Barks reprint series Western contemplated in the early 1980s. He found them some time ago while digging around at Disney's Publications Office in New York. Would be nice when he finds where he has them to post scans of them online.

Dan said...

Aw, c'mon, you guys... quit givin' Joe the business!

I was but a year old when that offer appeared, and to this day have yet to see a real, live copy of any of those four "Best of Walt Disney Comics"—but to the lucky kids that obtained them, they were no doubt a breath of fresh air in those waning days of Gold Key to Whitman!

The "Best of" series did have a mild precedents, as well as descendants:

Throughout 1973, Gold Key's Walt Disney Comics Digest was branded with the "50 Happy Years" logo, the digest featured some rare stuff that year...

Issue #40 (April 1973) touted that issue's theme as "Through the Years With Mickey" and included Gottfredson's "The Bar None Ranch" and a Bill Wright comics adaptation of "The Monarch of Medioka"

The theme for issue #44 (December 1973) was "Donald at His Duckiest!" reprinting vintage Barks: "The Mummy's Ring" "Luck of the North" "Ancient Persia" AND "The Pixilated Parrot"!

A few years after the "Best of" series Joe mentions in this post, Western put out their two runs of the Dynabrite series featuring re-colored prestige format books of several different licenses. But there was an attempt to reach out to the growing collector's market and the Barks fans who were becoming more aware of "The Good Artist." A Barks reprint series of prestige format books was in the works, including a slipcases. We now know this courtesy of Dana Gabbard—Joakim Gunnarsson kindly posted the details *and* proposal memos on his blog at the following link:

But back to the subject of this post... cutting out comics don't make you a bad person, Joe. Especially if the product offered exceeds the material on the opposite page. Goodness knows how many plots points went unrevealed because some kid wanted to sell GRIT newspapers in his hometown, or simply *had* to have that Bullwinkle "Eat Your Heart Out" poster! - Dan

Joe Torcivia said...


I never saw any sort of countertop display for these books, nor any evidence of them being offered in retail stores. Perhaps it was a regional thing that did not include the New York City Metro area. Scarecrow, was this how you purchased them?

The possibility of a second series was completely unknown to me. What a shame that never happened.

And, speaking of Western Publishing related “shames”, I WAS aware of the early ‘80s Deluxe Barks Reprint Series. Western's Wally Green actually showed me the covers for them during our brief association. How great would THAT STUFF have been to have, pre-1984 (the year Whitman comics ended)?!

…Oh, well, at least Gladstone Series One would “come to our rescue” in a few short years.

Joe Torcivia said...

Dan writes:

“Aw, c'mon, you guys... quit givin' Joe the business!”

Thanks for the support, Dan, but I figure, if I can give Wally and Beaver “the business” I should receive a little in return.

You never saw any of those "Best of Walt Disney Comics"? We’ll have to remedy that someday! Unlike the Maltese Falcon, they have been rendered less “The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of” and more “plain old deluxe-printed comics” by the sheer volume of quality material released over the intervening years but, as a collection of “then-unimagined, flat-out awesomeness”, they still occupy a special place in Disney comic book history.

My original, consecutive run of WALT DISNEY COMICS DIGEST ended with # 33, with a February 1972 cover date. I resume with # 39, with a February 1973 cover date, and no "50 Happy Years” logo on it.

# 40 (the special Mickey Mouse issue), of course, does have it, and # 43 (“Goofy and his Goof-Kart”) and # 44 (the special Donald Duck issue) do not. Though MY copies of # 43 and # 44 are WHITMAN editions, and maybe the Gold Key versions DID have the logo.

And, as GREAT and welcome as WDCD # 40 (Mickey) and # 44 (Donald) were, each touting what are obviously “special stories”, both stop just short of mentioning the names of Floyd Gottfredson and Carl Barks! (Not to mention Bill Wright and Paul Murry for Mickey!) And those books would have been an ideal place for such credits to begin.

…But, we’d have to wait two more years, and the "Best of Walt Disney Comics" series, for that to happen. Then we’d see nothing until Gladstone Series One!

Here’s a direct link to the site noted by Dan – which is also the SAME ONE noted by Dana, proving that great minds DO indeed think alike.

scarecrow33 said...

Just for the record--I purchased the Disney comic albums in downtown Seattle on the 4th floor of Frederick & Nelson, one of the leading department stores in Seattle in those days. Now that I think of it, it WAS part of a display, because all four books had their covers prominently showing, so that the casual shopper could not miss them. The fourth floor was the book section, and they carried magazines and comics as well, plus any novelty items such as the Walt Disney and Golden Comics Digests. I'm pretty sure I saw these albums in other stores as well, but only after I had purchased the full set from Frederick & Nelson.

It was on that same floor where I also purchased the majority of my WD Comics Digest collection. The Gold Key version of the digest (it's news to me that there was a simultaneous Whitman version) featured the "50 Happy Years" logo on issues #40, #41, #42, #43, #44, and #45. I am absolutely certain of this because I have them in front of me as I write this. So every 1973 issue of the Disney digests featured that logo--at least in the Gold Key version.

Anonymous said...

As scarecrow pointed out in that previous Leave It to Beaver/Adventure Comics #240 post, comic books were originally just cheap, disposable entertainment for kids. They were usually read once and then thrown out in the trash, or, at best, donated to paper drives, or given away to other kids (or traded for another comic or for a baseball card). Then there were all those ads with coupons to cut, plus pages and covers coming loose just from normal handling (and the readers back then were children who handled things roughly). And paper deteriorates over time, and, back then, who would have thought to store comics upright in acid-free bags with acid-free backing boards? Even collectors stored comics by stacking them horizontally, rolling the spines. Sigh.

A lot of young collectors/investors probably don't understand why people didn't save their Golden and Silver Age comics. Those of us old enough to remember the 1960's are often surprised that so many comics survived intact.


Joe Torcivia said...


We’ve both learned something in this exchange!

Because I have a Gold Key version of WDCD # 40, and it does have the "50 Happy Years” logo on it.

I do not have 41 and 42. My 43 and 44 are Whitman versions, and do not have the logo – and have BLANK interior and back covers, to boot. I can only guess that the Whitman covers (due to being perpetually on-sale, with no cover expiration date) were modified to look more “timeless”.

My copies of 48, 49, and 50 are all Gold Key but, by then, the logo would have “gone away”.

I have no idea when the Whitman parallel issues of WDCD began (about the same time as the “regular” comics, would be a good guess), but they were clearly in place by 1973. I’d suspect they’d carry on until WDCD ended in 1975.

I just noticed another interesting thing FOR THE FIRST TIME… My Whitman copies of 43 and 44 have a COVER PRICE of 69 CENTS, while my Gold Key copies of 48 and 49 are priced at 59 CENTS. So, the Whitmans, being sold in toy and department stores, were actually MORE EXPENSIVE than their Gold Key, newsstand and candy store counterparts! My Gold Key copy of 50 is priced at 69 CENTS, clearly marking when that change went into effect!

My 51, 55, 56, and 57 are all Gold Keys, and are also priced at 69 CENTS. So, I wonder if the Whitmans “held the line at 69”, or increased correspondingly to 79 CENTS.

Gosh, the things you learn, just by Blogging! Proving that there’s ALWAYS something new to learn about the mysterious workings of Western Publishing… even in 2014!

Finally, and I just HAVE to say it – I can’t help myself… Your department store was named “Frederick & *NELSON*”? Imagine Scarecrow walking into that store and asking the Floorwalker where he can find the "Best of Walt Disney Comics" issues…

Scarecrow: “Oh, Floorwalker?”

Floorwalker (turns abruptly to face Scarecrow and reveals himself to be Frank Nelson): “YEE-ESSS!”

Sorry about that… Goodnight folks!

Joe Torcivia said...


It IS remarkable that we have as much of this stuff as we actually do! As I observed HERE.

scarecrow33 said...

Great reference to Frank Nelson. He would have been right in place as a clerk in that store. There was a woman whose delivery was very nasal who had a way of saying "May I help you?" that my mother found extremely irritating. Good thing you didn't reference OZZIE Nelson, because he might have said something like, "Now, boys, don't spend too much money on comics."

The cover price on the Gold Key version of #43 and #44 was still 50 cents. The last 50 cent issue was # 47. There were only two issues priced at 59 cents until it went up (#50) to 69 cents and stayed there for the remainder of the run.

Here's a rundown on the two issues you said you don't have. #41 was a reprint of the Dell Giant "Daisy Duck and Uncle Scrooge SHOWBOAT". The issue is rounded out with a text story "The Ice Ship" and 5 stories that were clearly crafted for the digest, judging by the unique layout of their panels, unlike anything found in a standard sized comic book of the era, and by the rather slapdash artwork. The issue concludes with a long Donald Duck adventure "The Saga of Sourdough Sam" which appears to have been drawn by Paul Murry.

#43, the first of the 128-pagers, features the longer comics version of Mary Poppins as its main attraction, including a cover photograph. It's divided into 2 parts, at the beginning and the end, and sandwiched in between are a Murry reprint of Mickey Mouse in "The Burro's Tale," an original Digest story of "Buckaroo Duck," formerly known as "Buck Duck," a character who never quite caught on in the comics, two Barks reprints of Daisy Duck's Diary "Too Much Help" and a Donald Duck story "Way Out Yonder," a Daisy's Fun Page reprint, and two more original Digest stories, one of Chip 'n' Dale against the Beagle Boys, and one of Clara Cluck and Clarabelle Cow, plus a few text pages such as "Minnie Mouse in Hollywood" scattered throughout.

One other observation--Western Publishing never revealed anything to its readers aside from an occasional preview of an upcoming attraction, yet somehow I knew that issue #57 was going to be the last of the Disney digests. I don't know how I knew, because there was no indication in the issue itself. Maybe it was something subliminal, because the last six pages of the last issue feature calendar artwork that had previously appeared on the back cover of issue #1! I might have subconsciously picked up on that. It may not have been deliberately planned that way, but it provides a fitting closure, a sense of having come full circle to the Walt Disney Comics Digest run.

Joe Torcivia said...

No matter how it ended, it was a very nice run, and one I would like to complete someday.

Considering I’m only missing issues 35, 41, 42, 45, 46, 47, 52, 53, and 54, it shouldn’t be that hard to do – except that Digests are much harder to find than regular comic books. And the Golden Comics Digests are even harder to find than the Disney ones!

Was the "Buckaroo Duck" / "Buck Duck" story drawn by Jack Manning? Check the "Buck Duck" story in # 34 and other issues for reference. I liked the way he did those… cartoony, but still interesting!

Quite a pre-cognition on # 57 being the last issue because, in those dark days, you REALLY never knew anything of the sort!

I wasn’t reading these at the time (so I can’t claim any similar warning signs of a final issue) but, from THIS perspective, I would have taken the fact that this was the ONLY issue of WDCD with NO NEW DIGEST-FORMATTED STORIES, and only Dell reprints (some reformatted, some not) in it as reason enough to suspect finality.

…Maybe you also picked-up on that subconsciously!

scarecrow33 said...

Back in those days when ESP was a hot topic of conversation, I truly did have some experiences of "knowing" about something before it happened. I'm not sure if I still have the "gift" now or if it's gone dormant--or I might have simply made some lucky guesses. But a couple of times, I answered the phone before it rang, I went to the door before the visitors had a chance to knock, and I occasionally "sensed" when it was the last episode of a TV series or the last issue of a comic book. Maybe other things fed into this--I'm not much of a paranormalist, but I did have a few extraordinary experiences and made a few accurate predictions.

I'm pretty sure the "Buck/Buckaroo Duck" story was drawn by Jack Manning. Did not know his name back in them there days, but his style was pretty distinctive, whether applied to Mickey Mouse or Bugs Bunny or the Banana Splits. I think some of his best work was a short-lived series from Gold Key called "The Close Shaves of Pauline Peril" which was almost a Mad Magazine-style parody of cliffhangers. Overall, he didn't impress me much as an artist, especially when he attempted Mickey Mouse or other iconic characters, because he drew them very loosely and gave weird curves to their bodies and hands. The proliferation of his work--the more there was of it, the more slapdash his drawings looked--was to me symptomatic of those days when comics were being more cheaply drawn and cheaply published (anyone for Charlton?). I guess his services were for hire at a fairly inexpensive rate, because he did (to name but a few) Road Runner stories, Donald Duck stories, Mickey Mouse stories, Woody Woodpecker, and several H-B characters--the few remaining (such as Wacky Races) after Charlton took the lion's share. Not to totally denigrate his style, because I'm sure he has many fans. I just think he was better suited to drawing original characters of his own devising than tried-and-true ones. The "Pauline Peril" series--whether he did the story and art or just the artwork--was excellent, and very suited to his breezy drawing style. (The story and art went hand-in-glove and appears to have been the result of a close artist-writer collaboration, though of course this is only conjecture on my part.)

And regarding the Digests, don't give up on acquiring them. I was missing several issues of the Golden Comics Digest (mainly because it was not as "essential" to me as the Disney) and was able to get copies very reasonably of all of my missing issues--including a fresh copy of issue #1 which my cousin accidentally dropped into the lake at our extended family's cottage in Maine back in the 70's. I was heartsick when it first happened, and kept it together with Scotch tape for many years. Finally, I found a decent copy on E-Bay. Now, I am happy to report, my Golden Comics Digest set is complete. I still have the waterlogged copy of #1, because I have grown attached to its somewhat warped but still readable condition.

So there is definitely hope for your Disney digest collection.

Best wishes, Joe!

Joe Torcivia said...

I’ve never been one to pooh-pooh such experiences as you describe, Scarecrow! There are always things than cannot be explained by conventional wisdom or ordinary means.

To me, Jack Manning was an interesting artist! I’ll never fully commit to saying he was a “good” one, but there are many artists who were not “good”, sans the saving grace of being “interesting”.

Of the influx of artists that began with Kay Wright in DONALD DUCK # 124, released in January, 1969 – lesser artists who unfortunately dominated the Gold Key and Whitman comics until their end in 1984 – Jack Manning was my favorite. Again, not because he was “good”, but because he was “interesting”.

I actually liked his Mickey Mouse a lot! It looked so much like how Floyd Gottfredson was drawing the characters in the ‘70s that I thought those comic book stories WERE by Floyd Gottfredson!

PAULINE PERIL was Jack Manning at his very best! I can’t explain why, beyond the possibility that this might have been a title (because it was a non-licensed property, and no one cared?) that he was allowed to completely cut-loose on! In a way, it was unfortunate timing that PAULINE PERIL coincided with Hanna-Barbera’s THE PERILS OF PENELOPE PITSTOP, which Gold Key was publishing in HANNA-BARBERA FUN-IN. Because of that, PAULINE looked like a rip-off, or was otherwise overshadowed by the more popular and recognizable PENELOPE.

The one Mickey Mouse WDC&S serial that Jack Manning did was an amazing departure from the more typical Paul Murry efforts. It was “The Secret of the Black Box”, in WDC&S # 348-350 (1969), And there was a Buck Duck story Manning did for WALT DISNEY COMICS DIGEST # 14 (Cover date: August, 1969) that was done in the same “out-there” style as PAULINE PERIL – limited color backgrounds and all!

I never go near E-Bay, but I should be more diligent in trolling sources like Mile High, in order to complete my digest collection.

Anonymous said...

Grand Comics Database lists Del Connell (writer) and Jack Manning (artist) as co-creators of Pauline Peril. I actually remember that comic. Even back then, though, I wondered why Gold Key was publishing a series so similar to the Perils of Penelope Pitstop, to which they already had the rights.

I had quit buying comics by 1973, and did not return to them until the mid-1980's. By the time I acquired a used (and worn, but intact) copy of WDC&S #424, that ad was presumably obsolete, so (thankfully) I was never tempted to clip that coupon.


Dana Gabbard said...

I believe Doug Sulipa offers the digests.

Joe Torcivia said...


Del Connell will always remain something of a mystery to me, mostly because he explicitly did not wish to correspond with me in the ‘80s, when many others such persons were happy to. If anyone is interested, I say more about that HERE.

And we have a parallel in our original “breaking-with-comics”, as mine was roughly from 1972 – 1981. I should Blog-post the tale of my return one day. I wrote it up for one of the “paper-fanzines” I wrote for ages ago.

In fact, it was an anomaly that I even bought WDC&S # 424, to see the ad in the first place. I would occasionally pick one up in isolation, and read it as a “guilty pleasure”. Like something I know I SHOULDN’T be doing anymore, being in that “teens-to-early-twenties / too-cool-for-comics” age, but did once-in-a-while, anyway. Sometimes, you just can’t resist the old habits!

Joe Torcivia said...


Thank you for the info. I *should* take greater advantage of online sources to fill those nagging holes.

Adel Khan said...

Joe, I have been in a similar predicament where people you want to contact with, don’t correspond back. I always like to know from the people involved in making these cartoons, the behind the scenes information, and lastly let them know how much I have enjoyed their work. It’s a thrill when you can find such person who answers your query, for instance, Robert McKimson Jr. was EXTREMELY kind about answering my quires about his father. He always is receptive about any questions or comments I have.

Last year, I posted my first blog entry concerning my re-introduction to the Pink Panther on Art Leonardi's (Animator/ Director of “Pink Panther”) Facebook wall, but I saw no comment.

When deciding how to title an entry, I try to see if I can involve alliteration or come up with a pun. The title is in spirit of the title to many "Pink Panther" shorts many of which, where the word “pink” is cleverly worked in.

It is coincidental that you bring up the idea of filling up the holes in your comic book collection, because I would like to collect more “Hanna Barbera” comics. Whatever comics I have read is courtesy of people posting the stories on their blog. I thank the people who post them, but reading a comic digitally does not equate to holding an issue in your hands.

I saw this sale on EBay
I am debating as to wether I should purchase these issues, because of the condition. What would you suggest?

Joe Torcivia said...


One major difference between the early eighties (when I did most of my corresponding with persons from the comic book world) and today is that folks are much more protective of their privacy. …And, with good reason, I might add. There are some… er, “overly dedicated” fans out there and, even if I’m only “looking back through a nostalgic filter”, they seemed far less in numbers “then” than they do today!

So, today, I wouldn’t expect very much in the way of personal responses from anyone (especially since they probably all have a presence on social media anyway). But, back then, it seemed more noteworthy when it happened, because things seemed… well, simpler and more open. And, of course, I RESPECTED the wishes of everyone, when it came to such things. That might not be true of many folks today.

Big Props to Robert McKimson, Jr. for being so open and willing to engage a fan! His father did not nearly get the credit and status he deserved, and I always said it was because he died before such attention began being heaped upon creators. And, certainly before the age of “self-promotion”, among such creators -- *COUGH* Bob Clampett *COUGH*.

That was a really great Pink Panther Blog post you linked to! Everyone, take the link, and go read it! You should do more like that! “Puns and alliteration”, especially in titles, are my stock-in-trade, so you know I’ll like such things!

Here’s a more convenient LINK to that post. And here’s an overall LINK to Adel’s Blog. …Now, that I’ve “put the pressure on”, you’ll HAVE to do more posting! Ha-ha-haaaaa!

As I said, I don't go near e-bay. And that e-bay link doesn’t seem to show me anything anyway but, as long as they are not too expensive (and they sometimes CAN be), I would recommend getting just about ANY Dell or Gold Key Hanna-Barbera comic. …Just don’t “cut ‘em up”, for any reason!

Adel Khan said...

Can you imagine the world being overrun with aggressive fanboys like Melvin J. Nickleback, if comic book folks weren’t protective of their privacy?

But oh ho! I does not give easily into youse pressure. I rely on your philosophy of taking your time in developing a blog post. During the spring break, I had been working on one post, but I have not been able to continue with it due to the amount of time it eats away. I plan on working on it during the end of this month. The topic is a well worthy surprise!

Big thanks for the compliment on the blog post! For the time being the conclusion feels abrupt, as I was not sure of the best way to wrap it up.

Out of all the poetic devices, alliteration speaks out to me. When it comes to puns, I refer to titles of Warners cartoons or Disney cartoons or comics.
I always referred to the title of Carl Barks’ many stories in order to recall the definition of alliteration. See, comics can be educational!

The cartoon I referred to in the Panther post “It’s Pink, But Is It Mink”, was also directed by Robert McKimson. As his son told me " His heart was always with Looney Tunes and full animation and not really such limited animation shows such as Pink Panther. At that point, it was just a job. I admire how he delivered a grand slam of entertaing shorts, in 1963, with the closing of Warners and the passing of his wife. It amazes me how people can preform their best, when experiencing crushing blows in their life. When I watch his cartoons they have had this great tranquilizing effect upon me. I have this deep respect for his professionalism, artistry and humility. If you would like, I could pass on Robert Jr.’s email address. I highly recommend his book “I Say.. I Say.. Son!: A Tribute To Legendary Animators Bob, Chuck, and Tom McKimson”

Joe Torcivia said...


Okay, we won’t rush you on Blog posting, especially if it’s worth waiting for. But, I tend to believe that there exists a relationship between the Blogger and his or her followers that requires a certain amount of regular updates, and that’s why I try to do so once or twice a week. …And, if that’s not possible (as with my period of Jury Service earlier in the year), tell your followers so.

Or, as I once said elsewhere, a Blog is a harsh mistress.

Alliteration has always been huge with me. Look over my published letters in Gemstone comics for lots of it. And it was especially fun to dialogue that Vic Lockman-inspired Gyro Gearloose story in UNCLE SCROOGE # 362 (2007). I went all-out for that, since alliteration was a trademark of Lockman’s stories for Gold Key and Whitman. …And, whenever possible, I tried to do a pun title, because I enjoyed them so much when Mark Evanier did them for his Gold Key comic book stories.

I very much enjoyed Robert McKimson’s work during the Pink Panther era. And, how do we continue to underrate the man who gave the world The Tasmanian Devil?!

My days of communicating with comics and animation figures are probably over, but I do appreciate the offer of communication with Robert McKimson, Jr. You can always forward him these links to two DVD reviews where I give his dad some well-deserved complements.

Adel Khan said...

The Donald Duck digest you refer to brings back a load of memories. I will explain more in detail on my blog.

You brought up a good idea about blog etiquette. A blog is a hard mistress, indeed! It’s interesting as while I was writing a reply to your comment, I had in mind the use of alliteration in your letters.

Thanks to your blog, now I can identify, which stories Lockman wrote. On the Grand Comics Databse, the contents of “Top Cat” #22 list a story titled “Tickets To Trouble”. Would that qualify as an example of Lockman’s work?

Will pass on the links to Robert McKimson Jr, and relay his observations to you!

Joe Torcivia said...


I looked up, and read, “Tickets to Trouble” in Gold Key’s TOP CAT # 22, which was reprinted from DELL’s TOP CAT # 2, and I can safely say that, despite the alliteration in the title, it was not written by Vic Lockman. There are no credits to go by, and it’s the sort of thing you just acquire a feel for the more and more you read and study the stories.

Perhaps we can discuss this “offline” someday.