Thursday, December 31, 2009

Favorite New Years Holiday Images: WDC&S 48 (1947)

Question: Would Donald Duck rather spend Christmas with a burning beard (as he does in THIS POST), or New Year’s Eve like this?

Personally, I think he’d rather be reading all 102 POSTS in TIAH Blog for 2009! But, I can be biased sometimes!

Happy New Year from TIAH Blog! See you in 2010!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

More Favorite Christmas/Holiday Images: LOONEY TUNES AND MERRIE MELODIES # 99 (1949).

THIS IS POST 101 FOR 2009!!! (Didn’t think we’d make it, did ya! Nyaah!)

Let’s… um, “kiss” the Christmas/Holiday season good-bye with Bugs Bunny!

‘Nuff said… unless you care to link to my older post on the interior contents (HERE). Warning! You may be sorry!

WE MADE 100 POSTS FOR 2009!!! More Favorite Christmas/Holiday Images: WDC&S 64 (1945)

Last post, featuring the cover image for 1964’s Donald Duck # 99 (…fittingly, our 99th Post for 2009!), illustrated that Simple says it best!” with its image of the Ducks in a stately, portrait-like Christmas pose.

In contrast, we present a real beard burner that is about to become rather un-simple for Donald as soon as he catches a whiff of the smoke.

Sure makes you wish you could see what happens next! Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

More Favorite Christmas/Holiday Images: Donald Duck # 99. (1964)

Sometimes, simple says it best!
This is certainly the case for the cover of Donald Duck # 99Christmas Album 1964”. (Cover dated January, 1965)

A collection of Christmas-themed short stories featuring Donald, Daisy, Huey, Dewey, and, Louie, Uncle Scrooge, Gladstone Gander, Gyro Gearloose, and Goofy, this was also one of the very first subscription comic books I ever received.

Comic book subscriptions were very handy in the ancient days of spotty newsstand distribution. And, thanks largely to that service; I missed only two issues of DONALD DUCK between 1964 and 1972. They were “factory-fresh”, seemingly untouched by human hands – and still smelled of newly applied printers ink! Ahhhh, heavenly!

But, the comic book subscription came at a price – and not just the “per-issue price”!
Folded over lengthwise by machine (resulting in the dreaded grading term “Subscription Crease” right down the middle), subscription comics from Gold Key circa 1964 would arrive in your mailbox with a “brown paper sleeve” (similar to “brown paper bag” material), upon which was your name and address, covering the “middle-third” of the folded book – with the top and bottom thirds sticking out (GASP!) unprotected!

Bad as this might have been to future collectors, subscription copies took a considerable turn for the worse in 1968. By then, a name and address LABEL was simply GLUED to the upper left corner of the book. Imagine treating a comic book like a common, ordinary magazine… BARBARIC!

Your options were to either leave it there (…kinda okay, since it was YOUR OWN NAME on it), or to try pulling it off. After one or two RUINED COVERS from such endeavors, I wisely decided to leave the labels as they were! One well-meaning aunt actually tried to STEAM OFF one of those darned labels. The resulting horror of that act, and its lasting effect on the book in question, leaves me scarred to the present day! NOOOOOO! MAKE IT STOP! MAKE IT STOP!

Anyway, as I try to stop shaking, please enjoy this fine Christmas image by artist Tony Strobl – and the history lesson on comic book subscriptions thrown in free of charge. …Uncle Scrooge would like that!

More Favorite Christmas/Holiday Images: The Flintstones # 35. (1965)

As we continue to celebrate the holiday season – and inch ever closer to 100 Blog posts for 2009 (…Ah, the reason for the recent flurry of posts is finally revealed!), here is an all-time favorite of mine… The cover illustration to Gold Key’s The Flintstones # 31. (Cover Date: December, 1965)

The content therein mainly consists of a comic-book adaptation of the original TV series episode “Christmas Flintstone”, written by the great Warren Foster.
In this wonderful story, as many of you may recall from TV, Fred Flintstone substitutes for a sickbed-ridden Santa and (AHEM!) “Saves Christmas” – back before every fictional character and his fictional brother had an opportunity to “Save Christmas”. In fact, at least chronologically (given the time and setting of The Flintstones) Fred is probably the FIRST character to (all together now) “Save Christmas” – before there even WAS Christmas… don’t ‘cha know!

The art for both the cover and interior story is by Phil DeLara.

BTW, I made certain to watch “Christmas Flintstone” on DVD on Christmas Saturday, followed by the Justice League Animated episode “Comfort and Joy”. Best of the classic, and the best of the contemporary!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Happy Boxing Day from Yogi Bear and TIAH Blog!

More holiday cheer, as we celebrate Boxing Day… with Yogi and friends popping of out (…what else?) a box!

Two things to note:

I doubt Baba Looey has ever appeared anywhere else without Quick Draw Mc Graw (…perhaps QD was off somewhere “El Kabong-ing”) and Mister Jinks REALLY should return that YELLOW POLKA-DOTTED TIE while he can!

Cover Image from Yogi Bear # 13 (July, 1963)

Friday, December 25, 2009

BEARY Christmas from TIAH Blog!

I know that whenever I think of Christmas, I think of Yogi Bear! (…Okay, maybe not so much!)

But, Yogi gives us a good Christmas image to share with the readership for Christmas 2009!

I haven’t been big on Christmas or Holiday cards for a number of years now. Even when it comes to returning wishes to those who are kind enough to remember me at this time of year. Those who know me personally know why.

But, know that I only wish the best for all of you who read this Blog – and the same to those who don’t! They just won’t know it, because they’re… um, not reading!

Anyway, here’s “Yogi the Christmas and/or Holiday Bear” to wish one and all a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday Season!

Don't you love those Gold Key painted covers!

Ho-Ho-Ho! And Hey-Hey, Hey!

Cover image from Yogi Bear # 11 (January, 1963)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Eve (WDC&S # 340)

It’s Christmas Eve! The time, like Donald, that we stock the tree and its environs with gifts for those we love!

And, hopefully, unlike Donald, those loved ones don’t catch us in the act!

Cover from Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories # 340 (January, 1969). Art by Tony Strobl.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Continued “Cover-age” of Top Cat!

As we say farewell to Arnold Stang, let’s take a look at the one aspect of Top Cat that Mr. Stang did not directly influence… the comic books.

Here are some selected cover images from the mid-1960s… the best period for Gold Key comics! As you can see, they did well by the characters, as did nearly every Gold Key issue of the period. It’s easy to see why I liked them so much.

I don’t know if Arnold Stang ever saw any of these but, if so, I’ll bet he enjoyed them!

Above left – TOP CAT # 7.

Below – TOP CAT # 12, 13, 17.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

He’s the Most Tip-Top! R.I.P. Arnold Stang.

Flags should fly at half-mast in every alley in America, in tribute to Arnold Stang – a personal favorite actor who left us at age 91.

Among his many roles, in both live action and animation voicing, was that of TOP CAT, the popular 1961 Hanna-Barbera prime time animated series.

Other animation voicing roles of note were Herman (of Herman and Katnip), Shorty the obnoxiously hyper little sailor friend of Popeye, and the Honey Nut Cheeiros Bee!

I don’t know what Arnold Stang’s last appearance might be, but he did a DVD extra feature for the TOP CAT the Complete Series DVD set of late 2004. Interested parties can enjoy a ten-minute interview with him there.

I’d almost like to go outside and clang two trash can lids together (the method Top Cat used to summon his gang) in memorial to Mr. Stang… but with today’s plastic lids, it just wouldn’t be the same!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Snow-Blogging! (WDC&S # 341)

For various reasons, this Blog has been dark since Thanksgiving. This weekend, we have a blizzard-conditions snowstorm raging on outside – so why not Blog, while I can!

So, as I face a hellish day of shoveling snow tomorrow (…Something about our popular concept of “Hell” and “Snow”, just don’t seem as if they should go together!) let’s enjoy a snow scene by the great Carl Barks, done for Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories # 341 – February, 1969!

And, know that I am NO LONGER “dreaming of a white Christmas”!

Peter Potamus in “Kooky Spook”. (1964)

To get us in the mood for my upcoming “Looong Review” of the DVD set “Saturday Morning Cartoons 1960s Volume 2”, here’s a cartoon that is not on the DVD but should, hopefully, be included in a future set.

Kooky Spook” finds our balloon-traveling buddies, Peter Potamus and So-So, having to spend the night in a haunted castle to break a curse and rid the castle of its resident ghost.

During the same TV season, Hanna-Barbera would do a different variation on this theme with The FlintstonesA Haunted House is Not a Home”. And, five or so years later, Scooby Doo and the Gang would take a turn at the “spend-a-night-in-a- haunted-structure-bit” with “A Night of Fright is No Delight”.

I can recall, but cannot identify the specific episode, that even The Simpsons did the “night in a haunted house” as an episode-starting throwaway bit. They just cheerfully walked out the next morning, with nothing having happened, and collect their reward… or something that gets the main story going. Clearly, this was inspired by the above-mentioned H-B shows.

So, let’s enjoy Daws Butler as Peter Potamus and the ghost of “Anguish MacGruesome” and Don Messick as So-So and the old English gentlemen.

The uncredited story has both Warren Foster and Michael Maltese stamped all over it. Elements of each of these two great cartoon writers are evident in this short. So, take your pick, writer-wise.