Thursday, June 27, 2019

Separated at (Festive) Mirth: What if Your Birthday Falls on Christmas?

Back when I was a kid there a "novelty record" (...Actually there were A LOT of "novelty records", then they peaked and virtually disappeared!) in which a young boy lamented:

"But, I'm only gettin' HALF OF WHAT I OUGHTTA, 'cause my birthday's on Christmas!"...or something very similar.

As the years rolled on, and comic book issues piled up, Chip 'n' Dale appeared to have this same problem!  ...All cover art is by the great Harvey Eisenberg! 

Exhibit One: The cover of CHIP 'N' DALE # 12 (Dell Comics, Cover Date: December, 1957 - February, 1958)...

It's CHRISTMAS, and they're exchanging predictable gifts!

Exhibit Two: The cover of CHIP 'N' DALE # 19 (Gold Key Comics, Cover Date: January, 1973)...

Now, it's THEIR (mutual?) BIRTHDAY and they're exchanging the same predictable gifts!

Oh, well, as the popular song goes... "It's their party, and they'll cry if they want to!" 

Exhibit Three: The cover of CHIP 'N' DALE # 55 (Gold Key/Whitman Comics, Cover Date: November, 1978)...

It's CHRISTMAS once again, and they're STILL exchanging those same predictable gifts! 

Only now with the intrusive UPC code slapped-on the art to obscure a festive sprig of holly, and the 1978 "Happy Birthday Mickey" logo added to ensure that this is both a Christmas AND a birthday cover!

Here they are, all together...

Finally, regardless of the occasion... did anyone (including the editors) notice that DALE is holding his card BACKWARDS - and, presumably, "reading" the blank reverse side? 

This inadvertently in-character bit for Dale, might actually make a good gag, better still! 

UPDATE: June 28, 2019

Our great friend, The Amazing Debbie Anne Perry, shared some SKETCHES of this cover that she worked-up in 2016... talk about an unrelated coincidence!  

There are four images leading us from beginning to end!  ...Enjoy! 

Two observations:  ONE: Deb appears to be opting for the DELL version of the title logo.  

TWO:  Dale is STILL reading the (presumably blank) reverse side of his card!  

Compare and tell me Deb didn't do a GREAT job on this!  Not slavishly copying Harvey Eisenberg, but injecting some of her own "personality drawing" into the final sketch!   

(Sigh!)  If only they looked as good as Deb's version all the time!  

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: Gee Thanks, Superman!

Here's another of those great early 1960s ads from DC Comics, circa 1963!

Superman invites you to "be his guest" at a circus!  15 days only, so we'd better hurry!

And, gosh... Look at all the keen acts and exhibits!  

With, not one but, TWO of them named "Zacchini"!  

Though, I'd imagine that "Hugo Zacchini", once he's fired out of his cannon, would also count as a "Flying Zacchini"!   ...But, I quibble!  

So, EVERY DC COMIC (let's assume, at least for that month) contains a coupon that is worth $1.00?   Hey, great!  

How often can I only spend TWELVE CENTS, and get back a DOLLAR in return?!  My retirement investments should do so well!  

Maybe I've just pinpointed the moment when financial speculation first entered the comic book market!   

Oh, but wait... I think there's a CATCH!  

"FREE Admission for 1 CHILD"?  ...And "only valid if accompanied by an adult purchasing a general admission ticket"?  

But, what if I don't have a child?  Or, have more than one?  

Oh, well I can still kill a Saturday afternoon, and...

"Good for all WEEKDAY AFTERNOON and EVENING performances and SATURDAY AND SUNDAY  EVENING performances ONLY"?  


"Free parking", you say?  But, I would be taking the BUS!  

...Double D'OH!

Aw, c'mon Supes!  You're "The Last Son Of Krypton", "The Man of Steel", "The Action Ace", "The World's Greatest Superhero"...

...And THIS is the best you can do?  ...Yeah, I know... Bruce Wayne is the RICH one! 

...But, are you sure I'm YOUR guest, Superman?  

'Cause this invitation feels more as if it came from HIM!  

Friday, June 21, 2019

Separated at Mirth: "TOO" for the Price of One!

Actually, "title puns" aside, it should be "TOO" for the Price of Two - since I paid for 'em both!  

The "'em" in question being Gold Key Comics YOSEMITE SAM # 26 (Cover Date: February, 1975) and YOSEMITE SAM # 48 (Cover Date: October, 1977).  

There were many strange things about the Gold Key comic books of the 1970s, but this is one I don't believe I've ever seen before - or since!  

Our "Mirth Separation" comes in the form of a one-page gag, originally printed in YOSEMITE SAM # 26, and later reprinted in # 48.  See below, and notice if anything stands out!  (As always, you may Click to Enlarge!) 

Let's begin a list... 

Most obvious is that the entire page has been RECOLORED, despite its printings being only 32 months apart - and, for reasons unknown, the gag was RE-TITLED as "Too Anxious!"

But beyond that, and not all that noticeable until you view BOTH printings together (as I've done for this post), it goes far beyond merely "adding an adjective to the title"!  

Look at the characters above - particularly Bugs - as well as the overall composition, and you'll will see that EVERY PANEL was, to one degree or another, redrawn and re-lettered!   

Check the sun, the rocks and scrub on the desert, and Bugs' expression and positioning as he shouts!  Let alone the thickness of the lettering!  

...So, is it really even a reprint?  Grand Comics Database thinks so - but I'm not so sure! 

And what could possibly be the reason for this strange occurrence?   As with so many things about Western Publishing's Dell, Gold Key, and Whitman comics.... we'll probably never know!  

I had originally intended this post only to call attention to the odd re-titling of the gag...

...But there's so much more going on that instead of calling the second printing "Too Anxious!", it ought to be called "Anxious II!"

So, as a disheartened vulture flies slowly off into the west, we have YOSEMITE SAM # 26 and # 48, rather unconventionally "Separated at Mirth"!  

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

"Team-Up" Has Been "Put Down"!

The following news came to me from our intrepid contributor Debbie Anne Perry!  Normally, when Deb contributes something to this humble Blog, it is warmly welcomed!

While ANYTHING Deb contributes is warmly welcomed, the "warmth" quickly gave way to a bitter chill...

written by SHOLLY FISCH
art and cover by SCOTT JERALDS

Magical fanboy imps Bat-Mite and Scooby-Mite are back—and they’ve brought along a host of Batmen and Scooby-Doos! But when the mites conjure up the ultimate trans-dimensional menace for our heroes to battle, will even a League of Batmen and Society of Scoobies be enough to save their infinite Earths? Plus, can they unravel the mystery behind the shadowy figure known only as…Scrappy-Doo?

ON SALE 09.25.19
$2.99 US | 32 PAGES


Things just keep getting worse and worse, don't they?  

First that unfortunate matter with the IDW Disney comics that has, for the FIRST TIME EVER, caused me to intentionally stop purchasing them!  

Now, the loss of my favorite current comics title... the amazing SCOOBY-DOO TEAM-UP!  

A comic that never fails to "read as clever and funny" as our team used to make the IDW Disney comics read... thanks to the extraordinary talents of writer Sholly Fisch!  

And expertly handling guest characters from all over Hanna-Barbera-Land...

...And the far corners of the DC Comics Universe!

And handling each with equal fan-friendly dexterity!  

Like this parallel reference between THE NEW SCOOBY-DOO MOVIES and BATMAN: THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD animated series!  

Or commenting on characters' VOICE ACTORS that change over time!  

...Or (above and below) the conventions of SCOOBY-DOO itself!  

And finally, just plain old wonderful silliness!  

HERE is the story of how, by complete chance, I discovered SCOOBY-DOO TEAM-UP... 

...And, alas, this post notes its end!

But, we've been here before... starting in 1984 with the demise of Western Publishing, and periodically to the present day... and Scooby and GOOD Disney comics always seem to come back... somehow!  

...I've no doubt they will again!  

And, besides... by today's standards, 50 ISSUES is a very respectable run for ANY comic book title, in this age of rapid cancellations and reboots!  

And SCOOBY-DOO TEAM-UP has had a VERY respectable run!  

Thank you, Sholly Fisch for those 50 wonderful issues!  

Everyone, do yourself a favor and read some issues of SCOOBY-DOO TEAM-UP, or just live vicariously through some of my Blog reviews...

You won't be sorry!  

Bat-Mite's honor!