Saturday, March 30, 2024

Happy Easter 2024!

While Bugs (Easter) Bunny entertains you with his trapeze-Easter-egg-juggling-act, allow me to wish all of you and all of yours a Happy Easter 2024!   

From MARCH OF COMICS #273 (Western Publishing, 1965), cover by Ralph Heimdahl.  

...And here is why our Easter was so happy, even without a visit from Bugs (Easter) Bunny!  

Averi and Cici busily gather Easter Eggs, but stop long enough for a picture!  

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: Maybe I've Been Reading Comics TOO LONG!

How can you tell if you've been reading comic books far too long?  

If you can remember when SOMETHING LIKE THIS didn't look the least bit strange! 

The STORY TITLE, that is, not the weird alien children! 

And, bonus points if, when reading a title like this, it REALLY DID sound like a far off journey through time! 

It certainly must have sounded like a distant future when this story was originally published in 1959,  because it STILL WAS when I read it as a reprint in SUPERMAN FAMILY # 179 (DC Comics, Cover Date: October, 1976)!  

Back then of course, the 24 years it would take to get from 1976 to the year 2000 (much less BEYOND that year) seemed like A LOT MORE TIME than it does now! 

Let alone the 41 years it would have taken originally, for Supergirl to travel from 1959! 

"A hundred years ahead, into the 21st Century", eh? 

That would mean her destination was 2059, in the original...

...And, um, er... 2076 in the reprint? 

Say, now that I think about it, 2076 is STILL really far off!  I know *I* won't live to see it, unless normal lifespans have exceeded 120 by then! 

OKAY, THEN... At least SOMETHING GOOD has come from all this...

...Even if it's just the relief that comes with realizing that I *HAVE NOT* been reading comic books too long! 

...In fact, I think I'll go read some more of them right now!  

But, before I do, I'll leave you with the final panels of the story, showing both Supergirl's return to the good old, overrun-with-Baby-Boomers, 20th Century... and an ad for the long-forgotten - even BEFORE the 21st Century - Warner Bros. Jungle Habitat, featuring Bugs Bunny!

And, readers of the REPRINT in SUPERMAN FAMILY # 179...

...Will probably be wondering until 2076 (should they live so long) why Supergirl left 1976 for a hundred-year time-trek, AND IS RETURNING TO 1959! 

I mean sure... she'll miss Disco, Watergate, and the Cuban Missile Crisis, an' all-kinds-o'-stuff-like-that-there...

...But she'll also miss the opening of Warner Bros. Jungle Habitat! 

I wonder if COOL CAT was there? 

Eeeh... COULD BE!  

Monday, March 18, 2024

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: Inadvertent Cover Enhancement!

This is an Internet scan of the cover of YOSEMITE SAM # 15 (Gold Key Comics, Cover Date: August 1973). 

And below is a scan of MY OWN COPY of YOSEMITE SAM # 15.  See anything unusual? 

Let's look a little closer, shall we? 

It would seem that, on MY COPY, Bugs' cooking was SO BAD that it made Sam sick enough to see SPOTS BEFORE HIS EYES!  

I don't know what the nature of the "spots" could be!  The cover feels no different in the section in which "Sam's spots are seen". 

It's not in any way wrinkled or warped, as if any sort of liquid was spilled on it.  And nothing has bled through onto the inside-front-cover. 

It's as if Sam is REALLY ILL from having consumed Bugs' questionable cuisine!  The spots sure go with the expression on his face! 

It would appear that my copy has a unique special effect to it!  Talk about an inadvertent cover enhancement!  

Saturday, March 9, 2024

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: A Great Cover Image with a Muddled Meaning!

Check out this wonderful cover image for THE BATMAN & SCOOBY-DOO MYSTERIES (2024 series) #3 (DC Comics; Cover Date: May, 2024 - On sale as I write this!)... 

...Which is a near-perfect send-up of the "Celebrity Window" running gag from the Batman TV show.  

Or, as I described it at GCD: "The cover is a parody/homage to the oft-seen bit on the Batman TV show (ABC TV, 1966-1968), where Batman and Robin scale a tall building and a celebrity leans out of a window to address them in mid-bat-climb."

LEFT: The Green Hornet and Kato (Van Williams and Bruce Lee). RIGHT: Sammy Davis, Jr.

I say "near-perfect" for one reason... the homage is very clear but, quite frankly... the GAG ITSELF is NOT!  

It seems to me that either something FUNNY, or at least a CLEVER REFERENCE, should be coming from Catwoman's or Scooby's dialogue balloons - BUT IT ISN'T!  

Or, perhaps Batman - or especially Shaggy - SHOULD HAVE BEEN GIVEN SUCH A LINE... but no!  

How about Shaggy unintentionally doing something dumb 'n' dangerous to inadvertently imperil our courageous climbers - or maybe leaning out far enough to fall -  if only to justify Scooby's line: "Rhi can't look!"

As it is, it wastes a great image by making it, like... incomprehensible! 

The best I can do is describe it as I did in my GCD index of the issue: "As Batman and Catwoman scale a tall building to return stolen jewels to their rightful owner, Scooby-Doo and Shaggy pop out of the "Celebrity Window."  You can see the entire GCD index HERE! 

Indeed, it would have been better with NO dialogue balloons at all!  Just perfectly conveying the fine homage it was intended to!  

On the plus side, the open window nicely obscures a small corner of THE BATMAN & SCOOBY-DOO MYSTERIES logo, as one might expect a glass window to do!  ...Don't they have window screens in Gotham? 

 ...If only the window was large enough to obscure the dialogue balloons as well! 

Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: March Fourth!

Beetle Bailey has always been a soldier who marched to a different beat and here, to commemorate March 4th, 2024, we find him "marching forth" to... um... a decidedly different beat once again!  

When they began in mid-1962, Gold Key Comics were very "experimental" with graphic design for the period, perhaps to further distinguish them from their Dell Comics predecessors - in ways beyond a cover-price decrease from 15, back down to 12 cents!  

Take the cover of BEETLE BAILEY # 41 (Cover Date: May, 1963 - released in February, 1963). 

Even if there were no different beat for him to follow, Beetle would still stand out among the line of generic, lookalike soldiers in their more conventional marching. Probably purposely drawn as such, rather then include some of Beetle's identifiable regimental regulars such as Killer, Zero, Cosmo, Plato, and Rocky. 

And, to further call attention to Beetle's drum-beat detour, we have a turquoise sorta line/reverse-checkmark to highlight his breaking ranks with the troops.  One of those "early Gold Key experimental design elements" added to better define his path - especially so against the white background.  

My guess - and it is just a guess - is that, when Beetle's creator Mort Walker (or his assistant Bob Gustafson) originally drew this cover, it did not include this element.  ...But aren't we glad that someone did? 

Finally, isn't it just like Beetle Bailey to commemorate March 4th in a post published on March 5th?