Saturday, December 20, 2008

Make your Christmas tree SpaceMan Jet's landing pad!

Flash Gordon!
Buck Rogers!
Brick Bradford!
Even...Rocket Kelly!
Have you ever noticed that space-faring heroes almost NEVER have a first name like "Dave" or "Melvin"? (Yeah, there was DAN Dare, but his last name was "Dare" for chissakes!)
It's always something dramatic and/or futuristic!
Makes you wonder what their parents were thinking when they filled out the birth certificate..."Yeah, "Brick"! That's a good name for the kid!"

Jet Powers was one of the last of that breed of high-adventure heroes, a kick-butt, blast-first-and-ask-questions-later kinda guy who crossed space and time like you and I cross the street!
As rendered by Bob Powell, one of the most versatile illustrators of the Golden Age (He did everything, sci-fi, romance, war, horror, etc), Jet was a ruggedly-handsome guy with distinctive white hair and a nose that had been broken and reset! (Think of a combo of Bruce Willis and Peter Graves.)
Besides being good in a fight, Jet was a scientific wiz with his own mountaintop base and spacecraft!
He operated as a freelance agent for the United States, at least once meeting the President himself to receive orders!
In four issues of his own title Jet battled Mr Sinn, an evil scientist equal to himself, who was colored bright green, but like Ming the Merciless, was an alien variation of the "Yellow Menace" villain stereotype.
Powers also met, rescued, and fell in love with Su Shan, formerly a servant of Sinn. Of course, Sinn wanted her back, so Jet had to keep rescuing her for the entire series!

Atomic Kommie Comics™ has returned him to interplanetary action as SpaceMan Jet, along with the SpaceBusters, in our The Future WAS Fantastic!™ series, even giving him his own section.where all four of his spectacular star-spanning covers adorn mugs, shirts and a plethora of other goodies!

For the special someone in your life with a taste for retro sci-fi / fantasy, you can't go wrong with one of these items as a Christmas present!
(Heck, if I didn't already have them, I'd want 'em!)

Friday, December 19, 2008

'Tis Better to Give than to Receive! (especially bullets!)

In this season of giving, the crew at Atomic Kommie Comics™ ask "why not give the guys who gave as good as they got?"

That's our roundabout (but alliterative) way of saying you should visit the Real Life Criminals section of our Crime & Punishment™ line for some criminal, but kitchy, collectibles for the Mob maven in your life!

We're talkin' Al Capone, "Lucky" Luciano, and especially John Dillinger on everything from black hoodies to mousepads!
With the new Dillinger biopic Public Enemies starring Johnny Depp due out shortly, now's the time to grab a funky, but affordable, retro collectible for the felony fan you love!

And, for you last minute shoppers, Atomic Kommie Comics™ offers a FREE upgrade to 2-Day Shipping to be sure that your gangster gift (or ANYTHING you order from us) is under the tree on Christmas Eve!
Talk about an offer you CAN'T refuse!
Just pick "Standard" shipping at checkout, and you'll automatically be boosted to the normally-more expensive 2-Day option at NO EXTRA CHARGE!
But the offer's only good until Midnight (eastern Standard Time), tonight! So move it or lose it! ;-)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Last Minute Gift ALERT!

When you go to Checkout at
Atomic Kommie Comics™,
choose "Standard" shipping,
and at no extra cost we'll
automatically upgrade you to
2-Day Shipping (when needed)
to ensure delivery by
Christmas Eve, December 24!
Delivery address must be within the United States and cannot be a PO Box.
Promotion ends on December 19, 2008 at 11:59 p.m. (EST). This offer may change, be modified or cancelled at anytime without notice.

Can you fit a not-so-jolly Green Giant under your evergreen?

Pre-dating the "Ho-Ho-Ho-ing" frozen vegetable spokesman by over a decade, a radically-different, costumed, Green Giant appeared in (what else?) Green Giant Comics #1 (and only) in 1940!
The emerald hero was secretly Brent Wood, who beat Marvel's Henry Pym to developing a size-changing serum which enabled him to grow to between 15-150 feet (depending on who illustrated the story)!
(Mind you, this story background information is second-hand, as the comic book we photographed and digitally-remastered was "slabbed" in lucite, so we were unable to read the stories. If anyone could verify or correct us, please do so.)
Less than a dozen copies of this incredibly-rare comic, which was distributed only in the New York City area, valued at several thousand dollars each, are thought to still exist!
The Green Giant recently cameoed (in flashback) in Alex Ross' Project SuperPowers mini-series which revives Golden Age heroes in the present day. Hopefully, we'll see more of him in the on-going series.

Atomic Kommie Comics™ has given him his own on-line storefront, plus we incorporated him into the Lost Heroes of the Golden Age of Comics™ line, in the Solo Heroes section, where characters with only one cover available to us (at the moment) go!
If you're looking for a retro-style Christmas gift for a Golden Age of Comics fan in your life, why not bundle one of our Green Giant goodies with the Project SuperPowers hardcover (or the original mini-series issues) for a kool, kollectible present?
It's what I'd want, if I didn't already have it! (one of the few perks of working here) ;-)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Put a Fantom under the Christmas tree!

The 1939-1940 Worlds Fair in New York City was a BIG event whose influence was felt throughout pop culture, in particular, fantastic fiction;
The first science fiction convention (NyCon 1) was held on the fairgrounds!
Charlie Chan caught a murderer in the Worlds Fair-themed Murder Over New York!
Doc Savage fought "The Worlds Fair Goblin" in the pages of his pulp magazine!
DC Comics launched a book called Worlds Fair Comics. (After the Fair closed, it was retitled Worlds Best, then Worlds Finest) This tied-in with "Superman Day" at the Fair, featuring the first actor to play Superman in costume, Ray Middleton!
And a super-hero was created specifically to protect the Fair and fairgoers!

Appearing in Amazing Mystery Funnies, The Fantom of the Fair was dedicated to defending those who walked the grounds of the exhibition, battling evil within it's boundaries.
The covers and stories incorporated elements and locales of the Fair.
While the Fantom's real name and the reason he fought crime were never revealed, readers did learn a number of things about him during his two-year run:
He had above-normal strength and agility, plus the ability to hypnotize people and alter their memories.
He operated out of the labyrinth of service tunnels under the fairgrounds, which enabled him to travel unseen, and had a secret headquarters within them (inspired by similar elements of the Phantom of the Opera)
His face was never revealed. When he wore civilian clothes, his visage was obscured by a fedora.
Despite changing his name to FantoMan, and expanding his operations to the whole of NYC, the character's series ended a couple of months after the Fair closed.

The crew at Atomic Kommie Comics™ felt that the Fantom should not be forgotten, so we incorporated him into Lost Heroes of the Golden Age of Comics™ line, giving him his own section!

If you want to show that special someone (who's into Worlds Fair kitch) that you want to share their interests with them, do a 1939 Worlds Fair-themed Christmas present!
Combine one of our cool Fantom of the Fair collectibles with a copy of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon, or Doc Savage: The Worlds Fair Goblin by Kenneth Robeson? Both titles are in-print and available at bookstores or Amazon!
Then party like it's 1939!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Make it a FURY-ous Christmas!

She wasn't the first superheroine, but she was the first to be created by a woman!
Conceived, written, and illustrated by cartoonist Tarpe Mills (who dropped her first name "June" from her published credit), Miss Fury started life in 1941 as a newspaper comic strip.

Wealthy socialite Marla Drake was preparing for a costume ball when she discovered a friend was going to wear the same costume as her!
Horrors! Social ruin!
Francine, her maid, hastily suggested an alternative--she instead wear a black panther skin sent to her by her uncle, which had previously been used as a ceremonial robe by an African witch doctor.
Strangely enough, it fit Marla perfectly!
En route to the party, Marla encountered an escaped criminal and kicked his, well, you know...
Police and reporters initially referred to her as "Black Fury", but she called herself "Miss Fury" in notes attached to crooks she caught. (The name "CatWoman" was already in use! ;-) )

Two items of note:
1) The panther hide didn't give her any super-powers, as such items tend to do in comics*!
Marla was a gifted athlete, and, that combined with the visual shock value of the costume, enabled her to defeat foes. (ask another wealthy socialite, Bruce Wayne, about his similar, equally effective, strategy!)
2) Unlike most Golden Age heroines (Wonder Woman, Black Cat, Phantom Lady, et al), who seemed to wear skimpy swimsuits to battle evil, Miss Fury's costume totally covered her (but extremely tightly)!

The series spun off into comic books in 1942, but only as reprints of the newspaper strips (albeit with new covers by Mills).
Sadly, unlike most other adventure strips, there were no other spin-offs like movie serials, radio shows, or even a Big Little Book or two!
The newspaper strip ended in 1952, but Tarpe Mills continued to work as a comic illustrator for various publishers, including Marvel Comics! Her last published work was a new cover for a graphic novel reprint of Miss Fury in 1979. She passed away in 1988.

We at Atomic Kommie Comics™ felt such a unique character would make a great, empowered role model for today's girls, so we gave her a section of her own in Heroines!™, where the so-called "weaker" sex RULES!
She'd make a cool pop-culture Christmas gift under the tree or in a stocking for your sister, daughter, or girlfriend!
Perhaps it'll inspire them to create a character of their own...

*Another Golden Age character, Cat-Man, whom Tarpe occasionally illustrated, did receive powers including agility, night vision and the gift of nine lives from his first cat-costume!
Villains would kill him, but he'd return to life by the story's end to avenge himself.
Someone figured out the "nine lives" idea would only work for nine issues, and it was dropped, but the other abilities remained.

Monday, December 15, 2008

"It's Christmas at Ground Zero.."

At this time of year, Christmas carols are in continuous rotation in the Atomic Kommie Comics™ office.
One of our favorites is Christmas at Ground Zero by "Weird" Al Yankovic. (You were expecting maybe Adeste Fidelis?)

Which brings us to, perhaps, the most unusual theme for potential Christmas presents (and, you gotta admit, we've had some real weirdies!)...atomic Armageddon!

Within our sci-fi-oriented The Future WAS Fantastic!™ section is the Atomic War line of kool collectibles with classic comic book covers from the fear-filled '50s, featuring the nuclear destruction of New York City (see above), Washington DC, and Moscow on black hoodies, sweats, and tees, as well as mugs and other tchochkies!

So for all you survivalists out there, while you duck n' cover under the Christmas tree, prepare for the irradiated end stylishly with our radiation-proof (not really!) garb and goodies!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Santa Claus / Kris Kringle / St. Nick / Father Christmas

DID YOU KNOW...the image of Santa Claus, as we Americans know it, is based on the work of two artists over 70 years apart?
1) Thomas Nast, who illustrated the first published version of Clement Clark Moore's The Night Before Christmas in the 1860s
2) Haddon Sundblom, who took Nast's visual concepts, refined them, and used them to illustrate Coca-Cola's Christmas advertising campaigns in the 1930s
Both Nast and Sundblom are equally famous for their other artistic accomplishments...
Nast was primarily a political cartoonist, whose illustrations of New York's "Boss" Tweed were considered the main reason the corrupt politician was forced from office!
Sundblom also created the image of the Quaker Oats man, and was a noted pin-up girl artist! (In fact, his last published artwork was a pin up girl semi-dressed in a Santa outfit for Playboy's December, 1972 cover!)

We at
Atomic Kommie Comics™ offer a dozen different renderings of 'ol Kris Kringle which follow in the visual tradition of Nast & Sundblom, on a host of Cool Christmas™ collectibles ranging from tree ornaments to hot cocoa mugs to sweatshirts and hoodies for kids and adults!
While they range from paintings to comic book cover art (like the art above), they all feature the "classic" image of Santa known to Baby Boomers, Gen Xers, and Millennials!
So give your "special someone", whether they're a spouse, lover, friend, or relative, a warm feeling this Christmas with a kool kollectible featuring the personification of the Christmas Spirit--Santa Claus!