Saturday, April 16, 2011

Fantastic Femmes--Cathy Rigby

A two-time Olympian, best known for playing Peter Pan in a long-running production that played Broadway and numerous national tours, Cathy Rigby has also been Dorothy in a national tour of Wizard of Oz.
Among gymnastics aficionados, she's notorious for being the first woman to pose nude in Sports Illustrated!
Genre credits include...
Peter Pan [2000] (Peter Pan)
Six Million Dollar Man "Love Song for Tanya"
Police Woman "Beautiful Die Young"
Check out...
Rigby-McCoy Entertainment HomePage 
July 2012 Update:
There's a rumor that more pix from the Sports Illustrated photo session are about to surface!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Reading Room: TARA, QUEEN OF THE SPACE PIRATES in "Fabulous Jewel of Morn"

Pirates are popular!
Seems obvious now, with the success of the Pirates of the Carribbean series, but from the 1970s until recently, pirates (like cowboys) seemed to have hit a cultural dead-end.
But, back in the 1940s-50s though, they were everywhere!
Captain Blood and The Sea Hawk (both played by Errol Flynn) and Jamie Waring (Tyrone Power) in The Black Swan typlified the swashbuckling heroic image of pirates on film.
There were, of course, pirate pulp magazines and comic books, as well!
Sci-fi / fantasy in particular, adapted the pirate concept in numerous incarnations, including Star Pirate, Captain Harlock, and, most importantly to us, Tara: Queen of the Space Pirates, who ran amok thru the galaxy for the last six issues of Wonder Comics (#15-20) with the tale scheduled for #21 finally published in Thrilling Comics #71.
Click on the art to enlarge
Though this tale is her first appearance, in Wonder Comics #15, the cover by Alex Schomberg during his "Xela" airbrush art period, is from Wonder Comics #17!
The cover features both the villain and jewel from the story in #15, so we're using it here.
The actual cover for #15, also by Schomberg as "Xela", featured Brad Spencer: WonderMan (the third character to use "Wonder Man/WonderMan") in his final cover appearance before Tara took over the cover slot for the remainder of the title's run.
In fact, none of the covers featuring Tara go with the stories in their respective issues!  Weird!
In addition, this Tara story was reprinted in the next issue (#16) of Wonder Comics, probably due to a production error!
Penciled and inked by Gene Fawcette.

Look for MORE Tara adventures soon!

And check out the

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Reading Room: Alien Invasions: SpaceBusters "Mission to Baldor!"

Click HERE for MORE SpaceBuster action!
War, even in space, is hell.
But it's an amazingly-familiar hell, as the SpaceBusters end up helping the Resistance in France, I mean Baldor, against the Nazi, I mean Belzaric, invaders...
From SpaceBusters #2, the last issue of the series.

Don't forget to check out our
 SpaceBusters
which also features SpaceMan Jet!
plus these kool space-war items from Amazon!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

YouTube Wednesday: The Man of Bronze IS the Man of Steel!

The recent Doc Savage posts have produced some of the biggest hit counts this blog has ever seen!
So, for this week's videos, we're going with The Man of Bronze and Ron Ely as two Clarks, one Bronze, one Steel!
First up, the rarely-seen behind-the-scenes featurette from the 1975 movie...

UPDATE: It's been deleted! Damn!
Then, the original theatrical trailer...Have no fear! The Man of Bronze is HERE!

Ron Ely reciting the Code of Doc Savage
(C'mon, admit it! He did a damned good job!)

UPDATE: That's been deleted, too!
Well, to make up for the deletions, here's the two major fight scenes in the flick in one clip!

And a very special treat: Ron Ely as the Golden Age Superman!
 From The Adventures of Superboy third season finale; "The Road to Hell Part II"
Don't worry, the opening synopsis gives you all the background you need...


Coming soon: The Doc Savage stories from Marvel Two-in-One and Giant-Size Spider-Man, as well as the Giant-Size Doc Savage one-shot, none of which are included in DC's trade paperback reprint! PLUS: the text features and pin-ups from the Marvel comics and b/w magazines!
Note: the Reading Room posts for all superhero (and superheroine) stories in the future will appear in our brother blog Hero & Heroine Histories, where previous entries have been "rerunning" several days later.
Bookmark it, or go to it and load the rss feed to keep up with, among other things...
The Shadow's Silver Age run from Archie Comics!
The COMPLETE Fox/Farrell Phantom Lady by Matt Baker!
The Green Hornet (Golden AND Silver Age)!
The SECOND Captain Marvel! (The one between SHAZAM! and Mar-Vell!)
Jet Dream and Her StuntGirl CounterSpies: the Complete Saga!
..and much MORE superhero(ine) stuff from 1938-1978!
The sci-fi/fantasy, horror, humor, Western, and romance stories (or genre combinations like Space Western) will continue here, so keep us bookmarked as well!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Reading Room: CAVE GIRL in "Ape God of Kor"

The very first Cave Girl story (but not her origin) from Thun'da #2, guest-starring Thun'da himself, along with his "mate", Pha!
Art by Bob Powell, who took over on Thun'da from the legendary Frank Frazetta!
Cave Girl continued as a back-up in the remaining four issues of Thun'da, and as the lead in four issues of her own title (with a Thun'da strip as a back-up!).
Despite the overlapping of the strips in each other's books, the characters never guest-starred in each other's strips again.

Check out the
plus these jungle goodies from Amazon...

Monday, April 11, 2011

DOC SAVAGE: The Movie That ALMOST Was

Comic cover cropped from the paperback art by James Bama
In 1966, with both Bond and Bat-manias at their peak, producers Mark Goodson and Bill Toddman intended to begin a film franchise based on the hot-selling Doc Savage pulp novels being reprinted by Bantam, starting with The Thousand-Headed Man
1966 Newsweek article about Doc Savage and the movie. Click to enlarge.
 They contracted Chuck Connors, who had recently finished a successful run on the RifleMan tv series to play Doc, and began pre-production.
Then, things stopped dead in their tracks.
It seemed that Conde Nast, who now owned the Street and Smith library, including Doc, The Shadow, and The Avenger, didn't own the ancillary media rights to the Man of Bronze!
Those rights had been retained by co-creator Lester Dent, who had written most of the novels (including Thousand-Headed Man) under the "Kenneth Robeson" house name.
(Dent, had previously licensed a short-lived radio version of the character, but had been unable to develop a movie or tv version.  When he passed away, his widow inherited the rights.)
Mrs. Dent was more than willing to negotiate, but time was not on the producers' side.  They had already scheduled the production, and had to start shooting something or lose their investment and the cast (most of whom had commitments scheduled after the Thousand-Headed Man shoot!
To recoup, the producers switched to an already-existing Western script called Night of the Tiger, and shot it as Ride Beyond Vengeance.  (Westerns at that point were still an "easy sell" to theatres and tv.)
Looking at the Ride Beyond Vengeance cast, it's fairly easy to guess who would've played whom...
Claude Akins as Monk
William Bryant as Renny
Jamie Farr as Johnny
Bill Bixby as Long Tom
Gary Merrill or Paul Fix as Calvin Copeland
Kathryn Hays as Lucille Copeland
Not sure who would've played Sen Gat
The cast also included Frank Gorshin and James MacArthur.
In the early 1970s, the character's rights were sold to legendary movie producer George Pal, who produced Man of Bronze in 1974.
The Thousand-Headed Man was eventually dramatized...but as a radio mini-series for NPR, who had scored great ratings with radio versions of the original Star Wars Trilogy.
Here's the original pulp cover...
 ...the rarely-seen British paperback, published at the same time as the 1975 Ron Ely feature film, and, oddly enough, based on the James Bama art for #14, The Fantastic Island...

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