Friday, October 5, 2018

Friday Fun REX DEXTER OF MARS "Among the Stars!"

This is a fitting episode in several ways... Rex Dexter of Mars becomes immortal (metaphorically-speaking)!
Rex Dexter didn't return!
This tale in Fox's Mystery Men Comics #24 (1941) was his last Golden Age appearance, and makes a very appropriate (though unintentional) finale to the series!
Rex would return in Image's Savage Dragon as a supporting character in the early 2000s and still appears from time to time.
Note: for all those who think the Clash of the Titans movies are an accurate version of ancient Greek myths, Rex Dexter gets it right!
Perseus fought Cetus, not the Kraken to save Andromeda!
However, original CotT screenwriter Beverly Cross decided to go with the more dramatic "Kraken"!
And, let's face it, don't the two Zeus (Zeuses?), Laurence Olivier and Liam Neeson, sound kool rumbling "RELEASE THE KRAKEN!" instead of "RELEASE CETUS!"?
Though this was the final Rex Dexter story published in Mystery Men Comics, it's not the end of Rex at Friday Fun!
Next week, we begin a two-part presentation of Rex's revised origin (it ain't a modern phenomenon, guys), told as the opening tale of Fox's Rex Dexter one-shot in 1940!
Then, the Friday before Halloween, we present a Rex Dexter story we "skipped" so it could be run around All Hallow's Eve since it involves space zombies!
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Thursday, October 4, 2018

Tomb of Terror Thursdays "End Result!"

On Thursdays this October, we're presenting sci-fi horror...
...from Harvey Comics, which, near the end of the horror line's run, applied specific story themes to the four anthology titles, as explained here...
There had been sci-fi tales scattered throughout all the Harvey horror titles for the two years they'd been around, but as of March, 1954, the editors decided to concentrate them in Tomb of Terror!
So let's dive in with the never-reprinted cover-feature tale...and note how different Lee Elias' bug-eyed aliens on the cover are from Bob Powell's insect ETs in the story itself!
Yeah, it's the old War of the Worlds "germs wipe out the unprepared aliens" concept.
Unfortunately, it's after the aliens wiped out all human life on Earth...and though two infants did survive, they'll soon die without attention...
Be here next Thursday as we present another long-unseen tale from Harvey's Tomb of Terror #14 (1954)
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Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Wednesday Worlds of Wonder BRAK THE BARBARIAN "Unspeakable Shrine" Part One

Though Brak was the least-successful of Marvel's early 1970s barbarian horde... wasn't for lack of trying, as this never-reprinted story from Marvel's Savage Tales V1N7 (1974) demonstrates!
To Be Continued
Doug Moench and Steve Gan both went on to other kool high-adventure projects at Marvel!
Doug scripted the b/w Doc Savage series (considered by many, myself included, to be the best comics version of the Man of Bronze) and Steve worked on Tarzan, Conan, co-created Skull the Slayer, and co-created the Guardians of the Galaxy's own Peter Quill/StarLord!
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(includes a never-before-published conclusion to the series!)

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Reading Room TWILIGHT ZONE "Calling..." & "Journey into..."

Though the original Twilight Zone comic never adapted any of the TV episodes... did use a stellar lineup of talent to craft some really good new stories as well as science featurettes like this George Evans-illustrated one from Dell's Four Color #1288 (1962)...
...and this Evans-penciled/Reed Crandall-inked piece from Dell's Four Color #1173 (1961).
Besides these talented guys, other artists on the early issues included Frank Frazetta, Mike Sekowsky, Frank Giacoia, Alex Toth, Frank Thorne, Don Heck, and Angelo Torres!
Though neither Dell nor Gold Key followed the Comics Code, they didn't allow the creatives to go back to the relatively-unrestrained horror material most of the artists (especially the EC alumni) had done previously!
Sadly, trademark and licensing constraints have prevented these stories from being reprinted, but you'll be seeing them re-pesented here and at our fellow RetroBlogs!
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(which is available in reprint, and features many of the same artists as the Twilight Zone comic)

Monday, October 1, 2018

Monday Madness ZANY "Buck Dodgers" and "Flush Gordon"

A couple of comic strip parodies from one of the many MAD Magazine imitators...
From Candar's Zany #3 (1959), illustrated by Carl (Golden Age Human Torch) Burgos, writer unknown.
From Candar's Zany #2 (1958), artist and writer unknown.
For October, we're re-presenting HTF and never-reprinted space adventure parodies, beginning with these two from Candar, which published risque titles like French Cartoons and Cuties and College Laughs.
Though Zany only ran four issues, it had a pretty damn good lineup of writers and artists including the aformentioned Burgos (who was also the editor for the first two issues), Bill Everett (who also painted all four front covers), Joe Sinnott, Dick Briefer, John Forte, Don Orehek, Morris Waldinger, Paul Reinman, and Pete Costanza!
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Sunday, September 30, 2018

Design of the Week Redux: HALLOWEEN HOLE-IN-THE-HEAD!

Each week, we post a limited-edition design, to be sold for exactly 7 days, then replaced with another...unless it sells really well, then it goes "Redux" for one more week, like this one!
With Halloween coming, it seems only appropriate that we go with scary themes for the next few weeks.
Kicking off our compilation of creepy collectibles is this ghoulishly-graphic image from one of the types of comic books that gave Dr Fredric Wertham such fits in the 1950s!
(Wertham was the psychiatrist who claimed that horror comics caused juvenile delinquency, resulting in the demise of the genre and the near-death of the comic book industry. Despite his heroic efforts, juvenile delinquency continued to flourish!)
Yeah, it's gruesome, but in a campy, cartoonish fashion!
Isn't that exactly what you're looking for in Halloween-wear?