Saturday, December 21, 2019

Holiday Reading Room TREASURE CHEST "A Christmas Carol"

There have been numerous comic adaptations of this Dickens classic tale...
...but this version is probably the shortest I've ever seen!
The Treasure Chest of Fun and Fact was a comic published bi-weekly during the school year (September thru June) and distributed to Catholic churches and schools from 1946 to 1972, featuring wholesome stories about historical, scientific, and sports subjects, adaptations of famous fictional works, and a number of original series.
(Click HERE to read "Kidnapped by a Spaceship", one of the sci-fi series that appeared in the book.)
Many well-known Golden and Silver Age creators contributed work to the title including Joe Sinnott, Reed Crandall, Jim Mooney, Graham Ingels, Bernard Bailey, Bob Powell, Fran Matera, and Frank Borth,
It became a year-round bi-weekly from 1966 to '68 (mailing summertime copies to kids' homes), reverting in '69 to school year-only until it's cancellation in 1972.
This adaptation appeared in Vol 2 #9 (Dec. 24, 1946).
I believe the artist is Mabel Olsen, whose signature is visible in the next-to-last panel of the last page.
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Friday, December 20, 2019

Friday Fun CHRISTMAS WITH MOTHER GOOSE "Jeminy's Christmas"

From the fertile mind of Walt (Pogo) Kelly...
...a Christmas tale featuring several fairy tale characters and some Kelly originals!
Published in Dell's Four Color Comics #253 (1949), this Walt Kelly-written and illustrated story was part of the Christmas with Mother Goose anthologies that appeared annually in the Four Color series from 1945 to 1949.
Before his comic strip Pogo took off, Kelly did a prodigious amount of work for Dell in their humor and holiday titles, most of which has never been reprinted.
His work has a gentle whimsy perfect for reading to little children before bedtime.
We've run almost a dozen of his stories (mostly holiday stuff) which you can read by clicking HERE!
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Thursday, December 19, 2019

Holiday Reading Room LIFE OF CHRIST VISUALIZED "Birth of Christ" & "Visit of the Wise Men"

Here's the Christmas story...
...from a HTF, never-reprinted story by a publisher who distributed exclusively to Protestant Sunday and vacation schools and churches!
Standard Publishing's Life of Christ Visualized #1 (1942) was the first of a three-issue miniseries which covered Christ's entire life from birth to death and resurrection.
The identities of both the writer and artist are lost to the mists of history.
BTW, Standard Publishing is not Pines/Standard/Better/Nedor who published titles like Fighting Yank, Startling Comics, and Adventures into Darkness.
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Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Wednesday Worlds of Wonder CHRISTMAS WITH MOTHER GOOSE "Christmas in the Shoe"

Walt (Pogo) Kelly was Dell's go-to creator for light-hearted kids' stories... this tale from Dell's Four Color Comics #201: Christmas with Mother Goose (1948) amply demonstrates!
Kelly was expert at doing sequels to classic fairy tales, often inserting them into situations never conceived of by the original storytellers, yet making them "feel" totally-natural, as if they were "lost" stories by the original creators!
Note: this was reprinted once, in a magazine, Western/Golden's Christmas Annual #8 (1975), 
This is the only issue which included comics.
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Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Holiday Reading Room RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER "Will a Stitch in Time Save Christmas?"

From the first Rudolph tale...
...we come to the last one, which almost didn't get published!
Scheduled for DC's 1978 Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer tabloid, this Sheldon Mayer scripted/penciled & Tenny Henson-inked story seemed doomed to never see print due to the DC Implosion of 1978!
(In fact, the Rudolph stories weren't considered important enough to warrant inclusion in the HTF Cancelled Comics Cavalcade, created to establish copyright for the various cancelled books' material!)
As DC slowly recovered from the disaster, they instituted a revival of their digest-sized comics line, including a new book, The Best of DC, which was primarily reprint material.
But when a Rudolph-oriented issue, #4 (1980), was scheduled for Christmastime release, it was decided to include the unpublished stories to fill out the page-count!
Interestingly, the cover didn't promote the fact that new material was included in the previously-all-reprint title!
And, though the story was created for an oversized tabloid (10"x13.5"), it actually works in the tiny digest-sized (5"x6.75") format!
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Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
(a replica of the original 1939 book we re-presented on this blog!)

Monday, December 16, 2019


Here's one of the koolest adaptations of Dickens' classic story...
...and most people don't even know it exists!
Note: the interior pages were two-color instead of the usual comic book-style four color.
The next-to-last page of the story is from the one-color inside front cover, while the final page was the four-color back cover of the magazine!
Illustrated by Arnold Roth, it's never been established who wrote this tale from Humbug! #6 (1958)!
It could be Roth, Harvey Kurtzman, Will Elder, Al Jaffee, or even all of them in a collaboration!