Saturday, March 14, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics UNCANNY TALES "Cure"

Sometimes solving the puzzle of a pandemic is worse than the disease itself... this never-reprinted tale set in the then-future year of 1976 from Atlas' Uncanny Tales #45 (1956) demonstrates!
It should be pointed out that the "common cold" virus, though known to mankind since 1600 BC, has never been known to affect any other, non-human species!
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Thursday, March 12, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics PLANET OF VAMPIRES "Long Road Home" Conclusion

Art by Pat Broderick and Neal Adams
...well, that kool cover says it all, doesn't it?
BTW, though the cover says six astronauts, we only see five, including Dr Ben Levitz, who was killed by savages when the crew first reached shore after crash-landing off Coney Island!
The "sixth astronaut" is never mentioned by name...or even shown in the background...anywhere in the issue!
In 2008, a team of astronauts exploring Mars lose contact with Earth.
After a two-year voyage, they return to find most of the planet devastated and the survivors apparently devolved to primitive savages!
However, some people in Manhattan managed to keep technology functioning and a relatively-civilized society going under an impenetrable dome...but at what cost to their humanity?
This never-reprinted first issue of Atlas/Seaboard's Planet of Vampires (1975) was Larry Hama's intro to comic scriptwriting.
Hama had been a penciler/inker apprenticing under Wally Wood before landing his first ongoing gig; penciling Iron Fist in Marvel Premiere.
But when John Byrne was given Iron Fist (which moved into its' own comic), Hama was without steady work.
The brand-new Atlas/Seaboard company welcomed the young creative with open arms, giving him two books: Planet of Vampires, which he scripted, and Wulf the Barbarian, which he both wrote and penciled.
Larry ended up leaving both the books (and the company) when the publisher refused to allow leeway on the deadlines when Hama's mother was dying, forcing the young writer/artist to bring in a host of pro friends to meet the deadlines while he dealt with the personal loss and handled funeral arrangements.
Hama went on to much bigger things like GI Joe, while Atlas/Seaboard went out of business within a year.
Next Wednesday:
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(the graphic novel verson of the novel, adapted into the then-current movie Omega Man, which "inspired" this series!)

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Wednesday Worlds of Wonder HARSH REALM "City" Part 2

To put it more succinctly:
Dex has met a woman who knew Dan.
She takes him back to her place and...
I think not!
So she's not a hot virtual-reality babe but, like him, a human in this virtual world!
Can you get a woman pregnant in virtual reality?
Will Dex find Dan?
For the Answers to These and Other Questions...
Be Here Next Wednesday!

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Tuesday, March 10, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics PLANET OF VAMPIRES "Long Road Home" Part 1

Remember when a pandemic created vampires who took over the world in 2010?
No, I don't mean the Twilight or True Blood franchises...
Be here Next Wednesday, as the astronauts are forced to chose sides.
The early 1970s was one of the more pessimistic periods in pop culture.
Between pollution/ecology concerns, potential overpopulation, and possible war, fear was running wild in pop culture, in particular, movies.
The near-future was believed to be a potential Hell on Earth, with movies like A Clockwork Orange (crime and violence held in check only by mind-control), Soylent Green (overpopulation and food shortages relieved by using humans as food), ZPG (controlled breeding to avoid overpopulation), and Omega Man (man-made plague kills most of humanity and leaves remainder as mutant ghouls).
Even films about the distant future like Zardoz and the Planet of the Apes series showed humanity as either decadent and collapsing, or under control of other species!
Writer Larry Hama and penciler Pat Broderick combined several of the concepts in Seaboard's Planet of Vampires #1 (1973).
It was one of the stronger titles of the new company formed to compete with Marvel and DC, but both internal problems between the publishers and creatives as well as failure to gain newsstand space (there were no comic shops at the time), doomed the company to a short life.
Next Wednesday
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(the graphic novel verson of the novel, adapted into the then-current movie Omega Man, which "inspired" this series!)

Monday, March 9, 2020


Steve (Spider-Man) Ditko was doing X-Files long before X-Files... this tale from Charlton's Mysteries of Unexplored Worlds #9 (1958) demonstrates!
Are we sure those odd-looking men were "helping"?
Only artist Steve Ditko and the unknown writer (who could be Ditko himself) know the answer...and they ain't talking!