Friday, 27 March 2015

BIG BORIS - THE ULTIMATE MONSTER...



Here's why KARLOFF THE UNCANNY was King
of the monsters.  No point arguing, it's a simple fact!

LEE & BUSCEMA - THE MARVEL WAY...



Here's an excerpt from the video version of HOW
TO DRAW COMICS THE MARVEL WAY.  I was
surprised to hear that BUSCEMA sounds very similar
to KIRBY.  From the same part of town perhaps?

BABE OF THE DAY - SUZI PERRY...



SUZI PERRY is another babe I know nothing
about - apart from the fact that she has something
to do with motor cars.  She's one of regular reader
McSCOTTY's favourite burds, and who am I to
deny him a peek at a pretty pair of pins?

TOP TEN THINGS THAT MAKE STAN LEE AWESOME...



It's become popular in certain circles in the past
few years to knock STAN LEE and try and diminish his
cataclysmic contributions to comicbook culture.  Here at
CRIVENS!, we share no such negative feelings towards
Mr. MARVEL.  So here are the top ten things that
make Stan Lee awesome.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

BABE OF THE DAY - RACHEL RILEY...



Time for today's glamour (over and above my
photo on the right, that is), so here's bright-as-a-
button RACHEL RILEY to provide it for you.  No
doubt McSCOTTY will be pleased to see her as he's
a big fan of hers.  Then again, who isn't?  (Apart
from CAROL VORDERMAN, I mean.)

THE THREE QUESTION MARKS...


The very first Three Investigators adventure I ever read

I first encountered ALFRED HITCHCOCK & THE THREE
INVESTIGATORS in 1969 or '70, in a book called THE MYSTERY
OF THE GREEN GHOST which I obtained from my neighbourhood
library.  Read it, enjoyed it, forgot about it.  Until, that is, a friend told me
around a year or so later about a series of books he was reading starring
the same three amateur detectives, enthusing wildly about JUPITER
JONES, PETE CRENSHAW and BOB ANDREWS and the
adventures they became involved in.

The atmospheric end-papers in the hardback editions

I don't remember whether I was aware, from my first encounter,
that there was a series of books about the three lads, but I soon started
reading the other ones and very much enjoyed them.  I have a vague re-
collection of beginning one book in one house and finishing it in another
(after flitting in '72), as my memory seems to jump between each house
when I think of the book.  It may have been THE MYSTERY OF
THE FLAMING FOOTPRINTS, or THE NERVOUS LION,
but I'm no longer certain.


Around 15 years later, I re-read the Green Ghost adventure, and
it was almost as if I was back in the house I'd lived in when I first read
it, so strong were the images in my memory that were revived upon that
second reading.  It's now been twice that span again (30 years) and I really
must revisit my past by reading it once more sometime soon.  ROBERT
ARTHUR Jr. created the characters in the early  '60s and wrote quite
a few of the early stories, then oversaw and edited the tales (some
of which he suggested) of other contributing writers.

The first Three Investigators adventure

The kids were aged around 13 in the first series of 43 books (1964-
'87), but a couple of years later, in 1989, a new series started, in which
the three males were now around 17 or 18, and mystery writer HECTOR
SEBASTIAN was their new mentor, who usually opened and closed each
tale.  (Alfred Hitchcock last appeared in book 30.)  Robert Arthur's heirs
objected to the new stories, and legal disagreements between them and
the publishers put them on hold in 1990, after only 13 new stories.


I haven't read all of the books in either series, and although
they fall under the category of 'juvenile fiction', they also qualify
as 'adult friendly' for grown-ups looking for diverting mysteries, free
from sex, swearing or sadism.  If you've never read one before, why
not give them a try?  If you've previously read one in your youth,
you shouldn't need much persuading in getting re-acquainted.

Ah, happy memories. I think I can see
what I'm going to start collecting next.


As mentioned, I re-read The Green Ghost in
1985, in a paperback edition, below.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

PLAY IT AGAIN, SAM...



And you'll be playing this song again and again,
catchy little number that it is, by father and son team
BING & GARY CROSBY.  Subtitled 'The Happy
Tune', it's aptly named!  Why not give it a listen
and see for yourself?

PATSY CLINE - IS SHE CRAZY?



Yup, she sure is!  Listen to her admit it in her own
words.  (Okay, they're WILLIE NELSON's words,
but why quibble?)

PART TEN OF SMASH! COVER GALLERY...



Here's SIMON TEST getting up to all sorts of escapades on
six covers of SMASH! from 1970.  This is the latest in our cover
gallery featuring this titanic title from 40-odd years ago, and it was
one of Britain's best periodicals for boys in an age when they was
still a comics industry in this country, as opposed to the 'craft
fair' that exists today.

I've mentioned before that, spectacular as these covers are, I
think IPC missed a trick by not alternating the featured character
from week-to-week, as it would surely have intrigued potential new
readers to see a different face staring up at them from the news-
agent's counter from time to time.  Any thoughts on the matter?







PART TWO OF UNTOLD TALES OF SPIDER-MAN COVER & IMAGE GALLERY...



And now, another bunch of covers and images from UNTOLD
TALES OF SPIDER-MAN, a retro-mag from the '90s which set its
stories back in the days of LEE & DITKO's era of the wondrous web-
slinger.  I told you just about everything you need to know about the mag
last time, so there's no point going over old ground.  Instead, let's focus on
the difference between comics of today and what I like to call 'the good ol'
days'.  I was in my local FORBIDDEN PLANET store recently, and over-
heard someone talking about the subject.  He may have been referring to
a specific title, but his comment was apropos to most contemporary
comicbooks, the main purpose of which seems to be to provide
content  for collected editions and thereby sell the same
material twice.

"You've got to read them all together or they don't make
any sense!" was what he said, referring to a continuing story-arc in
a series of issues of the same title.  And he's right.  I can't be bothered
with all that.  When I pick up a comic, I want it to be self-contained, or -
if it's a continued story - to be no more than three or four issues at most.
That was the good thing about the comics of a now-vanished era;  there
may have been a continuing sub-plot to keep the reader interested, but
the main storyline was usually done and dusted in one ish.  The only
comic that I know of that does this today is DAREDEVIL in
PANINI's The MIGHTY WORLD Of MARVEL.

Got any thoughts on the matter?  Then you know where the
comments section is.  In the meantime, enjoy the piccies from a
comic that knew how to give readers what they wanted.















Tuesday, 24 March 2015

THE STORY OF THE JAMES BOND THEME...



Does what it says on the tin.  Enjoy.

BABE OF THE DAY - KIM KARDASHIAN (AGAIN)...



KIM KARDASHIAN - all I know about
her is that she's in some TV show that I've
never seen.  Hey, that's all I need to know -
that, and the fact that she's a babe!

DIVE! DIVE! DIVE!



Remember these little items?  I used to go crazy for
them as a kid.  I've got a modern equivalent, bought
a few years ago in Glasgow, but one day I must track
down an original one.  I've got the baking powder all
ready and waiting.   Anyone else recall these great
little free gift toys?  Let's hear all about it.

Monday, 23 March 2015

YET ANOTHER AMAZING FANTASY - THREE, IN FACT...



Okay, so here's a question for you - how many issues were there 
of AMAZING FANTASY?  Including, of course, the issues that were
originally called AMAZING ADVENTURES and AMAZING ADULT
FANTASY.  Fifteen, right?  Wrong!  Eighteen, in fact.  That's because,
back in the mid-'90s, MARVEL published another three issue continuing
the numbering from what had once been the final AF featuring SPIDER-
MAN.  What you're looking at here is Volume 1, Numbers 16, 17 & 18,
thirty-two years after the fact.  These adventures are set between AF
#15 and ASM #1, and your collection isn't complete without them.
Straight on to eBay with you.







And below is the most famous issue in the series.

BABE OF THE DAY - KATE WINSLET (AGAIN)...



Am I imagining it, or does KATE WINSLET
more than slightly resemble MADONNA when she
was a little younger?  Regardless, she's a pure babe,
 so here's a pic of her for you lads to drool over.

HE'LL HAVE TO GO - OR, IN GLASGOW PARLANCE, "GET HIM TAE FECK!" (NO, I DON'T MEAN JIM.)



Here's JIM REEVES lip-syncing to his biggest hit,
HE'LL HAVE TO GO.  It was unusual for Jim not to
sing 'live',when he could, so the reason for the lip-syncing
is a bit of a mystery.  Maybe a guest spot on a show with
not enough space for his musicians?  Anyone know?
(Anyone care?)  Still a brilliant song 'though.

NOW IT CAN BE TOLD - FF #306...


Images copyright MARVEL COMICS

Recently, I posted a gallery of some FANTASTIC FOUR
covers - #s 297 -312, to be precise.  However, there was one ish
missing from my collection - #306 - whose image I had to borrow
from eBay to fill the gap.  I don't know why that particular number
had eluded me back in 1987, and although I'd always intended  to
track it down, I somehow just never got 'round to it.  Funny how
a whopping 28 years can slip by without one noticing, eh?

However, the long wait is over.  I bought one a few days back
and it arrived today, so I'm an ecstatically happy chappie.  Here it
is, along with its splash page to celebrate the momentous occasion.
I was only half the age I am now when I should have bought this ish,
and I was living in a different house in another neighbourhood, - in
a whole different century, in fact - but fate has finally rectified the
oversight and united us at last.  (Well, fate, eBay, and two-
odd quid, to be precise.)  Praise be to the internet.

Okay, frantic ones - feast your eyes on these two images
featuring the FF's fabulous foray into the fantastic.  It's what
comics (and blogs devoted to them) were invented for!

PART SIXTEEN OF COMIC COVERS 'SNAP'!



In case you didn't know, The MIGHTY THOR #126 was the
first ish not to bear the JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY masthead
which had graced its cover for the previous 125 issues.  Not that it
matters much, because it's really the art we're here to look at today,
not the name of the mag.  So look to your heart's content, and see if
you can spot what those clever MARVEL chappies have done with
the cover of #458.  The clue is in the name of this blog post, if
that's any help to you.

Any preferences, frantic ones?  Which and why?