Wednesday, 30 March 2016
Tuesday, 29 March 2016
|Images copyright DC COMICS|
Isn't it weird that ARNOLD DRAKE, original writer (and co-creator) of The DOOM PATROL, also wrote X-MEN after leaving DC to go to MARVEL? Two misfit groups, both led by a wheelchair-bound idealist whose intention it was to protect humanity. Unless I'm very much mistaken, both groups had their own BROTHERHOOD Of EVIL to fight against, pushing credulity just a bit too far when it comes to coincidence. Arnold Drake later said that he thought STAN LEE must've heard about The Doom Patrol at the preparation stage and stolen a jump on him. Poor Stan just can't win. It's asserted by some that JACK KIRBY created the X-Men, not Stan - and now he's also accused of ripping off Arnold Drake.
Hard to believe that I bought this mag at least 30 years ago. If memory serves, I purchased it from PETE ROOT of AKA Books & Comics in Glasgow's Virginia Galleries. I more than likely bought it primarily because I'd read the New Doom Patrol in SHOWCASE #s 94 to 96 back in the '70s, and therefore wanted to add the original group's first appearance to my collection. In my never-ending quest to give you a glimpse into yesteryear, I've decided to share the cover and some of the interior pages with you here.
Incidentally, I've added the covers and splash pages of #s 95 & 96 of Showcase to my post about #94, which you'll see if you click here. Wait 'til you've savoured the mood and the magic of the pages on display here first though - I wouldn't want you to exit prematurely and miss them, especially after all the time and trouble I've gone to in scanning them just for you.
Above is what my town's main shopping centre looked like in
the '60s. There's a fountain and flagpoles, pillars and posts, and
the whole place had a certain kind of style and charm to it that's
sadly lacking today. The centre has been roofed over, many of
the best shops no longer exist, and it's not the pleasant place
that it used to be. And guess what? They call it progress.
|Image copyright MARVEL COMICS|
This comic is mainly reprint, in that it collects The BEAST's
origin tales from the back-up stories that appeared in the X-MEN's
own mag back in the 1960s. They're topped and tailed by new seg-
ments to draw everything together, but it was probably prepared as
a fill-in issue for when the regular strip had missed the deadline.
However, it's worth it for the JIM STARLIN cover alone.
Monday, 28 March 2016
For fans of the classic series of THUNDERBIRDS, CORGI are releasing a new range of diecasts in May. Well, to be honest, TB2 and FAB 1 were released back in 2005, but TB1 and TB3 are new. Priced at £19.99 each (TB1 & TB3 count as one item), they're very reasonably priced considering what some people are asking for Corgi's 2005 TB2 and FAB 1 on ebay.
It's interesting to note that, unlike its 2005 release, this latest edition of FAB 1 doesn't have the ROLLS ROYCE bonnet ornament The SPIRIT Of ECSTASY, making it (in my eyes) less collectable than the earlier version. I wonder if RR refused permission, or whether Corgi would've had to pay for the privilege and decided not to in order to keep costs down. Anyone know?
Incidentally, TB1, TB2, TB3, and TB4 are clearly modelled after the MATCHBOX versions of the early '90s (though TB1 has a better finish). FAB 1 has all the same features as the '60s DINKY classic, but its profile is less sleek-looking.
Yet another Easter strip from SMASH! - and look at that ad for the
DINKY FAB 1. CORGI were actually working on a prototype model
in anticipation of acquiring the licence to produce a range of THUNDER-
BIRDS toys, but Dinky got given the gig instead. A few years back, Corgi
finally released a version of the car, which was essentially a copy of the
Dinky incarnation, not their original design. I've got both of 'em!
Waahoooo! Yet another super Easter strip from SMASH! #61, first
published in 1967. Which would you prefer - these brilliant comic strips
or a bundle of chocolate eggs? If you gave the second answer, tough, 'cos
you're stuck with the strips. You think I'm made of chocolate? (Call the
nurse, he's talking p*sh again!) Another strip soon - stay tuned.
Another slice of Easter fun from a 1967 issue of SMASH! I'm not sure
I ever quite understood Ronnie's motivation. If he already had more dosh
than he could ever manage to spend, then why the heck was he so eager to
get his hands on a million quid? Sheer greed I suppose. Typical, eh? He
probably grew up to be a Tory politician.
|Image copyright D.C. THOMSON & Co., Ltd|
From the DENNIS The MENACE book for 1962 comes this
Easter-themed tale of the world's wildest boy! Eggs-actly what we
need on a day like this. This page would've been a reprint from an
earlier issue of The BEANO - if you know which one, then con-
sider yourself a true comics fan! (And probably an old one.)
Sunday, 27 March 2016
More Easter treats from SMASH! #116. This time it's two pages of
BAD PENNY, who, when she was bad, she was very bad - and when she
was very bad, she was funny. (I don't even know if that makes any sense,
but it sounds good so it'll do for me.) Not drawn by LEO BAXENDALE,
I'm informed - I really should enlarge these pages and examine them be-
fore attributing them to any particular artist, shouldn't I?!
|Copyright relevant owner|
Someone gave me this interesting book by Denis Gifford a while back, but pages 7 & 8 are missing. (Assuming, that is, that the page count starts from the outside cover.) Have any Criv-ites got this book, and if so, would you be prepared to provide me with scans of the missing pages?
(Update: Received a scan of each side of the page from PC - see comments - printed out a copy and restored the book. Then the guy who gave me this book, gave me another one, so I gave the restored volume to someone else.)
Saturday, 26 March 2016
|Images copyright DC COMICS|
One of my favourite newsagent's back in the '70s was an R.S. McCOLL's in the Old Village quarter of my town. It was situated next door to an old-fashioned tearoom called The WILLOW, which was like a LYONS tearoom from the 1950s. Nowadays, what was The Willow is part of a Chinese or Indian restaurant, and the newsagent's is now a GREGGS, both of whose original incarnations I miss in equal measure. Roll on that Lottery win so that I can buy and restore them to their former glory.
Just some of the comics I recall buying in that particular McColl's were The DEMON #1, SECRET ORIGINS #1, JOURNEY Into MYSTERY Annual #1, KULL The CONQUEROR #1, as well as this post's favourite comic of the past - SWAMP THING #1. Doubtless there were many other mags (some of them British) I bought in that much-missed shop, but these are the ones which spring to mind at this moment. So let's take a look at some of the pages from that classic issue of Swamp Thing - comics don't get any better than this.
And if you have any memories of (or observations on) this magnificent mag, then share them with the rest of us.
And below is a pic from the '50s of the tearoom and newsagent's. The Willow's premises had a windowed extension just out of view to the left of the tree to accommodate more tables and chairs.
Friday, 25 March 2016
I've shown these two pages before, but I'm sure you'll forgive me -
after all, it's EASTER! How many chocolate eggs have you scoffed so
far, you greedy Criv-ites? If you're anything like me, too many! Having
said that, think I'll have another. In the meantime, enjoy The SWOTS
& The BLOTS from SMASH! #116, back in 1968.