Thursday, 2 April 2020


Comics from the '60s

Have I got a palpitating post for you!  Prepare to be rendered utterly envious of Bashful BARRY PEARL's cataclysmic comics collection, accumulated from when they first came out as he was growing up in America in the '60s and '70s.  I actually have some of these comics myself, the operative word being 'some' - but Barry has an unbroken run of every issue up until he stopped buying them in 1977.  I'll let Barry explain things in his own words before I unleash you on the rest of his fantastic photographs.  Over to Barry.

Comics from the '70s

It only took a few decades, But I was finally able to do this right.  With our current national (and worldwide) crisis, I finally got the time to place my comics the way I'd like, in two closets, one for the comics that began in the 1960s and another for those that began in the 1970s.  Now I can pull them out easily, whenever I want.  My collection, which contains all the Marvel Age comics beginning in 1961 with The Fantastic Four #1 (actually Amazing Adventures #1 with Dr. Droom), ends in 1977.  I keep my most valuable comics in a third, very secure place.

The Fantastic Four.  I have a mid-'60s individual reprint of #1

Whenever I post a picture of how I keep my comics stored, several concerned posters comment that they are stored the wrong way.  Many feel that comics should only be stored standing up or in special boxes, or should be slabbed, especially the oldest ones.  However, for me, comics have always been a great source of entertain-ment and enjoyment, and are useless to me unless I can pull them out and read them! Perhaps I'd feel differently if I'd paid a fortune for them, but I got many of them for free at my aunt's candy store, or on the newsstands when they first came out.

Amazing Adventures, Fantasy, & Spider-Man.  I have ASM #1

In the second picture from the top, I've shown how a couple of shelves look in the 1970s closet, which does not have double-doors.

The Avengers.  I have 1, 2, & 3

The X-Men.  I have #1

Tales To Astonish & Sub-Mariner #1.  I have TTA #70

The Incredible Hulk.  I have #102

First appearances of Daredevil, Iron Man, & Thor.  I have all 3

Strange Tales.  I have #135

As well as the comics in Barry's pics that I likewise own, I also have numerous reprints of every other comic on open display, with the possible exception of Strange Tales Annual #1.  However, my collection almost pales into insignifi-cance when you consider that Barry has an unbroken run of every title from 1961 right up to 1977.  Impressive, eh?  I'd like to thank Barry for sharing his collection with we Crivs, and I'm sure you would too, so why not leave a comment?!


hucky said...

Hi,Do you happen to have a copy of Lion issue 877[25th Jan 69]?
If you have could you let me have a scan of "the day the world drowned" first page as mine is half missing!
Cheers Clive

rob diablo said...

Amazing collection, it pretty much ends when i sopped collecting too,i love the fact that he reads them, that's brilliant, rather than hiding them away.

Kid said...

Here's my reply to your question from when I answered it yesterday on the TV Tornado Annuals Cover Gallery Omnibus, H:

Unfortunately, H, I didn't start buying Lion until Thunder was merged with it, and I only have about three Lion issues from the '60s so am unable to help you. All I can suggest is that you have a look at ebay for the discs that some people sell. However, the issue you're looking for is on sale on ebay at the moment for £7.99.

Well, he 'hides' them in his closets when he's not reading them, RD.

McSCOTTY said...

Amazing collection of comics from both of you. I wonder how many comics that actually is. My collection is all over the place in boxes in the loft, hut and house but is being weeded out to focus on my favourite period which is 1967 to 1977, I wonder if 1977 is the general cut off date for many collectors over 50 (I have others after 1977 but they are of less interest to me)

Lionel Hancock said...

Top marks ! What an amazing collection...and all looking beautifully preserved..I am Impressed !!

Anonymous said...

Wow, Barry has every Marvel comic from 1961 to 1977!! He's sitting on a fortune!

Kid said...

I too have boxes of comics in the loft, McS, but it's not the best place to keep them because of the changeable 'climactic' conditions up there depending on what time of year it is. I really must find somewhere else to keep them. I've got them well wrapped, but the last time I brought some down, I noticed that the staples had started to rust and had to carefully sand them with some fine emery paper to shine them up. I suppose it depends on what age a collector is in regard to his cut-off point for comics - I'm not sure what mine would be.


Yes, Barry has obviously looked after his comics, LH. Just a shame about the ink scribbles on J.I.M. #83's cover, but it would most likely have been like that when Barry acquired it back in 1962.


No, I think he sits on his @rse, the same as everybody else, CJ. Unless you mean his @rse is worth a fortune? (Ho ho, I'm so funny.)

Dave S said...

Great pics, thanks to Barry for letting us see them!

Kid said...

I'm sure he appreciates your appreciation, DS. As do I.

McSCOTTY said...

Sanding the staples of your comics down is for me at least going over and above. I just found a box of comics there tidying up the hall cupboard so looking forward to checking them out later tonight.

Kid said...

What can I say, McS? I'm an 'all or nothing at all' kind of guy. Let me know if you've got any goodies in that box, eh?

Barry Pearl said...

Thank you all for your kind and interesting comments. It’s hard to believe now, but in the early and middle 1960s, especially before the Batman TV show went on the air, “used” comics had no value. Comics that today would be sold for thousands of dollars were being sold for pennies or a nickel.

I don’t remember whether I bought Journey Into Mystery at a store or whether my aunt gave it to me, but the ink mark on it was not a big deal then because you probably weren’t going to keep the comic. Who knew?

I did not keep my comics because they would be worth something. I kept them because I loved reading them and rereading them. It would be great on a rainy day to pull out all of your fantastic four’s and reread them. I didn’t keep my DC comics, mostly, because they were not as much fun to reread. First DC writers did not project personality into their writing and so the writing itself was rather stale. And then most DC comics at that time, especially in the Superman line, had gimmicks on the cover. That is Superman got fat, he got old, he got young, or Lois got old, or was turned into a witch, or something. So once you knew the secret that appeared on the last page, there is nothing that made you want to reread the book. Marvel comics took you on an adventure you went to the center of the earth or you went to the moon or you went to the living planet or you went to Asgard. It was all just so much fun.

As I grew older and into my teens Marvel seem to be growing with me. And DC still seem to be aimed at younger children at the time. Marvel gave full stories, taking up the entire comic giving the story a chance to develop. With the exception of the justice league DC divided the comic into two or three stories with very little character development. Of course this would change with both companies but in the 1960s and into the 70s I really enjoyed Marvel comics.

But it seems so many of us saw the change as it came and by 1976 or so many of us left reading them. It is so common for me to hear people stop reading them at about that time. New owners, new writers, new artists took over. Lee, Kirby, Ditko and so many others that we liked were gone.

Kid said...

I wonder if the reason a lot of longtime readers gave up on comics between 1976-'78 was because they were leaving their teenage years and entering their 20s (or had just done so), and had basically just outgrown them. Naturally, they'd still have an affection for the comics they grew up reading, but newer ones just wouldn't seem to have the 'magic'. To younger readers, however, new comics would've seemed just as enthralling to them as old ones had seemed to us. Maybe it's just an age thing, Barry, in the case of others at least, if not yourself. Although I agree with you that comics seemed to have something back then that they don't have now, that could just be my age talking, eh?

Kid said...

Incidentally, Barry, you need to remove Strange Tales Annual #1 from its bag and unfold torn bits of the cover back into place. It'd look a lot better.

Phil S said...

Nice collection ! As an older but not quite as older reader, my era was the 70s but I enjoyed the Mighty World of Marvel UK reprints . I knew they were reprints but I couldn't get the originals. So having read the 60s and 70s eras yes the 60s were the better- but not always. I kept reading till the 80s and basically stopped in the 90s when the Liefeld style got popular. I started up again in the later 2000s and have pretty much stopped with the new comics . I find the art incomprehensible and the stories retreads or insulting to the characters.
To get back to it, many of early 60s Marvels were very good. The Larry Lieber Thors, Don Heck Ant-man weren't that good. Deathlok, Master of Kung - Fu were better. But the best of the Lee-Kirby, Ditko, Colan 60s were deffo top class and better than most of the 70s Marvels.

Kid said...

Y'know, PS, so many modern comics have such a different style to them that I have difficulty getting into them. Yet when I pick up a back issue or a reprint, the magic is still there. Maybe I have an 'arrested development' when it comes to comics. After all, the golden age of anything is usually when we first encounter something we like, and that just happens to be when we're kids or teens.

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