Super I.T.C.H » General
Get these books by
Craig Yoe:
Archie's Mad House Krazy Kat & The Art of George Herriman: A Celebration
Archie's Mad House The Carl Barks Big Book of Barney Bear
Archie's Mad House Amazing 3-D Comics
Archie's Mad House Archie's Mad House
Archie's Mad House The Great Treasury of Christmas Comic Book Stories
Archie's Mad House The Official Fart Book
Archie's Mad House The Official Barf Book
Popeye: The Great Comic Book Tales of Bud Sagendorf Popeye: The Great Comic Book Tales of Bud Sagendorf
Archie: Seven Decades of America's Favorite Teenagers... And Beyond! Archie: Seven Decades of America's Favorite Teenagers... And Beyond!
Dick Briefer's Frankenstein Dick Briefer's Frankenstein
Barney Google: Gambling, Horse Races, and High-Toned Women Barney Google: Gambling, Horse Races, and High-Toned Women
Felix The Cat: The Great Comic Book Tails Felix The Cat: The Great Comic Book Tails
Klassic Krazy Kool Kids Komics The Golden Collection of Klassic Krazy Kool KIDS KOMICS"
"Another amazing book from Craig Yoe!"
-Jerry Beck
CartoonBrew.com
Dan DeCarlo's Jetta Dan DeCarlo's Jetta
"A long-forgotten comic book gem."
-Mark Frauenfelder
BoingBoing.net
The Complete Milt Gross Comic Books and Life Story The Complete Milt Gross Comic Books and Life Story
"Wonderful!"
-Playboy magazine
"Stunningly beautiful!"
- The Forward
"An absolute must-have."
-Jerry Beck
CartoonBrew.com
The Art of Ditko
The Art of Ditko
"Craig's book revealed to me a genius I had ignored my entire life."
-Mark Frauenfelder
BoingBoing.net
The Greatest Anti-War Cartoons
The Great Anti-War Cartoons
Introduction by Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus
"Pencils for Peace!"
-The Washington Post
Boody: The Bizarre Comics of Boody Rogers
Boody: The Bizarre Comics of Boody Rogers
"Crazy, fun, absurd!"
-Mark Frauenfelder
BoingBoing.net
More books by Craig Yoe

Get these books by
Craig Yoe:
Archie's Mad House Krazy Kat & The Art of George Herriman: A Celebration
Archie's Mad House The Carl Barks Big Book of Barney Bear
Archie's Mad House Amazing 3-D Comics
Archie's Mad House Archie's Mad House
Archie's Mad House The Great Treasury of Christmas Comic Book Stories
Archie's Mad House The Official Fart Book
Archie's Mad House The Official Barf Book
Popeye: The Great Comic Book Tales of Bud Sagendorf Popeye: The Great Comic Book Tales of Bud Sagendorf
Archie: Seven Decades of America's Favorite Teenagers... And Beyond! Archie: Seven Decades of America's Favorite Teenagers... And Beyond!
Dick Briefer's Frankenstein Dick Briefer's Frankenstein
Barney Google: Gambling, Horse Races, and High-Toned Women Barney Google: Gambling, Horse Races, and High-Toned Women
Felix The Cat: The Great Comic Book Tails Felix The Cat: The Great Comic Book Tails
Klassic Krazy Kool Kids Komics The Golden Collection of Klassic Krazy Kool KIDS KOMICS"
"Another amazing book from Craig Yoe!"
-Jerry Beck
CartoonBrew.com
Dan DeCarlo's Jetta Dan DeCarlo's Jetta
"A long-forgotten comic book gem."
-Mark Frauenfelder
BoingBoing.net
The Complete Milt Gross Comic Books and Life Story The Complete Milt Gross Comic Books and Life Story
"Wonderful!"
-Playboy magazine
"Stunningly beautiful!"
- The Forward
"An absolute must-have."
-Jerry Beck
CartoonBrew.com
The Art of Ditko
The Art of Ditko
"Craig's book revealed to me a genius I had ignored my entire life."
-Mark Frauenfelder
BoingBoing.net
The Greatest Anti-War Cartoons
The Great Anti-War Cartoons
Introduction by Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus
"Pencils for Peace!"
-The Washington Post
Boody: The Bizarre Comics of Boody Rogers
Boody: The Bizarre Comics of Boody Rogers
"Crazy, fun, absurd!"
-Mark Frauenfelder
BoingBoing.net
More books by Craig Yoe

Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Monday, September 22, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Dick Cole #1

Having always been a fat kid I probably shouldn’t have any tolerance for wholesome super student athletes along the lines of dime novel hero Frank Merriwell.  But that having been said I must confess I have a grudging tolerance for Dick Cole, perhaps because he started life as a “Wonder Boy”, one of those “raised by a scientist to achieve the peak of human development” types. But he then upended all expectations by instead of fighting crime in a homemade costume he became a military cadet.  He started out battling mad scientists and punching dinosaurs but was quickly shorn of his super strength and dealt with the usual assortment of jealous rivals, crooked gamblers and spy rings.  He has a fairly long run in Target Comics and appeared in three issues of his own title.

scan01

scan02

One of the interesting to the verge of oddball thing about Novelty Press were the little “messages” they frequently but at the bottom of their pages that didn’t seem to be directed so much as the kid reader as the adult buying the comic.  As I’ve said before, Novelty Press titles seemed to be carefully designed to not offend Grandparents and and Great Aunts.

scan41 scan43 scan45 scan47 scan49

First up is a Dick Cole adventure drawn by Jim Wilcox in the awkward, blocky style the series was known for.

scan03 scan04 scan05 scan06 scan07 scan08 scan09 scan10 scan11 scan12 scan13 scan14 scan15 scan16

I’ve on the record for liking the adventures of street level supernatural crimefighter Sergeant Spook but honestly, the art was usually so-so at best.  But not here; Al McWilliams delivers some really handsome, well laid out pages, though I do have to wonder how exactly orphan boy Jerry (no last name) got invited to go on an Egyptian archeological dig.  For the record in the series the afterworld was known as “Ghost Town” and in his early adventures the Sarge would regularly visit to get help from the various spirits.  He did it less frequently after his psychic sidekick Jerry was introduced but the concept is referenced in this outing.

scan18scan19scan20scan21scan22scan23scan24

Edison Bell was originally a classic comic book boy inventor, meaning he creating robots, vehicles and the like, but that clearly was too much for the Grandmas so he became a “real world” boy inventor.  Meaning he did little science projects and/or experiments to get out of scrapes and the stories would end with tutorials for the kids on how they could do the same at home.  But in this “adventure” he doesn’t even do that; here he heroically puts on a Halloween costume.

scan28 scan29 scan30 scan31 scan32 scan33 scan34

 

 

 

scan35scan36

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, September 15, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Okay Adventure Annual 1957

OK, here’s an odd one, Okay Adventure Annual a British hardcover featuring a hodgepodge of boys own adventure prose stories and a very odd grouping of Golden Age American comic book reprints in color and black and white.  By which I mean there are stories which are, for no apparent reason, in black and white and color.  They clearly didn’t stint when it came to the cover.

Okay1957-01

And the end papers sure were pretty as well.

Okay1957-02-3

First up is an Invisible Justice story from Quality’s Smash Comics.

Okay1957-18 Okay1957-19 Okay1957-20 Okay1957-21 Okay1957-22

There was a couple of Golden Age heroes named The Voice, but the one who appeared in Quality Comics Feature Comics is undoubtedly the strangest.  Secretly a 150 year old man calling himself  Mr. Elixir who survived a 150 years of being shipwrecked on a desert island thanks to a steady diet of herbs which gave him long life, vitality and super strength.  It seems to me that all of that would make him a unique character but maybe all those years on the island made him a little weird because he decides he also needs to use ventriloquism to fight crime.

Okay1957-27 Okay1957-28 Okay1957-29 Okay1957-30

And a page of Mickey Finn just because I like the strip so much.

Okay1957-31

So, as you can see, most of the American reprints which from Quality Comics, but that doesn’t explain this Dennis the Menace comic book story being here.  It’s especially odd since the UK has its own Dennis the Menace who first appeared in the pages of  The Beano in 1951.

Okay1957-53 Okay1957-54 Okay1957-55 Okay1957-56 Okay1957-57 Okay1957-58 Okay1957-59

And finally here’s a reprint of “The King of Blackhawk Island” from Quality’s Blackhawk #76.

Okay1957-60 Okay1957-61 Okay1957-62 Okay1957-63 Okay1957-64 Okay1957-65 Okay1957-66

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, September 8, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Popular Comics #64

This week I’ll be revisiting Popular Comics, a particularly strong looking anthology title that had always featured wonderfully designed covers.  For most of it’s run its breads and various butters were comic strip reprints but for a time it had it’s own stable of original characters.  Most of these were surprisingly well written and drawn and even gave original takes on tropes that were pretty well trod even by the early 1940′s.

PopularComics064p01

Take, for example, the awkwardly titled Professor Supermind and Son.  Handsomely drawn by Maurice Kashuba the feature concerned Professor Harmon (“America’s Supermind” was apparently his nickname; apparently all the good ones were already taken) and his son. One of his inventions temporarily turned junior into a kind of a minimalist, generic superhero (no pseudonym, no chest insignia, etc.) but instead of fighting crime they meddled into the affairs of sovereign nations.  Captain America and Johnny Canuck may have punched Hitler in the jaw, but Dan Harmon did some real damage by shaming him with a misogynistic slur.  Either that or he was outing Hitler as a female crossdresser; I’m not sure which.

PopularComics064p08

PopularComics064p03 PopularComics064p04PopularComics064p05 PopularComics064p06 PopularComics064p07PopularComics064p08 PopularComics064p09 PopularComics064p10

I’ve covered The Hurricane Kids, Alan and Dave Burnham, are a couple of All-American kids who generally had pretty prosaic South Sea style adventures, in a previous installment.  But thankfully they did veer over into the fantastic elements lane as we see where they go from battling Zulus to blowing up a dinosaur real good.

PopularComics064p19 PopularComics064p20 PopularComics064p21PopularComics064p22 PopularComics064p23 PopularComics064p24PopularComics064p25 PopularComics064p26

But there were still comic strip reprints like Herky.  Man, I love me that Herky.

PopularComics064p27

Heere’s an episode of Martan the Marvel Man who sadly isn’t from Mars to make the alliteration complete.  Not that you could tell from his his outing which is heavy on the spy vs spy stuff but along with a hot wife he possessed super powers and a alien/super suit.  It was a sweet like number that was vaguely faux Roman with kickass shoulder pads (lots of 40′s superheroes fought crime with bare legs but Martan was the only one I know of who did it in a skirt; a skirt that shorter than his wives).

Popular_Comics_47

PopularComics064p28 PopularComics064p29 PopularComics064p30 PopularComics064p31 PopularComics064p32 PopularComics064p33PopularComics064p34PopularComics064p35

Wally Williams was one of those college boy heroes whose minor key “adventures” fill the middle of many a 40′s anthology comic.  Most of them were super student athletes battling jealous rivals, shady gamblers and Nazi spy rings that they conveniently found operating in the closest conveniently located haunted house; essentially endless pressings from the Frank Merriwell template.  It’s the sort of thing I usually leaf through to get to something more substantial but creators Victor Boni and Tom Hickey happily foreswore such trite antics and created something nicely homey and ordinary.

PopularComics064p36PopularComics064p37 PopularComics064p38 PopularComics064p39PopularComics064p40

On the other hand The Masked Pilot  was just another aviator with a domino mask.  Pass.

PopularComics064p45

And finally there’s The Voice who was more Invisible Man as a low rent superhero than a factory second Shadow.  But he was also kind of that as well.

PopularComics064p59PopularComics064p60 PopularComics064p61 PopularComics064p62 PopularComics064p63 PopularComics064p64 PopularComics064p65PopularComics064p66

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, August 25, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Smash Annual 1969

I’ve already dealt with Smash, the British weekly comic that ran 257 issues between 1966 and 1971 that featured an oddball hodgepodge mix of British and American comics, but there’s several points of interest in this 1969 Annual edition of the title.  Like, the way the cover doesn’t feature your standard symbolic, iconic image. Instead, it’s first of a three page color story featuring the characters from the humor features (Grimly FeendishPercy’s Petsthe Swots and the BlotsBad PennyThe Man from B.U.N.G.L.E.The NervsCharlie’s ChoiceRonnie Rich) engaging in a game of footie. While these kinds of crossovers weren’t unknown in British comics they were definitely pretty rare.

0102

First up there’s a nicely drawn outing of undoubtedly the dullest stretchable hero in comics, Rubber Man, formerly James Hollis whose “powers” was actually a cruse given him by an Indian fakir.

192022

Next up the first of two stories featuring the Legend Testers, Rollo Stones and Danny Charters who worked for the Museum of Legend of Myth in the 40th Century and traveled in time to test artifacts to discover whether the legends around them were true.  People who know more than me about British artists tell me the art here was done by the series regular artist Jordi Bernet. Like Rubber Man the Legend Testers make a cameo in Albion, the 2005 limited series published by DC.

 

283032

This one off science fiction story Inferno which appears to be a Spanish origin.

404244

Lieutenant Lightning may very well be the goofiest British superhero of the 60′s, and that’s saying something.  For the record his chest insignia reads “Tin”, which is the name of the future organization that emplows him.

545658

 

6566687072

 

 

94

 

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, August 18, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Hugo Hercules

You may very well consider this week’s installment of whatever the hell this is supposed a deviation from it’s designated mission station, that being to read all the comic books I’ve always wanted to read before I died.  Not to mention the fact it’s a new all-time low in my over reliance on what I generously like to thin of as the cut and paste school of  journal (pick a subject, do some research, collect images, read other peoples posts then do a bit of cut and pasting; rewrite and you’re done).  But truthfully I am just as over fascinated with comic strips as I am comic books and that goes double for  Hugo Hercules, William H.D. Koerner’s short-lived strip.  It ran for five months, September 1902 to January 1903 in the Chicago Tribune and is thought by many to be the funny pages very first superhuman.  Albeit one who didn’t wage an never ending battle against evil so much as wander around aimlessly sans agency or visible means of support looking for cool stuff to do.  The strip itself was admittedly pretty meh; like a lot of early strips it relentlessly stuck to a repetitious single theme and rarely deviated from it.  In this case Hugo getting mixed up in stock situations that require a demonstration of super strength, punctuated by his not particularly catchy catch phrase.

Not being what you’d call a success Koerner left cartooning to become a painter.  In a lot of ways it’s still ahead of its time; as much as the trope of the superhuman has been, often brutally, deconstructed, no one to my knowledge has created so casual a ‘crimefighter’; maybe it’s time for someone to dust Hugo off and see what they could do with him..

koerner_hugohercules1902

 

hugocrossover

hugoherc020914 hugoherc021130 (1) hugohercules1hugohercules3hugoherc020907hugoherc020921 hugoherc021026  hugoherc021116hugoherc021123hugoherc021130hugoherc021221hugoherc021228hugoherc030104hugoherc030111hugoherc021005

 

hugoherc021102

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, August 11, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Henry Brewster #6

I wish I could explain how my brain works because frankly it’s inner workings are a mystery to even me.  Perhaps it’s just a symptom of my ADHD driven obsessive-compulsive nature but I tend to get “over fascinated” (which is probably the most polite thing you could call it) with certain things.  For example, Henry Brewster, a short-lived teen comic from 1966 drawn (and presumably written) by Golden Age artist Bob Powell, a.k.a. Stanley Robert Pawlowski.   Powell is know for his work on Sheena, Queen of the Jungle, Mr. Mystic and the Mars Attack cards and while those credits clearly show he was an incredibly versatile artist seeing him do teen comics is still a little strange, not to mention a bit unsettling.  These comics are are drawn in a distinctive loose, scratchy style, which would make these comics oddball enough but  Henry (no relation to Punky) Brewster is plenty peculiar in a lot of other ways.

197842 197845 803755 197843 197846 197848

First off there’s the format; a 25 cent, bimonthly comic of entirely original material (which they should have made much more of; for once a cover banner reading No Reprints wouldn’t have been out of place) just seems kind of ambitious for a neophyte publisher like Myron Frass’s M.F. Enterprises   Especially seeing as how it’s only other title was much maligned (for good reason) even shorter-lived version of Captain Marvel  – the android version who could dissect himself  by yelling “Split!” .  

Then there’s the fact Henry Brewster wasn’t yet another pressing from the well worn Archie Comics template.  The cast consisted of standard All-American boy Henry, the super strong and literally soft spoken (his dialogue was always lettered at roughly half the size of everyone else’s) Animal, professional weirdo Weenie and “the girls”, who were sadly mostly easily defined by their hair color, prematurely silver haired rich girl Melody and dark haired girl next door Debbie,  Though Melody did develop some depth over the course of the series; in #1 she coldly rejects  the hapless, love struck Weenie so often”Go away!” threatens to become her catch phrase,  but by #6 she actually appears to be going out with him (or at least willing to be seen holding his, ew, hand). Which is odd seeing as how along with being a hardcore goofball who sometimes seems like he’s stolen an middle schoolers clothes as drawn Weenie is grotesque he could easily be a background character in a Gilbert Herandez Love & Rockets story.

hb24

While the adults in Archie Comics were frequently spectacularly exasperated to the point of hair pulling by the Riverdale Gangs innocent antics grown ups in Henry Brewster instinctively get that Henry and company were basically good kids who just wanted to be helpful.  But after more or less ignoring anything specifically 1960′s (except for a story in #1 where the gang gets into a Beatles analog band called “The Baldies” which leads them, including some of the girls, to shave their heads, placing them several decades ahead of their time) this issue gets hip deep into super secret agents and supervillains.

Admittedly this was what got me over fascinated in Henry Brewster – that and it’s cover.  I mean, seriously, what the hell is that thing standing behind Henry supposed to be?  Some kind of African cat god?  An extraterrestrial bent on world domination? I had absolutely no clue and ached to know, though I knew in my heart that chances were I’d never get to read it.  But then I didn’t reckon with the internet; almost all things are possible with the internet.

henry1

Before they get to the super spies and villains the gang has a positively Scooby Dooesque encounter in a haunted house.  But here the mysterious figure isn’t trying to scare them off because he’s searching for hidden treasure or running a counterfeiting ring out of it’s basement but just some poor schlub testing amusement for a spook house.  Though instead of wearing a creepy rubber mask for some reason he decides to dress like a minor league pre-1965 Marvel villain.

hb03hb04hb05hb06hb07hb08hb09hb10

And here the gang gets involved in 60′s style super spy stuff…

hb12hb13hb14hb15hb16hb18hb19

And finally they face an actual supervillain, well, kind of a supervillain, a broad parody of a TV Batman villain anyway. One Tome B. Bukwurm.

hb22

He’s…well, I don’t properly know exactly what he’s supposed to be.  Is he a mole man (one crossed with Professor Kelp from The Nutty Professor) or just a guy dressed up like a mole man?  Albeit a mole man dressed in a Transylvanian space outfit for a showing of The Rocky Horror Show.  And that goes double for his henches, who look like mole man members of The Rat Pack?  Are they a crime gang or do they represent an incursion by a race of subterranean creatures bent on world domination?  After all that anticipation I was frankly disappointed by Bukwurm’s unnecessarily exaggerated goofiness, making me wish even harder that the creature on the cover actually appeared in the comic.  Which is only when it finally occurred to me…

henry1 (1)

Bukwurm is the creature on the cover!  As the saying goes, if it had been a snake it would have bit me.  But this raises even more questions.  Is it suppose to be one of those ‘symbolic’ covers or did Powell forget what the character was originally supposed to look like, or did he change his mind about his appearance after the cover was drawn?

hb22 hb23 hb24 hb25 hb26 hb27 hb28

hb29

And finally, here’s a couple more stories without any fantastic elements that manage to be quite a bit of fun.

hb32hb33hb34hb35hb36hb37hb38hb39

 

 

hb42 hb43 hb44 hb45 hb46 hb47 hb48 hb49

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, July 14, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Garth #4: The Quest for the Q Ray!

As previously established I’ve always been intrigued by Garth, the UK’s newspaper plainclothes lowercase superman.  So far I’ve mostly only been able to read the later more grownup Frank Bellamy version but thanks to the Atlas reprints from Australia I’ve had a chance to see the work of original artist John Allard. Although frequently compared to Superman (though I’ve always thought he owed more to a pre-Time Top Brick Bradford) Allard always sited Terry and the Pirates as being more of an influence on the strip and, boy, can you see that in  The Quest for the Q Ray.

tumblr_n6agmoK5ju1tbwokgo1_500tumblr_n675o2tcRn1tbwokgo1_500

It’s a rollicking Boys Own Adventure full of a lost cities and master criminals, supercomputers and of course, the titular Q Ray.  It’s painfully old-fashioned, in the best way possible.

G001977

 

 

G001978Garth 2 Garth 3Garth 4 Garth 5Garth 6Garth 7 Garth 8 Garth 9 Garth 10Garth 11Garth 12Garth 13Garth 14Garth 15Garth 16Garth 17Garth 18

Garth 19Garth 20 Garth 21 Garth 22    G001999cG001999dG001999eG001999e1G001999esG001999fG001999gG001999i

 

 

G001999j\G001999hG001999k

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, July 7, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Kid Cowboy #1

 

228914228918228920

I am not much one for Westerns; life in the Wild West always seemed like the worst possible combination of camping and gym, which seemed like a nightmarish hellscape to a fat kid like me.  Oh, I’m not made of stone.  Some of my favorite movies (Cat Balou, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, etc.) and TV shows (Maverick, Wild, Wild West, etc.) are westerns.  But when it comes to comics, I’m pretty much ‘meh’ on the genre.  But in years past while idly leaving through the Overstreet Price Guide I would find myself staring wistfully at the beautifully painted covers of Kid Cowboy, a Ziff-Davis series that ran for ten issues between 1950 and 1952. But it wasn’t just the covers; I have to admit I was intrigued by both the kid’s snazzy cowboy outfit and the comic’s title; Kid Cowboy is without question a strong contender for “Most On The Nose” title for a comic.  And it’s sub-title, “Boy Marvel of the Wild West!” was no slouch either.  It was one of those comics I dreamily dreamed about one day reading, never really believing I’d ever get the chance.

The Kid dresses like Gene Autrey and shoots like The Lone Ranger and has one of those ”raised by Indians” origins that were fairly common back in the day.  Being a white guy I can’t say for certain but the stories do a fairly good job of depicting Indian life, or at least go out off their way to show that Native Americans weren’t backward savages.  Along with his

and the stories do a fairly good job of depicting Indian life (being a white guy I can not say for certain, but at the very least the stories go out of their way to show Indians weren’t backward savages).  Along with his childhood chum Red Feather without benefit of either agency or visible means of support The Kid just went around helping people, the way cowboys only did in the pages of fiction.  Standard stuff, yes, but once you get past the John Buscema (!) cover of #1 you really can’t complain about the contents by Ogden Whitney and Bob Brown.

Page01_KidCowboy001

 

Page03_KidCowboy001Page04_KidCowboy001 Page05_KidCowboy001 Page06_KidCowboy001Page08_KidCowboy001 Page09_KidCowboy001 Page10_KidCowboy001 Page11_KidCowboy001Page12_KidCowboy001 Page13_KidCowboy001 Page14_KidCowboy001 Page15_KidCowboy001Page16_KidCowboy001 Page17_KidCowboy001 Page18_KidCowboy001 Page19_KidCowboy001Page21_KidCowboy001Page20_KidCowboy001Page22_KidCowboy001Page23_KidCowboy001Page25_KidCowboy001Page26_KidCowboy001

 

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Monday, June 30, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Adventures of the Dover Boys #1

We tend to think that after the publisher Archie published the character Archie their output was all teen comedy for the next fifty years when nothing could be further from the truth.  Most enlightened comic book guys have at least heard of some of their lesser known entries in other genres, like Super Duck, Cosmo the Merry Martian,  The Adventures of Young Dr. Masters, etc.   But when it comes to the obscure it’s hard to beat 1950′s Adventures of the Dover Boys.  It was a one-shot trial balloon for an adventure series in the “boy adventurer” genre and concerned the Dover twins Tim and Dan and their search for Aztec treasure with their Uncle Bill.  It borrows heavily from such boys novel series as  The Hardy Boys (the title of course being a play on The Rover Boys series) and radio serials like Jack Armstrong, All-American Boy (which was still airing in 1950).   It’s fun stuff and shows the serious style of Archie artist Harry Lucey (better known for drawing Sam Hill, Private Eye for the publisher) to good advantage.  I have no idea why Archie hesitated from launching the Dover Boy as a full series– the final panel is a  plea to readers to write in if they wanted to see more, and apparently not enough did.

DB01-30

DB01-01 DB01-02 DB01-04 DB01-05

 

DB01-06 DB01-07 DB01-08 DB01-09DB01-10 DB01-11 DB01-12 DB01-13DB01-19 DB01-20 DB01-21DB01-27 DB01-28 DB01-29DB01-30DB01-18 DB01-19 DB01-20 DB01-21

*Due disclosure compels me to reveal that in my youth with artist Scott Bieser I created a comic book series called The Rovers the title of which was also inspired by The Rover Boys.  If I ever get my crap together I may just post one of those comics here, but that’s not where the smart money would be.

258361

Steve Bennett
Steveland

Sunday, June 8, 2014

COMIC BOOK COMPULSIVE — Billy the Cat Vs. General Jumbo

As previously established though I love British comics I am not the world’s biggest fan of the output of publisher DC Thomson which tended to skew to a  audience younger than their chief rival Fleetway.  But I am not completely immune to their appeal; in the past I’ve written about my love of two adventure strips that appeared in the boys weekly The Beano, Billy the Cat and General Jumbo.  Over the years they appeared with less and less frequence as the weekly became increasingly humor centric but new stories did appear in the comics oversized annual, The Beano Book, all through the 00′s.  Thanks to a helpful scanner I’ve finally been able to read them and now so can you.

What both features have in common is pure and simple premises crazy high in wish fulfillment.  Which is amply demonstrated in this nice little General Jumbo story from 2006′s Beano Book; I would explain more, but what I mean should be instantly self-evident .

Beano2006Page102 Beano2006Page103 Beano2006Page104 Beano2006Page105 Beano2006Page106 Beano2006Page107

Then we have Billy the Cat; I’ve long been a proponent of the idea that the only people who would “really” fight crime in costumes are children, something the creators of the strip clearly believed as well.

Beano2007Page023Beano2007Page024Beano2007Page025Beano2007Page026Beano2007Page027 Beano2007Page108  Beano2007Page110Beano2007Page111Beano2007Page112

And finally, here’s a Billy the Cat/General Jumbo crossover from the 2008 Beano Book written by Kev F Sutherland and drawn by Nigel Dobbyn.  I am of the considered opinion that this is awesome sauce.

Beano2008Page028Beano2008Page029Beano2008Page030Beano2008Page031Beano2008Page032Beano2008Page092Beano2008Page093Beano2008Page094Beano2008Page095Beano2008Page096Beano2008Page129Beano2008Page130Beano2008Page131Beano2008Page132Beano2008Page133Beano2008Page134

Steve Bennett
Steveland

SUBSCRIBE