Saturday, November 15, 2008

Batman: The Brave and the Bold!

Finally got a chance to watch the opening episode of this tonight... and I have to admit, I'm hooked! Took me a few minutes to get accustomed to the much less grim Batman on this show, one who would actually make jokes (as well as to get accustomed to Dietrich Bader's voice coming from the Caped Crusader), but I have to say, I was able to go with it... I'll be watching the series with every new episode, just as I am with the Spectacular Spider-Man (wow, two whole cartoon series I'm watching these days).

I'm a number of eps behind on Heroes and Smallville, though.

By the 10's: The Brave and the Bold, Part 1!

The Brave and the Bold started out as an anthology-styled title, featuring epic adventures of the likes of Robin Hood and the Silent Knight, and then it morphed into a Showcase-styled title before morphing into its final phase as a Batman team-up book!

But of course, you already knew that!

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I think the size and style of the logo here in issue 10 really shows what the title's original intent was! And you know, I wouldn't mind seeing all these features reprinted in a Showcase-style volume...

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The Silent Knight and Robin Hood are still holding strong in issue 20!

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Issue 30, and we're in the "Showcase-style" era... with the most successful concept spun out of B&B (although it's obviously not the first JLA story)!

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Issue 40, and here's Cave Carson, who got a LOT of try-outs in B&B! It's an interesting concept (even if a bit derivative of other works, like Journey to the Center of the Earth and the Pellucidar stories of ERB)... I think it really needed a strong, unifying storyline to really get this going, but these days, what with the Warlord's Skartaris existing in the DCU, I don't know if anything could be done with it today!

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Issue 50, and the team-ups are starting! I don't know if DC intended to just rotate all the team-ups at this point, or if they were looking for a pair to spin off together (since neither GA or the Manhunter here had their own book at the time).

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Issue 60 cover-features the second-most successful title concept introduced here, the Teen Titans! The first "unofficial" gathering of these teens only included Robin, Kid Flash and Aqualad, but it must've done well enough to get a title (and the inclusion of Wonder Girl, who shouldn't have co-existed with them, as she was supposed to be Wonder Woman as a teen!). Like with the JLA, the appropriate archer (in this case, Speedy) wasn't included in the initial teaming!

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Issue 70, and a concept got locked in that would last for the rest of the series... teaming Batman up with someone else, mostly in stories written by Bob Haney (and apparently existing on their own unique Earth!).

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Issue 80... and for me, the Creeper doesn't work well with most artists other than Ditko... Neal Adams' style is just too realistic for it to work in my mind!

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Issue 90, and Adam Strange is the co-star this time! I think Adam teamed up with Batman at least two more times. Always was a bit of a stretch to team the two together!

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Brave and the Bold 100, the anniversary issue, and you know what? Batman really needs to learn how not to be critically injured when he's in a team-up book, because he always ends up nearly dying (witness the story in World's Finest where Gold of the Metal Men tries to kill him on the cover, or the story in this title or World's Finest - I forget which - in which the Atom goes into a comatose Batman's brain to get his body to work and track down a criminal).

The rest of the series next time!

Jon

Movie of the Week: 20 Million Miles to Earth

Enjoy (if Google still has it available) this classic Ray Harryhausen movie, and then afterwards, check out the slideshow!




Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Cool Stuff BONUS: Superman Stuff!

Well, the 3 Stooges Cool Stuff post was really, really short... but I didn't want to add Superman stuff to that, especially since I have so much of it (not as much as Batman or Spider-Man stuff, though)... so here's a bonus post!

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I remember seeing this poster advertised in the comics back in the early 70s... but this was the first time I'd seen a photo of the actual poster! I've always thought it was rather silly to have Superman giving the peace sign... not that Superman isn't for peace, by any means... but at the time, the peace sign was starting to be co-opted by the establishment (Nixon especially), and I always felt that was just weird...

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Here's a classic Marx tin toy from 1941... wind it up, and Superman stops the plane! Like some other Marx tin toys featuring Superman, I wouldn't be at all surprised if there was a Popeye version of this, too.

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How often do you see Perry White on the box art for any Superman product? That's just part of what makes this 1954 Transogram board game so interesting!

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There's the board game... apparently, the players of the game can be Clark, Lois, Jimmy or Perry -- one would think whoever gets Clark would have the advantage!

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1967 Superman thermos! Odd that the style appears to be more 1950s...

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Superman figural brush! Sold, I believe, by Avon.

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This Superman coloring book appears to be from the 1980s, based on Luthor's costume! Or is that Luthor in the Pterodactyl (or Pteranodon)'s mouth?

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This older (possibly late 60s or early 70s) Superman coloring book has probably the most un-dynamic Superman pose of any Superman coloring book ever!

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Even this 1966 (or so the seller said) coloring book cover is more dynamic! Although it appears the Superman pose is swiped from a Wayne Boring piece of art (or maybe Boring did it himself, but simplified the drawing?).

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Superman colorforms with Neal Adams box art!

And that's where we'll end it for today!

Jon

Cool Stuff: 3 Stooges

So, I don't often post 3 Stooges-related stuff here (well, except for the Give-A-Show slides, of course)... but I thought you might find these amusing!

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Three Stooges coloring book!

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Three Stooges puffy stickers! These look to be based on the "New 3 Stooges" cartoons.

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Three Stooges 8mm movie!

And here's a Stooges classic, just to pad this post out!



Jon

Slideshow: GI Joe!

Don't have a lot of GI Joe images in my files - mostly Ward's and Sears catalog stuff... but there's some fun stuff here to look at, too!


Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Cool Stuff: Original Comic Art!

OK, so the last installment of Original Comic Art was a bit sparse... but it's business as usual this time around!

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Page 5, from Thor #176 by Jack Kirby!

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Page 17 from Thor #178, by John Buscema!

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Page 12 from Thor #191, again by Buscema!

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Page 8 from Thor #195, Buscema!

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Page 9!

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Issue 196's Cover by Buscema!

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Page 12, Thor #207 by Buscema!

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Page 27 from Thor #213 by Buscema!

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Page 15 from the same issue!

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Page 28 from the same issue!

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Issue 279's cover, by Dave Cockrum!

Hmm, I promised more than Kirby and Thor, didn't I?

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Page 9 from Tomb of Terror #13, by Bob Powell!

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Tomb of Terror #9's cover, by Lee Elias!

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Page 1 from Tales of Suspense 60, by Don Heck and featuring Thor's fellow Avenger, Iron Man!

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Page 3 from Tales To Astonish #42, by Heck again!

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Tales of Suspense 58, page 1, again by Heck!

More Marvel next time!

Jon

Castle of Frankenstein #9, Part 2!

As promised, here's the interview with Boris Karloff!

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In brief... the interview starts by showing Karloff a 1933 interview with him, and he clarifies his real name is William Henry, not Charles Edward (apparently there had been some confusion about that), and that he was born in Dulwich, not Enfield. He talks about being typecast as villains, too, and that he prefers working in theatre. He also dispels the rumor that Lon Chaney introduced him to films!

Also mentioned is his first movie (His Majesty, The American... not The DUmb Girl of Portici), how he was cast as the Frankenstein Monster, that he never saw Edision's version, nor did he see tests of Lugosi as the Monster. He credits Jack Pierce for the look of the Monster, except for the putty on his lids. Karloff praises James Whale's direction, offers his suggestions as to why the scene with the little girl was cut (where the Monster throws her in the lake), that he prefers the first Frankenstein movie to the other two in which he played the monster, and that he felt the Monster should've never spoken.

Karloff also mentions that Glenn Strange (who played the Monster opposite Karloff in House of Frankenstein) wasn't as lucky as he was, that he'd not seen Hammer's Frankenstein movies, that Lugosi was a very fine actor, he enjoyed working in Italy on Black Sabbath except for the cold, but he didn't care for working on Il Monstra Dell'Isola in Italy... He dispels a few things that he'd supposedly said about modern horror films, and talks about working on Die, Monster Die, among a few other things!

Next time: Batmania!

Jon