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  #31  
Old 04-16-2018, 11:01 AM
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Keep in mind this is actually BEFORE the Legion gets their own series.

And I'm a ways off from covering it, but I'd argue the Legion of Substitute Heroes are much better characters. For real.
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  #32  
Old 05-16-2018, 09:41 AM
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Action Comics #3

Written by Jerry Siegel and drawn by Joe Shuster.

Back to classic Superman. Back in the old days, he took his title of "Champion of the Oppressed" seriously. Superman is still a person who sticks up for the little guy, but I'd say for the most part, the character is relatively apolitical. In his earlier appearances, Superman's targets were corrupt politicians, businessmen and authority figures. Technically, that hasn't stopped since Lex Luthor took on all those roles), but he doesn't really represent the kind of graft and corruption we see in the real world, even though it has recently been established that his decision to get into politics might have a real world equivalent.


But back in the day, Superman would see people being abused by people in power that represented something a little closer to real life (if seen through the wacky Golden Age comics lens). We've already see him fight domestic abuse and ending a war by strong arming world leaders and a war profiteer into changing their minds about the whole war thing. We will definitely head into traditional "hero vs. villain" stories (and they are great), but a "Superman teaches a jerk a lesson in empathy with brute force and trickery" is on display today and frankly, I get the appeal of watching someone with overwhelming power make the world a better place. So let's get to...


Last time, we saw Superman stop a war, save Lois Lane from various perils and generally be a good guy. Not much to recap. So let's get on with what my trade paperback calls "The Blakely Mine Disaster"


We start with Superman rushing to the scene of a mine disaster. But when he arrives, instead of appearing as Superman, he disguises himself as a miner who "accidentally" falls into one of the mines. Not really sure of the purpose of this ruse, as it probably gives the rescuers a bit more stress about one more guy to save, but I suppose people are still learning who Superman is and maybe he thinks he wouldn't be allowed in. Actually, that follows. I don't know if the creators where thinking that, though. Anyway, in the mine, Kent springs into action.

Poison gas is filling the mine but thankfully Superman's constitution makes him immune to it and begins saving the rescue party who have been overcome by said gas.


Then...


I'm very glad the box told me what I was looking at, because otherwise my best guess was "man being devoured by a pile of trench coats".


Superman saves Kober the miner. Later, in the hospital, Kent has a chat with him about the conditions of the mine.


Kent interviews the mine's owner, Thorton Blakely, and sees that he doesn't care about the safety conditions of the mine, blaming the miner's carelessness and stating he has no intentions to change.

That night, Kent, once again disguised as a miner, sneaks onto Blakely's property and is described as "an avenging demon", which seems much more like a Batman thing. Superman watches a party Blakely is holding and states his next move.


One thing I love about Golden Age Superman: he thinks like a Hulk with a social conscience. Sure, he wants to help people, but he's getting pissed off at these people enough to want to break shit up.

Kent is then caught by Blakely's guards and is brought before Blakely. They threaten to beat him up but first Blakely has a question.


Says Superman, with a goddamned hilariously stupid expression on his face.

Things I see in that expression:
* 13 year old boy who just saw boobs.
* Guy trying to grin and bear a situation where people know he just farted.
* Villain about to succeed, then sees a Hostess Fruit Pie one panel before the comic ends with him enjoying said fruit pie while being tied up.

I dunno, is that face as funny to you guys as it is to me? Is it just because that's an expression I never expected Superman to have?

Anyway, Blakely is about to have the man beaten and thrown out when he has an inspiration and states loudly he has an idea to make his party more fun. Then party goers REALLY build up Blakely's party throwing reputation by stating that he always have novel parties and that "Elsa Maxwell has nothing on him!" After looking up Elsa Maxwell, I continue reading.

Blakely then states that his guests are "pampered nincompoops whose sole activity in life is searching for new ways to escape boredom". Then he states


So your novel party is insulting your guests, then whooping it up in some bowels? Already, I feel this guy's partying ability was oversold, but maybe these are just the kinds of parties that happened before cocaine. Anyway, the party goers are WAY into it, so Superman leads these folks to the mine. They go down and someone is REALLY excited about sandwiches.


Again, maybe this is a thing from the late 1930's but were sandwiches the height of partying indulgences or is this guy just a huge dork? Or maybe this was originally supposed to be opium and the editor decided to change it. As for the flask guy, stop pretending you didn't bring your own monogrammed flask. You are just bringing it up so you can saw "Oh, wait, I brought one" and show people your "cool" flask.

Once the party goers get down there, they immediately start complaining, and rightfully so. Kent, meanwhile, sneaks off and finally does what he loves: causing damage. He returns and when Blakely asks where he's been, Kent has a foolproof alibi.


Beautiful. I hope he uses this all the time. "Where did you go, Clark?" "I've been in front of you the whole time." "Wow, you look a lot like Superman!" "No, I don't." "How come I've never seen you and Superman at the same time." "You have."

Frankly, I buy that there are no follow up questions since the next thing that happens is a collapse in the mine (caused by Superman's earlier meddling), trapping everyone inside. Kent then tells everyone that they only have 24 hours of air left. And they get pissed at Blakely.


Sadly, we don't get to see Blakely dropped like a bag of rotten potatoes as some other guys hold those guys back. Blakely then remembers there are safety devices in the cave to send a message to the outside world. But when he tries to use it, he finds that his poorly maintained property isn't working. Some other guy begins strangling Blakely, but then all come to the conclusion that they need to find a way out (hopefully secretly planning to strangle Blakely moments away from him emerging from the Earth).

Blakely (looking suddenly more muscular than before) tells Kent to dig but it's a no-go.


The men must dig for their lives, with Blakely facing an ironic punishment for his transgressions against human decency that he won't soon forget.


Hearing his Kent waits till everyone falls asleep and then frees them with his super strength.


I think the artist was getting tired too, as the faces of the characters are getting more and more...


That. So from then on Blakely promises that now his workers will be the best treated by any company. Kent congratulates Blakely and promises under his breath that he'll get another visit from Superman if he breaks his promise.

And that's the end! But wait, there's more!


Jimmy Olsen looks different than I remember. Anyway, that's the end of that adventure. And frankly, I enjoyed it. Part of me wonders if this comic originally didn't have Superman in it and it was just a prideful guy getting his comeuppance and then the creators, seeing Superman was a hit, inserted him into a pre-written story. But it still works. By Superman standards, the plan his not nearly as circuitous or overly cruel as he would become in the Silver Age. It's a nice, simple morality play were Superman helps someone become a better man.

I can understand why there are fewer of those stories, but they feel really welcome in this day and age. Of course, in real-life, bullying someone into empathy doesn't work so easily, but that's the joy of this kind of fantasy, where we can see one of society's villains learn their lesson by understanding their victims a bit better. Superman is still a but cruder and rougher around the edges here (both the character and the comic itself), but Superman is still established as a humanitarian who wants to make people's lives better by changing the minds of people in authority. Frankly, in these times of bigotry and systematic shittiness and graft, this is a fantasy in line with the kind of daydreams I have daily, and I wouldn't mind a few more Superman stories like this.

Next time, we'll take a look at another Superman adventure, this time a Silver Age gem wherein Superman must learn "The Secret of the Space Souvenirs".
Until next time!

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  #33  
Old 05-24-2018, 11:38 AM
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Superman #122

Written by Otto Binder and drawn by Al Plastino.


Back in the world of Silver Age Superman, where Superman and Co.'s trickery seem less socially helpful and more cruel and spiteful, with everyone bearing big plastic smiles. The stories always try to play it out as being for someone's own good and no matter how bad things get, an apology or an explanation heals all wounds. This is also an era where there was far less fighting and far more mysteries. It would be easy to blame that on the fallout of comics ending up under the HUAC, and that may be, but I also think part might be a natural evolution of the character's story and the weird, WEIRD worldview of the writers.

But with less violence, Superman comics seemed to have more "mysteries". Recently, we saw the mystery of the Fortress of Solitude. This time, the mystery is "why is Superman acting strangely." Which is kind of every other Silver Age Superman story, but in this case, even Superman can't solve the mystery.

(and no, it has nothing to do with the Super-Sergeant story on the cover. I'll get to that one at a later date).

It's a tale called...


Please note that the giant puppet master hand is metaphorical, but the Silver Age was a time where that totally could have been a thing.

Our story begins with Clark Kent enjoying a relaxing day of paperwork, as there are no trials for Superman today. Or so he THINKS! Suddenly, Kent has an inexplicable compulsions to travel to Saturn. There, he collects some unusual rocks and brings them to Earth.


Superman donates a little rock that makes music and donates it to a time capsule for the 50th Century, presumably to remind people that the people of the 20th Century had no singing rocks.

Makes sense. Also, a time capsule to the 50th century seems excessive. Why not just 100 years or so. I'm sure people would get just as much a kick out of your very large model of a car then, too.

Superman then suddenly confesses he has no memory of bringing that rock to those guys after insisting that they keep it.

I'm not the biggest fan of Al Plastino's Superman art, but no one is better at making Superman look like a big goober.

Superman explains it to Lois while the two are just walking down the street and Lois basically says "Don't be silly, you are invulnerable to that." Hey, maybe if the world's most powerful man is confessing he might be a victim of mind control, don't just dismiss the guy.

Sure enough, Superman once more has a compulsion and flies to Uranus and makes a statue resembling a 6 legged Uranian horse that once existed there (again, in no way representing the 20th century). Once again, he insists that it is put in the capsule and that he's being overcome with these sudden impulses, meaning that maybe the guys working with the capsule should say "Uh... no. This might be a Luthor plot or something."

So Superman has twice shown that he is no longer in control of his actions. So, of course, in the very next panel, Superman, who is no longer the only control of his fantastical god-powers, is hanging around an orphanage, entertaining children. But while Superman is bending a steel bar into a knot, he is suddenly forced once again to complete a task on another world, much to the kids' disappointment.


Superman let you down, kid? He came to your orphanage and bent shit. I mean, he could have done other cool things, but that's still a pretty good show. Anyway, Superman is forced collect giant snowflakes on Pluto and makes it up to the kids by letting them play with them.

Lois is interested in what Superman's next trophy is but Superman re-iterates that he has no idea. Then is collects a golden flying saucer ship from the depths of Atlantis, which is a thing, apparently (also Atlantis appears to be in ruins. Does Aquaman know about this?). Seems like the story might want to pause to note that there was an Atlantis, they had space ships and they were made of gold. Into the time capsule with the craziest thing on Earth.

Also, I feel like everything so far was stuff Superman could get more than one of. How come he's only been sharing big snowflakes. Hey, I think that modern day scientists, historians and archaeologists would all be super psyched to have access to an ancient Atlantean spaceship. Also, musical rocks, if you could keep them in a box so you can get some peace and quiet sometimes.

Superman is stumped... but Lois actually gets her due and has the mystery solved of where Superman is going next. Can you at home figure it out?


Sure enough, Lois is right and Superman arrives on Rhea and steals a tree from Saturn's moon. Lois then predicts Superman will gain trophies from Mars and Ariel. Again, Lois is right about Mars.


Man, I wonder if that's what J'Onn J'Onzz really looks like. I hope so. Or maybe that's a statue of a beloved cartoon character and that's just their Spongebob or something.

Next Superman heads to Ariel, but at the worst possible time, making him unable to stop an escaped tiger. However, on the way, Superman backhands an asteroid to land near the tiger, creating a big hole in the ground for the tiger to fall into until it can be rescued. My reaction is "Great plan, Superman" and I'm still not sure if I am being sincere or sarcastic.


Finally, Superman gathers a statue of his own head from Neptune, given to him by Neptunians (again, if first contact is such a hop, skip and a jump, humanity would LOVE to have a hand with that), and brings it to Earth. Lois reveals that she discovered the pattern with Superman's actions.


Superman sees it, but that barely answers any questions for Superman, who is still confounded. But that night...


That's a very convoluted plan. For very little pay off. So you brainwashed a guy into giving you gifts into celebrating him? That's like making your Mom complete 12 labours to give YOU a golden fleece so you can celebrate her on mother's day. Not a great gift, the future. You honored Superman by making him your brainwashed Santa and not telling him why.

The next day, Superman wakes up and decides to tell no one, feeling that if he told anyone the reason for these events, he would look conceited. But then Lois mentions that Superman was probably faking the trances to show off and calls him conceited. "I can't win." Thinks the most beloved and powerful man on Earth who also has a good job.

And that's the end. Superman mistakenly thought to be a big showboating faker by the woman he loves. Again, not a great gift, future people. But I wonder why NOW Superman is concerned with looking modest. Silver Age Superman is possibly the least modest incarnation of the character, labeling all of his powers and skills "super" (Super ventriloquism is a big deal in these old comics) and is constantly making public appearances to things celebrating himself. But hey, whatever you want for that sitcom-style ending, guys.

Next time: Wonder Woman finally hits it big in America in her first adventure as Wonder Woman.

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  #34  
Old 05-27-2018, 07:38 AM
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Somehow, this is not the most objectionable instance of friendly future aliens messing with someone close to Superman for their own (extremely mild) benefit.
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  #35  
Old 06-02-2018, 08:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus Prime View Post
Okay, so I opened to a random page in The Essential Superman Enclopedia, and found the write-up on Mars (as in the planet). And it said, among other things; the following;



Martler, incidentally, is so named because he was the Martian Hitler.

So... plainly I think one of us has to move Heaven and Earth to read this comic book.
Uhh, I think it's fair to say they didn't exactly capture Welles' distinctive features.

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  #36  
Old 06-03-2018, 02:48 AM
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What is more quintessentially Welles than alarming people with a warning from a Martian invasion?
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  #37  
Old 06-03-2018, 05:13 AM
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Well, this.



But that wouldn't come for some time...
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Old 07-04-2018, 10:46 AM
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Sensation Comics #1

Written by William Moulton Marston and Drawn by Harry G. Peter


Last time we left Wonder Woman, she had earned all of her Wonder Womanliness in a contest of Amazons and now is heading towards America in a story called "Wonder Woman Comes to America".


The first page catches us up to these facts and also introduces one of the most iconic elements of Wonder Woman's mythos, the Invisible Jet! Lucky us. The two then have their first true meeting. It's sweet.


Steve falls back to sleep and Wonder Woman, upon landing, hides the Invisible Jet in an abandoned barn (which seems like a step too many. It's already invisible) and drops off Steve at the hospital. Wonder Woman rushes out of the hospital, not because she has another heroic thing to do but, you know, to look around. Not that I blame her, but the Doctor was trying to ask who you were, Wonder Woman. You couldn't have waited a moment. Anyway, Wonder Woman is admiring a frock as people stop and stare, including old women wondering what is up with this "brazen" "hussy" and some old timey guys with their old "whatta tomato"-style comments. Just then, a crime happens!

Man, even though I think superhero comics are moving a bit further away from grim n gritty again, I don't think that no other era has sold the idea that being a superhero is a fun thing to do with your time more than the Golden Age. Wonder Woman and Superman just thought that battles against criminals and kicking their dicks in the dirt was more fun than a barrel of... stickballs? Whatever was considered fun back when everything was sepia toned.

Not so much fun for the criminals, though.


*Seeths* OK, that lady does not fuck around. I've long felt Golden Age Superman plays rough but the art didn't do much to convey the sound of crunching bone as everything is dislocated and shattered. That's how I read that body language, anyway.

The police come by to see what happened and Wonder Woman responds "I don't know. I heard someone says 'It's a hold-up.' Goodbye." Normally, I would say it might be an overreaction for a situation you don't understand, but I'll give her the benefit of the doubt that the context of people panicking was a good reason to fight.

The police insist that she stick around to answer questions but she gets sassy, saying "Maybe when I'm on the Quiz Kids program." Suggesting that despite being isolationist, Amazons still tune into NBC radio. It's the one thing from Man's World they are familiar with. But still, WW, stick around. PEOPLE WANT TO TALK TO YOU!

Maybe Wonder Woman is surprisingly introverted when it comes to one on one conversation, despite otherwise being outgoing. Lady, I can relate. Anyway, she runs off at super speed and finds herself being chased not by the police but by some mysterious dude. But even he at top speed in his car has trouble catching up with her.


Like the last time we say Wonder Woman running in a comic, her legs and dress look really weird. I mean, I know you don't want her to look indecent while running, but it looks like her dress is taped to her thighs.

Eventually, Wonder Woman stops to talk to the guy. Turns out he's an agent who wants to book her bullet deflecting act for a stage show. Thinking it'll be a fun way to kill time, Wonder Woman accepts and soon she is booked by theaters despite the fact that, hey, maybe deflecting bullets so close to the audience is a bad idea. But then again, in those days kids probably killed time by throwing rocks at each other, so I will just assume no one cares about safety. Anyway, the papers start calling her Wonder Woman and her agent is making money hand over fist but she doesn't care about that. When she learns that Steve is OK, she immediately drops her career for a man. OK, that's a bit of a misrepresentation (though, it's the early forties so... maybe not). Wonder Woman doesn't really care about money, so her agent is upset when she says that she's done.

With his meal ticket expired, the agent decides to make a really weird face and steal the money. The two plans don't seem to be related.


But Wonder Woman catches on to the crook and catches him while he makes a face like a Kate Beaton character.


Wonder Woman takes her share of the earning and leaves her manager on a telephone pole. Not like, way up on one, but one of those poles with latter rungs where he probably would be too hurt if he feel. On the way to the hospital, Wonder Woman meets a crying nurse who looks exactly like her. Turns out her fiance is in South America can't pay to send her over, so Wonder Woman gives her some money. In return, the nurse (Diana Prince) lets Wonder Woman use her identity so she can make money and shit. Now Wonder Woman gets her secret identity and even gets to be close to Steve Trevor.

Strangely, our new Diana Prince says to Trevor, who wants to return to duty, to basically just forget about it and is all like "Hey, you were really into that Wonder Woman, right? I bet she misses you. I wonder if she is single." But Trevor soon makes a discovery in the paper.


I could be wrong, but I feel like the Capitol Building isn't close enough to a building for that view to work but that's not important right now! Trevor escapes the hospital and reading the paper, Diana finds out why: an article warning of a US enemy bombing a military camp with a gas that penetrates gas masks. Wonder Woman heads to her hideout, while in a pose that says "this is how a hu-man walks!" It looks less like a walk and more like someone was talking a photo of her pretending to walk and she kind of forgot how that looks.


Steve Trevor reports for duty and is soon in a plane battling with the enemy. In a move of desperation, Steve crashes his plane into the enemy's. Even worse, his parachute is torn up and Steve is falling to his death. Wonder Woman arrives just in time in her Invisible Jet to save Steve.


Though his spine is probably crushed by falling back first at high velocity into the arm of a super strong woman, Steve is saved! But there's still a parachuting enemy to deal with, which Wonder Woman does with aplomb. That is a synonym for brutal uppercut, right?


Man super strength punch compounded with drop speed? That man's skull might be dust, now. "Why, he's been wounded." says the woman who just did that stuff I just said, so is probably responsible. Wonder Woman tries to revive him but he dies, forewarning of more attacks from "the enemy". Steve doesn't know what to do next, as he infiltrated the enemy base before (in the last issue, in flashback) but they probably moved. But Wonder Woman figured out where they are thanks to her contacting her mom to use her magic sphere to locate them. And soon enough the duo find the base and begin their attack.

It's pretty successful and Steve says "put on this gas mask" and destroys a canister of gas. Steve apparently forgot that it is supposed to penetrates gas masks, but luckily, so did the writer, so most everyone else dies. However...


First of all, I love bald guy in the gas cloud, who looks like like he's thinking "ARRGGHH! DEATH GAS!" and more "Oh, bother." Anyway, a guy pulls a self destruct switch (which, wisely, is kept quite high, out of reach of children) and self destruction occurs.

Wonder Woman escapes and finds that Steve, though alive, wasn't quite as lucky. Wonder Woman was apparently unaware of how weak men are, asking him why he didn't just "jump out of the way." Then Wonder Woman notices Steve's new injury.


Yeesh, that better be an awkward pleat, because otherwise it looks like Steve's leg is "broken" and more like a noodle of shattered bone and flesh. Also, I love how in the second panel, Diana isn't looking at Steve when talking to him. "Believe me, Diana! There is a Wonder Woman and... Diana. Diana! Look at me. This is really unsettling." Diana continues the conversation (still looking ahead and slightly up while talking to a bedridden man) and suggests he forget about Wonder Woman and date his nurse, but Steve, who clearly needs work on talking to women, says that she doesn't hold a candle to Wonder Woman. We leave Wonder Woman contemplating in amusement her romantic rivalry with herself.

And that's it. It is another fun story with a weird mixed bag of well-intentioned gender politics. Steve Trevor playing the role of damsel in distress/partner makes for a fun pairing. The art is a mix of pretty good (Harry Peter clearly loves drawing ugly baddies) and not so good (Wonder Woman action scenes look mostly good for their time, but Diana Prince just standing there looks... scary). For all of it's flaws (which we'll really get into down the line), it really is a charming series.

Next time: Dynamic tension!

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  #39  
Old 07-17-2018, 10:33 AM
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Daring Comics #18

Written and Drawn by Edvard Moritz (attributed)

Ah, this is where things get interesting. Because now I'm finally diving into a comic collection I got for my birthday: Super Weird Heroes, featuring obscure (and mostly, if not entirely, public domain characters) from the Golden and Silver Ages of comic books. These are some more oddball characters that never caught on in an era where the exact "what" of what a superhero is was still being felt out and experimented with.

And we are starting with...


I won't reveal too much about the background of the book until we are done. You might be able to piece some stuff together yourself, though, because it has a connection to one of the biggest icons in comics. Let's see if you can do it.

Also worth noting, this cover is a big misrepresentation of what happens. Yes, the main character is a guy named Jim and he is granted super strength by Atlas himself... after a fashion. But here Jim is doing science stuff. Which does NOT happen in the comic. This was back in an era where every other hero was some sort of scientist (which I am down with. It's a good message for the kids), so I guess someone thought that would be a selling point. Also, the costume is slightly off, though this version looks less... clash-y. Trust me.

The fact of the matter is the comic was released in '64 but it was originally written and drawn in the 40's (though I suspect the art here has been touched up at least a bit). Apparently, it was published by I.W. Publishing, which had a history of buying old printing plates of old materials, sometimes of materials never before published. This is one of them (Atlas would have appeared in Atlas Comics #1 in 1941).


We start with our hero (a human hero) working as a clerk or something and definitely not a scientist. A meek man who keeps staring at Linda, a woman with hair best described as lumpy. The two are walking down a sketchy street only to find Linda's little brother Andy being beat up by thugs. Linda asks them to stop and they do, but then the boss starts hitting on her. After a bit of stammering, the weak Randall tries to intervene, only to be hit so hard in the jaw that he orgasms (I'm assuming, based on his facial expression). BTW, the art here is by beloved comics artist Ross Andru, who did a lot of DC and Marvel stuff and even co-created the Punisher).


The thugs leave (but not before the boss tells one of his young charges to get Andy to join the gang)and Linda is pretty unimpressed with Randall's ineffective act of bravery. Randall is feeling sorry for himself for his lack of manliness and falls asleep, only to encounter in his dreams "Atlas, the Greek God of Strength". Actually, he's a titan and he doesn't have an "of" title, but still, his resume checks out.


For some reason, the book got VERY specific with where this farm is despite not telling us what city takes place in. Also, some guy shows up just to whisper an insult to no one in particular.



Randall's uncle is skeptical but sure enough Randall runs, does bicycle kicks, moves a log and dives into water. Sure enough, Randall gets super-swole and even the guy who was making fun of him a few panels ago is impressed. Randall's uncle is impressed, saying "just one more thing. You won't need these anymore" while taking off of his glasses. Unless Randall was doing eyeball chin-ups we didn't see earlier, I'm pretty sure he does. Now the world has to deal with a near-sighted colossus. Anyway, Jim Randall now visits a very impressed Linda and shows off his new physique and states he's going to settle things with the gangster Duke from the scene where Randall gets pleasure punched. Linda then says that Andy's fallen under Duke's sway and that he'll just get shot by people with gun if he tries to intervene. Randall quickly agrees, learning only now that one man can't make a difference (at least, not if he's bringing delts to a gun fight).

BUT HOLD ON!


Or maybe they'll just laugh and kill you with bullets. Also, the furry leopard undies don't really fit with the rest of the visual theme of your costume. I like that you want to do something different, but this is not working for you. Anyway, so "Atlas" decides to strike... fear? into the heart of the criminal underworld by reminding them of muscles. After all, criminals are a wimpy and pencil-necked lot. And in the very same page he beats up a crook who is blackmailing Linda with photos of Andy holding up a corner store. Andy sees this and is impressed, but he's not ready to give up on his criminal way of life, talking like Edward G. Robinson to prove his point.


Atlas skedaddles down town and pole vaults onto the second story in order to eavesdrop on Duke and his men. Turns out their using the kids to cause a friggin train wreck (in order to distract from a bigger crime) which is a lot more ambitious than I expected since when we were first introduce to the villain he was making a child beat up another child. Atlas then knows what he has to do.


"Oh, mercy! Help me!" is the most correct response for when a man in leopard briefs jumps onto your car and hijacks it with you in it babbling about a party he has to go to.


Meanwhile, the kids complete their decent into evil by planning to destroy a train by putting a boulder on the track and replacing all their "th" sounds with "d"s. Meanwhile, Atlas' big heroic act involves him abandoning a car with a terrified and confused man with the hopes that it'll all settle itself out. "That man's in the past now." Atlas probably thinks. "What happens to him no longer matters." Anyway, he hurls the boulder out of the way and stops the kids (who are probably teenagers due to the fact they have a truck, but I really just don't know) from escaping.


Got to say, that kid's got balls considering he just watched a man jump out of a moving car, hurl a boulder through the air and stop your truck with his bare hands. Atlas decides to take the kids with them in the hopes that showing them the defeat of Duke will result in them realizing the power of muscles over evil and maybe get them caught in the crossfire for shits and giggles. Turns out Duke is after a convoy of armored cars and Atlas' solution is to... um, get one of the cars to crash into his. With children inside. And they do, so all the occupants of Atlas' vehicle jump out.


I love Atlas' reckless disregard for human life. I don't even think he's thinking in terms of collateral damage, I think he just forgot mortality was a thing. Atlas then starts hopping from car to car, only to see the linchpin in the gang's plan: a personal plane with guns. But the world's strongest man settles their hash.


Atlas does not fuck around. But really, it's that other guys fault for flying so low. What was he thinking? Anyway, Atlas just killed a man for 100% certain this time and I guess he didn't have a lot of options but jeez, that's rough. Atlas then starts using one of the armored cars as a weapon against the crooks, then starts punching them left and right.


I love that one guy in a sideways sitting position. That guy was not only punched hard, but strangely. When the "tornado of vengeance" finally slows down, he tells the now-remorseful kids that they've learned their lesson, so they won't have to go to jail for their crimes. Boys will be boys who attempt to murder a train full of people. The kids mention that Andy was innocent of what Duke was blackmailing him for and the kids are later shown being redeemed because they are playing baseball, the most penitent of all sports. Atlas then tells Linda and the readers not to thank him but thank strength, the kind that can be achieved with training, clean living and the urge to use it for justice. This really is a comic where the message really seems to be "might makes right". Or at least that strength is almost of virtue unto itself. Oh, and here are some exercises you readers can do at home.


So have you figured out which big comic icon this is connected with yet? The muscles, the leopard print underoos, the name Atlas? If you haven't figured it out, here's the answer.


That's right! Charles Atlas! The original print of the comic actually contained a letter by Charles but when the comic was finally released decades later, the printer removed the letter and was able to distance itself from the muscleman without having to change very much. I mean, the similarities and the fact that despite some divine intervention, Jim Randall is a self-made muscle man makes SO much sense. But at the same time, despite all the pieces being there, I don't think it would have dawned on me if no one mentioned it.

As a comic, Atlas is fine. I feel like there are a few moral kinks to be worked out, not because our hero kills a guy (in his first appearance, Batman had a gun) but because of the way he endangers other people on his way to help people. I like the message of improving oneself and staying healthy, but then the morality is as simple as "PUNCH EVIL!" and "HEY KIDS! SEE ME PUNCH EVIL? BE GOOD NOW!" Still a quick bit of fun.

Next time: Flash faces his greatest mystery yet!



Until next time...

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  #40  
Old 07-19-2018, 03:03 PM
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I was about a quarter way through before I thought "this couldn't possibly be a full comic based on the Charles Atlas ads, right?"

And now I have learned that I must never second guess myself.

Charles Atlas wouldn't.
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  #41  
Old 07-19-2018, 05:31 PM
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I love how the top and bottom part don't match. Like someone ripped two action figures in half and jammed them together.
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  #42  
Old 09-11-2018, 10:24 AM
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Showcase Comics #8

Written by Robert Kanigher and Drawn by Carmine Infantino


Coming back to the Flash, here we have an adventure that... it doesn't really change much. It's an early one and the science is a little less silly then when he fought future Grant Morrison, but this is more just a solid tale that establishes that while the Flash has raw speed power, his great strength is his wit. If anything, this adventure doesn't feel too removed from a Spider-Man tale, to a certain extent. Yes, there's no soap opera/serial element and there's some very Silver Age DC stuff, but the last solution the Flash uses feels very much like a Spidey solution. So lets begin... the "Secret of the Empty Box!"


It's a solid splash page and on the surface, it would seem that even for the fastest man alive there's no escape from gravity (of course, this is before Flash has revealed all his little speed tricks that become very useful in such situations.

This chapter starts off with a foggy morning and when the fog clears, the city discovers a strange giant box in the middle of town. Which feels like a common occurrence in the Silver Age DC Universe but this is the early days of that era, so this is kind of a big deal.


Meanwhile, Barry Allen (AKA The Flash!) stops to help a little girl get a ring she dropped into a sewer drain. He can't get it by conventional means but here he reveals a new trick with his speed powers: vibrations. Specifically vibrating metal hard enough to bend it.


Technically, that metal should probably be super hot but this still makes more sense than when he "vibrates his molecules" to travel through walls. And later, the comic would use the "speed force" to explain why the Flash says to physics "I don't need to follow your rules!" Barry arrives to see the big box.


I looked up if "Shades of the Pyramids" was a thing people said and saw nothing. But also, I didn't look very hard. Because I didn't feel like it. Weird exclamation, though, amiright?

The Flash quickly suspects that this is just a big distraction and that whoever set up the box is planning to commit a crime elsewhere. He changes costumes in a photo booth in a nearby fair (a guy is excited to think he's got a photo of the Flash changing, only to find it too blurry say anything). Then he runs across the city "Billy from Family Circus" style and with a disturbing lack of organization.


Also, I think the artist just decided that the Flash can fly and is just zooming around. Also, I'm guessing it's just supposed to be visual shorthand, but it doesn't look like he's actual giving the city a thorough check for crime. You yourself stated that he "brains" behind his wants a distracting so the criminal probably isn't in plain sight, openly robbing shit.

Flash does hear an explosion and arrives in time to see someone escaped with some jewels and had JUST left via a steel door. He can't open it, but he vibrates his finger in the keyhole until it become man-sized. If you aren't turned on by that last sentence, I don't know what else I can do for you.


Sure enough, Flash catches up to the criminal outside, escaping via tightrope. Flash starts to cross the rope only to see the villain is one step ahead of him... or is he?




I don't care if the physics are somehow questionable even for the Flash, it still looked cool. And soon the Flash sends the masked mystery man to the cooler. Meanwhile, the police open the box to find another box. Now, it would be super irresponsible not to treat this box like a threat, but at the same time, when that happens, you gotta suspect someone is fucking with you, right?

Meanwhile, the Flash is confused as the villain he caught is laughing from his jail cell. But he's surprised and even more confused to see what appears to be the same villain robbing an armored truck.

"By the sands of the Sahara!" he exclaims.

Why?

Seriously, what is going on here. Kanigher co-created the character, so why does he suddenly decide to give Flash a bunch of Egypt-themed catchphrases? "This is Golden Age Hawkman, right?", I imagine Kanigher saying to himself.

Anyway, the following stuff happens.



Good work Flash. Though I feel like if the updraft is strong enough to carry you out of sight, then the Flash just saved your life, dummy.

Flash jails the guy and it turns out they are identical twins. Who are laughing. Meanwhile, Iris, after complaining about Barry being a slowpoke, tells Barry the second box has been closed and, sure enough, there's a third box. Barry goes back to being the Flash and, seeing a pattern, tries to keep his eyes out for a third crime. Flash doesn't see anything, but it occurs to him that the guy might be digging underground. A bit of a leap but it certainly makes sense that he would be trying to commit his crime unnoticed. He finds the criminal cleaning out a bank but finds he can lay a finger on the villain.


Hey, I think you intentionally didn't tell him. But Flash comes up with the brilliant idea of throwing stuff as him. Specifically money, so the metal can drain the power in his suit, but really, you throw anything at him with super speed and he'll probably go down.


Meanwhile, the third box is opened and it lead to the tunnel that the final criminal made. Which probably isn't the smartest move. I get making a distraction but this giant box gambit seems ill-considered. It pretty much assumes the length of time it takes for people to open a big box. Also, not pictured is the fact that the villain was handling just briefcase and a bag of money. So I don't know how much money this giant box cost, but you are BARELY getting reimbursed for it. This whole plan seems ill-considered. Well, maybe he's doing it for the rush? I don't know.

By the ways, these guys aren't even given names like "The Dapper Gang" or "The Fancy Triplets". I checked the DC wiki and they are created as "masked criminals" (lower case). No one bothered to have these guys show up again. And I remind you, this is in comic books, where there is so rarely a criminal that isn't recycled. Even the Penny Plunderer appeared more than once.


Yet another villain Paul F. Tompkins MUST PLAY.

Another solid issue that's fun even if the villains plan seems incredibly ill-considered. The Flash is a series that mostly came out fully formed. The character is mostly a bit generic in personality at this point but the character is not without his charm and the writers are clearly trying to find interesting ways to you super speed. A fun, if non-essential story.

Next time: Supergirl meets the Legion of Super-Heroes. And they don't tell awful lies to her for kicks!

Until next time...

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  #43  
Old 09-11-2018, 10:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Unusual View Post
Next time: Supergirl meets the Legion of Super-Heroes. And they don't tell awful lies to her for kicks!
I'll believe it when I see it
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  #44  
Old 09-20-2018, 07:58 AM
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Action Comics #267

Written by Jerry Seigel and Drawn by Jim Mooney


Don't let the cover fool you, we are actually going to be covering the b-side story in today's comic. This is the third appearance of the Legion of Super-Heroes, still not quite really for their own feature in Adventure Comics. It should also be noted, as will be obvious to any LoSH fans who read this, is that since time travel plays a big role in early Legion adventures things get a little.... wonky. Like, there are two notable appearances that had aspects completely ignored due to the fact that if we want Legion on the regular, it's going to be hard to keep track of the various timelines (a problem that would only get harder on down the line). They were decisions that seemed to make sense at the time but now have probably been retconned in some silly way (though I haven't found out how. I'm sure it involved some straining).

But we'll get to that. Now we are going to have our first meeting between the Legion and Supergirl in a story titled...


Note, this story contains seven superheroes. Eight, if you count the Supergirl robot. Our story begins with a school bus full of kids. If you think this bus full of kids are about to get into trouble, you are right. After all, a drawbridge is going up so a ship can go by. "Too bad! We'll be delayed! You kids will miss seeing Superman personally open the Superman Fair in Metropolis, celebrating Superman Week!" Says the bus driver, who probably then exclaimed "Superman!"

By the way, I don't know much about drawbridges but how slow do you think this boat will move? Even if it's 10 minutes, I feel like Superman can fit a little more time into. This is a very defeatist bus driver.

Or maybe his thinking is "Maybe we should just turn around now to get you kids home and then I can go home and have some beers. Good plan, right?"

But what this bus driver doesn't realize is that one of the students is a secret superhero.


Even at superspeed, I'm sure someone will notice the emergency door is wide open. Supergirl then pulls down the boat deeper into the water so that no one has to raise the drawbridge, saving people valuable minutes.

Supergirl then dries herself in the goofiest way possible.


Supergirl stands firm and holds her upper half completely still and shakes the fuck out of herself. Most superheroes would just do a super spin, but I like Supergirl's style. The students soon arrive at the Superman Fair where, in true Silver Age fashion, everything is very clearly labeled the way a 10 year old would detailing his or her dream house in pencil crayons ("This is the video game room and you have to take a slide to get in!" BTW, this is my dream house now). Superman himself is there, being electrified for the audiences amusement. But soon, it is time for him to go, but not before winking.


I sincerely hope that Superman remembers that's Supergirl or otherwise... ew. Anyway, Linda Lee is enjoying day at the fair when suddenly the machine that was electro blasting Superman threatens to go out of control. Supergirl is worried and is afraid she is about to give up her secret identity AND the existence of Supergirl (for the first year or so of Supergirl stories, Superman insist that Supergirl not to appear in public as a superhero, as he wants her as a secret weapon).

But before Supergirl can spring into action a mysterious boy appears, and solves the problem with electro powers, then lets Supergirl know that he knows her secret. Soon after, a lion with a weird face (at least in this first panel) gets loose.


Again, this new person reveals she knows that Linda Lee is Supergirl and walks off. To get her mind off of this, Lee decides to enjoy one of the rides.


Again, I love how everything in this era was labeled like it was a political cartoon where nothing is a pathetic metaphor. Anyway, Supergirl is enjoying the ride when suddenly the rocket breaks loose. What is going on in this fair. This is the third life threatening accident to happen in, I'm just spitballing here, 20 minutes. And if I guess wrong, I don't think any other number that isn't years is going to be a satisfactory answer. I hope Superman took his name off of this damned thing when he heard about how shoddily run it is. Otherwise, he's essentially letting himself be the Krusty the Klown of the DC Universe.

Anyway, the rocket manages to land safely, seemingly by lucky accident. In fact, it was a third teen who used magnetic powers to slow her descent and he tells her as much, once again revealing she knows who he is (man, this would be repetitive even if we didn't see the exact same story structure in the Legion's first appearance.

Supergirl is fretting about these mystery teens at home when suddenly her telescopic vision notices that a construction crew is working on a wooded area where she keeps a hollow tree with a Linda Lee robot double to protect her identity. This seems like bad planning on Linda's part but compared to the deathtrap that is the Superman Fair, it seems like an understandable oversight. Anyway, Supergirl can't stop the bulldozer without being seen and when it pushes the tree over... it's just a regular tree. Supergirl goes to investigate in full Supergirl garb (how committed are you to this "the world can't know Supergirl exists" thing? I don't blame you for not liking it but you where the one who agreed to it and were just worrying about it) to investigate. And what do you think she finds.


I like how Supergirl is describing the Legion of Super-Heroes costumes as if they were merchandise. "Each more fantastic than the last! I want to collect them all!" Also, I think that if Subway can call their employees "sandwich artists" they can at least describe their uniforms as "action costumes".

Anyway, yup, it's the Legion. They tell Supergirl that they protect her identity and who they are and Supergirl is like "Oh, yeah, Superman told me all about you."


However, the teens reveal, they aren't the original Cosmic Boy, Lightning Lad and Saturn Girl, but in fact their children. It's an odd decision and I think it is because no one intended on keeping track of running timelines and thought "Oh, it makes sense that the next generation of heroes from both eras should meet." In a few issues, things are going to get a little wonkier.

And I won't get ahead of myself. Anyway, the Legion says they were there to prevent a few disasters at the Superman Fair and also to pull a few "initiation stunts" on Supergirl, as they want her to join the Legion. Supergirl is all for it and together they travel into the future (which Supergirl can just fly to because there isn't a super power that a Kryptonian can't just develop for the Hell of it in the Silver Age).


I like to think this image could be of Supergirl slam dunking over the period of many years. We then get a montage of Supergirl seeing the Metropolis of the future and it's nearly identical to the very same scene in the first Legion appearance. There are some differences but the tour even caps off with a visit to an ice cream shop featuring "Nine Delicious Flavors from Nine Planets"! Supergirl states "This Martian ice cream tastes... er... fantastically delightful." Says Supergirl, clearly trying not to say "out of this world" (I think that's the joke they are going for, anyway, since that's the exact joke Superboy makes in the first appearance.) Anyway, Supergirl arrives just in time to meet the team's other members.



Maybe I should be taking issue with the concept of "atoms expanding" but I don't care. It's fun. What I take issue with is the power of super invisibility. How is that different than regular invisibility. It's a very good power, don't get me wrong, but why add the modifier. I'm on the fence about super disguise. I guess some disguises are clearly better than others.

The Legion reveals that they can only admit one new member a year (boy does that not last) and Supergirl needs to do something special to win the seat in the Legion Clubhouse. Supergirl comes up with a great plan that makes her look like Scooby-Doo digging for a bone.


Supergirl digs a tunnel through the Earth from... somewhere to.... somewhere else to ease traffic (that happens to be going to those possible disparate and specific places). However, the Legion, while impressed, cannot let her join... because she is over the 18 year old age limit for membership. It's the same kind of bullshit that kept me out of the ball pit at McDonald's Playland. Supergirl looks in the mirror to see a Superwoman, with bigger breasts and a worse haircut).


Supergirl realizes she was exposed to red kryptonite while under the Earth. Red Kryptonite is the stuff that allows whatever random wacky thing the writer and think of in a story when he doesn't feel like using Mr. Mxyzptlk. The Legion is regretful of Supergirl's ineligability


I like how they are already calling her Superwoman, when they first learned of this moments ago. It would be like if I was cut up, stitched together and everyone had an unspoken agreement that the prefix "Franken-" be attached to my name.

Superwoman, feeling bad that she's lost years of her life, travels back through the time stream.


Which is filled with... scrap of wallpaper? Has the Legion just been dumping trash in the time stream because nobody lives there?

Anyway, when Supergirl returns home, the effects of Red K have worn off and Linda Lee lays on her bed thinking about her next chance to join the Legion of Super-Heroes. She might not be accepted today, but she has dreams of joining the team someday...

This issue heavily retreads the first Legion appearance in the first half. The second half is... unremarkable. It doesn't seem like there's much of a lesson here. To quote Homer Simpson "It's just a bunch of stuff that happened." But it's charming enough and it briefly introduces three Legion members who are among the teams most notable members. Supergirl will definitely hang out with the Legion again but I really don't know if they'll ever explain the "kids of the original Legion" thing, because that never comes up again in the two Legion collections I have.

But enough about Supergirl. We are going old school with the Golden Age Superman!

Next time: Superman drugs an innocent man and keeps him trapped for days.

Until next time...

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  #45  
Old 09-20-2018, 08:40 AM
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Pizzarino Sbarro Pizzarino Sbarro is offline
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I love the way Supergirl dries herself. In general, I’m thrilled by superheroes doing goofy shit with their bodies. Reminds me of when Hank McCoy would just stand... upright (?) off the side of buildings, hanging by his toes, in the sixties.

Also love a cat with a man face.
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  #46  
Old 09-20-2018, 08:42 AM
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It's like they reversed Ron Perlman's Beast.
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  #47  
Old 09-28-2018, 07:57 AM
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It wouldn’t be a LoSH stories if teens weren’t being awful to one another for completely arbitrary reasons.

You know that Red-K only lasts a few hours! And she didn’t actually become decades older in the last fifteen minutes.
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  #48  
Old 09-28-2018, 08:32 PM
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Yeah, it's pretty BS all around. The only thing I can say in the Legion's defense is that while extremely impressive in the doing of it, Supergirl's tunnel doesn't seem to be nearly as useful as she seems to think it does, except those with very specific travel plans for people in one very specific place.
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  #49  
Old 09-29-2018, 11:14 AM
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Action Comics #4

Written by Jerry Seigel and Drawn by Joe Shuster


Ah, fall. The perfect time for football, or so I'm told. I'm not a sports guy but I definitely get the appeal. And the appeal of football in particular. Though sadly, people are seeing the serious long term damage of playing the sport, but I did play briefly in Junior High and enjoyed being the running back. Note that it was touch football and that it was just for a couple of phys. ed. classes. But I enjoyed it. And I can understand the rougher version of the game. I did do some roughhousing in my younger days.

But of course, ramming your body into someone at full force and slamming them into the ground can do some serious damage. And if you are more powerful than a locomotive and faster than a speeding bullet, that's probably not good either. Yep, today we get to watch Superman play football.

Superheroes playing sports feels more like a silver age deal back in the days when comics got a lot more milquetoast but also even more insane. Heck, the X-Men had annual baseball games for a while. It's fun. But heroes playing sports doesn't feel too weird for a lot of Golden Age characters, particularly the more social justice-minded ones like Superman and Wonder Woman. Superman isn't exactly a social butterfly yet, like he would be in the Silver Age but he is someone who will use his powers to have a little fun or even focus his energies on smaller crimes/social ills and just help a dude out.

What he does here is a pretty horrifying interpretation of "helping a dude out" in Superman Plays Football (AKA Superman, Gridiron Hero)

Let's begin Simpsons-style: a first act that has absolutely nothing to do with the main narrative.


Superman tracks the driver down and finds him stuck on the train tracks and apparently had time to get a green paint job on the car.


OK, so reading this you think that this is going to be a story where Superman uses his powers to crack down on drunk drivers. Superman having campaigns against entire societal ills is a thing that does come up from time to time. But instead, Supes abandons the body of a dead drunk in order to eavesdrop on the conversation of some train passengers.


OK, first of all, I like that from this angle, Superman is probably kind of peaking his head our from these guys' point of view, which is fun to think about. The space work in this scene makes me doubtful that it is the most effective hiding spot.

But what I really need to point out is that there is no rhyme and reason for Superman's actions between failing to save a man and hiding in a train. Why does he hide in that train? Why abandon the corpse. Like, maybe this is when Supes was trying to avoid face time with people who aren't criminals, but if you got to run, then maybe don't hide in the train. Just use your super jumping power to jump away.

Anyway, Superman learns that a football team coach has [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8t8iDdCl2Kw]hired goons[url] to play on his team to give himself an edge. Superman then immediately sets out to stop these men. Seems like all he needs to do is stand up and say "I heard you and I'm telling the university board if you go through with it." Or a lot of other ways to scare these guys off from committing... is it even a crime? At worst, isn't is a school scandal?

I don't know how these things work but I know that 100% that Superman's reaction goes beyond the pale of how one deals with sports cheating.

First Superman notices by a FANTASTIC coincidence that one of the players happens to look EXACTLY like him. Wow! What an incredible contrivance. Er, coincidence. Same diff. Anyway, Superman does what we would all do in this scenario: after the player, Tommy Burke, is dumped by his girlfriend for not being a football hero (in 7 years as a substitute, he hasn't played a game) he makes him feel better by dressing just like him and drugging him.


This would be a terrifying thing to happen to you even if you didn't know that he could crush your head like a grape. I imagine Superman then holding the man close and going "Sh, sh, sh... Let it go black, let it go black."

When Tommy wakes up in his room, he's shocked again to see himself and that he can't move. Superman cheerfully tells him he's been drugged and will be incapacitated for the next few days while he takes his place. Superman has just committed a clearly MUCH LARGER crime than cheating on a college game; he's kidnapped and drugged a man to win a football game. Which, I think is ALSO cheating on a football game, but in a far more terrifying fashion. I should also point out that in all likelihood, whatever punishment Superman gives the crooked coach, it won't be as bad as the one dealt to an innocent bystander.

Meanwhile, the police are probably investigating whatever happened with the corpse Superman abandoned.

Anyway, Soperman picks a locker to use and accidentally upsets a brute who claims that it is his. Things don't go well for this guy.


The Coach (who looks like Dick Tracy if he forgot his yellow coat and went with a blue one) comes in and seeing that he's knocked a fellow player out cold decides to make him a starter player for-- oh, no, wait he actually kicks him off the team. That's a surprisingly sensible character choice for an old Superman comic. Congrats, Supes, you ruined a man's life over locker assignment. Actually, this is another thing I'm not used to seeing from Superman in the Golden Age: he actually feels pretty bad about what he did to Burke by knocking Ray Martin out (he doesn't seem to care much about Ray Martin though).

Superman decides to try to redeem Burke by running out during practice and makes an amazing catch.


The Coach sends a bunch of players to get him off the field, including Ray Martin (when they face off, it also took me a while to figure out who is who because they are drawn nearly the same and the number of Superman's uniform has already changed once). Anyway, the Coach keeps sending more players after Supes, but he takes care of them with ease.


I should point out that the team might have two coaches. Because the Dick Tracy guy is introduced as coached, but there is also a guy in a uniform that says coach. I'm really confused about who is in charge around here.

The Coaches agree to have him on the field and Dick Tracy even calls the newspapers or as he says 'This is the sports editor of the "News"?' Not any particular paper. Just, the News. Maybe this is back in the day where there were few enough paper that you could name your paper "the News".

Anyway, an article is written promising an exciting game from Tommy Burke.


"Who are you? Get out of my apartment!"

Speaking of, where is Superman stashing Tommy? Is it in his room? Because Tommy might be desperately trying to fight off the drugs to warn his guest that this impostor is a fucking mad man.

Meanwhile, the corrupt coach from another team is a little worried about this "Tommy Burke" and brings in his goons to kidnap Burke.


Luckily for them, Superman has done a lot of the work for them. By the way, I love that Superman must be just... around the ceiling, and neither of these guys have bothered to look up. I mean, I'm not always looking at ceilings but a musclebound floating man in a room isn't going to escape my notice when I enter a room.

I hope.

Superman seems satisfied that their villainy won't actually extend to killing Burke and decides to leave him in their hands. Which is a little irresponsible but on the sliding scale of things that Superman does in this comic, it's not bad. Heck, with these guys, he'll have fewer bed sores. Anyway, the coach of the opposing team is shocked to see Burke free!


Superman threatens them with the truth and they look to respond with a... knife! Jeez! I feel like even in the work of football wounds, that might be hard to make look like an accident! That said, the knife never comes into play. Someone says "Give me the knife" and... Superman dodges some tackles. There's no big "This knife bent on his Achilles tendon!" moment to make that threat pay off. It's every way the opposite of Chekov's gun: it is introduced late in the story and immediately amounts to nothing despite being explicitly referenced that it is about to come into play.

Meanwhile, Tommy escapes and makes it to the game, but before he can expose the imposter...


I think your ex-girlfriend is kind of a jerk, dude. Anyway, Tommy is pretty quickly over the who "kidnapping" thing when he realizes his doppelganger has turned him into the campus hero. With the opposing team being carried out on goddamned stretchers (Superman don't care) and attended to by some sort of surly, half-grown Charlie Brown, the opposing Coach writes his resignation.


I want to know that kid's (?) story. He seems interesting.

Superman has a now happy Tommy switch back as the second half is about to start. He manages to awkwardly get the ball before being dogpiled and knocked unconscious. When he wakes up, his girlfriend embraces him and asks him to quit football for being "too brutal" (she's not wrong) and Tommy happily does. The end. Of the relationship in a few days, probably.

Now, let's exercise with Superman and learn how to lift large chairs!


Wow! Now you can seriously hurt your back! Way to go, bald child!

And that's Superman's football adventure. I like the idea that Superman would take time out to fight minor corruption, but this was a plan that was needlessly crime-filled. Remember when you threatened the coach to resign? Why not do that from the beginning? Or tell someone and use your reporting skills to get evidence? OR NOT DRUG A MAN AND LOCK HIM AWAY FOR DAYS?!?

Say what you will about the Silver Age Superman's web of lies and emotional manipulation of friends and co-workers, I'm pretty sure he hasn't done that.

Next time: It's Halloween, so we will cover the Chamber of Chills, Harvey Comics' weirder and dumber attempt to emulate EC Comics.

Until next time...

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  #50  
Old 09-29-2018, 12:34 PM
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Y’know how Sherlock Holmes turned to drugs when he didn’t have any exciting crimes to solve.

Superman had a similar problem.
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  #51  
Old 09-29-2018, 02:29 PM
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Well, he definitely turned to drugs in this outing.
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  #52  
Old 09-29-2018, 03:37 PM
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That poor weightlifting child.
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  #53  
Old 10-04-2018, 10:25 AM
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Chamber of Chills #21

Written and Drawn by... who knows? I tried to look it up and even the Harvey Comics wiki doesn't have the answer. The only thing I know is the cover is by Al Avison. If anyone can figure this out, it would be appreciated.


It's one of my favourite times of the year again: October! There's a bittersweet atmosphere in the air, the leaves change to a fiery red and, of course, I spend all month celebrating Halloween. I think I know what my costume is this year, if I'm not to lazy about it.

And so I'll try to fit in as many Halloween comics into this thread as I can. This year I'm going with Chamber of Chills, a lesser remembered horror comic from the medium later Golden/early Silver Age. Now the most beloved comics of this period is (by me at least) are the books by EC Comics. EC was a company that feels like it's primed for a movie about it's history. It started with a guy inheriting his Dad's company that produced educational, Christian and Funny Animal comics. William Gaines, who had different ideas of what to do with the medium than his dad, decided to produce horror, science fiction and crime comics with a stable of killer talent such as Johnny Craig, Basil Wolverton, Wally Wood and Harvey Kurtsman to name a few.

Top notch talent produced some wonderful comics and although a lot of the comics were variations of (or just plain ripped off) classic stories from various genres, there is an attitude to the books that was generally very fun. You usually got a surprise ending (or "snap ending" as they called them), often very cheeky, as well as a point of view. They could be heavy handed, but the stories where often fun morality plays and sometimes dealt with issues of the time. The military series they produced were particularly unique in that they specifically were anti-war, never treating as a cool adventure like all the other contemporaries were (one of my favourites is "Yellow", which was turned into a well done an surprisingly sober, if not particularly horror-themed, Tales from the Crypt episode).

Speaking of Tales from the Crypt, if just in parenthesis, the Horror books are the most remembered and it's easy to see why. It's not because they were the best books (lately, I think it's Shock Suspenstories, which have surprise endings where the karma is actually a little messier and more tragic) but they have the most personality. Three personalities, actually: The Cryptkeeper, The Vaultkeeper and the Old Witch. Though there were three EC horror books each with their own host (the Cryptkeeper hosted Crypt of Terror AKA Tales from the Crypt, the Vaultkeeper hosted Vault of Horror and the Old Witch hosted Haunt of Fear), they were essentially the same book, except they came out at different times of the year. And when I say they are the same, ALL three hosts show up in each others books.

The hosts, known as the Ghoulunatics, where great. Obvious, they are famous (especially the Cryptkeeper) for their bad puns, but they gave the books a REALLY playful tone that helped you swallow the cheeky stories inside. It makes sense since so many of the twist endings are played like jokes anyway. In addition, the Ghoulunatics where constantly trashtalking each other, not just in the comics themselves, but also in each other's letter pages (it's actually hard to say how many of the letters in those pages where from real people. I think I hear somewhere that sometimes they would just make their own to talk themselves (and certain creators) up. I'd buy that.

Much in the same way that Stan Lee and his narration and catchphrases helped ingratiate fans and make them feel a part of something bigger, the Ghoulunatics added something to that series that really made you feel a part of something bigger.

But this isn't EC Comics. Oh, no. No, today we are reading the first story of Chamber of Chills, one of the many knock-offs produced in the wake of EC's success. Unlike EC, there's no host, there's not really a twist ending and it all feels like rather than building to an ending, it is, in the words of Homer Simpson (that I often echo) a bunch of stuff that happened. So let's start off with a bunch of stuff from issue 21 of Chamber of Chills and it's first story The Old Hag of the Hills. See, not even a pun in the title.

But the art looks pretty good. I wouldn't be entirely surprised if he turned out to be someone with some name recognition, should I ever find it.


This dude might have gone uncredited for it, but that is some good "evil with in her liar" art. I find most of the art in this story pretty decent, though there are a few odd bits that I won't focus on. Usually, I'd comment, but I have nothing to say except "that looks odd to me" (also, some of said "odd art" seems like another person would enjoy it, like when for no reason the artist draws the characters lips MUCH fuller than on any other page. Anyway...)

We start with a which going on about her evil plans, as they are want to do. Meanwhile, In America, a man named Mike begins to feel a little strange.


I like panel two falling out of place to reveal a panel of crazy swirls behind him. I can't tell if panel 3 is good art or not. I like it regardless, but it sort of reminds me of weirdly animated cartoons from the 70's. Like, not the kind on the TV, but from film. Why are there so many marks on his face. Anyway, I like that it looks kind of weird.

While the witch cackles about her enchantment taking hold, the unnamed priest decides to get some help. when he arrives with a doctor, they find the apartment empty and a not that says "I must go to Ireland - The land of my ancestors. Do not follow me, Thomas." (I assume that means the priest is named Thomas but it could also be he signed his name and that he's Mike Thomas. So far this is the most compelling mystery). They catch Mike in the distance talking to a spectre only he can see. After a plane ride to Ireland where he disturbs the other passengers by not talking or eating (things I almost would have certainly not noticed as a fellow passenger on a 10 hour flight) Mike arrives to see the witch at the airport.

[CENTER]


"Wow, you still look and cackle like a weird-ass gremlin. I missed you Doreen!"

Micheal returns to the family home and gets scratched by 'Colleen's' cat named Sa... die. That's not a typo, the cat has an ellipsis in it's name. Which seems like a stretch to put "die" in the name of a cat. Even then, unless you pronounce it weird, it's not going to sound like the word "die".

The next day, the hag enacts step three of her plan, turning into a sexy lady.


Now this is where the witch's plan really relies on a lot of luck as far as I can tell. A goon starts hitting on her and getting grabby and in fighting for he accidentally ices the guy.

Also, I love the use of "oh-oh", which I can only imagine in the cadence of a child. "Oh-oh, spaghettios. There's a corpse on my floor. Whoopsie daisy, he had children and they are orphans now."


As far as I can tell, you didn't enchant either of those characters for that particular situation. And stealing from that guy and getting caught is a good start but it's a bit of a reach to assume he would just straight up murder the guy. I wonder if she had a different, more complicated plan, then that stuff happened and she was like "OK, I can work with this."

A trial follows and the witch, still in beautiful woman form, claims he used a bottle to kill his victim (a fact easily disprovable since it is very obvious that his head struck the corner of the bar, which ends up with blood on it. Nonetheless, the Witch mocks Mike outside of his jail cell about her great plan that was totally just luck in the last part. Michael proclaims his innocence about it being an accident (I'm pretty sure even so, this might fall under manslaughter, so innocence is a bit much. But I guess you'd have to talk to a legal expert about that, which I am not).

Then Mike is killed in a surprisingly stark (for this era for comics) couple panels.


In an era where every panel is filled with to the gills with dialogue, all we get here is a death yell and I like it. Anyway, the witch puts her final phase into play by enchanting Mike into becoming an undead slave.


Part of the curse is that his face will forever make a "Duh-duh" idiot face.

No death with dignity for that guy.

Eventually, Thomas the Priest arrives to look for Mike and sees his miserable fate. The witch shows up but thankfully she's also... REALLY easily defeated in three final panels that are trying their best to confuse you.



It specifically tells us which panel to go to, meaning that according to that arrow, the continuity is as follows: Witch is scared of Thomas' bible, Thomas bids Mike goodbye, Thomas looks over to see the witch burning after she apparently left the room for a minute. It's obvious how this layout is supposed to go but... who the Hell added that arrow?

Anyway, seems like Thomas didn't have to do a lot. Seems like witches are super easy to kill (see also, the Wizard of Oz).

And that's the story. The art is not bad, but there isn't a lot going on in the story. Once the witch's somewhat unwieldy plan is enacted (though I feel like in the sliding scale of evil plans in comic books, this one is concise and sensible) and the ending falls a little flat. No twist, more like "oh shit, I guess we got to wrap this up. Um, I guess his friend shows up and the witch is scared into a fireplace." "Well, it's lunchtime, so let's do that."

Still, I really wonder who the artist is. Anyone have any ideas?

Next time: Chamber of Chills continues with terror... in the OLD WEST!

Until next time...

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  #54  
Old 10-04-2018, 11:04 AM
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Is there any particular reason the witch has it out for this guy? Or is she just a jerk?
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  #55  
Old 10-04-2018, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus Prime View Post
Is there any particular reason the witch has it out for this guy? Or is she just a jerk?
There is a reason in that title page, which is basically that his family has a history of hunting and torturing witches. But they don't really dig too deeply into that more interesting plot point, it feels more like they needed a quick reason for her to just go after him.
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  #56  
Old 10-10-2018, 03:33 PM
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Chamber of Chills #21 continued

Written and Drawn by... I dunno, but he wasn't as good as the last guy.


We continue with Chamber of Chills #21 with a much shorter story. And it's the 50's, when Westerns were king, so it's got a western setting, too. Enjoy...


Yep, this one is promising us a crazy-ass buzzard monster. Our story begins with travelling hardware salesman Cal Hodgins and his family traveling the roads of America in a covered wagon. Not knowing the area, Cal asks a local where the current road leads. "To death", says the old timer, who is dramatic, but unhelpful. He claims that no one should go near the "Old Randall place" as this is the third man he's buried in 10 years.

He then begins to tell the story of old man Randall, the stingiest and richest man in town.



John seems like he's not good at murder. I mean, I get gloating. It's unwise, but it feels good in the morning. But maybe howsabout sticking around to make sure the murder goes OK and that he's not writing messages in your murder weapon.

Also, there's a beautiful simplicity to "John Did It" that I amused me and I don't know why. It is a sensible last message. I guess I just read it in the voice of a loud clod, though nothing actually suggests it. My over-active imagination is hilarious to me.

Anyway, the house was boarded up thereafter and John was never found. However, every so often someone makes the mistake of staying in the house and winds up brutally murdered. Cal's reaction is "THIS I GOT TO SEE" and heads in the direction of the murder site with his wife and young daughter as his wife keeps warning him that a storm is coming. The opening narration tries to paint his wife as "overly ambitious" but through this whole thing I feel like she's "sensible" and "fed up with her stupid husband".


I know you're scared, kid, but stop strangling Mommy!

Anyway, Cal tells his wife they are staying the night. Nothing to worry about. After all, he brought his gun.

"There isn't anything living that won't die when you shoot it."

This is not comforting. Cal went from dangerously incompetent to dangerously incompetent and believes deeply in the killing power of guns.

Also, trees. Trees don't always die when you shoot them. Also, larger bears, if you don't shoot them in the right place. Ivy. I mean, part of it dies, but not all of it. Look, it's just a terrible argument is all. Cal enters the house and hears what he believes to be the sound of bats. Suddenly!


It doesn't work. Cal is soon scratched by the thing's horrible claws and Cal pulls out a knife. He makes his move and...


Did he kill the monster?


There's a lot to unpack here. First of all, that's a crazy ass mask. Thing about the physiology of it. In the panel where he is stabbed, the knife goes into the "beast"'s breast, pretty high up. That means that John Randall wasn't wearing the bird's head like a hat (seeing where the knife wound is in the panel where the old-timer shows up again), he wore it over his head. Meaning he can squish it into kind of a tube shape, I guess.

Also, it feels like it's harder to murder people in that get up than, say, a mask and some knives. Even if you want to wear a monster costume for a psychological advantahe, maybe one where you don't have to fight without using your arms is best.

And finally, SHIT, THE OLD TIMER HAD HIS FACE RIPPED OFF! FEELS LIKE SOMEONE SHOULD COMMENT ON THAT AND GET HIM TO A HOSPITAL!

Anyway, the heroes find out that John was using a rope and pulleys to simulate flying (seems like that would be hard to control from your monster costume) and that the gun was ineffective because Cal is... a terrible shot. Serious, John says "Some went through my wings and one hit a rope". That was nearly point blank shooting. Do not let Cal near a gun again.

Anyway, as you might expect, John was Scooby-Dooing it, hiding in the house trying to find a gold and using a monster costume to scare away... no wait, he just murdered everyone.


At least John died thinking something was funny. I think? The last panel is just Cal counting his reward money and not caring where they go next. The end.

Now what I like about a lot of EC Comics is that they were often morality plays sometimes with a social message, heavy handed though they often were. But I'm not sure what the moral is here. I feel like it could be not to fall for superstition, because no one knew about the fake monster. My best guess is that it's OK to do whatever because as long as you are willing to enter a house with a gun, a knife and a willingness to use them, things will go your way financially.

Good lesson.

Next time: Chamber of Chills continues with white people writing about African tribesmen and oooooh dear.

Until next time...

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  #57  
Old 10-10-2018, 03:44 PM
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I appreciate how... adorable/pathetic that murderer looks when he’s half out of his costume.
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  #58  
Old 10-10-2018, 04:14 PM
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It seems like he came up with the monster design first and was too married to it to make any changes for practical purposes.
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  #59  
Old 10-12-2018, 01:22 PM
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Chamber of Chills #21 still

Written and Drawn by... Again, no idea.


Next we come to the issue's next longer story, which is about some Natives in the South Pacific so you know it is going to be bad. I mean, the racism isn't super grotesque but it's not great either. Basically it consists of generic tribal magic and ceremonies and stuff. Not nearly as ugly as I was dreading in rereading it, but nothing I'd want to bother defending either. It's just sort of there. That's how I feel about the story, too. I've said this often enough that I am ashamed of my own unoriginality but I will quote Homer Simpson in saying that it's "just a bunch of stuff that happened". It staggers from one episode to the next and they only kind of matter to each other, so it's a lot like watching Heroes again.

Anyway, our tale is...


Should I read into the use of the word "black" here? I mean, I don't think anything is intended by "eternal blackness" other than death but the reference to "Black secrets" gives me pause. I will say, at least the characters don't physically look like racist caricatures but I also feel like it's because most of the characters are drawn like generic white people coloured brown. Not great but a lot easier to forget about while reading, at least.

Our story begins with the birth of Mabu. An old crone, the Ancient One, pops into the family home to say "Hey, the fiends have marked that kid. Laters!"

The parents try to ignore him but sure enough Mabu starts developing some nasty habits when he gets older.


I should also point out Mabu was whipping his peers to make them build them a play house. Wow. That's some next level bullying. And he's doing it without the aid of henchkids. But by himself he managed to bully a bunch of kids into construction work.

Mabu's Dad tells him to knock it off and is concerned with his son, who confesses to simply having weird wicked urges he can't control.

Suddenly, the next panel is years later, which is a little weird because Kid Mabu from the panel before looks almost identical but the kid he bullied years before looks grown up. Also, there's no warning that it's going to be years later on the next page and it isn't part of a "time passes" picture montage, so you just have to figure it out.

Anyway, he challenges his previous bullying victim to a fight since they are both are into the same girl (said girl gets very few lines in the comic and they are all exclamations, none of which express her feelings toward either man or much beyond "Look out!" and "AAAAIIIIIEEEEEEEEEE!" But we'll get to that. The two men begin to fight while the ancient one looks on.


Keelo wins but Mabu smacks him on the back of the head with a stick when his back is turned and runs away. It's unclear if this killed him or not but considering he never shows up in the story again, I think it's safe to say he is dead. Anyhoo, Mabu finds himself shacking up with the Ancient One who tells him that the fiends have marked him and he has great evil powers and he sends a horrible plague to the town. Mabu returns to town to take it over and when someone tries to fight him, that guy gets plagued (in the form of a hand from off camera strangling him.


Or maybe some other villager just didn't like that guy, strangled him and looked at the witch and the guy who cursed the town and was like "Hey, can we keep this between us?"

He convinces the village to see him as a god in exchange for removing the curse but it turns out the fiends, for all their power, didn't care to tell Mabu about preventative medicine because he ends up getting the plague too.

He dies but the Ancient One's insistent that Mabu live (I really don't know why she's so invested in this guy. What is she getting out of this? Or is she just glad to be on the team?) Anyway, as the villagers pallbear the coffin somewhere, it starts rumbling and Mabu emerges, looking gaunt and spooky. But he has some dire news about his fate.


Desperate to not die, Mabu gets the Ancient One to tell him how to summon the Prince of Evil for advice.


Loola is that lady that they fought over before. Anyways, he throws her to some crocodiles and then the supreme evil is all like "You will be brought to death's door from a silver spear from the sky"! Mabu begins collecting and destroying all the spears and murder anyone he suspects of being his future murderer. As he begins gloating, he's struck by lightning. Though only temporarily stunned, the villagers grab Mabu and stuff him into a crypt (death's door) and put a boulder over it. And that's all she wrote or Mabu.


So... what was I supposed to take away from this. It could be as simple as "Mabu get his comeuppance for being a jerk" but being a jerk seemed like it was part of a curse. Did Mabu even have a choice? And the fact that maybe he was dealing with something is never explained except for the panel where he talks with his Dad. Every other moment in the comic he is a monster who should be shunned and it's not really clear what his deal is. I mean, if we are meant to feel no empathy for him, why even introduce the idea that he's not in full control, because that aspect of his curse is never brought up again.

But also, there are no likable characters. Usually these stories have one so that we can be excited that the villain got a harsh punishment but with the exception of Leeko, they are generic bystanders. Even Loola is just a bystander, she gets to have three lines. This very much feels like this was written by ear with no plan of what the comeuppance or message is supposed to be.

Also, I still don't get the Ancient One's deal. Maybe she was just waiting for him to get to this point to laugh at him, but even that doesn't make sense because in the panel before she's telling the villagers "He's not dead, he's just resting" and really seems invested in his well-being for some reason. Then when he's trapped forever, she's like "haw haw!" Also, If no mortal man can move that boulder, how was it put there in the first place? I think she just got bored with her eternal loyalty and was like "Whatevs! Later, sucker!"

Next time: Chamber of Chills also has a lot of supplementary material each issue so next time I'll finish #21's extra filler stuff.

Until next time...

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  #60  
Old 10-17-2018, 11:11 AM
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Chamber of Chills #21 finale

Written and Drawn by a lot of uncredited people (or one very busy uncredited people).


Now, these old books new that to fill out their books with more than just comics. The EC books also had short prose stories (usually the weakest parts of the books) and some fun letters pages (where I am sure at least half of them were written by the comic writers). Chamber of Chills is a little similar. I don't know whether or they had a letters page but they aren't reprinted here. But they do have prose, a "fun facts" section and... an alien torture section. Really. But let's start with some prose stories


I feel like I don't get this one. If you didn't read it, some gangsters kill a gambler who somehow managed to clean him out. With his dying words, the man claims his brother will avenge him. While the gangsters are hiding out, they are picked off one by one by a mysterious assailant until the top guy is forcibly hung.

I might have missed something (as I often do) but it seems like there's no cleverness here. Putting aside the lack of twist... Is the brother supernatural or not? I'm not sure I get it. Is it as simple as "and the brother killed them all?" Were the gangsters cursed. Anyway, not a great story. Let's try the next one.


I kind of like this one. It's cute. The premise is that a family needs to bring their dog in while a mad gorilla is on the loose. First the son goes out, then the father. When neither come back, the wife goes after them. She hears a sound coming from the well and thinking someone fell in, reaches in, only to feel a big hairy hand take hold.

My only complaint is of the 1950's prejudice against gorillas, which are generally pretty chill and timid. Gorillas are the best and they name their cats "Ball", which is a good cat name.


This one is just another version of "The Voice in the Night" for those who haven't heard that story. Which is understandable. It's a famous story but not as big as your Frankensteins or Draculas. Basically, it's about a fungus that turns those who touch it into nasty fungus things. Creepy and gross. This is a decent short rip-off but I've seen it many times before (and again, EC Comics stole it better).

Now lets move onto a larger story, a four pager entitled The Ghost of the Rue de Morte.

We start out with boys causing trouble and I scanned it badly so it ain't here. Anyway, these little trouble makers start throwing rocks at a neighborhood "ghost". They can't agree whether he's a ghost or an old drunk but they throw rocks anyway, because they are little assholes.


Flash forward to years later and one of the little bastards grew into a man. He walks through the street, waxing nostalgic for the good old days and decides to hang around to see the ghost again, who always comes out at 8 o'clock (which is pretty early for a ghost). While he is waiting, he ends up coming in at the wrong end of the asshole stick when he's attacked by hoodlums. But not just any hoodlums, it turns out they are his childhood friends. And when he's all like "Oh, hey, you guys." their reaction is "Shit, he recognizes us!" and murder him.


The man wakes up to get help from an old man, only to realize that it's the ghost... but he isn't the only one.


"Here's the keys to the Rue de Morte and I put a to do list on the fridge. But don't sweat it, it's a pretty easy gig. Mostly stumbling and moaning.

This was a decent one. Very simple, some ironic punishment, the pathos of the character finding his old friends to be his killers and I like the ghost is a nice dude, if foreboding, who is like "Here you are, friend." It's nice, simple and easily the best story in the book in construction and execution.

So brownie points for some of off-brand EC (I know that might not be fair, since everyone was trying the same kind of horror at the time, but still).

Moving on, we have a two page spread about African superstition facts. Some of them may be true but considering that all the different tribes are drawn the same with sticks through their noses, I don't think they cared to cite their sources.


We then move onto "Tricks to mystify your friends." After reading about them, I feel like that's enough to accomplish being mystified.


Blasphemy!


I'm not sure the joy of sharing this one. I'm also 100 % positive that some kids did this and fucked up their hands something fierce.

Oh and here are how to do the tricks.


This all seems like nonsense. The second one requires you to assume that your mark won't want those cards shuffled. Even if they don't know the code, any dummy can guess that the cards have been set up ahead of time if there isn't an illusion of randomness. I feel like the first requires you to walk awkwardly until you can pull it off and it seems like it's hard to do. Also, sticking a string to a wooden ball seems annoying. If you put tape on it, people are probably going to notice.

And yeah, the kids are super going to fuck up their hands trying to do your stupid... even trick seems generous.

There's then some nonsense about a planet with dinosaurs that had an apocalyptic event and are now "moons orbiting Mars and Jupiter". I should note, this isn't a story but is treated as fact because there weren't enough lies in the ads for x-ray specs in children's comics.

But then things get weirder... nay, -est, in the last segment which is... a bunch of imagery tortures on alien planets.


Those are clearly man-eating grasshoppers. D-.


Or, I dunno, maybe just beat him to death? Seems like a lot of work for punishment. At least Mercury was all like "just let the grasshoppers do it."


Ew. Seriously, who is this section even for? I'm all for "Hey, what if something" stuff but who wants to read about these gross tortures. There's not even any even tangentially related science fiction nonsense this this stuff any more.


At least this little section had space monsters in it's torture porn.

And that's the end of Chamber of Chills #21. Harvey Comics clearly wanted to show they were hardcore with that last one before returning to issues to Little Lotta and Spooky the Tuff Little Ghost. But EC was clearly the better product, over all. There's a bit of good in here, but it doesn't have the same sense of fun as the EC Books.

But we aren't done with horror books yet.

Next time: Into the House of Mystery!

Until next time...


Last edited by Johnny Unusual; 10-18-2018 at 11:03 AM.
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