Saturday, March 31, 2012

Monkees' Davy Jones 2012 Death. Recent Newspaper and Magazine Coverage.

This is a tough one. Here on the blog, I try to run only very dated material, so as not to step on the toes (and pocketbooks) of publishers and such, and I also do not support (or endorse the "facts" reported within) the many "rag" tabloid papers such as the GLOBE and NATIONAL ENQUIRER. I did buy some recent such issues that contained articles and information on Davy Jones of the Monkees, due to his recent untimely and unfortunate passing, and now run these recent 2012 articles here in hopes that by doing so, other interested and curious fans will not need to buy and support such sensationalistic periodicals. Also, many overseas fans do not have access to these magazines, so...Click each to enlarge.









And now, a piece from a respected (in most circles) paper, the L.A. TIMES!


Friday, March 30, 2012

CAPTAIN AMERICA! Get Every Fact! About the Man Called Cap! Marvel Comics!

Another incredible installment of "Superheroes Confidential," this one from a 1974 issue of DYNAMITE magazine! The editors dipped into the Silver Age to present a great Jack Kirby-drawn sequence from Captain America's shared (with Iron Man) comic book, TALES OF SUSPENSE! Cap's awesome origin is recalled, including his "I was a 90-pound weakling" shtick! Notice how many questions are answered (in the text piece) about Cap's then-current friends and foes, as 1974 was a most tumultuous time for the Star-Spangled Avenger, with his many partners coming and going, dealing with the death of past partner, Bucky, and his faith-testing tenure as Nomad, in the wake of the belief-shattering Watergate scandals! Read here for the DYNAMITE low-down on Cap's greatest villain, the riotous Red Skull! Click to enlarge images below!


Notice how, with only about 10 years of "Marvel continuity" to deal with,
the editors still struggle mightily to clearly detail Cap's universe and comings-
and-goings!



Thursday, March 29, 2012

WONDER WOMAN! Fabulous 1973 Nick Cardy Original Comic Art! DC Comics!

It doesn't get much better than Nick Cardy original comic art! Here we see his amazing illustration for the cover of WONDER WOMAN #205, from 1973! Say what ya want about ol' WW, but Nick drew some real eye-catching covers for her book during this period, snagging readers who would normally never give the Amazing Amazon a second look in the day! This cover scene has it all, action, danger, drama, and yes, a sexy WW strapped across a prominent phallic symbol! Click to enlarge!


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

STAR TREK! 1967 Teen Magazine Love! Kirk! Spock! Bones!

With this week marking birthday celebrations for William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy, I thought it was high time for another STAR TREK post! Didja know that the torrid teen mags of the 60s not only gave props to the Monkees, Stones, Beatles, and those musical mavens, but also to TV shows of the day like STAR TREK? Sure, the mag editors got a bit cutesy with their coverage, but some rare info and pics were bandied about all over these spreads! You got great studio pics of Cap'n Kirk, Scotty, Bones, Spock, and the rest of the galaxy-groovin' group, and little-seen candid pics, too! Click to enlarge these blips from the pages of 16 MAGAZINE and other fan pubs!






BONUS! Click below to enlarge this 1981 STAR TREK page from Marvel Comics! Drawn by Gil Kane (best know for his long stints on many superhero and horror books), this page appeared in the TREK comic when Marvel briefly had the license!




Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Rare Steve Ditko DR. STRANGE Pin-Up! Silver Age Sensation! Marvel Comics!

There's little to say about this. What can words do, but simply distract one's attention from the sheer beauty of this magnificent Dr. Strange illustration? Appearing in a 1967 reprint issue of MARVEL COLLECTOR'S ITEM CLASSICS, Stan Lee and the gang surreptitiously slipped this little Steve Ditko-drawn gem into the back pages, with nary a bit of advance fanfare or typical hokey hyperbole! Since "sturdy" Steve did a very limited amount of Marvel work (and, by 1967 was 2 years gone from the so-called "House of Ideas"), little-seen art by him was always a welcomed treat, so feast your eager eyes, frantic ones! Click to enlarge!


Monday, March 26, 2012

More Fabulous Foreign FANTASTIC FOUR Painted Covers! Marvel Mirth!

We've covered a few of these rare gems before, but here is another breath-taking blast of some terrific Spanish Marvel covers! As you can see, these are basically re-worked versions of the actual 60s printed US cover scenes (most originally created by Jack Kirby), but with new compositions and (in most cases) realistically rendered painted images! Also of interest is the slightly skewed take on the now-familiar characters, as Reed seems older in some shots than others, costume color schemes are mismatched, and the Thing never seems to look the same in any two images! Lots of fun for any Marvel-maniac! Click to enlarge!












Sunday, March 25, 2012

Super Spectacular Spider-Man 70s DAILY Strips! Kraven's Chase! '77 Marvel!

Wow! More little-seen daily SPIDER-MAN strips from 1977! After last week's exciting episode, an injured and drugged Spidey now has to flee from that angry-as-a-bull bushwhacker, Kraven the Hunter! The Webbed Wonder has to navigate the towering DAILY BUGLE building, while worrying about the safety of his friends and co-workers, knowing he must face a final show-down, one that he may not survive! The jittery tension gets ratcheted to sky-high peaks, in this week-long epic by Stan Lee and John Romita, Sr.! Click to enlarge!

In addition to enjoying the mind-snappin' art, notice how nicely Stan Lee's dialog hits the ear!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Marie Severin Mystery! INCREDIBLE HULK #102 Cover! Marvel Comics!

Another cover art head-scratcher! Below, left, you can see the image that was to be the original art to the colorful cover of INCREDIBLE HULK #102 (below, right)! But, as you can see, someone (most probably editor Stan Lee) demanded some radical changes to Marie Severin's art, modifying faces, poses, and bodies! Already an odd image (The Hulk changing back into Dr. Banner, as opposed to the dramatic opposite motif), but why the changes? Was the rejected Hulk seen as too timid, or pained, or scrawny, as opposed to powerful and eye-grabbing? You decide! Click to enlarge!
Fun Fact: This was the 2nd time Hulk received his own full-length comic, after being cancelled
at the conclusion of his first 6-issue run, 5 years earlier! In the interim, ol' Jade Jaws kept the flame alive
by making tons of appearances in other comics, and helming his own short-form strip in
TALES TO ASTONISH!



BONUS! Below is the yet another take on this power-packed cover image, by Ron Wilson and Joe Sinnott, for the 1976 reprint of this issue in the MARVEL SUPERHEROES title!



Thursday, March 22, 2012

The MONKEES! "Tell The World We're Synthetic!" 1967 POST Article and Rare Pics!

Here it is! This is the SATURDAY EVENING POST article that rocked Monkeedom to its foundation in 1967! Though riddled with inaccuracies, this article purported to blow the whistle on the whole "Monkees don't play their own instruments" controversy! Although not kept a secret (since the group then was only a fictional TV band), this article stated the guys barely even sang on the tracks to their first two super-selling LPs! Not only did they sing (and contribute various instrumentation) on those early discs, the band did, of course, fight for (and win) the right to take charge of their musical destiny, producing some very forward-thinking power pop that holds up today! This piece is also notable for some great on-set canid pics, not only of the Monkees, but producers Bob Rafelson and the late Bert Schneider, as well as Jackie Cooper (tied into the comic book world as SUPERMAN'S "Perry White" in the 70s/80s movie franchise)! The article even discusses the early years of band merchandising, branding, and audio voice manipulation, practices in full force today! Click to enlarge!






Wednesday, March 21, 2012

1973 Nick Cardy BATMAN Original Cover Art! Spot the Differences! DC Comics!

I was simply gonna run this original comic art, the cover to a fabulous 1973 BATMAN "Super Spectacular" volume, only because it was so darned sweet! Ya can't go wrong with that wonderful Nick Cardy art, and super-rare Golden Age reprints, right? But, take a close squint at the cover art (below, left) and the printed cover (below, right)! See anything different? Note the head on the main Batman figure, as well as his trunks in the panel at the lower right of the cover! Why the changes? Was his head deemed too wide or fat on the original? Were his stylish trunks attracting too much attention? Was this the cover as seen only in ads for this sensational special issue? Any ideas? Click to enlarge, superhero sleuths!



BONUS! From my own colossal collection comes this scan, below, of the printed cover! Batman's head and trunks appear unaltered from the above original art! What gives? Were two covers printed? Did this comic get two print runs?


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Marvel Mandate on the MANDARIN! Iron Man's Greatest Foe! Silver Age Greatness!

More information for eager comics fans of the 70s, from the hallowed pages of dandy DYNAMITE magazine! Here, the generous editors give us the low-down on that low-down Iron Man foe, that martial arts madman, the Mandarin! Born of the Cold War, this commie-lovin' baddie gave ol' Shellhead a real run for his money, and is even rattling IM's armor today! He even was seen in the 2008 IRON MAN movie! Do you know where? Just look for the many rings! Click to enlarge this pandemonium-producing spread, spotlighting a 1964 IRON MAN passage drawn by Don Heck!



Monday, March 19, 2012

INCREDIBLE HULK Tidbits! Bill BIxby! Nick Hammond! Lynda Carter?! Marvel Comics!

Back with more fabulous and rare images and tidbits from the mega-successfulI INCREDIBLE HULK CBS-TV show! Click below to enlarge this great 1979 feature that covers not only Marvel Comics' HULK show, but his sibling SPIDER-MAN TV series (starring Nick Hammond as the worried Web-Slinger)! You can read about a certain super-heroine from Marvel's competitor also, some gal called WONDER WOMAN! I had this and so many other similar publications of the day, as they all struggled to spotlight superheores an sci-fi themes, in those days after STAR WARS set the world ablaze!





Below: A powerful pic of the TV Hulk himself, Lou Ferrigno, with the man who portrayed the Jade Giant for visitors to the late-70s Universal Studios tours! Do any fans out there know this actor's name, or attend the tour back then?




Below: Some odd and rare pics of Lou Ferringo, as the ever-Incredible Hulk, filming a sequence for the early 80s FALL GUY series!



Below: A fairly recent article on actor Brandon Cruz, child star of Bill Bixby's early-70s series, COURTSHIP OF EDDIE'S FATHER! Brandon later filmed a guest spot on a first season HULK episode, and was a dear friend to the talented Bixby till the very end!


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Super Sunday SPIDER-MAN Seventies Strip! Kraven's Final Revenge? Marvel!

Last time, you saw the entire previous week's worth of SPIDER-MAN strips, as the evil Kraven activated his master plan in an effort to eliminate an on-the-ropes Wall-Crawler! Now, the struggling Spidey seems to be doomed, as the jungle-bred madman moves in for the final kill! More 1977 Marvel majesty by Stan Lee and John Romita, Sr.!   Click to enlarge!

What made the Marvel superheroes different from other characters was the feeling that personal
issues were always (sometimes selfishly) important! Concerns such as family and responsibility, as opposed to those of the general society or world as a whole, were always at the forefront!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

AVENGERS ASSEMBLE!? 1976 Albert Bigley Comic Art! Marvel Comics?!

Yowza! I found just the thing to wet your appetite for this summer's big-screen AVENGERS movie! Here is my swingin' 1976 illustration of the mighty assemblers in mind-bursting battle action! The gang's all here! Not only Captain America, but Iron Man, and those sensational and sexy (?) super-heroines, Hellcat and (a very large) Scarlet Witch! What do ya want from an 11-year-old me?! Sheesh! At least I was quite forward-thinking, adding the high-flying Falcon a full three years before he'd be officially added to the team! Click to enlarge!


Friday, March 16, 2012

MORE Aurora Origins! Model Kit Madness! Batman! Hulk! Spider-Man!

In this previous pulse-pounding post, I discussed the possible origins of some of the well-remembered poses for the far-flung Aurora superhero model kits! Well, take a gander below! The Batman and Robin kits had to have been based on this mid-60s "New Look" image of the daring Dynamic Duo! Both kits look as if they were originally conceived to have been sculpted in sporty swinging poses, with dioramas added only later as an after-thought! What do you think? Click images to enlarge, and remember to keep your glue capped!


BONUS! Below (left) is a great re-imagining of the 1964 Aurora SUPERMAN model kit box art (right), by artist Randy Garett! Randy wanted to create box art that utilized the image of actor George Reeves, from the ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN 50s show!

Below: Artist Jerry Ordway has a turn, in this tribute to the kit, as seen on this 1990s DC comic book cover!



Below: A fabulous and colorful ad from Polar Lights, touting their re-issuing of the magnificent Marvel Aurora kits, in a new, larger scale! The kits are still available for older and newer fans to tackle!