Sunday, November 29, 2009

Bill Ward/McCartney 1963

Bob Sproul, publisher of CRACKED Mazagine, also published COLLEGE LAUGHS; he used some of the same artists in both publications. "Powers," who signed the cover, is John Powers Severin, the main CRACKED artist for decades. Bill Ward, who also signed his name McCartney, was well represented with his pretty girls and sexy humor.

Dave Miller has once again gone above and beyond the call of friendship by supplying scans from this 1963 issue. We appreciate you, Dave!

COLLEGE LAUGHS Copyright © 1963 Major Magazines, Inc.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Ed Wheelan's Minute Movies: "Serpents of the City" Part 1

Recently Pappy showed an Ed Wheelan Comics McCormick strip from EC Comics. Wheelan was an old-time cartoonist, born in 1888, whose work first appeared in Hearst newspapers around the time of World War I . He then moved to the George Mathew Adams Syndicate to produce what was probably his most successful comic strip, MINUTE MOVIES, from 1921 until 1935.

This is a 1933 example of MINUTE MOVIES. The comic strips were divided into two tiers, and Wheelan presented them as silent movies, with a regular cast who rotated in and out of the stories as different characters.

Edgar Wheelan died in 1966.

"Serpents of the City" is scanned from its printing in NOSTALGIA COMICS #2 and #3.

NOSTALGIA COMICS Copyright © 1972 Nostalgia Press

"Serpents of the City" Part 2

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Alex Toth's Land Unknown

THE LAND UNKNOWN, a comic book adaptation of a science fiction lost world movie of the '50s, is another of my favorite silver age comic books. The movie may be "B", but the comic book is "A", based on artwork by Alex Toth.

Dell's Movie Comics were produced well ahead of a movie's release, so writers usually worked from an early version of the script. I don't remember the movie so I can't tell you any differences in the story. The most noticeable is that Toth didn't attempt to draw the actors' faces.

The 15¢ price on the cover was a marketing test by Dell to see if they could raise the price of their comics. They would put the higher price on copies sold in certain areas of the country, then compare sales figures. There was much resistance from comic buyers to a price hike. Western Publishing, which produced the comics for Dell, didn't officially raise their price to 15¢ until other publishers raised their prices over a decade later.

THE LAND UNKNOWN, Dell Four Color #845. Copyright © 1957 Universal Pictures Corporation, Inc.