Saturday, September 21, 2019

A Paperback Cover Swipe -- Look Closely

DAvy, Fortress Atlantis

Erstwhile comics artist Gray Morrow's cover for the Perry Rhodan book Fortress Atlantis (1974) reminded me of something else, and I finally realized it was the general layout of Robert Foster's cover for Davy (1964). A closer look shows that parts of it are actually swiped -- the torsos and legs of the figures are exactly the same on the two covers.

Nor a swipe, but possibly inspired by the same source I can't pin down, here is another Perry Rhodan that made me say, "Where have I seen that before?" The Wallace Wood page is from Dynamo #1 (Aug/66).

Dynamo #1, A Touch of Eternity

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Jack Oleck Stories in Three Atlas Titles

Writer Jack Oleck came to Atlas right around the time the Comics Code was instituted, in 1955. His output there was steady but not prolific; his average on the fantasy titles wasn't much more than a story an issue.

Here are a couple of the titles that started up at the beginning of the Code era, and one that started later. Around the beginning of 1959 the writing was being turned over to pretty much Larry Lieber (with Stan Lee), leading into the monster era. Oleck had no stories in the newest titles, Strange Worlds or Tale to Astonish, and only this one in Tales of Suspense. World of Suspense ended with #8; World of Fantasy continued to #19 in 1959 with no more from Oleck.

Tales of Suspense 1

Jack Oleck scripts
in World of Fantasy

Jul/56 #2  One Night
Nov/      #4  The Only Clue
Jan/57  #5  Back to the Lost City
May/      #7  Someone in the Flames
Feb/58  #10  The Secret Men
Jun/      #12  The Next World
Oct/      #14  Lost in the City That Didn't Exist
The Mole Mystery
Dec/      #15  Mystery of the Mountain
Strange Doings in Cell 4-B

in World of Suspense

Aug/56 #3  The Man Who Couldn't Be Touched
Oct/      #4  Something Is in This House
Dec/      #5  Menace Below
Feb/57  #6  Come into My Parlor
Foster's Fear
Apr/     #7  The World's Strangest Crime
The Lost Island
Jul/      #8  Prisoner of the Ghost Ship

in Tales of Suspense

Jan/59 #1  The Day I Left My Body

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Some Mickey Klar Marks Comics Stories, from the Records

Pug & Curly, Calling All Kids 11
These are the comic book stories I could positively ID in the online listing of the Mickey Klar Marks papers in the University of Southern Mississippi's collection, having already posted her Zany Giraffe ones. The majority of her work in comics is text pieces, so USM notes which among her papers are comics scripts.

There are a good number not here, ones that are identified only by the feature (another Flip-Flap, more Pug & Curlys, and so on) and others whose titles were changed too completely to find, if they were indeed published. In the case of her Millie, Nellie, and Mitzi scripts for Timely, the relevant issues may well not be available to index yet.

On all listed here except for Little Audrey, the publisher is Parents' Magazine, so when something sold to Funny Book is published in Calling All Kids it's just been shifted among the publisher's titles.

The lines in bold are the descriptions of the scripts as given in USM's listing.


"Billy Boy," sold to "Funny Book," 20 March, 1946, 2 pp.
     "Musical Comics: Billy Boy" Calling All Kids 5, Sep-Oct/46
"Comin' Thru the Rye," sold to "Funny Book," 1946, 2 pp.
      "Musical Comics: Coming Through the Rye" Calling All Kids 7, Feb/47
"Flip Flap and the Crying Hyena," sold to "Funny Book," 1946, 4 pp.
     "Flip-Flap and the Crying Hyena" Calling All Kids 7, Feb/47
"Flip Flap Joins the Navy," sold to "Funny Book," 1946, 4 pp.
     "Flip-Flap Joins the Navy" Calling All Kids 18, Apr/48
"The Hobo Dog," sold to "True Comics," 1946, 3 pp.
     "Butch the Bum" True Comics 60, May/47
"Kid Sister," sold to "Sweet Sixteen," 1947, 4 pp.
     "Kid Sister" Sweet Sixteen 9, Sep/47
"Little Audrey and the Petticoats," sold to "St. John Pub.," 1949, 5pp.
     "Little Audrey and the Petticoats" Little Audrey 8, Jan/50
"Little Audrey -- The Big Help," sold to "St. John Pub.," 1949, 6 pp.
     "The Big Help" Little Audrey 9, Mar/50
"The Needle in the Haystack," sold to "Funny Book," 1947, 2 pp. (rebus)
     "The Needle in the Haystack" Calling All Kids 4, Jul-Aug/46
"Mystery of Croak Pond," sold to "Funny Book," 1945, 4 pp.
     "Croak Pond Mystery" Funny Book 8, Jun-Jul/45
"Pug & Curly," sold to "Calling All Kids,"
  "Crossing Stream," March 1947, 4 pp.
     "Pug and Curly" Calling All Kids 11, Aug/47
  "Sailboat," May 1947, 4 pp.
     "Pug and Curly in Trouble at Sea" Calling All Kids 12, Sep/47
"Sally's Slanguage," sold to "Polly Pigtails," 1945, 1 p.
     "Sudie's Slanguage" Polly Pigtails 7, Aug/46 (2 pp.)
"Sea Shell Maker," sold to "Funny Book," 1945, 4 pp.
     "The Sea-Shell Maker" Calling All Kids 5, Sep-Oct/46
"Twinkle: Amusement Park," sold to "Calling All Kids," 1947, 5 pp.
     "Twinkle Makes a Merry-Go-Round" Calling All Kids 12, Sep/47
"The Yankee Clipper," sold to "True Comics," 1947, 8 pp.
     "Joe Di Maggio--The Yankee Clipper" True Comics 71, May/48
Unnamed series for "Sweet Sixteen" and "Polly Pigtails"
  "Teen Age Columnist," 1947, 4 pp.
     "Kid Columnist" Polly Pigtails 25, Feb/48 (2pp.)

"Spot Sees Spots Before His Eyes," sold to "Novelty," 1945, 3 pp. has to be a Zany Giraffe story, although unidentified in the collection as such (in the published story the character is named Spots; Spot is the dog in Novelty's Speck, Spot and Sis series). I've updated my Zany post to reflect that.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Jack Mendelsohn's Issue of Alvin

I was rechecking Dell's Alvin for Don Segall's stories when I found Jack Mendelsohn's style on #5--unexpectedly, as the Who's Who does not mention that as one of his strips. Since I'd been looking through Standards' funny animal titles just before that, I soon recognized refries from Mendelsohn-scripted stories at Standard as well as Quality. Does anyone recognize the plots of the two stories for which I didn't find earlier versions?

Happy Rabbit 41, Buster Bear 5, Alvin 5

It looks like Segall returns after this one Mendelsohn issue, but other hands have taken over the writing by the end of the run of new stories in 1967.

(* = single page)

O-D/62 #1  A Trip to Chinatown * w: Don Segall
Alvin the Scientist w: Segall
Alvin's Pet w: Segall
A Day in the Country w: Segall
Let's Paint a House w: Segall
Flying Studio w: Segall
David's Birthday Present * w: Segall
Car Trouble * w: Segall
J-M/63 #2  Do-It-Yourself Disaster * w: Segall
A Day at the Farm w: Segall
Alvin and the Burglars w: Segall
Alvin in Orbit w: Segall
Team Spirit w: Segall
Alvin's Interview w: Segall
Wrong Number * w: Segall
A-J/     #3  Bubble Up * w: Segall
Among the Canned Goods w: Segall
Alvin's Paper Route w: Segall
A Day at the Zoo... w: Segall
The Motor Scooter w: Segall
E-fishin'-cy w: Segall
Chicken for Dinner * w: Segall
J-S/     #4  Spoiled Brat * w: Segall
Roughing It w: Segall
Subway Sidney w: Segall
Sweet Kids w: Segall
Culture Caper w: Segall
Tree House w: Segall
O-D/     #5  Share and Share a Bike * w: Jack Mendelsohn
    from "3 of a Kind"
      Buddy Bear in GOOFY 44 (Jul/51)
Water on the Brain w: Mendelsohn
    from "Water, Water Everywhere"
      Percy Pig in HAPPY 41 (Feb/51)
    via "Water on the Brain"
      BUSTER BEAR 5 (Aug/54)
Snow Fun w: Mendelsohn
    from 1st Prince Pinky and Pudd story
       in MARMADUKE MOUSE 35 (Feb/53)
Auto Mission w: Mendelsohn
Rink Jinx w: Mendelsohn

Little Angela in Alvin

O-D/63 #5  No Space for Rant w: Mendelsohn

I didn't find an earlier version of this particular story, the first in the backup series, but Mendelsohn wrote for Standard's Little Angel--what's the difference in a single letter?

Thursday, June 27, 2019

A Sound-Effect Clue

This is Jim Wilcox--most of whose work was on Dick Cole and Young King Cole for Novelty--on a non-comics piece of work, an ad for Grosset & Dunlap's Rick Brant Electronic Adventure series. This was run on the back of number 4, 100 Fathoms Below, and probably on others like the Hardy Boys series. Rick Brant was by "John Blaine"--Hal Goodwin with, on the first three (the ones mentioned in the ad) Peter J. Dawkins.

Rick Brant ad, Dick Cole in Blue Bolt v4 #9
The thing that led me to Wilcox--and once you compare this to his comics work, it's obviously his art--is the sound effect "Soc!" In story after story the two Cole series contain ones like "Poc," "Thoc," Thuc," and "Whac"--do you see a pattern? This tier is from an early Dick Cole, in Blue Bolt vol 4 #9 (Apr/44).

In the letter column in Blue Bolt vol 9 #1 (Aug/48) the editors say that Wilcox "has been doing some of the writing and artwork on (Dick Cole) for five years." As the story in that issue is drawn by Alden McWilliams and it still contains a "Soc," I would say the writer has continued on the feature--whether that's necessarily Wilcox is the question.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Mickey Klar Marks's Zany Giraffe

Mickey Klar Marks donated her papers to the University of Southern Mississippi, and an inventory is online. These are not records like William Woolfolk's notebook, but rather copies--I suppose carbons--of her scripts, with a notation on each as to the publisher who bought it.

For comic books Marks wrote mostly fiction text pieces, but she did write a few comics stories. The Zany Giraffe series in Novelty's, later Premium's, Frisky Fables is hers. Although the installments were published without titles, these are her working ones. The only byline on each was "art by Jim Adams."

Frisky Fables v1 #3 Zany Engineers a Rescue
The story hook in each episode is that Zany is the only one who can solve a problem for the forest creatures but since giraffes have no vocal cords, it takes some effort to get his idea across.

Zany Giraffe's strip appeared on-and-off. I believe these are all of the strip's original appearances. There are a handful of scripts in the USM collection that seem to have gone unpublished: Zany Earns a Badge; Zany Giraffe, American; A New Twist; and Zany Takes a Stand. I can't reconcile any with the Spots story. [UPDATE: It wasn't labeled as a Zany story in the collection; here's Marks's working title replacing my description. The character is named Spots in the published story itself; Spot is the dog in Novelty's Speck, Spot and Sis series.] However, the collection of papers may not not complete; there are some bylined text pieces of hers published whose typescripts are not at USM (at least under the published titles).

Zany Giraffe in Frisky Fables
written by Mickey Klar Marks

Win/46 v1 #3  Zany Engineers a Rescue
Apr/     v2 #1  Zany Solves a Mystery
July/     v2 #4  Zany Furthers Education
Sept/     v2 #6  Zany Almost Talks
Oct/     v2 #7  Zany and the Tigers
Nov/     v2 #8  Zany Starts a Trading Post
Feb/47 v2 #11  Zany Debunks a Ghost
Apr/     v3 #1  Zany Sticks His Neck Out
May/     v3 #2  The Taffy Pull
Aug/     v3 #5  Spot Sees Spots Before His Eyes
Oct/     v3 #7  Zany Giraffe Becomes Mayor
Dec/     v3 #9  Zany Helps Heat a House
Feb-Mar/49 v4 #7  Zany Stars in a New Role
Aug-Sept/     v5 #3  Zany Turns Nautical

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Who Are Roppe?

Charlton Davy Crockett 1, Gold Key Daniel Boone 6

The signature "Roppe" on the cover of Charlton's Davy Crockett #1 in 1955 is a portmanteau name like "Brangelina." In this case it's Mike Roy and Mike Peppe. The fact that they did the issue's first story (unsigned) gives more pages of art to corroborate the ID.

Roy and Peppe were doing a knock-off here of Fess Parker's Davy Crockett from "Disneyland"; a decade later they were drawing Parker as another frontiersman, as in the story tier above, from Gold Key's Daniel Boone 6 (Aug/66).

I assume this first issue is assembled out of inventory bought from one of those companies getting out of comics in the mid-Fifties, but I have no idea which. There are a Red Roan text story and Big Bow and Little Arrow humor piece from Fawcett, but Charlton mixed those into everything.

Roy and Peppe art on
Charlton's Davy Crockett

Aug/55 [cover]
Indian Attack