Friday, December 30, 2011

Twilight Zone 1-10 writers

identical Rod Serling heads from TZ 3 stories, 'The Last Battle' and 'The Queen Is Dead'

This list indexes the writers of the first ten Gold Key issues of The Twilight Zone. There were four earlier issues, which I've yet to see, published by Dell in 1961-62; Gold Key restarted the numbering with #1.

Those cited by the Who's Who as writing mystery stories in the early Sixties for Western (which would include the Dell TZs, then Boris Karloff as well as TZ, at Gold Key) include Leo Cheney, Royal Cole, and Marshall McClintock. There are no specific stories they're known to have done, so I can't match up the unknown writers' styles with particular authors.

Technically one story in each issue is not a Twilight Zone; there's no logo, no appearance by Rod Serling, and the copyright owner is Western rather than the TV production company, Cayuga.

A stat of Rod Serling's head was used in any number of stories beginning with the third issue. Above, on the left, is the head's first appearance, in a Mike Sekowsky story—and I don't think the head itself is by Sekowsky—then, on the right, it's definitely a stat in an Alex Toth story. Below are two examples from Frank Thorne stories; in earlier ones, he got to draw Serling.

identical Rod Serling heads from TZ 10 stories, 'Lost Acre' and 'Demon Light'

The art attributions are on the Grand Comics Database.

The Twilight Zone Writers

Nov/62#1 Perilous Journey"TZ 1"
Do Not Touch Exhibit"TZ 1"
Voyage to NowhereLeo Dorfman
Feb/63#2 The Lost Colonie"TZ 2"
Journey into JeopardyDorfman
The Ray of PhobosDorfman
May/63#3 The Last Battle"TZ 2"
Birds of a Feather"TZ 2"
The Queen Is Dead—Long Live the Queen"TZ 2"
Aug/63#4 The Secret of the Key"TZ 2"
Experiment in Purple"TZ 2"
The Captive"TZ 2"
The Ordeal of Bluebird 3"TZ 2"
Nov/63#5 The Legacy of Hans BurkelDorfman
Poor Little SylvesterDorfman
The Shadow of FateDorfman
The Fortune HuntersDorfman
Feb/64#6 Captives of the MirageDick Wood
The Night People of LondonWood
The Last Sixty SecondsWood
May/64#7 The Shield of MedusaWood
The Menace from Out ThereWood
The Man Who Haunted HimselfWood
Aug/64#8 Hamilton's CreatureWood
The Night Striker of ParisWood
Iron Man No. 1"TZ 2"
Nov/64#9 The Street Where Evil DweltWood
The Doom Days    ?
Creatures on CanvasWood
Feb/65#10 The Bewitching WindowWood
Lost AcreWood
The Patient Workers *Wood
The Demon LightWood
The Mystic BookWood
The Midas Wheel *Wood
(* single-page stories)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Woolfolk Records Update 3

The William Woolfolk script records were scanned some time ago by Marc Svensson, through the good graces of Donna Woolfolk. I've been working off the scans that Marc dug out on CD storage after some looking, and now we come to a break in that currently accessible data. My next Woolfolk post will jump ahead into his last year's worth of work in comic books, in mid-1953. I certainly wouldn't have been able to start blogging steadily this year without standing on Marc's shoulders, so to speak!

On the updates: I misread Woolfolk's Captain Marvel notation as "lonely witch" and couldn't quite fit that description to any story; darkmark pointed out that "lovely witch" would fit "World's Wickedest Witch."

darkmark supplied the publication info for the Captain Midnight stories, and he caught my mixup on the Mary Marvel story almost as soon as I posted (I had misread my own info as Marvel Family 19 when I rewrote it into my blog format). The untitled Manhunter story in Woolfolk's style that I since found in Police 52 fits on the July 1945 page; the first of the two Manhunters next written in August (Houdini under water) was published in issue 53.

In my intro to the May 1947 records I said: "Tales of Terror! by Fred von Bernewitz and Grant Geissman says of Moon Girl that 'in a 1955 interview, Bill Gaines recalled that Dorothy Rubichek wrote the earliest stories. Rubichek, incidentally, was the wife of long-time Gaines friend William Woolfolk.' (The correct spelling is Roubichek.)" Update: on the facing page in Tales of Terror! I find: "(Harry Harrison) tells how he actually wrote scripts that his wife signed and submitted to EC." So I suppose Gaines was remembering correctly who submitted the Woolfolk stories, but I have no idea why at least two writers felt they needed fronts.

July 1945
10 pg Manhunter[untitled] Police 52, Mar/46

August 1945
10 Manhunterthe falcons of death
"The Vengeance" Police 56, July/46
September 1945
Captain Marvelthe lovely witch
"CM and the World's Wickedest Witch" CM Advs 59, Apr/26/46
January 1946
Captain Midnightstratosphere treasure hunt
"The Stratosphere Treasure Hunt" Capt Mid 45, Oct/46
March 1946
Captain Midnightsky tournament
"The Sky Tournament" Capt Mid 53, July/47
March 1947
Mary Marvelenchanted forest
6 "MM in the Enchanted Forest" MM 19, Dec/47

Monday, December 26, 2011

Tower's Peanut Butter Story Writer

In The Comic Reader 198 (Jan/82), Mike Tiefenbacher says that Ralph Reese "definitely wrote the famous 'peanut butter' Dynamo story ('Bad Day for Leonard Brown')." In Comic Interview 133 (1994), Dan Adkins mentions to Lou Mougin a "story about peanut butter or something" as being written by Reese. The Tower Comics checklist in Comic Book Artist 14 (Jan/01) credits the "Bad Day for Leonard Brown" script in Dynamo 3 to Reese.

The only problem is that the story in which Dynamo is buried in peanut butter (at a PB factory) is "Once upon a Time..."—the Weed story in Dynamo 4, drawn by Steve Ditko and Wally Wood (Chic Stone drew "Bad Day").

Dynamo 4 'Once upon a Time...'panels: Dynamo 'trapped by a ton of molten peanut butter'

I had to work pretty much from scratch at identifying Ralph Reese's writing style, since I didn't know which of those two to start from; but then finding a couple of Marvel stories crediting him as writer/artist helped. (With "fooey," "h'lo," and "woops" among the expressions tying together a group of Tower stories, I found "woops" in one of Reese's Marvel stories.) The peanut butter/bad day problem solved itself when I saw that he wrote both stories, among more than twenty at Tower.

Stories in Dynamo Written by Ralph Reese

Aug/66#1 A Day in the Life of DynamoDynamo
Oct/66#2 The Priceless CounterfeitDynamo
Mar/67#3 Bad Day for Leonard BrownDynamo
The Feats of SamsonDynamo
Honeymoon or High Noon?Dynamo
Weed vs. THUNDERWeed
June/67#4 The Secret Word Is...Dynamo
Dynamo's Day OffDynamo
The Weakest Man in the WorldDynamo
Once upon a Time...Weed

Stories in THUNDER Agents Written by Reese

Oct/66#9 Corporal Dynamo, U.S.A.Dynamo
Nov/66#10 Operation ArmageddonDynamo
June/67#13 The Black HelmetTHUNDER Agents
Sept/67#15 Hail to the ChiefDynamo
Dig We MustWeed
Oct/67#16 Dream of DoomDynamo
The End of the THUNDER Agents?THUNDER Agents
Dec/67#17 Return of the HyenaDynamo
Weed Out WestWeed
Put Them All Together, They Spell SPIDERDynamo
Sept/68#18 Dynamo and the Amazing Mr. MekDynamo
Secret of the Abominable SnowmenDynamo
Nov/68#19 Half an Hour of PowerDynamo
All-Girl GangDynamo

These are not necessarily every story Ralph Reese wrote for Tower; I'm still looking at a few in 1966 that I haven't yet convinced myself on. ("Corporal Dynamo" and "Operation Armageddon" just squeaked onto this list; "The Hyena" in Dynamo 2 didn't.)

Reese uses the names of Wood assistants Battersby, Brand, Coleman, Pearson, and Reese for some walk-on characters.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/09

Captain America 66 cover

Quality, Fawcett, and Timely bought William Woolfolk's scripts this month.

I can't find the Tom Mix Destry story.

UPDATE: I was misreading Woolfolk's Captain Marvel Junior notation as "plane" instead of "phone"; that the editors changed the fourth dimension to the fifth didn't make it any easier tracking down the story by search engine.

September 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

11 pg Doll Manthe Huntress
"The Huntress" DM 17, July/48
Tom MixDestry rides again
12 Captain Americagets a new assistant
"Golden Girl" CA 66, Apr/48
Ibisversus the Minotaur
"The Minotaur" Whiz 97, May/48
Captain Marvelsurrealist imp
"The Surrealist Imp" CM Advs 84, May/48
Captain Marvelman versus river
"The Feud with the River" CM Advs 84, May/48
Tom Mixhorse feud
"Tony's Feud" Wow 66, May/48
Sub-MarinerShanghai, port of mystery
"The Pirates of the China Sea" Human Torch 29, Win/48
12 Doll ManSilver Dollar's rise & fall
"Silver Dollar" DM 17, July/48
Marvel FamilySivana's newspaper
"The Sivana Family Newspaper" MF 23, May/45
Mary Marvelthe crime wave
"MM and the Crime Wave" MM 25, June/48
Captain Marvel Junior4th dimensional phone
"The 5th Dimensional Phone" CMJ 77, Sept/49
14 Doll ManDoll Man's biographer
"The Derby" DM 17, July/48
12 Human Torchfiesta of murder
"Carnival of Murder" Marvel Mystery 86, June/48

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

An Unknown THUNDER Artist

The art on "Half an Hour of Power," a Dynamo story in THUNDER Agents 19 (Nov/68), has been attributed to Dan Adkins and Wally Wood in The Comic Reader 197's Tower Comics checklist, Dec/81 (and subsequently in the Grand Comics Database); and to Wally Wood and Ralph Reese on pencils, Wood on inks, in Comic Book Artist 14's checklist, July/01. Dan Adkins verified and corrected the CBA art credits, so he evidently didn't remember working on this story and didn't see his style in it.

However, I see someone on pencils who was a Wally Wood assistant but hasn't been connected before this with the THUNDER Agents.

THUNDER Agents 19 tiers

These pencils look like Wayne Howard's. His style shows best in these tiers from the bottom and top of successive pages, but I think I can make it out on most pages, buried under the Wood inks. Granted the division of labor at Wood's studio, I still would credit Howard as the major contributor to the pencils. Wood is known to have provided thumbnail layouts for many stories at his studio, but I don't see much on this one that I'd call his actual pencil work.

There's another story whose art the CBA checklist credits to Wood & Reese/Wood—"Return of the Hyena," a Dynamo story in TA 17 (Dec/67)—and on that one I don't see any work by Howard.

If Ralph Reese didn't pencil "Half an Hour of Power," he definitely contributed to the story; he scripted it. I'll post a list of his THUNDER scripts shortly.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/08

Namora 1 cover
Fawcett, EC, Quality, and Timely bought William Woolfolk's scripts this month.

The Jester sleepatorium story reuses the same general idea as the Black Hood story written in June 1945, although this story's plot is simpler. Both strips, as it happens, involve a superhero with a secret identity as a patrolman and with a superior named McGinty.

I couldn't find the Captain America meets the Dummy story. Not only was the CA death doll story cut by two pages, but in it Bucky had to be rewritten into Golden Girl (who first appears in her costumed identity in a story to be written in September 1947 by Woolfolk).

UPDATE: I'd forgotten that Moon Girl had one story in International Comics; it seems the only place this one would fit.

August 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

9 pg Captain Marvel's largest dog
"The World's Largest Dog" Master 89, Mar/48
Moon Girlman lives beyond death
"Beauty and the Beast" International 6, Spr/48
11 Doll Mansuicide club
"The Suicide Club" Feature 122, May/48
Captain Marvelloses weight
"The Streamlining of CM" CM Advs 82, Mar/48
10 Sub-Marinerisland beneath the sea
"The Kingdom beneath the Sea" Namora 1, Aug/48
12 Captain Americadollmaker & his dolls
10 "The Enigma of the Death Doll" CA 68, Sept/48
11 Doll Mana million dollar corpse
"A Million Dollar Corpse" Feature 123, June/48
12 Captain Americameets the Dummy
12 Plastic Manloses his power
"Spadehead" PM 12, July/48
Captain Marveland the bobby-soxer
"CM Cuts a Rug" CM Advs 83, Apr/48
IbisCharon's death boat
"The Land of Death" Whiz 96, Apr/48
Captain Marvelworld of tomorrow
"The World of Tomorrow" CM Advs 83, Apr/48
Jestersleepatorium crimes
[untitled] Smash 78, Aug/48

Friday, December 16, 2011

Early Gill at Timely? Or Too Early?

"Vanishing Oil Tank Cars" is the Human Torch story in All Select Comics 3, Spring/1944.

All Select 3 caption: 'And so Torch and Toro leave Wilbur and his Nazi accomplices to a fate from which there is no return!'

Compare the upper right-hand caption in the Torch section with the one in the same upper right-hand corner on this page of The Hidden Kingdom" in Charlton's Jungle Jim 24, June/1969 (art by Pat Boyette).

Jungle Jim 24 caption: '...And Rowden's plane is thrown into the dive from which there is no return...'

My instinct is to attribute the Torch story to the writer credited on the Jungle Jim one: Joe Gill. Gill is known to have worked at Marvel in the Forties and Fifties, before going to Charlton. The one thing that gives me pause is not knowing when he returned from the service. The Who's Who has him starting at Marvel around 1945, which I don't take as hard and fast, but a story published with a Spring '44 cover date would have to be written in late 1943. Does anybody know when Joe Gill got home from the Pacific?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/07

Sub-Mariner 25 cover

William Woolfolk's publishers this month were Timely, Quality, Fawcett, and EC.

I think the Human Torch story may have been turned into one by Woolfolk himself, not the editors (although they would have been the ones cutting it to ten pages). It looks as if that happened with another here: in the notebook, the Joe Hodges story is first entered as a Doll Man, but that's crossed out and replaced with Kid Eternity. Possibly Woolfolk just absent-mindedly set down the wrong character name in both cases and caught himself only on Kid Eternity.

July 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

12 pg Sub-Marinerlost girl pilot and Firebrand, the wrecker
"Firebrand, the Scourge of the Pacific" S-M 25, Spr/48
12 Kid EternityJoe Hodges' last news story
"The Beagle" KE 9, Spr/48
Captain Marvel Jr.the Wreckers, specialists in catastrophe
"The Wreckers" Master 88, Feb/48
Mary Marvelmagic shoes
"MM and the Flying Shoes" MM 25, June/48
12 Sub-Marinerold vaudeville star, Gay 90s bandits
10 as Human Torch"Gay Nineties Gamble" HT 30, May/48
12 Moon Girlinvaders from Venus
"Invaders from Venus" MG 1, Fall/47
12 Doll Mana million dollars apiece to 3 strangers
"Millions for Murder" DM 16, Spr/48
IbisHolocaust—god who causes destruction
"Holocaust—God of Destruction" Whiz 95, Mar/48
Human Torchelephant's burial ground
"Tusks of Terror" Capt America 66, Apr/48
12 Moon GirlSatana, queen of the underworld
"Satana, Queen of the Underworld" MG 1, Fall/47
Captain MarvelSivana meets Minerva
"Sivana Meets Minerva" CM Advs 82, Mar/48
14 Kid Eternitypaintings come to life
"Skir" KE 9, Spr/48
12 Moon Girlsmuggler's cove & a sunken U.S. navy sub
"Smuggler's Cove" MG 1, Fall/47
Captain Marvelthe medieval demon
"The Medieval Demon" CM Advs 82, Mar/48

Monday, December 12, 2011

Gold Key Star Trek Writers

ST 22 panel--Spock: 'Have you ever heard of a 'black hole,' Captain?' Kirk: 'I'm afraid not, Mr. Spock! Please explain!'
In the second issue of The Monster Times (Feb/72), Len Wein listed his writing credits on Gold Key's Star Trek, mentioning that the writer before him was Dick Wood. The list included all the stories Wein had submitted, even if some hadn't been published yet; all soon were. Wood wrote #1-8, Wein #9-16. Gold Key started running credits with #47. This list gives the writers of #17-46, going by their styles.

The Comic Reader 96 (Apr/73) says that John Warner "...reports doing...some Star Trek stories with some rather familiar people cameoing." Two crewmen in ST 21 are named Levitz and Asherman, after Paul Levitz, then the publisher of TCR, and Allan Asherman, new to DC's editorial staff (and later author of The Star Trek Compendium).

To repeat the gist of an earlier post, #22's "Siege in Superspace" is a sequel to two credited Boudreau science fiction war back-ups in DC's Star Spangled War Stories. The panel above, with 23rd century starship captain Kirk ignorant of black holes (standing in for the 1974 reader about to get some exposition), is from that story.

Gold Key Star Trek Writers

Mar/73#17 The Cosmic CavemenArnold Drake
May/73#18 The Hijacked PlanetDrake
July/73#19 The Haunted AsteroidDrake
Sep/73#20 A World Gone MadDrake
Nov/73#21 The Mummies of Heitius VIIJohn David Warner
Jan/74#22 Siege in SuperspaceGerry Boudreau
Mar/74#23 Child's PlayBoudreau
May/74#24 The Trial of Captain KirkDrake
July/74#25 Dwarf PlanetDrake
Sep/74#26 The Perfect DreamWarner
Nov/74#27 Ice JourneyWarner
Jan/75#28 The Mimicking MenaceGeorge Kashdan
Mar/75#29 [reprints #1][Dick Wood]
May/75#30 Death of a StarAllan Moniz
July/75#31 The Final TruthWarner
Aug/75#32 The Animal PeopleDrake
Sep/75#33 The ChoiceMoniz
Oct/75#34 The PsychoCrystalsDrake
Nov/75#35 [reprints #4] [Wood]
Mar/76#36 A Bomb in TimeDrake
May/76#37 [reprints #5] [Wood]
July/76#38 One of Our Captains Is MissingDrake
Aug/76#39 Prophet of PeaceDrake
Sep/76#40 Furlough to FuryDrake
Nov/76#41 The EvictorsDrake
Jan/77#42 World against Time Drake
Feb/77#43 The World beneath the Waves Drake
May/77#44 Prince TraitorDrake
July/77#45 [reprints #7] [Wood]
Aug/77#46 Mr. OracleDrake

Drake, Kashdan, and Warner continued writing, with credit lines, from #47 to 61. The Gold Key run lasted, by cover date, from July/67 to Mar/79.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/06

Captain Marvel Advs 81 cover

Quality, Fawcett, and EC bought this month's stories, although EC cancelled Land of the Lost and Animal Fables before they could print these ones. I believe the LOTL one was drawn and the art exists.

June 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

14 pg Doll Manjoins the underworld
"DM Joins the Underworld" DM 16, Spr/48
Mary Marveltriton in the tunnel
"The Triton and the Tunnel" Marvel Family 19, Jan/48
Land of the LostRed Lantern's wedding
Freddy FireflyDr. Sleepy new building
Danny Demoncrime student robs teacher
Captain MarvelMarvel Family feud
as Marvel Family "The Marvel Family Feud" MF 20, Feb/48
Ibisthe gargoyle menace
"Gargoyle Menace" Whiz 94, Feb/48
13 Kid Eternityman who lived a million years
"The Man Who Lived a Million Years" Hit 52, May/48
Captain MarvelMr. Atom and the comet men
"Mr. Atom and the Comet Men" CM Advs 81, Feb/48
Captain Marvelthe lottery tickets murder
"Lottery of Death" CM Advs 81, Feb/48

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Unknown Star Trek Artist

After Nevio Zeccara drew the first two issues of Gold Key's Star Trek, Alberto Giolitti took over the art. The studio artists who helped him include Massimo Belardinelli, Giorgio Cambiotti, Mario Pedrazzi, Giovanni Ticci, and Angelo Todaro. I can't tell how much the studio artists contributed, although I think I see different finishes on different issues; the inks on #28 are pretty sparse. Saying that Giolitti pencilled a run of issues and Ticci inked them seems oversimplification to me.

The GCD's attributions of some Giolitti issues' inks to Sal Trapani or Alden McWilliams I'd call mistaken. McWilliams took over as regular artist with #40, after doing #38.

The first nine issues used photo covers; then George Wilson provided paintings for most of the rest, with a number of exceptions. #60 and 61 were line drawings by Mike Roy, and working backwards with an eye on his style (such as in Kirk's face), I'd credit him with the painting on #59, and possibly the cover paintings on #47, 48, and 58. There are covers by other artists as well.

#39 is the issue with the forgotten artist. It contains a mixture of his art and the Giolitti studio's, but I think this page flashing back to the Twentieth Century is all his pencils.

ST 39 page without Enterprise crew

The officer in the first panel and the girl on the left of the third are the most obviously José Delbo's.

As far as I can tell, Delbo in the U.S.A. drew everything but the Enterprise crew figures; Giolitti and company in Italy supplied most of those (and all the inks?). On this next page, Spock and Kirk are Giolitti's, but the other figures are, I think, Delbo's pencils.

ST 39 page with Spock and Kirk figures in one panel

I may be off on just how the work was divided, but definitely Delbo contributed to Star Trek 39.

In #36 as well, I think I see some Delbo figures here and there, but they're nowhere near as obvious as in 39.

#39's story was written by Arnold Drake; I'll list the uncredited GK ST writers next week.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/05

Moon Girl 1 cover
Fawcett, Timely, Quality, and EC bought this month's stories.

The Greek god of mischief in "Skullface" is a statue named Eloc, although Jack Cole neither wrote nor drew this story.

Tales of Terror! by Fred von Bernewitz and Grant Geissman says of Moon Girl that "in a 1955 interview, Bill Gaines recalled that Dorothy Rubichek wrote the earliest stories. Rubichek, incidentally, was the wife of long-time Gaines friend William Woolfolk." (The correct spelling is Roubichek.) Moral: approach publishers' and editors' recollections with caution!

Tales of Terror! credits the Land of the Lost story's author as Isabel Manning Hewson. As creator of the radio show, she got a byline on all the stories, like Bob Kane on Batman.

Where did the Blonde Phantom story appear, if it was cut from 12 pages and published after all?

May 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

7 pg Mary Marvelher first boy friend
"MM and the Boy Matador" Marvel Family 18, Dec/47
12 Captain Americathe Jester
"The Menace of Mirth" CA 65, Jan/48
11 Doll ManDarrel Dane, private dick
"Darrel Dane, Private Detective" Feature 120, Mar/48
Ibissword of Genghis Khan
"The Sword of Genghis Khan" Whiz 93, Jan/48
12 Captain Americasplits with Bucky
"When Friends Turn Foes" CA 65, Jan/48
Captain Marvelinferiority complex
"CM's Inferiority Complex" CM Advs 80, Jan/48
12 Blonde Phantominnocent girl in gambling racket
11 Doll Manthe Hag's gun running
"The Hag" Feature 121, Apr/48
Hector the Inspectorhaunted house
Land of the Lostanimated pencils
"The Pencilvania Pirates" LOTL 9, Spr/48
Captain Marvelmeets the weatherman
"The Weathermen" CM Advs 80, Jan/48
15 Plastic ManSkullface & Greek god of mischief
"Skullface" Police 77, Apr/48
12 Sub-Marinerlost atoll of treasure
"The Lost Atoll" Marvel Mystery 87, Aug/48
Moon Girlchampion lady wrestler
"Introducing MG and the Prince" MG 1, Fall/47
also in Happy Houlihans 1, Fall/47 and Animal Fables 7, Nov-Dec/47
Captain Marvel Jr.magic ladder
"The Magic Ladder" CMJ 57, Jan/48

Saturday, December 3, 2011

"Till Death Do Us Part" and the Code

As long as I mentioned "Till Death Do Us Part" from Journey into Mystery 15 (Apr/54—pre-Code) and its reprinting in Vault of Evil 4 (Aug/73—under the Comics Code), I wanted to show the art changes demanded by the Code Authority.

JIM 15 captions: 'I'd shot her and hacked her skull with an axe...I slammed into her with my car...I set the dogs on her to rip her to pieces...' Vault 4: 'I'd killed her in many ways...and those methods became more I became more desperate...'

There were none.

That is, there were no art changes—but there were changes. Once the captions on this one tier no longer actually described the art, the Code Authority approved.

Personally, I think the new coloring in the car panel is more emphatic about the violence than the original coloring.

The Comics Code must have been pretty tedious to work under—because it wasn't actually codified. There was a list of prohibitions, but the kicker at the end of the list pretty much read, "Oh, and whatever we at the Code feel doesn't measure up to the spirit of the Code." If you wrote or drew or edited with the list of bullet points tacked up over your desk, you still had no idea if your work would get to the printers without arbitrary alterations.

Certainly there was some dreck before the Code, and some really awful dreck outside it and after it. But how many of Dr. Wertham's preteen serial killers did this relettering save us from?

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/04

Feature 117 cover

These posts present my transcriptions of William Woolfolk's Golden Age comic book script-writing and -selling records from his handwritten notebook. Donna Woolfolk allowed the pages to be scanned by Marc Svensson. Boldface shows my addition of publication data not in the records.

Stories sold this month to Timely, Quality, Fawcett, EC, and Orbit.

I couldn't tell which Babs story went in which issue of Ozzie & Babs. NON-UPDATE: The Babs stories in both #1 and 2 concern department stores!

April 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

7 pg Human Torchgirl runs a trucking line
"The Hyena Strikes" HT 30, May/48
11 Doll Manvs. Polka Dot
"Polka Dot on the Spot" Feature 117, Dec/47
Babsdep't store
Ozzie & Babs 1, Dec/47 or 2, Mar/48
11 Doll Manin a sideshow
"Mr. Skeleton" Feature 118, Jan/48
Hector the Inspectorworld's dumbest crook
"HTI Meets the World's Dumbest Crook" Animal Fables 7, Nov-Dec/47
Freddy FireflyAtomic Bug
"FF versus Atomic Bug" AF 7, Nov-Dec/47
11 Babsdress contest
O&B 1, Dec/47 or 2, Mar/48
11 Doll Manboy who knew all the answers
"The Boy Who Knew All the Answers" DM 15, Win/47
12 Captain Americaversus the Matador
"Meet the Matador" CA 65, Jan/48
Ibisthe Ibistick fails
"The Ibistick Fails" Whiz 92, Dec/47
Captain Marvelworld's worst actor
"The World's Worst Actor" CM Advs 79, Dec/47
11 Doll Mantranscontinental railroad
"The Undertaker" DM 15, Win/47
10 Blonde Phantomsultan of bankrupt country
"The Sultan Strikes" BP 16, Win/47-48
Juvenile DelinquentJay Jostyn
"Jay Jostyn: Radio's Mr. District Attorney" Wanted 9, Sept-Oct/47
Captain MarvelMinerva's true love
"Minerva's True Love" CM Advs 79, Dec/47
Captain Marvel Jr.wolf of Wall St.
"The Wolf of Wall Street" CMJ 55, Nov/47
12 Doll Manman in iron mask
"The Man in the Iron Mask" DM 15, Win/47
Captain Marvel run by machines
"The City of Machines" Master 86, Dec/47

Monday, November 28, 2011

"Till Death Do Us Part" 1950s Swipes

Marvel reprinted "Till Death Do Us Part" (Journey into Mystery 15, Apr/54), from its Atlas days, in Vault of Evil 4, Aug/73. Artist Vic Carrabotta signed the splash page. A number of years later, when Eclipse reprinted some stories from Standard in Seduction of the Innocent, I felt I recognized a few panels and eventually matched them up with "Till Death." I found another familiar panel in an EC reprint. Carrabotta's panels come first in each pair below:

JIM 15 and Unseen 13 panels with identical scowling man

On the right: "Grip on Life" art by Alex Toth from The Unseen 13, Nov/53.

JIM 15 and Unseen 9 panels with woman recoiling in horror

On the right: "Your Grave Is Ready" art by Ross Andru from The Unseen 9, Mar/53.

JIM 15 and Two-Fisted 33 panels with people tossed about by atom-bomb blast

On the bottom: "Atom Bomb!" art by Wally Wood, Two-Fisted Tales 33, May-June/53.

(Toth and Andru were inked here by, respectively, Mike Peppe and Mike Esposito, but the pencillers' layouts were what Carrabotta took.) I wonder how many swipes I've missed in this and other Carrabotta stories, when I happened to chance upon just these three source panels.

By the way: "Till Death Do Us Part" opens with a four-panel tier before the splash panel, and at one point someone says "Ow-w-w!" The unsigned writer is Hank Chapman.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/03

March 1947's stories sold to Timely, Fawcett, and Quality; and, I'm pretty sure, Orbit—next month, Woolfolk records a better-described crime story that I could narrow down to a specific issue of Wanted, paid at the same rate as this one.

The Mary Marvel story was cut by a page. UPDATE: I posted it as appearing in MARVEL FAMILY 19 until corrected.

March 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

12 pg Sub-Marinerships of all eras
"Viking's Vengeance" S-M 24, Win/48
12 Captain MarvelMr. Atom
"CM Meets Mr. Atom" CM Advs 78, Nov/47
11 Doll Manhorse race & boy
"The Sphinx" Feature 115, Oct/47
True Detective MysteryWanted
Captain Marvel who lived forever
"The Man Who Lived Forever" CMJ 54, Oct/47
12 Human Torchthief of Bagdad
"Terror from Baghdad" Mar Mys 84, Oct/47
Blonde PhantomFrankenstein's castle
"Horror at Haunted Castle" BP 14, Sum/47
11 Doll Mancrime doctor
"Elbows" Feature 116, Nov/47
11 Captain Marvel Jr. phantom canoe
"The Phantom Canoe" CMJ 56, Dec/47
Mary Marvelenchanted forest
6 "MM in the Enchanted Forest" MM 19, Dec/47
Marvel Familycurse on Marvels
"The Marvel Family Curse" MF 17, Nov/47
Ibisman who escaped from Hell
"Ibis and the Man who Escaped" Whiz 91, Nov/47

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Speed Carter, Spaceman Writer

Hank Chapman's getting writing credits at Timely/Atlas in the Fifties puts him ahead of all the other writers except Stan Lee, but the crediting was inconsistent. Spaceman shows this: Chapman's name appears on just two stories, the second and third ones in issue 3, but he scripted the entire series.

Spaceman 1 first story: splash panel, then one story panel

The splash page layouts that I mentioned in my post on the Human Torch stories written by Chapman appear among these stories: a splash panel taking almost the entire page, with one story panel; and a tier of story panels before the splash.

Spaceman 1 third story: four-panel tier, then splash panel

The contemporary-sounding "Holy smokes" in Chapman's Torch and mystery stories doesn't appear here; the futuristic "Great galaxy" and "Holy atoms" substitute. "Ow-w-w," with some variations of length and hyphenation, appears throughout.

panels from third and second Spaceman 1 stories: 'Ow-w-w' and 'O-w-w-w'

The Famous Explorers of Space back-ups take place in Speed Carter's past. The Eadeh and Savage art guesses I pass along from the GCD.

Speed Carter, Spaceman—written by Hank Chapman

Sept/53#1 Speed Carter, Spaceman, and the Pirate Planeta: Joe Maneely
Slaughter on a Stara: Maneely
The Robots' Revengea: Maneely
Nov/53#2 [The Birdmen of Uranus]a: Maneely
The Half-Horrors of Hyadesa: Maneely
Who Stole the Suna: Maneely
Jan/54#3 [Grave-Robbers from Outer Space]a: Maneely
[The Core People]a: Maneely
[The Bems]a: Maneely
Mar/54#4 [The Positpeople and the Neganatives]p: Mike Sekowsky  i: Jack Abel
[The Jet-Men]p: Sekowsky  i: Abel
[The Mosquito Men]p: Sekowsky  i: Abel
May/54#5 Die, Spaceman, Die!a: George Tuska
[Beastmen of Space]a: Tuska
A Slaughter in Spacea: Tuska
July/54#6 The Thing in Outer Spacea: Bob Forgione
The Kiss of Deatha: Forgione
[Spaceworld of the Scorpeople]a: Forgione

Famous Explorers of Space in Spaceman—written by Chapman

Sept/53#1 Venus: Earth's Twin Sistera: John Romita
Nov/53#2 Mercury: The Red-Hot Planetp: Bill Benulis  i: Abel
Jan/54#3 Mars: The Dying Planeta: Al Eadeh?
Mar/54#4 Jupiter: The Giant Planeta: Maneely
May/54#5 Ceres: The Biggest Little World in the Asteroid Belta: Bill Savage?
July/54#6 How Saturn Got Its Fourth Ringa: Benulis

Monday, November 21, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/02

Animal Fables 6 cover
This is the final month of the three where William Woolfolk left his scripts undescribed in his notebook. Some stories I've narrowed down to the likely title by page number; at this point the Blackhawk stories in Modern were 15 and then 13 pages, so this month's 12 and 14 pagers wouldn't fit there. "The Robe of Lucifer" is the only 12-page Doll Man from this period not already in Woolfolk's records (and it is in his style).

This 7-page Ibis has to be Part Two to last month's 6-page Part One in Whiz 88, featuring the Cat. The Ibis stories by Woolfolk in Whiz Comics' 80s and 90s are described in earlier and later months in these records; 85's is the sole story by someone else, as I interpret the styles. 88-90 have to fit in December-February's lists of scripts.

Stories sold to Timely, Quality, EC, and Fawcett this month.

February 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

12 pg Doll Man"The Robe of Lucifer" DM 14, Autumn/47
12 Sub-MarinerMarvel Mystery or S-M
11 Doll ManFeature or DM
Hector the Inspector[untitled] Animal Fables 6, Sep-Oct/47
12 Human TorchMarvel Mystery or HT
12 BlackhawkBH
Captain MarvelWhiz or CM Advs or Marvel Family
Freddy Firefly[untitled] AF 6, Sep-Oct/47
14 BlackhawkBH
Ibis"Death of the Cat" Whiz 89, Sept/47
13 Kid EternityHit or KE

Friday, November 18, 2011

Dark Shadows Writers: Full Update

Updating my earlier post, here's a writers' index of the entire run of Gold Key's Dark Shadows; thanks go to darkmark for my seeing the issues filling in the first half of the list. The artist was Joe Certa.

Dark Shadows 8 panel with dialogue: '...have you read Arneson's account of witchcraft and voodooism in New England?'

D. J. Arneson had an uninterrupted 17-issue tenure on the feature (and then one more issue). This article by Jeff Thompson quotes editor Wallace Green on  how, after finishing the first issue's script, Arneson had to hustle with six more pages—they went with an epilogue instead of a second story—when it was decided to publish the issue with no ads.

Arneson is probably best known for graphic novels (as they had yet to be labeled in the Sixties) like The Great Society Comic Book, bylined along with artist Tony Tallarico. With Bill Fraccio's and Tallarico's art at Dell, he wrote the monster superheroes, Frankenstein, Dracula, and Werewolf; I misattributed those books' uncredited scripting some time ago to Don Segall.

To touch very briefly upon writers' styles here, when the scream "Augh" appears for the first time in the series in issue 18, I know that John Warner has come aboard; he's the only one of these four early-70s Gold Key writers to use that particular exclamation (although not in his every issue).

The issue numbers in boldface indicate the ones new to this update.

Dark Shadows Writers

Mar/69#1 The Vampire's PreyD. J. Arneson
Aug/69#2 The Fires of DarknessArneson
Nov/69#3 Return for RevengeArneson
Feb/70#4 The Man Who Could Not DieArneson
May/70#5 The Curse of Collins IsleArneson
Aug/70#6 Awake to EvilArneson
Nov/70#7 Wings of FearArneson
Feb/71#8 The Vampire TrapArneson
May/71#9 Creatures in TormentArneson
Aug/71#10 Souls in BondageArneson
Nov/71#11 The Thirteenth StarArneson
Feb/72#12 The GloveArneson
Apr/72#13 HellfireArneson
Jun/72#14 The Mystic PaintingArneson
Aug/72#15 The Night ChildrenArneson
Oct/72#16 The ScarabArneson
Dec/72#17 The Bride of Barnabas CollinsArneson
Feb/73#18 Guest in the HouseJohn David Warner
Apr/73#19 Island of Eternal LifeArneson
Jun/73#20 Quentin the VampireWarner
Aug/73#21 The Crimson CarnivalGerry Boudreau
Oct/73#22 Seed of EvilArnold Drake
Dec/73#23 The Cult of the DasniWarner
Feb/74#24 On Borrowed BloodDrake
Apr/74#25 The ImmortalWarner
Jun/74#26 The Witch DollsDrake
Aug/74#27 My Blood or YoursDrake
Oct/74#28 The VisitorWarner
Dec74#29 Stolen CenturiesWarner
Feb/75#30 The Weekend Witch HuntersDrake
May/75#31 The Doom of Helgi KolnissonWarner
Jun/75#32 The Secret of the LighthouseWarner
Aug/75#33 King of the WolvesDrake
Nov/75#34 Collinwood PossessedWarner
Feb/76#35 The Missing ManuscriptWarner

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1947/01

Modern 64 cover
This is the second of three successive months where William Woolfolk went back to leaving the scripts undescribed in his records notebook. All boldface, as usual, shows my guesses at publication.

As I said on the December 1946 post, the 13-page Blackhawk stories this month and last may have been written in the opposite order, but the Modern 63 and 64 stories are in Woolfolk's style and their writing would have to fit in December-January.

Woolfolk wrote the 14-page story in Kid Eternity 7 but not 6 or 8, by the style, and the next 14-pager he wrote, in July 1947, is described—it's in number 9.

This 6-page Ibis story's direct sequel is next month's 7-pager, both involving the villain the Cat.

The Miss America and Sub-Mariner stories of these lengths in Blonde Phantom 13 read like Woolfolk's style to me and the ones in 14 don't. Although a Spring cover date, on sale in Winter, meant almost no turnaround time for art and production, I feel these are the stories. If the on-sale date was much earlier than the very end of Winter quarter (late March) then, my seeing his style or no, this month's scripts couldn't have gotten into that issue. Blonde Phantom dropped from 52 pages to 36 with issue 13; I presume the editors had to hustle to fill a space with non-BP material.

Scripts sold to Timely, EC, Quality, and Fawcett this month.

January 1947 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

5 pg Miss America"Burning Witness" Blonde Phantom 13, Spr/47   ?
Sub-Mariner"Cruise of Death" BP 13, Spr/47   ?
FableAnimal Fables
13 Blackhawk"Thunder Bird" Modern 65, Sep/47
11 Doll ManFeature or DM
Captain Marvel Jr.Master or CMJ
14 Kid Eternity"Yo-Ho-Ho and a Bottle of Rum..." KE 7, Autumn/47
14 Doll ManDM 13, Sum/47 or 14, Autumn/47
Blonde PhantomMarvel Mystery or BP if cut by at least 1 page; otherwise unpublished
Ibis"The Man with Nine Lives" Whiz 88, Aug/47
Blonde PhantomMar Mys or BP
Captain Marvel Jr.Master or CMJ
Sergeant TwilightCaptain Midnight
12 Kid EternityKE

Monday, November 14, 2011

A Mandrake Writer

Dick Wood became known as a scripter on the King Features heroes in comic books when Phantom stories for Charlton credited him.  I imagine his first scripts for Charlton were passed along out of inventory when King's own short-lived comic book line ended operations.

Wood wrote King Comics' early Mandrake stories.

Mandrake 2 panels from its two stories

The singular expressions in these panels from the two stories in Mandrake 2—"Suffering Hannah" and "Great suffering Caesar" more so than "Great grief," which you can find from a number of other writers—are the sort I mentioned in my post on Dick Wood's Plastic Man stories at Quality in the Fifties. They don't show up in the first issue, but its "Y-yipes" and "Thunderation," among other things, are interjections Wood uses elsewhere.

Out of my handful of Mandrake issues, I come to writers I can't put names to in issues 4 and 6. (Jerry Siegel, by the way, told the Who’s Who that he wrote one Mandrake.) I would say that Wood wrote the Mandrake back-up in Flash Gordon 1. The inking credits here are Alberto Becattini's from the GCD; I hadn't recognized LeBlanc by myself.

some Dick Wood Mandrake stories

Sept/66#1 Menace of the City Junglep: Don Heck  i: Andre LeBlanc
The Flying Phantomp: Werner Roth  i: LeBlanc
Nov/66#2 Specter from Spacea: LeBlanc
The Phantom Casinoa: LeBlanc

a Dick Wood Mandrake in Flash Gordon

Sept/66#1 Midnight with Mandrakep: Heck  i: LeBlanc

Friday, November 11, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1946/12

Animal Fables 5 cover For December 1946 through February 1947 in his notebook, William Woolfolk went back to leaving his scripts undescribed.

Here are stories that sold to Fawcett, Quality, and Timely; and stories that had to have been directly commissioned from EC (Land of the Lost being an established title), after it had been buying Woolfolk's inventory of stories meant for his own company, OW.

The 13-page Blackhawk stories this month and next may have been written in the opposite order, but the Modern 63 and 64 stories are in Woolfolk's style and would have to fit here.

This is the only Ibis slot in Whiz where a story will fit amid the described ones written in earlier and later months; January and February's, at 6 and 7 pages, will form a two-parter.

December 1946 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

11 pg Doll ManFeature or DM
Aesop FableAnimal Fables
Land of the LostLand of the Lost 8, Nov-Dec/47 or 9, Spr/48
Blonde PhantomMarvel Mystery or BP
11 Doll ManFeature or DM
Freddy Firefly"Firefly Battles the Red Ants" AF 5, July-Aug/47
Captain Marvel Jr.Master or CMJ
Ibis"The School for Sorcerers" Whiz 90, Oct/47
Blonde PhantomMar Mys or BP
13 Blackhawk"Invaders from the Moon" Modern 64, Aug/47
Captain Marvel Jr.Master or CMJ or Marvel Family
Mary MarvelWow or MM or MF

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The First Human Torch Writer (of the Fifties)

Hank Chapman wrote the Human Torch in the Forties, if only as one of those remembered pitching in on the marathon weekend putting together a Torch/Sub-Mariner battle issue. I haven't yet run across his other stories in that decade. Luckily for me in tracking down his style, Chapman in a number of Fifties stories at Timely/Atlas was uncharacteristically (for a writer at the time) given a credit line. He was probably best known for his war stories, and he continued writing that genre in the Sixties at DC.

Uncredited, Chapman wrote the first two Torch stories in the Fifties revival, in Young Men 24 (Dec/53) and 25 (Feb/54).

Young Men 24 Human Torch page 1: 'Holy smokes!' in dialog

Art on the YM 24 story is by Russ Heath, with the exception of a splash panel pasteover of the Torch by Carl Burgos.

YM 24 Torch panels: 'Ow-w-w!' in each

The first clue to Chapman's writing a story is "Ow-w-w"—most often hyphenated exactly like that, but not always. That's best as an indication when the other writers at the particular company and time aren't using it, of course. And "Holy Smokes" in the splash panel helps lead me to Chapman here. The following panels are from a story with Chapman's credit line, "My Brother . . . the Ghoul" in Adventures into Weird Worlds 6 (May/52), with art by George Roussos.

Advs into Weird Worlds 6 story panels: 'Ow-w-w!'; 'Holy smokes!'

Another occasional clue to Chapman is seen by comparing the first page of Young Men 25's Torch story with the first page of "My Brother . . . the Ghoul" (and note "Holy Smokes" again in the Torch splash).

Young Men 25 Torch page 1: 4-panel tier, then splash panel; 'Holy smokes!'

Advs into Weird Worlds 6 page 1: 4-panel tier, then splash panel; 'Story by Hank Chapman' credit

The tier of panels before the splash in each case is something Chapman uses off and on; also, for that matter, the splash with a single story panel following, as in YM 24.

Other writers did the rest of the superhero stories in Atlas's short-lived revival experiment of the mid-Fifties.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Woolfolk Records 1946/11

Hopalong Cassidy 8 cover

These William Woolfolk scripts sold to Fawcett and Quality. The Mary Marvel story was cut by a page.

Woolfolk reused the flame planes concept from the Captain Midnight story he wrote in March 1945.

And this is the first month where I could add every single story's publication data to the original notations (boldface shows what wasn't in the records notebook).

November 1946 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

9 pg Hopalong Cassidyphantom stage coach
"The Phantom Stagecoach" HC 8, June/47
15 Blackhawkflame planes
"The Flame Planes" Modern 62, Apr/47
Captain Marvel who hated midnight
"The Man Who Feared Midnight" CMJ 51, July/47
Mary Marveltown couldn't lie
7 "The Town That Couldn't Lie" Marvel Family 13, July/47
Captain Marvel Jr.magic cap
"The Magic Cap" CMJ 51, July/47
11 Doll Man20 year old mail
"The Return of the Undertaker" Feature 111, June/47
11 BlackhawkCondor Man
"The Condor Man" BH 16, Autumn/47
11 Doll ManMr. Curio & his miniatures
"Mr. Curio and His Miniatures" Feature 112, July/47
Ibishousing shortage ghosts
"Ghost of a Chance" Whiz 87, July/47
Captain Marvel round the Horn
"Voyage 'Round the Horn" Master 81, July/47