Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Woolfolk Records 1951/03

Westerner 39 Lobo the Wolf Boy splash page

Fawcett, Orbit, and Quality comics.

Since William Woolfolk didn't have any Pinhead & Foodini stories in issue 1, I'm assuming his gag pages for the title didn't start in that issue either. He writes three set of gags in this and later months, fitting into the final three of the four issues.

The Lobo story is another case where the editors have changed Woolfolk's title at the page top, with the logo, but let his version remain at the end of the blurb below.

March 1951 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

6 pg  Ibis the pipes of Pan
"The Pipes of Pan" Whiz 139, Nov/51
11  Wild Bill Pecos secret of the lost caves
"The Secret of the Lost Caves" The Westerner 39, Aug/51
Curtains for a Killer theatre ticket alibi—but there was no show that night
"Curtains for a Killer" Wanted 40, Aug/51
12  Broadway Bandit gang specializing in night club robberies
"The Broadway Bandit" Wanted 40, Aug/51
Private Piney & Miss Fitt gag stuff
1  Private Piney "Always Room for One More" Pinhead and Foodini 2, Sept/51
1  Little Miss Fitt "Something to Bank On" P & F 2, Sept/51
Blackhawk the invisible men
"The Invisible Men" BH 45, Oct/51
Captain Marvel Jr. the thing that grew
"CMJ Battles the Thing That Grew" CMJ 103, Nov/51
Lobo, the Wolf Boy wolf kingdom
"Lobo the Wolf Boy Fights Fury the Terror Wolf" The Westerner 39, Aug/51
Wild Bill Pecos last bullet
"The Last Bullet" The Westerner 39, Aug/51
12  Goons with Guns hired strikebreakers, inc.
"Goons with Guns" Wanted 41, Sept/51
Monte Hale killer's faith in his guns
MH Western or Western Hero c. Dec/51
Captain Marvel Jr. palace of lost ideas
"CMJ and the Palace of Lost Ideas" CMJ 104, Dec/51

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

There's a Mistake You Don't See Every Day, Chauncey

I was going to post this page from Eerie Tales 1-and-only merely to showcase the howling error of a sort I can't recall seeing anywhere else (but then, I haven't read every comic book published). Then I realized I had an art attribution differing from one of the GCD's for this issue (in fact, for this story).

Eerie Tales 1 The Suckspect dialogue: 'Canst thou account for her majesty's every moment, sire? Let the queen prove she is not a vampire! Queen stands erect and king angrily defends her.' Next panel described: Queen stands erect and king angrily defends her

Eerie Tales predated Creepy by half a decade. Michael T. Gilbert unearthed it in Alter Ego, and later Joe Simon confirmed editing it. The magazine itself presented only joke editorial credits, just as a number of humor B&Ws did at the time, and was published by the otherwise unknown Hastings Associates (just as DC later published the two short-lived Kirby magazines as Hampshire House, for the sake, one supposes, of plausible deniability).

Gilbert, Hames Ware, James Vadeboncoeur Jr., and Dr. Michael J. Vassallos pored over the artwork for attribution; I pass along their credit of Ken Battefield on "Shroud Number Nine," who would never have occurred to me. They guessed at Bob Powell for the "The Suckspect" (pictured). Bob Powell's story later in the issue, "The Unbeliever," shows his style pretty unmistakably; "The Suckspect" doesn't, to me. Those gray washes don't help art-spotting! But look at the leftmost figure in the second panel, for instance; that's where Joe Orlando's work shows best on this page. The four art experts did suggest assistants helping on this story's art; I can't disagree with that.

Just before posting, I found a comment on Harry Mendryk's Jack Kirby Museum attributing every story in this and its the predecessor one-shot title Weird Mysteries to Carl Wessler; here's where I stood when I composed this post: "From the Greyble to the Grave" jumped out at me as a Carl Wessler script at the climax, when the protagonist screams "Nyaaaaa!" "The Stalker" ends up more or less in the same place as Wessler's "The Night I Watched Myself Die" (The Unexpected 105, Mar-Apr/68, DC), although otherwise they're two very different stories (and the later one moreover makes sense). He may have written "The Suckspect" and "Shroud Number Nine;" if he wrote "The Unbeliever," I'd say it was rewritten. (From the comment by Rick on Harry's blog, I take it that all of these stories are indeed in Wessler's records, although the CGD entry credits no writer at all.) UPDATE: Robin Snyder informs me that Carl Wessler's account book does not include those three stories. It also omits "Shocked to Death," so that argues against my thinking I see his style there; I've added question marks to that credit below. On the other hand, the records show that Wessler wrote the issue's text piece, "Frozen Stiff," which was meant to be continued in the never-published issue 2.

There was a question of whether the morgue keeper in Eerie Tales, unnamed in the stories, is technically Morgue'n from Weird Mysteries (which I'd love to see in total). He is; his name is on the morgue wagon in the cover painting.

Eerie Tales

July/59 The Stalker w: Carl Wessler  a: Gray   Morrow
Gunk w: Wessler  a: George Tuska
The Suckspect w: ?  a: Joe Orlando
Burn! w: Wessler  a: Morrow
Shroud Number Nine w: ?  a: Ken Battefield
The Unbeliever w: ?  a: Bob Powell
Shocked to Death w: Wessler??  a: Paul Reinman
From the Greyble to the Grave w: Wessler  a: Angelo Torres
Little Miss Gruesome w: Wessler  a: Reinman
Lower Than Hell w: Wessler  a: Al Williamson

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Woolfolk Records 1951/02

Pinhead and Foodini 2
And now for something fairly different: the TV tie-in Pinhead and Foodini. (Not completely different; William Woolfolk wrote a few stories of the radio tie-in comic Land of the Lost.)

Fawcett, Orbit, and Quality are the publishers this month.

These three love stories were plotted for Dorothy Woolfolk in the shorter page lengths and were published at the longer lengths corresponding to her scripts.

The Wild Bill Pecos story "Draw with Death" expands upon the plot of Woolfolk's Arizona Raines text piece "Draw against Death" (Crack Western 68, Sept/50), written in April 1950.

February 1951 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

6 pg  Captain Marvel Jr. the millionairedale
"CMJ Meets the Millionairedale" CMJ 103, Nov/51
plot for Dorothy girl loves an older man
12  "Betrayed" Love Diary 18, July/51
12  Mad Magician of Crime ex-vaudevillian turns to crime to make headlines
"The Mad Magician of Crime" Wanted 39, July/51
10  Foodini machine to make decisions
"Foodini's Think Tank" Pinhead and Foodini 2, Sept/51
plot for Dorothy my reckless moment—should I tell?
10  "My Reckless Moment" L Diary 19, Aug/51
10  Blackhawk BH Island becomes a trap for BHs
"The Island of Death" BH 45, Oct/51
Wild Bill Pecos crippled, must draw against a killer
"Draw with Death" The Westerner 38, July/51
Lobo, the Wolf Boy mysterious wolf kills people in village—is it Lobo?
"Battles the Killer Wolf" The Westerner 38, July/51
plot for Dorothy girl who stole my life
12  "The Cheat" L Diary 19, Aug/51
Captain Marvel Jr. the money mad monarch
8  "CMJ and the Money-Mad Monarch" CMJ 103, Nov/51
13  Foodini Pinhead goes wild
"Pinhead Goes Wild" P & F 2, Sept/51
Murder Message new typewriter holds a murder message on cylinder
"Murder Message" Wanted 39, July/51
Blackhawk atomic bomb on the loose
"BH and the Unholy Three" BH 45, Oct/51
Ibis curse of the fire king
"The Curse of the Fire King" Whiz 138, Oct/51

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Leo Dorfman, Total Warlord of M.A.R.S.

Leo Dorfman wrote the entire run of Gold Key's Total War/M.A.R.S. Patrol Total War. (M.A.R.S. is the Marine Attack Rescue Service, a four-man team vital in the fight against invaders on America soil).

Wally Wood has gotten the attribution for writing the first three issues, just as Jack Cole has for all his Plastic Man stories, but with no better reason than that he wrote some of his own work elsewhere. Could Wood have brought the concept and plots to Gold Key? Very possible, but who can say? The "new writer" finally identifies the invaders as extraterrestrials, which supposedly proves a point, but he doesn't do it in issue 4, the first with the new artists; he works his way up to confirming the fact in #5.

Here are tiers from issues 3, 4, and 9. Do you notice a similarity in writing style? There's also Dorfman's use of captions beginning with "As" quite a bit, and at least one siren going "Howeee."

3--In the next hair-raising moment... 4--But in the next desperate instant... 9--In the next catastrophic moment...

I'm not sure exactly how the Wood/Adkins art was broken down: if one did layouts, one complete pencils, one complete inks; or more likely nothing so clearcut. And of course others may have helped. The inks on the remaining issues seem to me to match up with Mike Peppe's on, say, Mike Sekowsky's pencils on Man from U.N.C.L.E. Most often Roy and Peppe worked as a team, like Andru and Esposito—but the only signature in the series, on the splash page of #10, is Roy's alone.

Total War written by Leo Dorfman

July/65 Target: America a: Wally Wood & Dan Adkins
Oct/     Sneak Attack a: Wood & Adkins
Breakthrough a: Wood & Adkins

M.A.R.S. Patrol Total War written by Dorfman

Sept/66 Operation Copperhead a: Wood & Adkins
Oct/67 Operation Deep-Freeze p: Mike Roy  i: Mike Peppe
May/68 Mystery Beachhead p: Roy  i: Peppe
Aug/     Operation Snake-in-the-Brass p: Roy  i: Peppe
Nov/     The Death Wind p: Roy  i: Peppe
Feb/69 Tomorrow Is Doomsday p: Roy  i: Peppe
May/     City under Fire p: Roy  i: Peppe
Aug/     10  The Dragon's Teeth p: Roy  i: Peppe?