Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Pete Riss Draws Mike Barnett and/or Mike Danger


I noticed at separate times that these Fawcett stories were by Pete Riss and that the first two Mike Danger stories in Charlton's Danger and Adventure (#24 and 25) were by him too. Since the earlier issues of the Charlton title contained Fawcett inventory material, I figured the Mike Danger stories were from that company, but off the top of my head couldn't figure where.

When they bought material from Fawcett, of course Charlton didn't get the rights to TV character Mike Barnett. They pulled a Windy and Willy on him in these reprints. When I finally connected the stories, I saw that the Grand Comuics database IDed the retitled Charlton story "The Racing Stable Mystery" (D & A 24, June/55) as reprinting "Death Goes to the Races" but didn't give the source of "The Mint of Dr. Dionysus" (D & A 25, Aug/55), which wasn't retitled.

The first two Johnny Adventure stories, in those same issues, look like they were lifted from Alex Raymond's Jungle Jim, and I have no idea whatsoever if it was directly, or from where.

Pete Riss Art
on Mike Barnett, Man Against Crime


Dec/51 Kill the Umpire!

The Mint of Dr. Dionysus
Feb/52 Mike Barnett, Man Against Crime and the Mystery   of the Blue Madonna

The Lead Poison Cure
Apr/     Death Goes to the Races
Jun/     The Case of the Old Hobo

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Mary Carey's Disney Movie Adaptations

WD Showcase 10,41,54

Mary Carey's only credit in the comics themselves was on the Golden Press adaptation of the 1981 movie Clash of the Titans. The Who's Who attributed a handful of 1970s Disney adaptations to her. The question was, how far back did her tenure go? As it happens, her run on Disney live-action movie adaptations coincides with the run of Walt Disney Showcase. It just now took me some extra time to work back to her writing The Boatniks and Bedknobs and Broomsticks.

Mary Carey Scripts
in Walt Disney Showcase


Oct/70 The Boatniks
Jan/72 Bedknobs and Broomsticks
Sep/     10  Napoleon and Samantha
Apr/73 14  The World's Greatest Athlete
Aug/74 24  Herbie Rides Again
Feb/75 27  Island at the Top of the World
Jun/     29  Escape to Witch Mountain
Oct/77 41  Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo
Apr/78 43  Pete's Dragon
May/     44  Return from Witch Mountain
Sep/     46  The Cat from Outer Space
Mar/79 49  North Avenue Irregulars
Sep/     52  Unidentified Flying Oddball
Jan/80 54  The Black Hole [repr from tabloid edition]

After Eric Freiwald and Robert Schaefer's last Disney movie adaptation (I believe The Legend of Young Dick Turpin, May/66), another writer to whom I haven't yet put a name took over on those one-shots, including the two the CGD assigns tentatively to Mary Carey, The Gnome-Mobile and Blackbeard's Ghost. His or her last movie comic, as far as I can see, was The Love Bug (June/69). This writer also did TV tie-ins like The Invaders and The Green Hornet.

But wait—the GCD says Paul S. Newman wrote The Green Hornet 3-issue run of 1967. No. In that year it's extremely unlikely that a writer for Western Publishing's East Coast office does a West Coast book (as the Dan Spiegle art shows this to be). Per his records, Newman wrote the Green Hornet in Four Color 496, Sept/53. There's a logical fallacy in taking that to mean he wrote every Green Hornet story published by Western.

One clue to this West Coast writer's style is captions like Several minutes have passed... and other variations on "time has passed." I have yet to see that in a single Newman script.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Morrow Swiped, or First Draft?

Presented for your consideration, two cover paintings: Marvel's Monsters Unleashed 1 (dated only 1973—but June, to work backwards from the second quarterly issue's given month/year), signed by Gray Morrow, and the first volume of the Danish publisher Interpresse's paperback series Rædselkabinettet (Horror-Cabinet), 1974. Varulves blodhævn means Werewolf's Blood-Feud, although the novel is a translation of Raymond Giles' Night of the Vampire.


Considering the dates, the first stab at explaining the differences between the covers would be that an unidentified artist repainted Morrow's. That sort of thing has happened; the German Doc Savage book series generally reprinted the Bantam covers (obliterating the signatures), but on a few volumes someone obviously swiped James Bama, "improving" on his monochromatic scheme, and on one, Fred Pfeiffer's Doc was swiped onto an entirely new background.

But really, the 1973 werewolf cover is much better in terms of composition and such, with the figures larger, than the 1974 one. It was painted with the placement of magazine text in mind, which on the book cover leaves a lot of unused space. I doubt the Danish publishers wanted the cover more demure, as another Rædselkabinettet cover has a topless vampiress painted from a Hammer Films still.

One way or the other, the background of the painting is Morrow's. My feeling is that the 1974 cover is a first draft by him, possibly from a few years earlier (this woman's face is, admittedly, the least obviously Morrow-looking part of the cover). Now the question is, can that feeling be backed up? Did that different version of Monsters Unleashed #1 turn up in a fanzine in the Seventies? I know Kelly Freas' Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction #1 has been printed with his figures intact and not the John Romita overlays the cover was published with.

How that earlier painting would end up across the Atlantic is, of course, a good question in itself.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

A Scooter Artist from the Madhouse


Teen humor again, but this time to ID an artist on Swing with Scooter not previously known to have worked at DC.

Gus Lemoine first signed his name on Fitzgerald's 1976-77 Fast Willie Jackson. Art spotters have worked backward to identify him on Archie's Madhouse. These concurrent Scooter stories match up with that style--right down to the low-rent "chicken fat" of the signs (Madhouse 64, Oct/68, probably contains the most Lemoine pages in one issue). Maybe he's inking himself somewhere among the Archie and DC stories, but I couldn't say where.

Scooter 14 seems to be Howie Post's only issue writing the feature. The Sylvester story's art is signed by Henry Scarpelli.

The Win Mortimer story I list here has been miscredited to Bob Oksner (the inker has been correctly IDed as Tex Blaisdell). There's a hiatus between this first story of Mortimer's for Scooter and his run on the feature in, mostly, #21-30.

Swing with Scooter

June-July/68 13  Oh, Happy, Happy, Here's Cap'n Clappy p: Win Mortimer
Aug-Sep/     14  Sylvester...Son of Ahbu w: Howie Post
Sir Scooter...Dragon Slayer w: Post  p: Gus Lemoine
Better Never Than Late w: Post  p: Lemoine