Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Pete Riss Superman Stories

I posted the text earlier about Pete Riss actually drawing the Superman stories that have been attributed to Sam Citron for so long—here are the lists of his work on the character.

I see that in Citron's art for Warren, Gold Key, and DC in the Sixties, he has some poses reminiscent of Wayne Boring's as far as the tilt of a head here and there; I wonder if his Superman work was all with Boring and the Shuster studio, and thus particularly hard to pick out? Pete Riss is not at all hard to pick out when you compare these stories with his credited work at Timely.
World's Finest 17 The Great Godini--'Killer Riss' poster
On that earlier post I misremembered the "Killer Riss" sneak as from "The Quicksilver Kid," but it was from "The Great Godini."

Pete Riss art on Superman

Jan-Feb/44 26  The Quicksilver Kid
May-June/     28  The Golden Galleons
Nov-Dec/     31  Tune Up Time for Crime

A Dog's Tale

The Treasure House of History
May-June/45 34  The United States Navy

The Canyon That Went Berserk

When the World Got Tired
Jan-Feb/46 38  The Battle of the Atoms

The Bad Old Knights

The Man of Stone
July-Aug/     41  Too Many Pranksters

Clark Kent's Bodyguard

A Modern Alice in Wonderland

on Superman in Action Comics

Dec/43 67  Make Way for Fate
Mar/44 70  Superman Takes a Holiday
June/     73  The Hobby Robbers
May/46 96  Haircut--and a Close Shave

on Superman in World's Finest Comics

Spring/45 17  The Great Godini

on Lois Lane in Superman
(untitled stories)

May-June/45 34  [Dirty Dealings with a Dictaphone]
Sep-Oct/     36  [Burying Treasure]
Nov-Dec/     37  [A Blowtorch for Big Larkin]
Jan-Feb/46 38  [The Brazil Nut]
Mar-Apr/    39  [The Twice-Stolen Pendant]
May-June/     40  [Go Fly a Kite]
Sep-Oct/     42  [The Bowling Brawl]


  1. Somewhere in all the papers dug up for the recent Siegel vs DC court case there's a letter from Whitney Ellsworth to Siegel asking him to take Citron off Robotman and put him on Superman. A sequence of events that places Citron's Superman work much earlier than the stories now attributed to Riss.

  2. It puts his work in the early Superman period that I haven't yet felt strong enough to venture into, as far as artists go. I'm comfortable from the point where the styles of Sikela, Dobrotka, Yarbrough, Riss and others become pretty distinctive.

  3. Recently a fan over on Facebook produced a whole stack of DC check stubs that give the credits for some 1943-44 Superman stories. All your work on identifying Pete Riss stories is substantiated therein. As for Sam Citron, it appears that he drew most of the stories that had been attributed to Ed Dobrotka! Where that leaves Dobrotka is now the question. Other than one story from after the war there weren't any Dobrotka credits in the pile. Hopefully more, earlier data is forthcoming.

    1. The problem with those pay records is that the info on them is second-hand. In the note on "Superman's Search for Clark Kent" I see Citron named among the people involved, but the check was made out to Joe Shuster to disperse. Jack Schiff could only record what was passed along to him by the Shuster Shop.

      The pencilling on that one, upon inspection of the story itself, is by the artist who also worked on Seven Soldiers of Victory, Captain Marvel, and Captain Triumph. That would have to be Ed Dobrotka, who was in comics only through 1946 as far as I know. Sam Citron worked into the 1960s, and some of his later stories, like those at ACG, are credited, with no trace of this style showing.