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[personal profile] icon_uk posting in [community profile] scans_daily
Following on from [personal profile] sweettart1823 's postings from Kevin Smith's Green Arrow series, I thought it prudent to present the earlier attempt to update the concept of "Stanley and his Monster" for the DCU

"Stanley and His Monster" started as a back up feature in "Fox and the Crow" in 1966, it was... and let's be polite here, never exactly rib-busting stuff (as noted in this revamp, this was a time when "Leave it to Beaver" and "I Love Lucy" were as racy as society got), but the notion of a lonely, overimaginative six-year-old boy who couldn't have a pet due to being allergic to ALL of them, and finding a friendly, and hypoallergenic, monster living in the nearby sewers was a nifty one. He DID ask his parents if he could bring a 9 foot tall red hairy monster to live in the house as a pet, and they agreed, assuming he wasn't being serious, a dangerous thing to do in the DCU.

Partly (and openly) inspired by Calvin and Hobbes, this revamp was written and drawn by Phil Foglio (who probably needs little introduction on this forum), and dates back to 1993. 1993 was not a good era for the notion of "cute" or "fun" comics, as this cover gently pokes fun at..




It is also that rare event by any standard, a Vertigo crossover! I kid you not, this family friendly title cheerfully links itself to the Sandman title from the very first page...

Yup, meet Remiel and Duma (the Angel of Silence) who were in charge of Hell following the events of the Sandman story "Season of Mists".

They are just finishing their first full role-call of Hell having had to get all the demons back because of the Sandman series... and having confirmed that "Zzzxxymax (spit/drool) Bite-Your-Dog's-Head-Off Zznoq" is in residence, all is well... or is it...



A demon who's good? Now who could that be?

Meanwhile precocious six year old Stanley Dover is investigating the attic in his house accompanied by his best buddy (Who has just discovered Mr Dover's old disco gear....





At the dinner table, Stanley asks about "The Heterodyne Boys", who seem to be a cross between the Hardy Boys, Tom Swift and Doc Savage, which is quite a thought! Mrs Dover, a born librarian, instantly clicks on the memory...



Stanley doesn't want his dad to spoil the fun, so shushes him before he can mention THE book in front of his mother, who he KNOWS will not let him build anything from it because it'd be "too dangerous". (Please note that this is what a happy marriage looks like in the DCU, Darkseid knows there are few enough of those left these days)



Please note that Star Trek, the Next Generation was still on first run in 1993.

Stanley instantly has his heart set on building the Tree Fort the book describes, but the first problem is that there is only one decent tree in the neighbourhood, built by an old guy who doesn't like kids climbing on it...



and all he wants in return is the chance to build an office in the tree.



I skipped a few panels in smooshing that page, where Mr Vick mentions that he'd once owned a copy of the book, but his mother had burned it for being far too dangerous for kids to try, that's one reason Mr Vick is so keen for Stanley to get a chance, since he knows that into every childhood a little crazy risk is healthy.

So hurdle one is overcome...



The builder is entranced that Stanley has a copy of THE book (Word about it clearly got around) and says that he can have some unused lumber he has lying around if he can get it all shifted, and he'll have a quick read of the book whilst Stanley does it, since he wants to re-read the chapter on building a suspension bridge.

Of course, with a superstrong demon on hand, it takes a lot less time than one might think to gather lumber.



That's six--year old logic for you right there!

One thing I've had to trim out of the story here are the recurring dreams that Stanley has during the issue about how great his tree fort will be, it becomes the headquarters for Captain Clothespin and his sidekick the Furry Wonder, as they fight the Joker, it becomes the rather overcrowded HQ for the Justice League and now, Stanley finds it serves as a last line of defence for his family against... (and tell me you wouldn't buy this comic)



Well, it may LOOK like Wesley Dodds, but we know who it is really, thanks to the inverted tone speech balloons.

At any rate, a short while later the tree fort is complete, well, it's built, but not tree fort is ever complete until you've spent the night in it, which will also be a challenge to arrange, but worry not...



I love this page...



A cunning plan, eh?

So the boys are in their tree fort, and as is their wont, thoughts turn to ghost stories... Spot starts to tell a couple of PG13 (at LEAST) stories about how ghosts were treated in Hell before he stops himself, realising that Stanley is NOT a target audience for such things (His jollification of them is amusing, but it had to be trimmed)



Okay, that's just seven shades of adorable right there... (There's a nice line in their entry in DC's Who's Who where it mentions that the Monster is placid and peaceable, UNLESS something or someone were to threaten Stanley in any way, which would lead to who/whatever it was suddenly having to deal with a 9 foot tall omnivorous buzz-saw of teeth and claws)

There is someone scarier than that on the prowl though, and Stanley warns whoever it is that they can't come into his fort...



Nice twist there. Stanley hopes that this means he's not in trouble, but that would be over-optimistic, and he is marched home, though his mother is actually very proud of him for managing it (and says so), though she's a bit curious where he found the big red shaggy throw pillows she saw in the corner (oh if only she knew).

Meanwhile the Monster is left alone in the tree-fort, planning on heading home in a few minutes, but is interrupted by the arrival of an old, old friend, a sexy demoness named, Nyx... but more on her next time.

See, this is particularly why I don't like Smith's reworking, trying to reconcile these two series (which I do appreciate we're not asked to do, but is sort of hard to avoid) is just plain WRONG!

Date: 2010-09-19 09:57 pm (UTC)
cainofdreaming: cain's mark (pic#364829)
From: [personal profile] cainofdreaming
See, this is particularly why I don't like Smith's reworking, trying to reconcile these two series (which I do appreciate we're not asked to do, but is sort of hard to avoid) is just plain WRONG!

Yes, I'll take Foglio over Smith any day of the week and twice on Sundays. Why do you have to rework perfection anyway?

Date: 2010-09-19 10:17 pm (UTC)
nezchan: Navis at breakfast (Default)
From: [personal profile] nezchan
I do believe DC editorial is allergic to cute fun.

I used to have this, isn't this the same one with Ambrose Bierce being continually being mistaken for John Constantine? If so, the "making dinner" joke is one of my favourite comic gags of all time.

Date: 2010-09-19 10:30 pm (UTC)
halloweenjack: (YAY)
From: [personal profile] halloweenjack
Sexy demoness, you say?

(Sorry, but, you know, Foglio.)

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Date: 2010-09-19 10:42 pm (UTC)
shanejayell: (Default)
From: [personal profile] shanejayell
Yay!

Hetrodines? *LOL*

Date: 2010-09-19 10:48 pm (UTC)
bradhanon: (Serious editor)
From: [personal profile] bradhanon
I actually have the book they're jokingly referencing here, grew up on the damn thing. Actually, I think it's still in print.

After checking, yes, you can still get The American Boy's Handy Book. Good thing for any kids you might know whose parents are actually letting them have a childhood, unfashionable as that is these days.

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Date: 2010-09-19 11:13 pm (UTC)
stig: "It Was A Boojum..." (Default)
From: [personal profile] stig
Not only is this influenced by Bill Waterson, but the "Little Boy's Life And Dreams Are Edited The Same Way As A TV Show" concept was done with Binkley of Berke Breathed's "Bloom County".

Date: 2010-09-19 11:28 pm (UTC)
leorising: (batvibe)
From: [personal profile] leorising
Gah, I have to go out before I can read it all, but this is making me SQUEE! Thank you for posting it!

Date: 2010-09-19 11:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] fredneil.livejournal.com
"Leave it to Beaver" and "I Love Lucy" in 1966?

Julie Newmar's catsuit and Eva Gabor's evening gowns, maybe.

Please tell me that the grimdark era is over and I don't have to worry about my beloved Inferior Five being turned into a group of alcoholics and drug addicts dealing with their self-esteem issues? On the other hand, Dumb Bunny would probably end up supporting the group with her earnings as a stripper... No, it's not worth it.

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Date: 2010-09-20 12:18 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] lonewolf23k
I'd love to see Foglio personally give the entire DCU a Makeover. He knows how to make comics fun, yet adventurous. And nobody makes them sexy like he does.

Date: 2010-09-20 01:24 am (UTC)
leikomgwtfbbq: (Yay!)
From: [personal profile] leikomgwtfbbq
I love this version of Stanley and his Monster. X3 Aww.

Date: 2010-09-20 01:25 am (UTC)
nezchan: Navis at breakfast (Default)
From: [personal profile] nezchan
I've loved Foglio ever since What's New, waaaay back in Dragon Magazine (when it was good!). Even had an official Myth Adventures Fan Club membership.

I don't think there's anything he's ever done that I don't love.

Date: 2010-09-20 01:25 am (UTC)
gehayi: (mad science!)
From: [personal profile] gehayi
I love this. This looks like a fun universe!

Also, Stanley's mother bears a striking resemblance to Agatha of Girl Genius. (Though less so when Agatha is looking like a madgirl, of course.)
Edited Date: 2010-09-20 01:32 am (UTC)

Date: 2010-09-20 01:28 am (UTC)
qalchemist: (Default)
From: [personal profile] qalchemist
The Heterodyne Boys are actually characters from one of Phil's other comics - to whit, 'Girl Genius', a most excellent composition.

http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/ if interested.

Date: 2010-09-20 09:15 pm (UTC)
bewareofgeek: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bewareofgeek
This was actually their second appearance (their first being a backup in Grimjack, of all places).

And they were based on real people...

Date: 2010-09-20 01:36 am (UTC)
filkertom: (Default)
From: [personal profile] filkertom
I really, really, really wish that a few of the late 80s-early 90s miniseries would get a reprint. Specifically: this one, the Foglio Angel and the Ape, The Oz-Wonderland War, and Matt Wagner's Demon.

Date: 2010-09-20 01:51 am (UTC)
nezchan: Navis at breakfast (Default)
From: [personal profile] nezchan
Yay, someone else who remembers Oz-Wonderland!

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From: [identity profile] jogadoresesquecidos.blogspot.com - Date: 2010-09-20 09:46 pm (UTC) - Expand

NOOOOOOOOOO!

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Date: 2010-09-20 03:09 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] keeva
I LIKE XXXENOPHILE

there, someone said

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Date: 2010-09-20 06:32 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] psychopathicus_rex
Aw, man, now I want a copy of that book. I wanna zeppelin, darn it. *pouts*
'Heterodyne boys', eh? This was pre-'Girl Genius', wasn't it?
I love Stanley 'exceeding his special effects budget for the entire month' on just one dream about a tree fort. That kid's got SOME imagination. (As for the Sandman - perhaps Dream is simply showing himself to Stanley in a form that he might understand better? I mean, given that he lives in the DCU, it's quite possible that he's heard of Wesley Dodds and is a fan of his adventures - that outfit might communicate 'Sandman' to him more than 'creepy tall white-skinned guy' would - which would make sense, if the guy's trying to hammer home the point that he IS the Sandman. 'This is the ruler of the dream world here! Knock it off!')

Date: 2010-09-20 06:56 am (UTC)
lissa_quon: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lissa_quon
Well Dream always changes how he looks by who/what is perceiving him. I don't think it's something he DOES so much as just how he WORKS.

But besides that, it does make lots of sense to a kid living in the DCU that he would be Sandman the superhero.

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Date: 2010-09-20 08:55 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] ebailey140
Another reason that the Vertigo characters should never have been separated from the rest of the DCU. Not only has Wonder Woman never really recovered from losing her best editor in Karen Berger, but you can't do fun stuff like this with those characters.

Also... Stanley and his Monster interact with Vertigo characters and it's light, fun, and kid friendly. They interact with Green Arrow and it's Grimdark.

Date: 2010-09-20 10:22 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] palabradot
Wow. Why do they not compile this? WHY?

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Date: 2010-09-20 01:54 pm (UTC)
ext_462267: (pic#561898)
From: [identity profile] jogadoresesquecidos.blogspot.com
This, sir, is SO NICE!

Stanley and his mom's facial expressions alone made me want to buy it.

Date: 2010-09-20 05:18 pm (UTC)
arbre_rieur: (DC Nation)
From: [personal profile] arbre_rieur
During its next Big Event, DC should include a fight between Stanley and Spot versus Malice Vundabar somewhere in it.

Date: 2010-09-20 07:42 pm (UTC)
crabby_lioness: (Default)
From: [personal profile] crabby_lioness
I'll say the same thing I said about Amethyst, why hasn't this been collected? And Angel & the Ape as well. Hell we had a Alan Moore DC omnibus, why not a Phil Foglio DC Omnibus?

Date: 2010-09-21 07:52 am (UTC)
philippos42: Sarigar (blue)
From: [personal profile] philippos42
Since it was the Foglio revamp that decided that Stanley's monster was not a terrestrial monster but a demon exiled from Hell when he grew sick of evil, this is really the precursor & inspiration for Kevin Smith's take. Disturbingly enough. Though of course there's no evil grandpa here.

I really hate the Kevin Smith Green Arrow anyway, too much supernatural crap for a street-level non-powered character like Ollie.

Date: 2010-09-26 12:52 pm (UTC)
biznizzonpeyote: A female Bower in Mario's clothes... What? (Default)
From: [personal profile] biznizzonpeyote
Wait, this was mixed with Kevin Smith's Green Arrow? Will someone please give me the details?

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