alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




Harvey Comics is best remembered as a publisher of kids' comics, but like MLJ/Archie, there was a time it dealt in a variety of genres, including horror, giving that up only when the establishment of the Comics Code Authority in 1954 put an end to stories such as the one I present here in its entirety, from Chamber of Chills #7 (April 1952; scans of this public domain title courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com). The gruesome denouement of "Crawling Death" (writer unknown, art by Abe Simon and Don Perlin) got special mention in Wertham's Seduction of the Innocent. Trigger warning for gore.

Typical human reaction: 'I'm going to kill it!! It might be some rare species!!' )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




It's fitting that I close this series of John Stanley horror stories with what may be his creepiest one ever, from Dell's Ghost Stories #1 (Sept-Nov 1962). Art by Ed Robbins. This issue is in the public domain; scans courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com.

Like a rattler the claw strikes )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




Writer John Stanley is best known for two things: his longtime run on Little Lulu and his authorship of the Dell horror comics Tales from the Tomb (one-shot giant, 1962) and Ghost Stories #1 (Sept-Nov 1962). Some have called the latter two the scariest comic books ever published. Are they? You be the judge, over the next few posts o' mine. To start with, here's the Tales from the Tomb lead story. Art by Frank Springer. This comic is in the public domain (scans courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com).

Oh dear! Just look at those stains! )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




The final Golden Age appearance of Madam Satan, from Pep #21 (Nov 1941; public domain), finds our villain attempting to damn two men at once. Will she succeed?

I think we all know the answer to that, but for old times' sake... )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




In this two-parter from Pep #18 and #19 (Aug-Sept 1941; public domain), our villain learns to change up her strategy a bit from merely seducing men and trying to give them the death-kiss. Does it work? Let's find out!

She's an unholy creature, I tell you! )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




Madam Satan, formerly the murderous mortal woman Tyra and now going by Iola for some reason, receives her first assignment from her infernal mate and boss. From Pep #17 (July 1941; public domain). Art by Harry Lucey, script possibly by Joe Blair (according to the Grand Comics Database).

I seem to have a premonition of something evil! )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




Madam Satan, seductive servant of the Devil, is one of the great unsung villains of the Golden Age. Her few appearances in Pep Comics were posted on s_d 1.0, way back when. Here's the first of them, from Issue 16 (June 1941), written by Abner Sundell, with art by Harry Lucey. As with all Pep issues up to #71, this comic is in the public domain (scans courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com).

Putting the 'fatale' in 'femme fatale' )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




Last time, we saw that John Dickering, the Comet, under the influence of bad-guy hypnosis, had committed several robberies and disintegrated at least one cop in the process. He snapped out of it, discovered he was now a wanted man, and vowed to clear his name. Which would be a tall order, given that while still mesmerized he'd managed to kill both his captors. So, did he ever clear his name? Find out in this story from Pep #17 (July 1941) which, like all issues up to #71, is in the public domain (scans courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com).

Watch the Comet achieve an historic first for the superhero genre! Major spoilers ahoy! )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher


Oh quit flirting, you two.

By request, another Comet story. This one's from Pep #3 (April 1940). Pep issues from 1 through 71 are in the public domain; scans are courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com.

Don't call me 'squirt!' )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




The publisher now called Archie Comics began in 1939 as MLJ Comics. Pep, its third title, is today best known for introducing the world to Archie Andrews. However, he didn't debut until Issue 22 (Dec. 1941). Before that, and for some time afterwards, Pep was an anthology comic of which the lead feature was the Shield, America's first patriotic-themed superhero. This post is about neither of them. Rather, it's about the Comet, a superhero with the chemically-induced power to disintegrate evildoers with a glance. The creation of Jack Cole (Plastic Man), he was, like many early Golden Age capes, a brutal, take-no-prisoners guy who didn't hesitate to kill. Here, from Issue 1 (Jan. 1940), is his origin story and first adventure. Pep issues from 1 through 71 are in the public domain; scans are courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com.

Read more... )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




Time for another cracktastic Fantomah: Mystery Woman of the Jungle adventure by Fletcher Hanks (as Barclay Flagg). This story is from Jungle Comics #6 (Fiction House, June 1940), which is in the public domain (scans courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com).

Trigger warning for the racist depiction of African indigenous people.

Just Say No to drug berries of the Unexplored Red Region, kids! )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




These scans are from a one-shot propaganda comic. Created in 1947 by an uncredited writer and artist, and issued by the Catechetical Guild Education Society, a Roman Catholic publisher, Is This Tomorrow envisions, step by step, how a communist takeover of America might take place. While the scenario isn't entirely implausible (we're not talking anywhere near Chick Tract-level distortion of reality, here), it does call for more than a little suspension of disbelief in places. And snark. Let's not forget the snark.

This 48-page comic is now in the public domain (scans courtesy of ComicBookPlus.com).

It Can Happen Here(?) Also, trigger warning for racism and violence/gore )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




Sorry, Mistah J, but as far as grim, unlucky origin stories go, I think this villain may have you beat. From the disturbed imagination of Golden Age cult favourite Fletcher Hanks (as Barclay Flagg), this is the story of Zomax, featuring Fantomah, Mystery Woman of the Jungle. It's from Jungle Comics #14 (Fiction House, February 1941), which is in the public domain (scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus).

Read more; trigger warning for one-panel racist depiction )
alicemacher: Lisa Winklemeyer from the webcomic Penny and Aggie, c2004-2011 G. Lagacé, T Campbell (Default)
[personal profile] alicemacher




In the 1950s, when Basil Wolverton wasn't drawing exaggeratedly gonky people for Mad or horrifying apocalyptic scenarios for the Christian Plain Truth magazine, he wrote and drew a number of kooky and fun stories, full of his signature alliteration and rhyme, for younger readers. Among his recurring characters was the space hero Jumpin' Jupiter. Here's a representative story from Key Publications' Weird Tales of the Future (November 1952), which is in the public domain (scans courtesy of Comic Book Plus).

Well crack my crown and call me coo-coo! )
skjam: Man in blue suit and fedora, wearing an eyeless mask emblazoned with the scales of justice (Default)
[personal profile] skjam
Hi folks!

Today we look at Crimebuster, the lead feature of Boy Comics, from Lev Gleason Publications. Born Chuck Chandler, he was at a military prep school hockey game when her received word that his parents had been murdered by the Nazi agent Iron Jaw. Without waiting to change out of his uniform, Chuck went into action, and got dubbed Crimebuster.

He battled the man with the metal prosthetic lower face for several issues, until Iron Jaw died. Crimebuster then went on to battle other criminals until Iron Jaw came back to life...somehow.

By this issue, Boy Comics #74 (Feb 1952), Chuck had moved into high school and started wearing long pants. He also fought Iron Jaw pretty much exclusively; the three stories in this issue are really just arbritarily divided chapters in their ongoing struggle.



I'm just going to skip to the third story, which matches the cover. Lev Gleason comics are in the public domain, so I can bring this story to you in its entirety.

That's one batch of beer they're going to have to mark down in price. )

Your thoughts and comments?
SKJAM!
http://www.skjam.com
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[personal profile] his_spiffynesss
Now here's something a bit different from the Golden Age: A female lead character that's not the typical beautiful ingenue or sexpot.

Tugboat Tessie was a backup feature from the short lived Seven Seas Comics by Manning Lee Stokes. Tessie was clearly inspired by the "Rosie the Riveter" image of working women of the war era. Being a lady sailor, it's kind of clear Stokes was taking the dialog from Popeye.

From Seven Seas Comics #1 )

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