Friday, October 30, 2009

Bronze Age Alphabet: Part 3

Today Trey Causey brings us Part 3 of his Bronze Age Alphabet, which turns out has a little Halloween relevance. Check out Parts One and Two if you missed them.

M is for Monsters:
We’ve mentioned the various four-color gargantua back at G. Now, let’s take a moment to consider the other monsters that menaced the comics world after the loosening of the Comics Code. Marvel tested the water with a living vampire (thus, technically not undead)—Morbius—first appearing in Amazing Spider-Man #101 (1971), but graduating into his own Adventure into Fear with #20 (1974).

After that the Big Two went after the famous monsters of filmland. Dracula went from villain to antihero in multiple Marvel mags starting with 1972's Tomb of Dracula. Marvel’s wolfman was the Werewolf by Night debuting in Marvel Spotlight vol. 1 #2 in 1972, but ultimately getting his own title. We got dueling Frankenstein’s Monsters in January, 1973—Marvel gave life to The Monster of Frankenstein, while DC nurtured the Spawn of Frankenstein in Phantom Stranger vol. 2 #23. The Living Mummy, who shambled through Supernatural Thrillers starting with #5 (1973), did genre double-duty as sort of blaxploitation and horror. The weakest of these celluloid reimaginings was probably Marvel’s Manphibian—a Gill-Man wannabe—from Legion of Monsters #1 (1975). A possibly film-inspired footnote (if we count German silent film—and you know I do) is the Golem, unearthed in Strange Tales vol. 1 #174 (1974), though of course the original Jewish folktale is the ultimate source.

There were also plenty of original monsters. Dueling swamp monsters rose from the muck in 1971 with Marvel’s Man-Thing and DC’s Swamp Thing. Marvel’s Scarecrow almost got his own series but instead emerged from a painting into Dead of Night #11. DC sent monsters into combat in World War II as the Creature Commandos. And what creature catalogue would be complete without acknowledging the ghosts, ghoulies, and assorted grotesques that graced the pages of the various horror anthology comics throughout the era?

N is for New Gods:
"There came a time when the Old Gods died…" the narrator tells us in Kirby’s New Gods vol. 1 #1 (1971). Maybe reports of the old gods’ deaths were premature. Instead, the Norse and Greek Pantheon mainstays of comics since the Golden Age were being forced to share the increasingly crowed heavens. Marvel added the Egyptian, Chinese, Indian, and Slavic gods, among others, as the gods of Earth formed sort of a United Pantheons to strategize for the return of the Celestials. This led to the creation of the Young Gods in Thor vol. 1 #203 (1972) who were intended to exemplify the best of humanity. Marvel also took inspiration from the pulps, borrowing Set wholesale(wholescale?) from Robert E. Howard, and the inspirations for tentacled horror, Shuma-Gorath, and the Elder God, Chthon, from HP Lovecraft.

But those are all old mythologies, new to comics though they maybe be. Jack Kirby wanted to give us something brand new—and he did it in his so-called "Fourth World" spanning multiple titles, but centering on the titular New Gods. The Manichean struggle between Apokolips and New Genesis has gone on for over a decade after their creator's death, and—Final Crisis(es) aside—will probably go on for sometime longer. Kirby created another pantheon of new gods (but these masqueraded as old gods) in the von Daniken inspired Eternals in 1976. The Eternals were created by yet another group of new gods—the enigmatic gang of giant, weirdly armored super-aliens called the Celestials, who liked to judge things Old Testament-style. Jim Starlin, taking inspiration from the Book of Kirby, brought forth his own new gods in Iron Man when he introduced Thanos (a Darkseid stand-in) who was born of a hereto unknown branch of the Titans of Greek myth, though they were later retconned to be a splinter group of Eternals.

O is for Out-there Outfits:
Comic book costumes have never been what you would call demure or conservative, but in the Bronze Age comic couture went to a whole new level. It’s cool that Luke Cage was secure enough in his masculinity to wear a canary yellow Pirate shirt, but are we to assume the metal head- and wrist-bands, and chain-link sash are a statement about the place of the black man in 70s America—or a case of accessories making the outfit? Do the psychedelic raccoon eyes of Dazzler, Kitty Pryde, and Marionette really hide their identities, or just get them noticed at the discotheque? And speaking of Dazzler, this fashion forward lady also sported mirrored roller skates, and a jumpsuit—excuse me, Parisian nightsuit. Another disco-victim was the Spider-Man villain Hypno-Hustler, who looks like he gave up a promising career with Parliament for a life of crime. So you don’t think I’m (just) picking on disco, I’ll push out onto the runway: Satana—in an oh-so European, precariously cutaway unitard and shaggy, fur boots assemble, followed by Red Sonja—in a Hyborian Age haute couture scale mail-kini.

Let’s not play favorites, though. DC had more than its share of questionable fashion statements. Supergirl did a lot of fashion don'ts, beginning in Adventure Comics vol. 1 #397 (1970), as she embarked on a series of reader designed costumes. She went through six costumes and an evening gown before settling on her outfit for the rest of the 70s: hot pants, a chocker, and a V-neck billowy-sleeved shirt. I blame those kids from the future she was hanging out with, ‘cause the Legion of Super-Heroes introduced Bronze Age readers to a brave new world of fashion with the 70s redesigns of Dave Cockrum, further (uh) refined by Mike Grell. Let's run the list: Extensive cutouts? Threatened wardrobe malfunction? High collars? High collar, no pants, and Peter Pan shoes? That’s a big, synthesized, computer-voice "AFFIRMATIVE" to all of the above. The prize for most out-there Legion outfit goes to Cosmic Boy's duds debuted in Superboy vol. 1 #215 (1976) which are best described as...well...uh—a black bustier, and gloves affair? That’s the best I can do, really. You’re just going to have to google it. In fact, Cosmic Boy may win the whole DC category, beating out swordswoman Starfire's green-dotted, cutout partial unitard, and Warlord supporting cast member Shakira's fur bikini with booties.

P is for President:

The American President had appeared before the Bronze Age—most famous perhaps is Kennedy’s post-assassination appearance in Superman—but the push toward greater topicality in the Bronze Age had real (and fictional) presidents turning up more often. President as protagonist-in-chief had its highwater mark in the 1973-74 DC series Prez: First Teen President. Prez (both title and first name) Rickard dealt with the tough issues of his day—legless vampires, and Russian chess-player supervillians, for example. He also appointed a Native American, Eagle Free (complete with war bonnet and teepee), as head of the FBI, and his own mother, Martha, as VP. Compared to that, the term of alternate earth Kyle Richmond (the Squadron Supreme’s Nighthawk) is almost uneventful—except for possession by an alien intelligence leading to suspension of the Constitution, and subsequent conquest of the whole planet. I'd almost be willing to sit through the CSPAN coverage of the Congressional hearings after that one...

In the realm of presidents you might actually have studied in school, FDR got a retroactive role in the creation of the Justice Society of America in DC Special #29 (1977). In 1973, Richard Nixon was embroiled in Watergate; but in the pages of Captain America that same year, the nefarious Number One of the Secret Empire was implied to be the President under the hood (taking the "Tricky Dick" thing to a whole new level!)—just before he committed suicide in the White House.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

What is Scanned in the DC Universe as of Oct 1 2009

Thanks to the diligent work of a comic scan enthusiast by the name of Phantom Stranger, we have a new listing of What's Left to Scan in the DC Universe as of Oct 1, 2009. (This is an excel doc that has been converted to web pages by me, so you know how that can make for wonky html.)

From his intro to the document we get these stats...

33,641 DC Comic scans now completed.
That's 95.37% of all DC now scanned.
Just 1,633 issues left to go or 4.63%.

33,000 comics - if you were able to read 4 comics a night, it would take you over 20 years to read all the currently scanned DC comics.

What you won't find in this document is the complete list of all scanned DC Comics. I had to delete that to make the pages work in a browser (imagine a web page with 33K table cells on it, and you start to see the problem.) - If you would like a copy of the original excel document, leave a comment. :)

Thanks to Phantom Stranger for his hard work on this! (and I removed your email in case some crazy DC Lawyer wants to cause trouble.) Also thanks to Darkseid, KingDaubach, Kaotic1, rorschach, Brainiac,Tomander and Heretic for providing updates.

- Jim

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Mister Crimson Hostess Ad

Like a lot of comic fans, I love looking at the old Hostess Ads that used to appear in Marvel and DC comics back in the 80s. Well, while digging through some *back issues* of Mister Crimson, I saw this classic Mister Crimson Hostess Ad

Note for our friends in our countries: This is not a real ad...please don't email me about back issues.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Free Comics Monday: Whiz Comics

Whenever I post old Fawcett comics here on Free Comics Monday, I have just the slightest twinge of hesitation because, you know, DC Comics Entertainment now owns all of the characters.

Then I read stuff like this...

Following the success of Warner's film noir-inspired Batman film The Dark Knight and the commercial failure of its lighter, family-friendly Speed Racer during the summer of 2008, August departed from the project after being forced to make the film's script more in line with The Dark Knight's serious tone. The film is now in development with Bill Birch and JSA/52 co-author Geoff Johns assigned to write the screenplay. ~ wikipedia

...and all my hesitation vanishes.

Enjoy these two Non-Dark installments of the adventures of Captain Marvel in Whiz Comics.

[ Whiz 46 ]

Whiz 138

[ Whiz 138 ]

On a more serious note - I would like to take this time to remember Frank Coghlan, who died at the age of 93 back on October 5th. Frank played Billy Batson in the 1946 movie serial The Adventures of Captain Marvel.

Frank Coghlan in The Adventures of Captain Marvel

Considered by many as one of the best movie serials of all times, I would encourage people to check out the series if you never have. In keeping with the times, there is a scene where Captain Marvel shoots people with a machine gun, which just goes to show Hollywood has a long history of not really understanding the Big Red Cheese. ;)

- Jim

Friday, October 23, 2009

An Interview with Lou Manna

Young All Stars 31 cover by Lou Manna and Bob DownsToday I am pleased to present this interesting interview with veteran Artist Lou Manna, who has worked on a on many notable comics over the years including early work on Thunder Agents and All-Star Squadron to his present work on The Phantom and Soulcatcher series.

Special thanks goes to FBU guest correspondent Clayton Neal who conducted this interview.

Clayton Neal: Looking back, what was it that got you hooked on comics? Do you remember what title it was?

LOU MANNA: I can remember the issue! It was Superman #161, the one where he goes to war and Ma and Pa Kent die. I was amazed that could happen in a comic book! And seeing the beautiful Curt Swan's art got me hooked. It was all DC from there. I remember going to the corner store and an issue of Batman with Ace the Bathound, so from then on I was a comic book junkie!

There was a cool old store where the guy had boxes of comics he sold for five cents each. I bought a lot of DC's Superman and Batman, and in a few years I had a pretty good collection. I discovered Marvel's Spiderman a few years later, and then things really started opening up for me.

I have been collection comics since I was 8 years old. Thank God for comic shops! An old man like me going to the 7-11 to buy comics might look a bit odd.

CN: When did you realize that you wanted to be a comic book artist?

LM: When I was 8 or 9 years old, I started to try and draw Superman and Batman. I would do these little comics on loose leaf paper with crayons. When my Dad would come home from work, I would sell them to him for a quarter. From there, I just tried to copy my favorites like Gil Kane, Buscema, Neil Adams, and many others.

I spent years making the same mistakes that most others who want to draw comics make. I had no knowledge of anything about the comic business. I would see the finished product, but didn't know what all went into the production.

CN: Was it easy for you to break into comics?

LM: Not at all! Well, in one way it was, but in another it was not! When I first started to show samples, I was so naive. I took the samples to DC Comics, and Jack Adler would be very patient with me. He would explain that I needed to work on drawing hands, so I would do that, go back the next month, and he would say “Ok, the hands are good, but the buildings are bad, work on that. This went on for a few years. I was always sure that the next time I went in, would be the time he would say “we have work for you”. This went on for about 3 years, but I was learning as I went along, since I had no formal training.

Finally, Dave Manak and Dick Giordano liked my samples. And were going to give me a werewolf story to do. The fact is, I showed them my samples and went home, thinking the same rejection was happening. They called me and asked “Where did you go?” and then they told me that they had work for me. They said I could go back in the next day, and that is where it began.

I spent two years training on mystery stories, and really learned a lot about the business. I learned to draw a lot of things that I would never want to draw on my own. It was great training because it taught me that there was more to comic art than just drawing muscle men. I also learned about story telling, from there I got a bit lucky.

My friend, John Cardona, was a great artist in school, and we would always draw pictures and show each other. One day he introduced me to his cousin, Jimmy Janes, who was working for Warren. I showed him my work, and he saw potential. I started doing some layouts for him, and from there, he got me the Legion of Super Heroes assignment. I did a lot of work there, layouts and pencils that he would go over and fix, that lasted about a year. I met Rich Buckler through Jimmy, and did some layouts for him on the Hulk, All-Star Squadron, and other books that he worked on.

I went and got Spiderman from Mark Gruenwald, and was supposed to become the artist on the Web of Spiderman, but that fell through, so I went back to DC where I felt more comfortable.
CN: You were rejected a number of times by DC, did you submit to other companies?

LM: The funny thing was, I got rejected by DC for three solid years. I just happened to go to Marvel Comics with Jimmy Janes when he was dropping off his work. Mark Gruenwald came out to say “hi”.

He looked at my work, brought me in and gave me a Spiderman script—just like that! They never used it, but I got paid for it, and did a few small jobs for them. A Rogue story, I think, so that was weird!

Sunrise 01There were a lot of companies in the 80's that you could submit samples to. Some rejected me, and some gave me work. I was one of the first American artists that worked for a British company when I did Sunrise for Harrier Comics in 1983. Most British artists came here, I did the opposite! Also, Grant Morrison had a back up story in it, so how weird is that?

CN: I am interested in knowing what your feelings are about the past “ages” of comics. We have all watch the medium evolve, but not everyone thinks that is such a good thing.

LM: Well, what the artists today are doing is really amazing work. But there is something about the look of the older comics that stays with me. Today the art is so much better. The coloring, the writing, are excellent, but a lot of todays books get lost in the process. The coloring is by computer, and in many cases so dark that I can't see the art underneath.

The silver age to me was the most exciting, a combination of the age and the times. I remember when certain comics came out, they were so mind numbing to me: Neal Adam's Batman, Wrightson's Swamp Thing, Colan, Kane, Kirby, Aparo, all a big part of my youth, so I am bias for that time and style. I'm not taking anything away from the greats of today. Hitch, Davis, Garcia Lopez, Hughes, and so many others, I don't see it as “bronze age, silver age, etc., but as a evolution of comics and the medium.

40 years ago, His Name was Savage, to me was the first mature graphic novel, but it goes unrecognized. Today there is so much product, that you really have to stand out to make a difference.

Salem Saint JamesCN: I know that Salem Saint James, the comic you produced, was set in the World War 2 era. And some of the work you did for DC included both Infinity Inc and the Young All-stars. Am I correct in assuming that you really have a fondness for the golden age?

LM: Not so much the golden age, but I do like that period of time. I was born in the 50's, but I think the art deco of the 30's and 40's—the cars, the clothes, just the feel of that time period makes for some great backgrounds. And as for bad guys, you can never have enough Nazis to beat up on.

I set Salem in the 40's because I like that innocent time, and because he would fit more as a private eye than in todays time period. Now having said that, if I continue doing a new Salem book, I have thought about bringing him into the modern times. But I do like the early golden age stuff. Only the very early Captain America, Superman, and Batman, but after the first few books, the golden age really wasn't so golden. The art was crude, and it wasn't until the early 50's when it got a lot better. As the second generation of comic artists came into the field.

CN: Can you tell us what you are working on now?

Phantom artwork by Lou MannaLM: I am doing a set of sketch cards for Moonstone, a few small indy projects, and I just started to work up a Phantom story that I will be writing and drawing.. Plus a few pet project graphic novels that I am also working on now, I try to work on something new each week, so I take in a lot of small assignments, commercial work. I just finished a 50 page book for a school system in Chicago, and a logo design. So as long as people need work, and I think I can do it, I am always open to new projects. It helps to be able to do a few different styles, and not just comic work, because that expands both.

I have always has such a weird journey in comics. Not always easy, not always fun, but I got bit by the comic bug when I was young. It is something I could never see myself giving up. Even when I worked for corporations as a creative service manager, I always had time at night to do some comic art. I would run home and eat dinner, then go to the studio to work on something. Anything to keep my hand in it.

Now that I do this full time, the stakes are much higher, but the rewards are so much sweeter when you finish up a book and the client is happy.

I look at the road I started on, and the road to get there--- I am a lucky guy!

CN: And we are lucky you granted us this interview! Thank you Lou!

And I second the thanks to both Clayton and Lou for the interview! - Jim

You can check out more of Lou's art at:

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pierre Remembers George Tuska

Enlarge George Tuska Iron Man“I am Iron Man.”

This was Robert Downey JR’s line at the end of the Iron Man movie.

In the 70s… that line applied to George Tuska.

The Iron Man I grew up with was magnificently drawn by him..

It is during his run that I became an Iron Man fan.

But my favorite issue from his run had to be from issue # 78. An issue where Stark recalls how some weapon test went very wrong in Viet Nam.

Boy was that a great issue. I must have read it a thousand times. My copy of that comic is falling apart from my reading it wayyyyy too much.

It was also under his short Avengers run that I became a fan of Beast. I was not familiar with Beast until I saw him in the pages of the Avengers. Although later the title would be taken over by George Perez… it was Tuska who made me a fan not only of Beast… but of Yellow Jacket as well.

George Tuska Iron ManLoved those issues.

Sadly I don’t have that many comics drawn by Tuska.

Other then his Iron Man…. I have a few Avengers comics… A few Daredevil comics…. And probably an issue or two of some other series that I can’t recall right now.

Somehow… he seemed to be very under-appreciated as an artist.

Although in “The Great Comic Book Artist”, it is mentioned that “he has been too often at the mercy of inkers less talented then he.” That “To see Tuska at his best you have to look back to the forties”.

Sadly…. An inker can make or break a penciller’s work.

Often, Tuska was matched with inker Vince Colletta. Colletta for example would take an artist’s penciled work and bring it to his level. So if he took the work of some lesser artist… he would bring it up to his level. But if he took the work of a better artist… sadly he would take it down to his level.

George Tuska was one of the greats who somehow fell under the radar, which happens wayyyy too often to many great artists.

I really got a kick when Iron Man made an appearance in Spider-Girl, and Ron Frenz drew Iron Man as if George Tuska had drawn the character himself. It was like seeing the Iron Man of my younger years once more.

Ahhhh…. The memories.

But as long as we have Iron Man around…. We will have a little reminder of George Tuska…. Since for a decade or so….

He was Iron Man.

R.I.P. Geroger Tuska. 1916- 2009

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Hey Kids! It's Mister Crimson!

While we wait for the Mister Crimson team to put on the finishing touches to some new installments, I thought I would share these cool looking character sketches Diego did.

He was working on a project for children and decided to try the same style on Mister Crimson.
To the right you can click and see the full sized version of this stylized Mister Crimson. Below is Ace in the same style.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Free Comics Monday: Space Western

Okay, in my time of posting public domain comics here on my blog, I can say this is probably the most mind blowing concept comic I've ever encountered. Long before the idea of Transparent Mashups was even coined, Charlton Comics pioneered the concept with their zany comic Space Western.

What's interesting is this the actual idea of Space Westerns was a common theme in comics and science fiction, but usually there was an attempt to blend the elements.

However, such subterfuge is unnecessary for Space Western. Here,
Spur wearing cowboys and warpaint wearing Indians clash against ray gun welding Martians for the fate of humanity.

In this issue Spurs Jackson and his Space Vigilantes who in one issue fight Nazis on Mars

Space Western 44

[ Space Western 44 ]

In this issue Strong Bow, a Native American who helps the US Army fight Aztecs from Space

Space Western 42

[ Space Western 42 ]

- Enjoy!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Caine Interviews: Carbonated Comics

A few weeks back we posted our first Digital Comics Spotlight centered on the digital comic book distribution site: Carbonated Comics . Recently we were able to interview Nicole, Adam, AJ, and the team over at Carbonated about their site and it's services:

1. What is Carbonated Comics?
Carbonated Comics is a technology company dedicated to providing publishers and artists a way to safely publish digital comic books and other media through a hardware independent platform.

2. Does Carbonated Comics see 'printed comics' and 'digital comics' as separate entities? Are the printed & digital markets separate?

The digital comic book industry is an extension of the printed comic book industry in many ways. The most exciting aspect of the digital industry is how it opens and redefines the market for both emerging and established publishers. For small press and emerging publishers, digital comics allow them to get their work out to the world with unprecedented ease and very little of the overhead associated with printed comics.

For established publishers, digital distribution allows them to make their entire body of material available with none of the costs associated with creating reprints or with graphic novelization. While there are many points where these markets cross over, we believe that those who savor the tactile experience and collectability of printed comic books will continue to support that market, and those who have embraced digital formats will greatly increase the demand for digital content. Digital and printed comic books are not mutually exclusive, and we have had a great deal of feedback from customers who said that they would be interested in titles that were available in both formats.

3. What types of services does Carbonated Comics provide for its clients?

Currently, Carbonated Comics offers several services, with more on the way. We currently offer: – our secure storefront and the portal to our publisher and collaboration zones.

Protection of IP – Our clients can take advantage of our secure file format to distribute digital comics in a manner that helps to protect their intellectual property. Our secure format (CCX) is not simply a renamed archive file, but is a security enabled and fully encrypted distribution platform. This helps greatly reduce the risk that a comic book will be pirated and distributed without permission.

Digital Comic Manager – The Carbonator is Carbonated Comics premier software product for reading and managing a digital comic collection. The Carbonator is compatible with many standard digital comic book formats such as CBR and CBZ, and is the native reader for our secure multimedia capable CCX files. The Carbonator is the only digital comic manager that allows you to take full advantage of the multimedia components of the CCX file format including soundtracks, voiceovers and DVD like commentaries.

Digitizing service – After speaking to many artists, publishers and content owners about digital distribution, we have discovered that one of the greatest roadblocks with publishing digital content is getting all the various types of content into a standard format. To help our publishers overcome this barrier,Carbonated Comics offers our professional digitizing service for free to all of our clients.

Collaboration zone - We offer a ‘Looking for Work’ and ‘Job Fair’ feature on our website. This allows content creators and publishers to connect to each other and start collaborations. Content creators can list themselves as Looking for work, and publishers can mark themselves as Looking for workers.

4. Are there any restrictions on the types of comics that Carbonated Comics will publish (such as length or content)?

We do not have a requirement or any restrictions for the length of a comic that we will distribute. Whether it is a single strip or a 1000 page epic, we can make it happen. Our only restriction on content is that we are currently unable to host and distribute content of a graphic pornographic nature.

5. Are there any restrictions on the types of creators that Carbonated Comics will publish for (such as established or non)?

We realize the value of all types of publishers, from the huge corporate mega-publishing houses down to the self publishing ‘one man show’. Small press and independent publishers are vital to the survival of the comic book industry and we are more than happy to work with anyone who embraces the art form.

6. Are there any plans to publish printed comics as well?

Carbonated Comics is a primarily digital distribution and technology and e-commerce company. At this time, we do not have plans to pursue comic book publishing.

7. Is Carbonated Comics looking at any non-web based markets (such as disks)?

We do not currently have plans for physical media distribution, but we are looking at many non-traditional distribution venues as well as our current development for the iPhone. While we do not plan to distribute physical media as a commercial endeavor, our technology would make it quite easy to do so, especially for promotional materials like convention freebies.

8. What are some differences, if any, that Carbonated Comics has from some other services out now such as Comicsxp, Drive Through Comics, Wowio, and Crispy Comics?

The primary difference between Carbonated Comics and our competitors is that we are a dedicated technology services company. Each member of the Carbonated Comics team brings an average of 12 years of technology expertise to the table with backgrounds ranging from banking and e-commerce to aerospace and defense.

We are committed to the security and service required to make the digital comics industry as safe, secure and user friendly as possible while maintaining the agility to meet the ever changing demands of the industry.

9. What steps has Carbonated Comics taken to ensure success when other similar services (such as eyemelt) haven't been able to make a success of digital comics?

There are a few key factors to success in the digital comics market. The first is solid technology. Many of the failed or struggling companies out there who have tried digital distribution have relied too heavily on older technologies such as Adobe PDF or CBR/CBZ. While these technologies succeed in getting files out the door with sequential pictures, that is all they have to offer.

We have taken the approach of designing our technology from the ground up specifically for the comic book market. By offering such features as synchronized soundtracks (music, voiceovers, sound effects, etc.), DVD like “directors commentaries” and multiple viewing formats (page by page and frame by frame), we have opened up the possibilities for a truly new comic book experience.

The second key factor to success in the industry is the one-stop-shopping approach that we have adopted. Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for artists and publishers to take advantage of digital distribution. This is why we have such straightforward relationships with our publishers. We offer free digitizing, free hosting (it costs nothing to distribute through our website), no hidden fees (like transaction fees or bandwidth usage fees) and we claim absolutely no ownership over content, stories, characters or trademarks. Our compensation model is based purely on a share of the sales, with a vast majority of the profit from a digital sale going to the content owner.

10. Where does Carbonated Comics see the digital comic book industry in five years, and where will Carbonated Comics fit in?

With the growing market for devices such as eBook readers, smart phones, netbooks, gaming systems and the like, as well as the expanding market for digital content in general, we see the digital comic book market as having a very bright future. More and more companies are looking at digital content as a primary means of distribution, as opposed the novelty that it was 5 years ago. We at Carbonated Comics are a very adaptive and forward thinking group and we plan being around for the long term!

Thank you Carbonated Comics, we look forward to great comics coming from you for quite some time...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Pierre Speaks: Superman Batman: Public Enemies

Superman Batman Public EnemiesAs a rule…. When DC/Warner started making those straight to DVD movies…. I pretty much stayed away from them movies.

Wayyyy too often, those movies are made with little or no budget, and end up being worse then Saturday morning cartoons.

The exception to that had been the Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker movie.

Boy was that good…. On every level.

The animation was awesome…. The character and location designs were very strong…. And even the story was pretty good.

But as I said… that was the exception.

So I stayed away from the likes of the Superman: Brainiac or Superman: Doomsday movies.

I had no interests in movies with poor stories and animation.

But then a good friend of mine… AKA Slim Jim… sent me a copy of the New Frontier DVD and he got me… not hooked… but at least intrigued by some of them cheap movies.

Although I still stayed away from Batman: Gotham Nights and the Wonder Woman movie… I did give a try to Green Lantern: First Flight which was pretty good… and lately…

Superman Batman: Public Enemies.

I had read the comic… and although the story was pretty weak… some of the visuals by Ed McGuinness were pretty strong…. And I was curious to see how some of that would be adapted/translated into one of them cheap movies.

I am sorry to say… not very well.

One of my colleagues at the studio also got the DVD… but as soon as he saw Captain Atom walk (fairly early in the movie) he almost threw the DVD out the window. But he did turn it off and that was the end of it for him.

I must admit that I was surprised to find out that this would be the next DC/Warner DVD movie. Although I can imagine the “bean counters” at DC/Warner thinking that a movie with 2 of their most recognizable characters would be an instant hit.

For the story… they somehow managed to fix some of the weakest elements of it.

But they also kept some of the elements that make no bit of sense.

What do some characters like Brimstone or Mentallo even need money for??

Oh well.

And in the end… they could have surprised us with a nice unexpected twist. But sadly…. They went for the petty obvious ending (no I won’t spoil it for those who still want to see it).

Essentially…the whole point of the comic was to get rid of Luthor’s status as the President of the United States and bring him back to his Pre-Crisis status… more or less.

But in the movie, they simply wanted to make a buddy-buddy movie showing how much Bats and Supes were the best of friends despite their differences.

As for the animation, it generally was clunky… Some of it was OK…. But most of it was somewhat poor… and some even downright awful.

That is very disappointing concerning that this is basically by those who gave us Batman, and Justice League.

Sure the animation in some of the shows was iffy… but in general it was pretty good… and heck some episodes on those shows were exceptionally good.

At the time… in the animation biz… these were the shows used as examples of really strong/well made animation TV shows.

No so much for Superman Batman: Public Enemies.

But I guess that like pretty much everyone who produces animation, they always look for a studio that will be willing to do more and more work for less and less money. And sadly that often can be reflected in the final result when they try to produce a show with almost no money.

Although in this case… I suspect that the real problem came from the design work.

This show had some of the worst design work I have seen in a while.

Especially Power Girl’s face from profile…. Damn that was painful to look at. Although…. No…. the very worst design of the lot HAS to be Amanda Waller. Damn that was bad.

The more lines you put on a character…. The more difficult/time consuming it will be to animate it. And by giving each characters a hundred extra lines to try to show ever single muscles… they made the animators job that much more difficult.

If you have the budget for it, or a strong enough crew… you can do a film with highly detailed designs. But not in this case sadly.

It’s a credit to the animators that the animation is only clunky… because it could easily have been much… much worse.

I understand that they wanted to more or less try to match McGuinness’ artwork… but all they seem to have gotten from McGuinness’ style was how muscle-bound McGuinness’ characters are and tried to emulate that by adding a hundred lines to suggest the muscles.

They could have made a more streamlined version of McGuinness’ characters not unlike the designs they used in Justice League… instead of the mess they came up with.

It kills me how they always try to re-invent the wheel.

They had developed a great style that was perfect for animation…. Why always try to re-design what not only works… but what works in a great way.

It’s not only DC… Marvel does the same. They keep on re-designing their characters too for each animated projects. Heck just in the “Hulk VS” movie they have two different designs for the Hulk.

Damn that’s insane.

But sadly that happens wayyyy to often in animation.

On a production…. Whenever you have a new designer, director, etc, they always try to “fix” what was done by those who were on the show before them.

They will try to re-design everything to try to put their mark on the style… to put their mark on the show.

Although it’s the same in movies.

Why could they not use the same Batman costumes in Batman Returns as in the first Batman film?? No they HAD to re-design it. And the costume in Batman Returns is not better then the one in Batman… it’s just slightly different.

The same with Blade.

Heck even Spider-man they made a new costume just to make the blue a little darker for some reason.

Damn!!! That is INSANE!

All that energy wasted to fix something that already works to begin with. To fix something that is NOT broken.

I’ll never understand it.

At least for the voice acting in Superman Batman: Public Enemies, they used the actors who did a fantastic job in Batman, Superman, and Justice League animated.

It was funny how in one of the extras… they had this “dinner” with Kevin Conroy, the “voice” of Batman, and how they were complimenting him on being the only one who could play Batman.

How no one else could play Batman but him.

Only to have in the very next extra feature, a preview of Justice League: Crisis on 2 Earths, with Billy Baldwin playing Batman.

Once again… why not keep on using Kevin Conroy in the role of Batman?? Especially if he was SO great as they just were saying 2 minutes before that??

Although in the Superman Batman: Public Enemies, they re-used some of the extra features they already had used for Green Lantern: First Flight… still some of the extras were still fun to look at.

The best extra feature HAD to be the Justice League: Crisis on 2 Earths preview.

Damn!... So far… that looks good.

Can’t wait to see that one.

But sadly…. It will be available only on spring 2010.

Spring 2010??

Damn!!! That’s wayyyy too far.

It will be a long winter waiting for that one.

Oh well.

So in short… I would not recommend the Superman Batman: Public Enemies DVD unless you are buying it for your kids under the age of 12.

But if you really must buy it… buy the 2 disks version. You will have some nice extras, and 2 good episodes of Superman the animated series.

So if you decide to buy it… Remember… You were warned. :)

Until next time.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

More Mister Crimson Fan Art

While we are waiting on new episodes of Mister Crimson, I thought I would share this fan art drawing of Crimson by Agustín Fernández:

Thank you Agustin, and thank you Diego for sharing that with us!

- Jim

Monday, October 12, 2009

Free Comics Monday: The Face

The Face is radio announcer Tony Trent, who decides to fight crime after having witnessed a murder committed by gangsters disguised as cops. Having no innate superpowers, he instead uses a frightful mask to scare criminals, not unlike Batman. With issue 63, he no longer wears the mask and fights crime as himself.

The Face 02

[ The Face 02 ]

Created by artist Mart Bailey and an unknown writer. The Face first appeared in the Columbia Comics anthology title Big Shot Comics #1 (May 1940) and continued until issue 62 (January, 1946). From issue 63 the feature continued as Tony Trent until Big Shot 104, the final issue of the series. Apart from appearing in Big Shot, The Face also had two issues of his own title (1941-1942), as well as two as Tony Trent (1948).

Big Shot 19

[ Big Shot 19 ]

The character has recently reappeared as part of Dynamite Entertainment's Project Superpowers, going by the name "Mister Face." In this series he is capable of producing (uncontrolled) terrifying hallucinations in others.


Friday, October 9, 2009

Bronze Age Spotlight: A Theory of Power

Hero For Hire 01Editor's Note: Today's Bronze Age Spotlight introduces a new writer to the Flashback Universe Team: Crom! Crom is a fiction and film writer for 2nd Culture, an IP creation company. Crom prefers the rocket launcher to the rail gun, Marvel to DC, and Classical to Post-modern. Crom is not a robot from the future, but we're not sure about his illegitimate offspring. You can learn more at his

A risk inherent to reading the 1970’s Luke Cage, AKA Powerman, in this day and age is having one’s mind exploded by an overload of stereotypes, dialogue and cliches which run from quaint to outright racist

The story begins with our protagonist (who seems to only be called Lucas in the first story), very black, and very in jail, (it's okay though, he was framed). There is hope for his release... not through his innocence, but as a White Doctor’s guinea pig. The Doctor offers to experiment on Lucas' body in exchange for a full pardon... just kidding, more like vague promises. This experiment could cure the seriously ill, even stop the aging process. But why try it on the old, or the ill when perfectly healthy, mid-twenties Black men are abundant in maximum security prisons?

Too Hot in the Hot Tub!As it does with all comic book Doctors willing to subject human beings to experiments, things turn to the ridiculous... and for Lucas, add 30 CCs more racism.

Bathing in the salty brine of the "electro-chemical solution", Lucas is confronted by his token prison oppressor, Rackham - the red-neck advocate of the issue. Intent on frying our hero, he hatefully twists the special science-knobs. The searing chemicals penetrate Lucas's body, and from the hate-stew emerged Whitey's ironic nightmare: steely skinned Luke Cage - Blacker ‘an ever.

With one mighty swing of his powerful cliche, Lucas smashes his way free of the miracle healing/death chamber, and keeps on punching till he’s escaped prison. Now a drifter, Lucas makes his way back to New York, to Harlem, and the streets he grew up on. And after beating the living shit out of a random kid, decides that New York needs his super powered skills as a private dick.

Seriously - after picking up the pieces of my mind, I thought about how this story could have came into being...

Shaft!When 1972 hit, the blaxploitation movement was getting a full head of steam. The previous year had yielded two of the biggest films to make the scene: Sweet Sweetback’s Badass Song and the more well known Shaft. The Black badass had arrived. It was an archetype soon placed into mass production.

Archie Goodwin probably woke up screaming in bed, one spring morning. The gravy train of Blaxploitation was pulling away from the platform, and Archie needed to dive for the caboose. Luke Cage was born.

Marvel had been no stranger to the Black Super Hero. Two major Black characters had already set the stage. The Prowler; a villain from the Spider Man gallery; intriguing in his own way. His costume had a unique flavour, and unlike many of Parker’s other villains, wasn’t absurdly zoomorphic. The other was The Black Panther, the next property in line to be ruined by Wesley Snipes.

But The Prowler and Black Panther were Black characters with strong characteristics and a clear vision. Our man Luke Cage was a cat of another stripe.

Where The Black Panther traded on strong roots into the cultural history of African origins, and a moral ideal for Black and White people alike, Luke Cage was a pop culture Frankenstein. As I read Hero For Hire, I was more and more inclined to think of the main character not as the edgy protagonist that blaxploitation such as Shaft could create, but instead as a caricature of that protagonist through the eyes of the whitest boy to ever come out of Kansas City. Goodwin’s premiere tale in “Luke Cage: Hero For Hire” feels like a suburban distillation of the civil rights movement as seen from the back of a theater.

With Archie Goodwin’s death in 1998, and Stan Lee now an animatronic film extra, it’s unlikely we could ever get a straight account of what prompted Marvel to create Luke Cage. The obvious answer is that Goodwin was secretly Black, and decided that the forum of Marvel was his Mount Sinai.

The whole affair feels clumsy and awkward, like an ill-conceived publishing stunt, perpetrated on the naive white teens who watched movies like Shaft, Black Belt Jones, Sweet, and assumed they were reading Anthropology textbooks.

The backstory of a wrongly accused, young Black man, abused in jail by white supremacist guards is nearly prototypical. The metaphorical language of his ascension to power is clunky. The writing is confused, as if written in the late hours while caging lines from Richard Roundtree. Their turning point takes place in a hot tub. For the love of god.

Black GoliathHowever, let's give Marvel credit for publishing a comic with a black hero as the star and resisting the urge to use the word Black in the title. You KNOW they just wanted to call him Black Power Man. (Which is probably how he ended up with the name of Power Man later on.)

On the flipside - whatever voice of reason inspired them to forego this annoying tradition seems to have left them two years later, as issue 24 of Power Man of sees the long awaited arrival of Black Goliath. :\

Artistically, the artwork of George Tuska and Billy Graham, like most everything else about the comic, was extremely competent, but hardly revolutionary. Before we completely dismiss the lot of them though, we should remember that they were never given a lot of time to find the characters, or the heart of their story. Goodwin was replaced after five issues by Steve Englehart, and he was only able to get another sixteen out before the series was re-imagined.

The departure of Goodwin and arrival of Steve Englehart on the title prompted a fall into the classic comic mold; oddly shaped midgets in goofy costumes, trying to steal famous diamonds. The social commentary, already thinly scraped across the toast of the narrative, was gone. Now the jive-talking, the street knowledge and the trappings of The Black Power Movement had been bussed out of the comic.

Like the movies, blaxploitation in comics was a quickly killed fad. The book only lasted another fifty issues, when the character was joined with another Marvel cult hero, giving rise to “Powerman & Iron Fist”. The attempt to jiu-jitsu the status of Black people from their martyrdom into heroes was a step along a social path to equality, but it possessed all the nutrition of cotton candy with maple syrup. Fortunately with the team-up, Luke Cage was nursed along for many years until he would later find a solid narrative, with interesting people, and a rich spirituality in the hands of other writers.

Which will no doubt be ruined by Snipes in the future.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What Makes a Good Super Villain Story?

All Star 37Editor's Note: Today I present a guest column by Pop Box creator Clayton Neal. Clayton describes Pop Box as an automatically home delivered comic fix that is designed to let the fans have a say in the comics. He is hoping to launch Pop Box soon but is currently working on content and looking for creators. People interested in hearing more about Pop Box or in submitting work can contact Clayton at

~ Jim

To paraphrase an American great: Last night I had a dream! Not so much about the civil rights movement, but interestingly enough, it did take place in the courtroom. I can't tell you much about it (mainly because I don't remember) but I can tell you that I was standing in front of the judge saying:

“...after all, your Honor, what exactly makes a good super villain story?”

OK, I admit to little sleep and too much research can put me in a very interesting mind set. As I woke up laughing to myself and after the initial “What was that?” line I give, I thought that it was a very interesting question. Not only what makes a good super villain, but also what makes a good super villain team?

Back in the Golden age of comics it was simple, because the characterization was much simpler than today or even in the Bronze Age of comics. For example, When the Injustice Society was first formed by the Wizard (All-Star Comics #37, 1940) the villains actually seemed to form a bond, and had a great cooperation in working together to defeat the Justice Society of America.

In the Bronze Age, it was a different story. The individual villain characteristics started to surface. Marvel Comics showed us that even the most bonded team of villains wasn't immune to a sudden back stabbing. Avengers #72 (Jan.,1970) started a story arc with the Zodiac Gang where the leader of the citadel at the time betrayed his team and blasted them off into space as well as the Avengers. Roy Thomas did a great job in scripting this memorable classic.

JLA 111 Over at DC Comics, Len Wein and artist Dick Dillon went one step farther. In Justice League of America #111 (Sept. 1974) they created the Injustice Gang of the World. A new “master villain” was introduced and gathered together the likes of Mirror Master, Scarecrow, Poison Ivy, the Tattooed Man, and Chronos (The seemingly staple of almost every villain team DC came up with at that time). Libra not only betrayed his team, but beat them and left them for the authorities to pick up. Strangely, this both disappointed me and excited me at the time. Maybe that is what they were aiming for. This was now offically the formula for super villain teams that seemed to work. This is what was making a great super villain team: Who will betray who?

It was only a few years later when Gerry Conway took this theme a little farther, and Created a gem with the Secret Society of Super Villains! I thought it was interesting when I found out that in order to pitch the idea to the big guys at DC Comics, he actually wrote and had Rich Buckler draw up a small sample mock up of what he had planed for the series. He knew this was the only way he might be able to get them to rise up and take notice, since the sales on other Super Villain solo books like the Joker didn't sell so well. I for one am very glad that DC gave the go ahead for the comic. From the very first issue, they started to stretch the betrayal theme to new lengths!

A few examples being:

Secret Society of Supervillains 01Issue one had Gorilla Grodd not only leaving an injured Copperhead behind for the authorities, but in order to serve his own purpose, he actually told the Society that it was Copperhead who was the backstabber, And to think they had just been told that the Secret Society was to be a kind of brotherhood of injustice.

Issue two reintroduced the 50's hero Captain Comet, who recently came back to earth after a long impose exile in space. After he “saved” Star Sapphire from Green Lantern, the society thought to convince Comet that they were indeed the good guys, and the Justice League were the evil ones. (It turns out later that the good Captain didn't buy it, and he knew that the Secret Society's leader, Manhunter, was actually one of the good guys unlike the rest of the team)

Oh sure, the Secret Society bonded together, but the theme was still there. The Wizard and Sinestro not taking part in the big blow out between the SSOSV and Mantis, wanting to wait and side with the winners, The Trickster deciding to try and keep the loot for himself, only to be tossed out of the society, and then getting his first taste of heroism when he sided with Captain Comet and Kid Flash to try and take down the team because he felt betrayed by the society. Some of many examples.

In my humble opinion, the SSOSV was the book that really expanded the theme, and showed the world that what made a great super villain story. Who's going to stab who in the back and when?

Hey, you gotta love your villains, just don't turn your back on them.

- Clayton

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Mister Crimson Episode 43

Mister Crimson Episode 43

In which all hell breaks loose!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Free Comics Monday: The Saint

Today, inspired by the emails I got after I posted the Charlie Chan comics, I'm featuring another comic book Detective series published by Avon

Simon Templar is a British fictional character known as the Saint, featured in a long-running series of books by Leslie Charteris published between 1928 and 1963. After that date, other authors collaborated with Charteris on books, until 1983; two additional works produced without Charteris' participation were published in 1997. The character has also appeared in motion pictures, radio dramas, comic strips, comic books and three television series.

Saint 01

[ The Saint 01 ]

Avon Books was founded in 1941 by the American News Corporation (ANC) to create a rival to Pocket Books. They hired brother and sister Joseph Myers and Edna Myers Williams to establish the company.

As well as normal-sized paperbacks, Avon published digest-format paperbacks (the size and shape of the present-day Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine) in series. These included Murder Mystery Monthly, Modern Short Story Monthly and Avon Fantasy Readers. Many authors highly prized by present-day collectors were published in these editions, including A. Merritt, James M. Cain, H. P. Lovecraft, Raymond Chandler and Robert E. Howard.

They published comics from 1945 through the mid-1950s.

Saint 12

[ The Saint 12 ]

- Enjoy!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Bronze Age Alphabet: Part 2

HH is for horror hosts: Horror anthology comics having equally horrorific hosts is a tradition going back to 1950s EC comics' three so-called "GhouLunatics." The Comics Code had no room for horror framed by snarky comments and bad puns, so the hosts were out of work, except in TV tie-ins like the Twilight Zone, or non-Code approved magazines like Warren's Eerie and Creepy. But the Code loosened in the Bronze Age, and Cain became the "able [heh] care taker" of the House of Mystery in #175 (1968). The object of his fatricidal rage, Abel, moved into The House of Secrets in 1969. DC gave the (grave)moldering host-concept a makeover with the Mad Mod Witch in The Unexpected #108 (August 1968). Macbeth's Three Witches doubled toil and trouble at The Witching Hour (1969-1978). 1969 also saw the debut of Marvel's only hosted horror title, Tower of Shadows, which had not one, but two cemetery-themed emcees--Digger and Gravely P. Headstone.

The crypt doors were flung wide open in the seventies. Eve (a relative of Cain and Abel) weaved nightmares for realtors in Secrets of Sinister House (1972-1974) starting with #6, while Destiny preferred to dwell on Secrets of Haunted House (1975-1982). Destiny also spun Weird Mystery Tales (1972-1975) but entrusted those to Eve after #15. Lucien told Tales of Ghost Castle in 1975, but ran out of material after just 3 issues. The titillatingly titled The Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love (1971), switched to the somewhat less suggestive Forbidden Tales of the Dark Mansion after four issues, and got a sultry (and nameless) hostess who James Robinson would later dub Charity, but who looked a lot like Madame Xanadu--who was the host/star of Doorway to Nightmare starting in 1978. You might think the oddest horror anthology would be Archie Comics' Chilling Adventures in Sorcery as Told by Sabrina, where beginning in 1972, the normally wholesome teen-witch got to show her dark side, but no...The most way-out, weird anthology was hosted by one Farmer Bones, the bucolic, skeletal purveyor of animal-themed, terror tales in The Barn of Fear (1977).

I is for Implosion: Remember the awesome 70s Vixen series? How about that Green Team on-going? Well, what about Grell's DC series, Starslayer? No? That's because in this universe, they never happened. In the Bronze Age, DC and Marvel waged a war for dominance of the shrinking comics market. In 1975, they both seemed to have arrived at a plan of throwing as many concepts out as possible and seeing what stuck. Between 1975 and 1978, DC and Marvel brought out 100 new titles. DC published 57 of these in what house ads trumpeted as "The DC Explosion." The market didn't--or couldn't--respond in the way DC hoped. Titles were axed, and in late 1978 there was a four-color holocaust--31 titles were sent to comic book oblivion in that year alone. Claw was conquered, Firestorm extinguished, and the Doorway to Nightmare shut. No one welcomed Kotter back. This massacre became known as the DC Implosion. In many ways, this loss of wild creativity and innovation was the real crisis that ended the DC Bronze Age.

J is for Junkie: In 1971, Stan Lee took on the Comic Code Authority to publish a story showing the negative effects of drug use. Amazing Spider-Man #96 (sporting the lurid cover blurb "The Last Fatal Trip!") had Harry Osborne act out an LSD cliché, but it led to a change in the Comics Code. The door was open for the Bronze Age to show the sensationalistic horrors of addiction. The unfortunately named Speedy became a heroin addict (and a rock musician) in a socially relevant story arc in Green Lantern #85-88 (1971). In a 1979 Iron Man story arc, cocktail-swilling Tony Stark battled his own "Demon in a Bottle." Addiction could also provide costumed motivation, like in the case of the Black Spider, former small-time crook and heroin addict, who waged a murderous war on the narcotics trade, before running afoul of Batman in Detective Comics #463 (1976). Late Bronze-Agers Cloak and Dagger weren't addicts, true, but they did get their powers through being unwilling guinea pigs in a nefarious plot to perfect synthetic heroin. Sorry, Mr. O'Neil: maybe the snowbird does fly--at least in the Bronze Age.

K is for Kung Fu: In the early seventies, everybody was kung-fu fighting as eastern martial arts mania caught pop culture in its grip. In 1973, the one-two punch of Bruce Lee's Enter the Dragon, and the Kung Fu TV series, got Marvel in the fray with Shang-Chi, Master of Kung Fu, debuting in Marvel Special Edition #15. The character was such a hit that the title was rechristened The Hands of Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu with #17 in 1974. That year the dojo got crowded with Marvel's Iron Fist, and the Sons of the Tiger, both of whom would make appearances in the black and white magazine Deadly Hands of Kung Fu. Jim Dennis (a combined pseudonym for Denny O'Neil and Jim Berry) produced a kung fu novel in '74, titled Dragon Fists--which served as a "backdoor pilot" for DC's entry into the arena with Richard Dragon, Kung Fu Fighter (1975). That same year, Charlton invited fans to the House of Yang, which was a spin-off of their "don't call it Kung Fu: the Comic" 1973 series Yang. DC emphasized the "karate" in the name of the some-time Legionnaire, Karate Kid in his high-kicking solo-series starting in1976. By the end of the seventies, virtually all of those characters were in limbo, "superherofied", or settled into mentor/trainer roles. Exit the Dragon.

L is for Lost Worlds: Let's get our terminology straight. We're not talking about otherworldly fantasylands (like Gemworld), forgotten prehistories (like Conan's Hyborian Age, or mythological realms (like Asgard). Instead we're looking at the Bronze Age echoes of Arthur Conan Doyle's Maple White Land, the titular Lost World.

The foremost example is technically pre-Bronze Age--the Savage Land from X-Men #10 (1965). Still, with 3 self-titled Ka-Zar series, Savage Tales, and Astonishing Tales sprawling across the seventies and early eighties, this prehistoric preserve in Antarctica is definitely Bronze Age real estate. Another Silver Age revival was the tropical island hell of The War that Time Forgot which flared up in GI Combat in 1976 and Weird War Tales in the early eighties. In First Issue Special #8 (1975), DC bade us for the first time "enter the lost world" of Skartaris on the earth's interior with Travis Morgan, the Warlord. The South American jungles hid both a city of diminutive aliens in 1983's Sword of the Atom, and Nova Roma, the remnant of a lost Roman colony, in New Mutants vol. 1 #8. But not all lost worlds were in far-flung parts of the globe. The Wild Area, from Kirby's Jimmy Olsen, with its motorcycle gang Hairies, its Habitat "hewn from the giant trees," and its Mountain of Judgment, was apparently a bedroom community of Metropolis.


Related Posts with Thumbnails