Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Number 1677: Where did you go, 2014...the Twilight Zone?

We find ourselves on the last day of 2014, and as usual the year went by too fast. Years have a tendency to do that. Someone once said the older one gets the faster time goes. Seems like it, anyway.

Or perhaps we are victims of the phenomenon of missing time, as in “The Day That Vanished,” from Twilight Zone #14 (1966). I have shown this story before, but these are new scans. The art is by Reed Crandall. The Grand Comics Database credits the script to Dick Wood.

We will all get together around the corner in 2015. Happy New Year, everyone! My advice is to not party too hearty. There are New Year’s Eves from my youth that I recall not at all. They are my personal version of missing time.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Number 1676: Death stalks the Bayou!

Joe Kubert did this surprising torture cover, a teaser for the lead story of Nightmare #12 (1954). I say surprising because it is fairly graphic: hanging people, the rack, hot coals. Ouch! Joe drew his share of horror comics during this period, since he could draw almost anything, but this was a period of heavy criticism of horror comics. This was probably bad timing.

I was disappointed that the Grand Comics Database has no idea of the artist of “Death Stalks the Bayou.” It is extremely well done in an illustrative style. And there are even a couple more torture scenes.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Number 1675: Morning after the day...

Happy Boxing Day. Or, since we don’t observe that holiday as our fellow English-speaking nations do, we just call it Another Damn Shopping Day. This is the day people head to stores to pick up bargain rolls of wrapping paper and Christmas decorations. If they are like me, by next Christmas they will have forgotten they bought it and go buy new stuff instead. So much for bargains.

But today at Pappy’s we celebrate the day after with some fine original art, originally posted at Heritage Auctions, and re-sized to make it more convenient for downloading or reading. First up, “‘Twas the Morning After...” drawn and written by Sheldon Mayer, and inked by Tenny Henson was published in DC’s Limited Collector’s Edition #C-50, in 1976.

Next a cover from another Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer special from 1978, also drawn by S.M.

The fine scanning is done by the folks at Heritage Auctions. A big thank you to them.

UPDATE December 26...A couple of readers wanted to see how to make a floor yo-yo, as promised by Rudy on the last page of originals. Always happy to accommodate. I went to my Big Box of treasury-sized comics, and here are the plans.
And now back to our regularly scheduled posting:

Finally, I believe this Mayer story, penciled and inked (and presumably written) by S.M. is unpublished based on the lettering not being inked. It is said to be from Plop!, and while “Gregor’s Grisly Grotto” does not have a Christmas theme, it is an extra present to all of us from the old master.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Number 1674: Severin and Kurtzman beat us to the draw

It’s Christmas Eve! Thanks for checking in, even though you might be taking a quick break from wrapping presents or preparing for Christmas festivities. Take a few minutes to upwrap your present from Pappy, two stories drawn by John Severin and Harvey Kurtzman from Prize Comics Western #79 (1950). Both of those much admired talents would later make their mark as comics immortals with their work for EC Comics. Severin usually worked with Will (then Bill) Elder as an inker (see the story below the Severin/Kurtzman collaborations).

Black Bull was a masked character, and it seems there was no shortage of masked six-gun totin', quick-draw heroes in those days. In this case Black Bull is accompanied by his butler, Egbert, and his secret identity is as the son of a wealthy man.


Severin, Elder and Abe Lincoln

As mentioned in the comments above, Severin’s usual inker in the forties and early fifties was Will Elder. “Severin and Elder” jobs are found many times in Prize Comics Western, and EC science fiction comics. I do not know how many love stories the pair worked on, but this three-page story of the romance of Abraham Lincoln and Ann Rutledge not only shows Severin’s mastery of time and place, but also likenesses. Elder and Severin separated professionally, but for a time their beautifully crafted stories were on display in comics that may have been otherwise indistinguishable from their many competitors.

For decades there has been a dispute over how involved Lincoln and Rutledge were. After Lincoln’s death stories came out about Rutledge being the love of his life, and when she died he was profoundly affected. Some historians dispute the details, and you can read an interesting scholarly work on the subject in this article by Lewis Gannett for the Journal of Abraham Lincoln.

From Standard’s Thrilling Romances #8 (1950):