Friday, June 22, 2018

Number 2197: Blackhawk’s asteroid war

In a column from the April 27, 2018 issue of the news magazine, The Week, we read this chilling paragraph: “. . . an asteroid nearly four times the size of one that leveled 500,000 acres of Siberian forest in 1908 missed Earth by only 119,500 miles last weekend. Startled astronomers had detected it less than a day earlier.”


I looked at the cover of Blackhawk #59 (1952) and it brought to mind fears of a huge object hitting our planet and making us like dinosaurs...extinct. I was able to shake it off. After all, a miss is a miss. In this tale it isn’t the fear that an asteroid is about to hit Earth that is the problem, it is that an “aggressor nation,” (and we all know who that is, don’t we?) has set up a base on said asteroid, ready to rain down death on America. America has only one rocket ship ready to fly to Asteroid X, and it can accommodate seven, just the number of Blackhawks! What luck!

Except for the out-of-this-world environment, it is a battle story. I don’t know who wrote “Beachhead on Asteroid X.” The Grand Comics Database gives Bill Ward ? (question mark means it is a guess) credit for the artwork.

I am torn by opposite opinions: even though I am for the exploration of space, I also tend to agree with Blackhawk’s opinion in the final panel.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Number 2196: Daredevil “slapping you to H... and back”

Daredevil is after a murderer in “The Case of the Killer Who Hated Death.” The law arrests Tonia as the murderer. Tonia is Bart “Daredevil” Hill’s friend, so he goes all out to find the real murderer. Like most costumed vigilantes in comic books he has no qualms about illegally breaking into prison and punching a prison guard with his fists, or hitting someone with his deadly boomerang...if it will help Tonia.

The story and art are signed by Charles Biro, who was also the editor.

From Daredevil Comics #3 (1941):

Monday, June 18, 2018

Number 2195: Satan has no b*lls

EH! was another Mad imitation, published by Charlton, from the early '50s. The indicia reads “Designed by Al Fago Studios,” so we know to whom we can assign the blame. When I first read “Paradise Gained” I had some hope for it based on the Dick Ayers artwork, but after a couple of pages hope died. I wonder — rhetorically, since I don’t believe anyone is still alive to answer my question — if it was designed by someone who used other Mad imitators as a guide, rather than Mad itself?

In the story you see Satan in a department store. You see Satan is very popular with women. You see Satan appears to be nude under his cloak and cowl, yet without genitalia (page 5). Make of that what you will.

From EH! #2 (1954):

Friday, June 15, 2018

Number 2194: The Avenger and the sea monsters

The Avenger, published by Magazine Enterprises in 1955, lasted four issues. One of the more notable things about the four issues is that comic book journeyman Dick Ayers drew the first issue, and another top comic book professional, Bob Powell, did the next three.

Today we offer The Avenger fighting off some sea monsters. Not monsters in the sense of the Creature from the Black Lagoon monster, but regular denizens of the deep, a shark, an octopus, both of which could look monstrous if they are coming after you.

It is too bad the series only lasted four issues, but it was just a couple of years early for a superhero revival in comics.
For the origin of The Avenger, you can go to the link below.

The story is from The Avenger #2 (1955): Art by Bob Powell.

As promised, the origin story. Just click on the thumbnail.