Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Number 242

Don't Wake The Dead

I've got to go back to work today. I've been off since December 21, during which time I have been practicing retirement. I do this just about every year. I want to retire. I'm ready for retirement. When I'm not working I don't have to get up at 4:00 in the morning, which is why a title like "Don't Wake The Dead" seems appropriate.

You think this story from Ace Comics' The Beyond #15 (1952) is a horror story…how about being a wage slave going back to 1965? Now that's a horror story.


During my time off I read the biography, Schulz and Peanuts by David Michaelis. In 1947 Schulz, besides his day job at Art Instruction, Inc., was moonlighting as a letterer for the Catechetical Guild in St. Paul, Minnesota. According to page 167 of the biography, "[His boss, Roman] Baltes rewarded his efficiency, reliability, and thoroughness by having him draw the climactic panels of Is This Tomorrow--a dire prophecy of a Communist takeover tricked out as a "public service comic book.

I have never seen Is This Tomorrow, although I've seen the cover reproduced many times over the years. According to the biography, the comic book had over 4,000,000 copies in circulation at one point, so there have to be a lot of them out there. Has anyone ever looked at the last few panels and said, "By god, there's Charlie Brown!"?

1 comment:

Mr. Karswell said...

Real nice post Pappy. Seems like when Ace do somthing great it's really great, but man they turned out some mediocre stuff too. And you gotta hand it to them, their distinct take on horror is so refreshing among many of the other pre-code pubishers who all seemed to just copy each other.