Sunday, June 26, 2011
Buster Brown and the Gods of Egypt
Buster Brown Comic Book was published by Brown Shoe Company for several years in the 1940s and '50s. They used some top comic artists, and they had interesting stories set in interesting locales. These two stories are set in Egypt, one in ancient times, one modern. They are written by Hobart Donovan, who was apparently the only scripter for Buster Brown Comic Book, or at least the only one given credit.
The Grand Comics Database does a guess on the artwork for "The Power Of The Great Cat" from BBCB #9, dated Fall, 1947. They credit Alex Kotzky?, so if you're a Kotzky art-spotter you tell us if it is by him. "Seb-Ek Crocodile God Of The Nile," signed by Dan Barry, is from BBCB #12, and is dated Summer 1948. I'm not sure how Grand Comics Database knows the dates, unless someone checked them with the Brown Shoe Company records. You won't find any dates in the comics because they don't include an indicia, or any kind of copyright notice, for that matter. Maybe the Brown Shoe Company didn't care. Maybe for them it was enough to publish these comic books to be given away to young customers in their shoe stores, and to make the kids holler, "I want Buster Brown!" when Mom and Dad said it was time for shoes. What I remember about the Buster Brown shoe store where my mom bought my shoes, besides making sure I got a copy of the free comic book, was sticking my foot in the fluoroscope and seeing the bones of my foot. That sort of thing is banned nowadays, but six decades on I haven't detected any problems with my feet caused by Buster Brown's fluoroscope. Any damage from the Buster Brown Comic Book is co-mingled in my brain with the thousands of comics I read in my life.
Note the variant spelling of pharaoh as "pharo" in the first story. Was this ever an accepted spelling?