Sunday, October 09, 2011
The cowboy soldier
Syd Shores did the artwork on these three stories, written by Hank Chapman, from Atlas Comics' Battle Brady #10, 1953 (actually #1, continued from Men in Action).
Battle Brady is a Texas cowboy in an infantry unit in Korea. Brady uses a couple of six shooters instead of the standard issue rifle, and he's so darn good he can shoot a message into a mesa. Allowing six bullets for each gun, as many times as it took him to shoot and reload he would have had time to walk back to his unit and just tell them to attack, saving a lot of bullets.
Battle is a buddy with his sergeant, Socko Swenski. I was never as close with any of the NCOs I worked with during my time in the army as Battle is to Socko. Swenski does a course on using a flamethrower. That five-page feature reminds me of PS Magazine, the U.S. Army magazine of preventive maintenance, produced by Will Eisner's shop, and later by Joe Kubert's shop. It has some mighty handy advice if you happen to come into possession of a flamethrower.
Shores had a nice tribute by the late Gene Colan, who described Shores and his abilities. You can read it in Blake Bell News. You can see a Two-Gun Kid story by Shores in Pappy's #924.