Monday, March 26, 2012

Number 1129: Charles Biro and Bob Wood's eye a-peel

As I mentioned a few days ago, Bob Wood, who partnered with Charles Biro to create and edit Crime Does Not Pay, a few years later was convicted of killing a girlfriend. The story is told in the trade paperback, Blackjacked and Pistol-Whipped: Crime Does Not Pay, from Dark Horse Comics, along with over 200 pages of crime comic book stories from that magazine.

These two stories predate Crime Does Not Pay. They're from Daredevil #11 (1942), which was published soon after war was declared against Japan, and I've included a centerspread board game called "Slap the Jap." Sorry for the racist content, folks. It was wartime, and it's interesting, an elaborate game for a comic book.

Biro's early stuff was as lurid as he could make it. He knew what got attention on newsstands, and he hewed to primary colors to make his stories stand out. Quality Comics was doing much the same thing. Someone once commented that coloring like this is "like taking a potato peeler to your eyeballs." Even so, for emphasis I've given the coloring a little extra push to make it really bright. If any eye damage occurs, well, sorry. You've been warned.

I have shown both these stories before, a few years ago, but these are brand new scans.

Bob Wood's story of The Claw, despite his drawing, has a lot of energy to it, though, just as Biro's tale of a murderous horror movie star does. That kind of energy went into Crime Does Not Pay when that publication began with a date a month later than this issue of Daredevil, July 1942 to the Daredevil date of June.


Brian Barnes said...

Knowing the future history of Bob Wood gives that first story a real ugly sheen.

Hot women immediately hate you for something, act bitter and cold, until you grab them and "kiss" them, then they know what a real he-man you are and get weak kneed with desire. Yikes!

I know we see this in a lot of comics of era but it's extra icky here!

These racist 40s comic actually caused more trouble then they were worth as propaganda. A lot of Americans went into the Pacific war thinking the Japanese were going to be push-overs, and there could be nothing further from the truth. An early technology advantage in planes, battle-hardened troops, and tenacious fighting were a bit different then "oh no white god fire bad run!"

Weird WWII said...

GREAT ENTRY! In fact, me and my son are playing Slap the Jap as we speak. Keep those great wartime comics coming!


100Aliases said...

Wow, the whole concept of a horror film actor who lives out his roles must have been a popular one back then. There was that Captain America story with the Hunchback, the two Clayface stories in Batman, and probably more.

Was there a common source for all of these? The only pulp story I know of about a horror movie actor is Robert Bloch's 'Return to the Sabbath', and the actor in that story was a victim.

And as for the last three panels on page 10...damn.