2010
08.30

MangaSpidey2

I had a last minute chance to attend the Baltimore ComicCon this past Saturday. I was happy to have been able to make it even for just a day, which turns out to be the perfect amount of time to enjoy the show (unless you’re running a booth, of course). I caught up with Joe Keatinge for a bit (Mr. Glum thanks you, Joe!), which included giving me the Hard Sell to move to Portland. The rent situation actually made me reconsider for a second. Also, I got to meet Tom Scioli of Godland & the Myth of 8-Opus fame. I saw the original pages of his web comic, American Barbarian, and they were gigantic… probably the best way to read this comic.

In between booth hopping and catching up with folks, I dug up a few comics of interest.

I’ve always liked the cover for Green Lantern Corps #208 by Ed Hannigan & Joe Staton, Jan ’87, but I’ve never read the title. I finally decided to pick it up. Steve Englehart wrote it. Thinly veiled communist sympathizing using the alien, Kilowog, as the mouthpiece? Count me in! By “sympathizing”, I don’t mean spreading propaganda (notwithstanding the cover art), but it does not paint the Russians as moral villains the way most American entertainment did at that time. Instead, Englehart attempts to show the Soviet ideology… in a condensed 22 page monthly DC book kinda way. I wonder if sales dropped after this issue hit the stands. Anyway, look at the inking on that cover, as if it were inked with the largest, crappiest brush… so good!

Kilowog

I don’t know what it is about Marvel Comics’ splash pages during the early 70s, but I’ve seen a few really striking ones recently. Marvel Super Action #33 (reprinting Avengers #70, Jan ’70) has such a splash page. I’m not sure if it was Stan Lee, Roy Thomas, or Sal Buscema who came up with this type of post-Steranko, Eisner-esque solution… but I’m going with Sal on this one. I like Sal.
Avengers

Manga Spider-Man #14 by Ryoichi Ikegami, July ’98. I don’t know much about this series, but it looked too good to pass up. I can’t tell if the original series was from the 80s or early 90s, but it’s pretty neat to see regardless.
MangaSpidey1

Now for my favorite find in a while: “Dirty Job” written by Bob Haney and drawn by Alex Toth. It originally appeared in Our Army at War #241, Feb. 1972, but I found it reprinted in Sgt. Rock Special #11, March 1991… and what a find it was! I had never seen this story before, but it may be one of Toth’s best. He packs so much story and subtle behavior in the characters within a mere 4 pages. Well… more like 3 pages; the last page is unreal. A printed page, let alone a scan of the printed page, cannot do it justice. Imagine receiving the original art of this story for the first time, being hit over the head with the undeniable mastery of Toth’s decisions.

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Not bad for a couple of bucks. Thanks to Bryan with a Y and to Roger and his Time Machine for the hook ups to the show!

10 comments so far

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  1. Holy smokes! I’ve NEVER seen that Toth story before. Wait…I have to go read it again –

  2. Nice to see you for 5-minutes. That Toth story is chilling.

    I didn’t get the chance to peruse old comics until AFTER the show was over. Luckily, one retailer was taking awhile to wrap up and I rifled through a few of his long boxes and spent a total of $8 on a bunch of Atlas Comics, which included THE DESTRUCTOR, PLANET OF VAMPIRES, MORLOCK 2001 AND THE MIDNIGHT MEN, PHOENIX, THE GRIM GHOST, and a Modern comic [imprint of Charlton?] called VENGEANCE SQUAD by Joe Gill and PAM w/a MICHAEL MAUSER back-up by Nicola Cuti and Joe Staton.

  3. That Toth story is potent.

    That GL cover looks like it could’ve come out yesterday. I can’t believe it’s from 1987.

  4. Wow. Consider me Toth’d.

    Speaking of comics (segue); I am finally really (happily) absorbing all the comics you sent me. I must admit that a lot of it didn’t hit me immediately. It’s taken a long time for my eyes to adjust and to start seeing the unique qualities contained in each work.

    Richard Corben, Brendan McCarthy, Marcos Martin—all artists that will now occupy space in my mental tapestry. I’m glad to have these things pointed out to me—as they were not obvious enough for me to have discovered them on my own.

    Thanks Dude.

  5. I’m pretty sure there’s a giant size special , 10 by 15 with that Toth job somewhere in my collection, it’s pretty damn amazing

  6. It’s not so much that Toth is so good in this story- that’s to be expected- it’s Bob freaking Haney that surprised me so much here. Devoid of his usual scripting quirks and mannerisms, this may be the single best comic story he wrote in his entire DC tenure.

  7. HOW DO YOU PEOPLE HAVE ROOM IN YOUR HOMES FOR MORE COOL OLD COMICS?

    Maybe it is time to move to Portland after all.

  8. I kinda just mentioned this in an e-mail, but man, it was so great to see Kat and you at the show. Totally huge and way awesome surprise.

    If you haven’t already, try to find the original Japanese editions of those Spider-Man mangas. The covers alone are freakin’ worth it. I believe they’re by a different artist – all painted. The one I have has Spider-Man standing against a brick wall holding a rose. Yep. Kinda weird.

  9. By the way, Mike, whose work does that last page of the Toth story remind you of?

  10. I thought of that, too, Mr. Bacardi! It’s got Trevor Von Eeden written all over it. It’s like the missing Thriller page or something. And although I only know and like Haney’s work mostly through his Brave & the Bold material, I liked his writing here even more.