Thursday, December 30, 2010

Bulls and bears in love -- a Jack Cole Golden Age classic

Normally being considered a potential substitute is not all that flattering, but when a Golden Age publisher looked at a young cartoonist as a potential substitute for Will Eisner, the artist should indeed be flattered.

That was the situation that Jack Cole found himself in and history has born out that publisher's opinion. Cole is now one of the unquestioned geniuses of the medium for his inventiveness, his humor, his extraordinary sense of composition, his expressiveness and his ability to pack explosive energy into a cheaply printed image.

All of these talents are on display in this story from 1947...

Monday, December 27, 2010

And now a word from our sponsors...

Remember that the best way to support a blog that doesn't have collection plate is to click on one of the ads you see to the right.

It was new! He was different!

You've probably never heard of the Barker. He was published by a major comic book label (the aptly-named Quality which also gave us Plastic Man, the Blackhawks, Black Condor and many other well-remembered characters). He was co-created by one of the recognized geniuses of cartooning (Jack Cole) and was drawn for almost all of his run by a gifted and highly respected artist (Klaus Nordling). He had a healthy run as the cover feature of two titles.

But the Barker wasn't a superhero (and it's superheroes the fanboys remember); he was just what his name implied, a man with a smooth patter who drew crowds into a carnival. He was also the de facto boss of a circus that routinely had to deal with thieves, conmen, murderers, suspicious crowds and corrupt local officials, all in entertaining fashion.

So step right up and for one thin dime, a mere tenth of a dollar...

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

"Pre-war quality at pre-war prices"

This was 1947 and people were already getting, if not nostalgic, then at least a little wistful for the good old days.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Frankenstein meets Siegel and Shuster

Like Siegal and Shuster, Dick Briefer had been been in the comic book industry since the mid-Thirties and all three were major players throughout the Golden Age.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Driving Mippyville

Within this vale

Of toil and sin,

Your head grows bald,

But not your chin.

Use Burma Shave

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Frankenstein meets Frankenstein

Dick Briefer always had fun playing with the line between the merely dark and the truly grotesque. In the Mippyville stories, he normally pulled back before things got quite as potentially gruesome as this 1946 tale.

Briefer also enjoyed parodying popular culture figures from Bing Crosby to Inner Sanctum host Raymond. Boris Karloff fit right in.