Wednesday, December 30, 2015
Under a cover by Dick Giordano, where Batman doesn't look like he's going to be enjoying the ball drop on New Year's Eve....
...is the two stories of Batman #247 (February, 1973).
In "Merry Christmas", Batman takes care of a gun-wielding criminal on Christmas Eve, with a little help from a distraction by the Christmas star (and writer Denny O'Neil, penciller Irv Novick and inker Dick Giordano!).
...then, in the second story, "And A Deadly New Year" (by Denny O'Neill and Dick Giordano), Batman and Robin take out a deadly stash of nerve gas to save Gotham, and save the new year on New Year's Eve!
Holy Holidays, Batman, and Happy New Year!
Saturday, December 26, 2015
This little tale had Superman and Luthor facing off under a red sun (thus superman didn't have his powers), so it was a bare-knuckle brawl....that ended with the two becoming separated, and Lex saving the planet's inhabitants (while convincing them Superman was evil).
Luthor was unsuccessful in finding water for the people, and goes back to fighting Superman, but throws the battle, and on their way back to Earth, convinces Superman to redirect water to save the planet's inhabitants, so that while headed back to prison, Luthor feels like a hero.
...where readers and Luthor learn that Brainiac is really a robot, uses his own genius to increase the threat of Brainiac by increasing his intelligence, and then Luthor returns to the planet where he's thought of as a hero, battling with Superman all the while!
Luthor is on the red sun planet, now named Lexor in his honor, where he spends time as their hero, the Defender (having gotten temporary super-powers), and has to stop Superman who was stealing rare crystals (which, unknown to the Lexorians, were emitting dangerous radiation).
Luthor leaves the planet with Superman to save the Lexorians, including his girlfriend, Ardora.
Wishing to read these classic tales?
...Superman #239 (June-July, 1971), the Superman in the Sixties tradepaperback of 1999, Superman: The Greatest Stories Ever Told Volume 1 tradepaperback of 2004, and in the Superman vs. Lex Luthor tradepaperback of 2006.
...Superman #245 (also known as DC 100-Page Super Spectacular #DC-7 from December-January, 1971/1972), Superman: The Greatest Stories Ever Told Volume 2 tradepaperback of 2007, and in the Superman vs. Brainiac tradepaperback of 2008.
Sadly, the story from Superman #168 hasn't been collected anywhere in America....as of yet. After all, who'd believe Luthor could be the hero?
Thursday, December 24, 2015
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Premiering alongside their adult counterparts in DC's style guide by Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez in 1982, were the "Super Juniors"....and they were kid versions of Superman, Batman, Robin, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Arrow, Green Lantern, Aquaman and Supergirl.....
...and while they made it into quite a lot of merchandise....
....they only made it into one comic book.
Best of DC #58
Not bad for a one shot...
...and better still, the digest included reprints of classic Christmas themed Sugar & Spike stories by Sheldon Meyer!
...and "A New Adventure With The Genius" from Sugar & Spike #51 (February-March, 1964).
Wednesday, December 16, 2015
....no matter how strange they might be.
Concluding our look back at DC Comics' Forgotten Heroes, we end with some of the more recognizable of the lot...
...and those that have stood the test of time.
In Action Comics #248, Congo Bill tried to save the life of his friend, Chief Kawolo, but failed, serving only to prolong his life long enough for the chief to give Bill a magic ring, which would allow Bill to change his mind with the legendary golden gorilla, Congorilla, and use his animal strength to help people. Bill didn't believe the chief, but took the ring.
....with Congorilla wandering through a movie set and being pursued by a movie director while heading to the cave to save the body of Congo Bill with Congorilla's mind (though he really needed a publicity agent, as Congorilla didn't make any of his covers other than the first...even in the gorilla crazed Silver Age!).
Congorilla found the golden pyramids in Africa, and ended up with the Forgotten Heroes in Action Comics #552 (February, 1984).
...and Buddy faced off against the alien who escaped from that ship, saved his friends, even after his powers wore off....and proposed to Ellen...all in 16 short pages, where he never even got a costume or super-hero identity.
Buddy then faded away again, but not for long, because he found a golden pyramid while scouting for sites, which led to his joining the Forgotten Heroes in Action Comics #552 (February, 1984).
...wherein a man named Mark learned of his earlier lives when he got a jeweled amulet at the orphanage where he was raised, as well as learning of his various super-powers, which he uses to save the town he was in...dying in the process, but knowing in his heart that "I Lived A Hundred Lives"...
...so that he would return.
Rip Hunter, Dane Dorrance, Dolphin, Cave Carson, Rick Flag, Congorilla and Animal Man, who would become the Forgotten Heroes, in a battle with Vandal Savage (an immortal enemy, whom the Immortal Man had been sparring with over the ages, since the days they both got their powers from a meteor crash....Vandal himself usually facing the Justice Society and Barry Allen Flash, but recently had been vexing Superman)...and this team exists, proving that even heroes who have been forgotten still can contribute to the safety of us all!
Thursday, December 10, 2015
You can search far and wide looking for their first appearances....
...or just get the Flash vs. The Rogues tradepaperback from 2009, under this cover by Ethan Van Scriver, with a collection of the first appearances of Flash's most important non-speedster foes.
Collected here are the first appearances of....
Captain Cold would be a driving force in Flash's life...and appeared next in Flash #114 (August, 1960, NOT in the trade, but mentioned so a cover with Captain Cold could be shown!).
Mirror Master was the first villain readers saw in the newly revived Flash comic....and he quickly returned in Flash #109 (October-November, 1959), also not in the trade, but a cool cover, nonetheless!
Heck, Grodd didn't even make it on a cover of Flash until Flash #127 (March, 1962)....story not included here, but the cover is to get a look at the furry foe of the Flash!
Pied Piper even branched out in his second story (not in the trade), being recruited by Mr. Memory as the Flash foe in Justice League of America #14 (September, 1962) along with Green Lantern foe Hector Hammond, Aquaman villain Sea-Thief, Wonder Woman rogue Angle Man, Green Arrow evil-doer Dr. Davis and (behind the scenes) the Joker (to capture Batman), all while dealing with the Atom joining the JLA; though all these villains didn't make the cover!
Weather Wizard didn't make the cover of his second appearance (Flash #130 of August, 1962, facing Kid Flash and the Elongated Man), but did finally in Flash #145 (June, 1964) in a tale not in the trade.
Trickster quickly strikes back after his heist of a plane in mid-air, quickly coming back to play new pranks on the Flash in Flash #121 (June, 1961) in a story not in the collection.
This boomerang quickly returned, facing the Flash and the Elongated Man in Flash #124 (November, 1961), in his second appearance (which isn't in the trade).
The Top spun onto his first cover on his own with Flash #141 (December, 1963), where we also met Peter Gambi, a tailor to super-villains in a stylish story (not in the collection)!
Heat Wave's second appearance with with all the Rogues, but his appearance after that was in Flash #166 (December, 1966), still facing off against Captain Cold (but not seen in this trade), and Mick continued to be a thread to the Flash, eventually taking him on on his own!
a surprise villain the Rogues faced as well (who tried to make a monkey out of the villains).
The Rogues returned en masse for the second time in Flash #174 (November, 1967), making life hard for the Flash yet again in a story not in the Flash Vs. The Rogues trade, but, like all these stories, proving that sometimes things are better the second time around!
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
....and, like Dolphin, they didn't have too many appearances back in the day, but were gems in the making (well, some more than others...).
So, let's dig into more Silver Age characters of yesteryear....
Calvin "Cave" Carson started his spelunking in Brave and the Bold #31 (August-September, 1960 by France Herron and Bruno Premiani), being contacted to investigate the disappearances of a radio tower and some freight trains and find "The Secret Beneath The Earth". Cave goes to investigate, while his friends, Bulldozer Smith and Christine Madison, finish work on Cave's Mighty Mole (a machine which would allow the team to tunnel underground). Getting a message to his team via balloon, Christine and Bulldozer take the Mighty Mole underground to rescue Cave from the magnetic monster responsible for the chaos, starting a series of adventures inside Earth.
The team had been fracturing, and when we next see Cave Carson, in Action Comics #536 (October, 1982, by Marv Wolfman and Joe Staton), Cave has become a recluse, grown a beard, and doesn't want to use the Mighty Mole to help people (but Lois Lane and the Omega Men convince him to help Superman against the Mole).
...and then facing a "Rain of Fire", with a sculptor who uses a golden metal to turn people into statues.
...and June encountered the Dzamor, who told her to state the name, "Enchantress", which allowed June to become the supernatural super-heroine and defeat the evil of the castle (and then change back to June, to leave the party with Alan, who had no idea of the Enchantress' true identity...).
the Wizard in Crisis On Infinite Earths #12 (March, 1986, by Marv Wolfman and George Perez, and also featured many of the Forgotten Heroes, like Rip Hunter and Dolphin, along with Animal Man and more in space fighting Brainiac), and was soon after recruited by Amanda Waller to work for her Task Force X along side Deadshot, Captain Boomerang and Bronze Tiger during the Legends six issue mini-series of 1986 and 1987 (making her and Rick Flag teammates, after being on opposite sides before....).
Still have a few more Forgotten Heroes to cover, so don't forget to come back!