Thursday, June 25, 2015

Charlton's Emergency Comics

Emergency was a TV series that focused on the new at the time profession of emergency medical response teams created by Jack Webb, Robert A. Cinader and Harold Jack Bloom as a spin off of Webb's Adam-12 police series.  The focus of the show was on Fire Station 51 personnel John Gage (played by Randolph Mantooth) and Roy DeSoto (played by Kevin Tighe), as they provided emergency on-location medical support for the emergency room of Rampart General Hospital, who's staff included Dr. Kelly Brackett (played by Robert Fuller), nurse Dixie McCall (played by Julie London) and neurosurgeon Dr. Joe Early (played by Bobby Troup).   

The show lasted for six seasons, starting on January 15, 1972 and going until March 26, 1977, with six made for TV movies in 1978 and 1979 focusing on the lives of those who saves lives in the Los Angeles area.

The Emergency Comic Book

Charlton made 4 issues of a color comic book based on the Emergency TV show, running from June, 1976 to December, 1976 following the adventures of John and Roy as they did their business of helping those in danger!

The stories were written by Joe Gill, and cover art was by Joe Staton for issue #1 and #2, and by Jack Sparling for issue #3 and #4, with interior art in issue #1 by a young John Byrne, and the later 3 issues by Demetrio Sanchez Gomez.


The Emergency Magazine

Charlton also put out 4 magazine editions of Emergency, being in black and white except for the cover, from July, 1976 to January, 1977.

These magazines featured multiple stories per issue, with Emergency #1 having stories by Joe Gill, Nicola Cuti and Mike Pellowski and art by Continuity Associates (a group organized by cover artist, Neal Adams).  Emergency #2 also had stories by Nicola Cuti, Mike Pellowski and Joe Gill, and art by Continuity Associates and cover by Neal Adams.

Emergency #3 had stories by Nicola Cuti, Mike Pellowski and Joe Gill, interior art by Continuity Associates, and a painted cover by Earl NoremEarl also painted the cover for Emergency #4, and interior stories were written by Nicola Cuti, Joe Gill and Mike Pellowski, and art by Win Mortimer for the first two, and by Jack Sparling for the third.

These books, along with the TV show, stand as a tribute to those whose job it is to run towards the danger....the real heroes!


  1. I have always loved "Emergency!", both as a child watching the reruns after school and again recently when I watched the entire series again via Netflix streaming and DVDs.

    One correction, though (and one that "Emergency!" actor Randy Mantooth himself made during his interview at the Academy of Television's website) is that "Emergency!" was not actually a spin-off of "Adam-12". "Adam-12" was already airing when "Emergency!" went into production and started airing. None of the "Emergency!" characters had made any previous appearances on "Adam-12".

    The stars of the shows did eventually guest star on each other's series, though. In the "World Premiere" television movie of "Emergency!", "Adam-12" stars Martin Milner and Kent McCord made a brief guest appearance at the Rampart Emergency Hospital. Then, in the fifth season episode of "Adam-12" titled "Lost and Found", "Emergency!" stars Randolph Mantooth and Kevin Tighe returned the favor. Finally, in a subsequent episode of "Emergency!", the firefighters of Station 51 were all seen watching an episode of "Adam-12" on tv(!) Roy and Johnny were called out on a rescue run part way through the "Adam-12" episode and ended up wondering for the rest of the story just how the episode had ended. (So, in two episodes they were all characters interacting with each other and in the third, the "Adam-12" characters were real, they were characters on tv!)

  2. Thanks for the clarification! Seems all this series crossing over didn't start with Marvel....

    It appears Randy Mantooth speaks at events to support EMS programs as well. How awesome is that? I did find that info, but thought it didn't really relate to the comics. More info here: