Monday, February 28, 2022

Secret Love Of Young Hearts

One doesn't think of reoccurring characters in romance comics, nor of stories that crossover titles, but, for the trials and tribulations of young socialite Melanie Winters, and her ill fated romance with Juan Ricco/Perez, as told by Barbara Friedlander, Alex Toth and Vince took four issues in two titles to tell the story of "20 Miles To Heartbreak"!

Here are the covers mostly by Dick Giordano! (with Secret Hearts #141 by Bill Draut and Vince Colletta)

Young Love #78 (Jan-Feb, 1970)/Secret Hearts #141 (January, 1970)


Secret Hearts #142 (March, 1970)/Young Love #79 (Mar-Apr, 1970)


First, Melanie starts her story by secretly being in love with stepfather, and running away from home.  As she flees, she's picked up by Juan, whom people would not approve of (and as a fight breaks out as they dance, she flees again, and is hit by a car!).  Recovering, Melanie finds that Juan was arrested for causing her accident, but Melanie's estranged sister returns, getting Juan freed (to see the shock of Melanie's mom when Melanie hugs Juan).  Then, realizing he is a pawn Melanie is using against her mom, Juan takes off as Melanie's sister announces her own upcoming wedding!

So much drama for eight pages an issue, but great Alex Toth art, even if heavily inked by Vince Colletta (and the four part story is reprinted over Young Love #122 to #125...).

Monday, February 21, 2022

President George Washington Is A Hit

Celebrating the Presidents' Day, with George Washington, the first President of the United States, with this cover of Hit Comics #44 (January, 1947) by Al Bryant, featuring the hero, Kid Eternity, who has the powers to bring back those no longer with us, simply by saying "Eternity" in the presence of his mentor, Mr. Keeper.  

Here, he gets help from Washington against the Shoe (even in the Golden Age, they had begun to run out of names for villains!).

Thursday, February 17, 2022

Curt Swan Super Romance Artist?

Remembering artist Curt Swan on his birthday, and wondering, as it is February near Valentine's Day, why wasn't Curt used on romance comics?

Oddly, he wasn't, but here are a few issues with Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen that show he has all the basics down, with weddings, jealousy, crying, fighting, shame and kissing....

Superman's Girlfriend, Lois Lane 7 and 31

Superman's Girlfriend, Lois Lane 29 and 30


Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen 56 and 76

Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen 21 and 98

Monday, February 14, 2022

Giant Young Love

Young Love #69 (August-September, 1968 with cover by Dick Giordano) was Young Love's one and only giant, squarebound issue (though the series did have 100 Page Spectaculars towards the end of its run), full of jealousy, rage, heartbreak, rage, loneliness and even love (all as it says on the cover)...all gathered from past issues of other romance comics!

Here's a look at the issues that have stories from them reprinted within...

Tears For A Dream/Heartbreak In Paradise

This cover of Heart Throbs #85 (August-September, 1963) is by John Romita, and actually features the Dream story reprinted in the giant, while the Paradise story was only inside Secret Hearts #91 (October, 1963), but the cover was also drawn by John Romita!

A Shoe For Cinderella/Moment Of Truth and Curtain For A Heart

John Romita provides the covers for both Secret Hearts #88 (June, 1963) and Falling In Love #54 (November, 1962), though A Shoe doesn't feature on the cover, nor Moment or Curtain on its either...but you can definitely see the Romita style on the women's faces!

To Hide From Love/Forgive Me, Forget Me

Arthur Peddy might have started the cover for Falling In Love #56 (January, 1963), with Romita finishes, but John Romita did all of Girls' Love Stories #74 (November, 1960), neither of which were the cover feature of the issue that they came from either!

Plus, the issue had "Mad Mad Modes For Moderns", with fashion art by Jay Scott Pike (creator of Dolphin), and could be considered one of the first dozen Super DC Giants (which oddly started with the number, S-13...and include volumes with Supergirl, Batman team ups, Jerry Lewis and even more romance comics for Valentine's Day!).

Sunday, February 13, 2022

Holy Football, Batman!

In this Golden Age classic of Detective Comics #82 (December, 1943), under a cover by Bob Kane and Jerry Robinson, Batman and Robin kick around the old football to face....the "Quarterback Of Crime!".

Saturday, February 12, 2022

Shadows Of Adam Strange

Taking a look at one of the great romances of DC's science fiction comics, with two similarly themed issues of Mystery In Space, with Earthman Adam Strange, and the love of his life whom he has to take a Zeta-Beam to see, Alanna of Rann, a planet in the Alpha Centauri system, 25 trillion miles from Earth!

Shadow People Of The Eclipse

Adam Strange returns to the planet Rann in Mystery In Space #78 (September, 1962) by Gardner Fox, Carmine Infantino and Murphy Anderson only to find Alanna in a panic, as the planet has been plunged into an unnatural darkness.  The Vantors are threatening Rann again, sending its inhabitants to a distant planet ruled by the Llyrr, who absorbs their experience (draining their minds).  

Adam figures out the Llyrr is feeding off of people's electrical impulses, and defeats it with a thunderstorm, helping everyone return to their homeworlds.  Once back, he and Alanna work together to defeat the Vantors, but doesn't get to enjoy more than a bite of Alanna's Ranagarian Quail before his Zeta-Beam wares off, returning him to Earth.

The Deadly Shadows Of Adam Strange

At least Mystery In Space #80 (December, 1962) by Gardner Fox, Carmine Infantino and Murphy Anderson starts happy, as Adam finds a little time with Alanna, as her father, Sardath is kidnapped.  Trying to rescue him, Adam's Zeta-Beam wears off, leaving him on Earth, with time for him to work on his archeology while awaiting another Zeta-Beam back to Rann.  

Once back, Adam finds Alanna, still searching for her father.  While he joins her, he is his own shadow!  The two find the flier that the kidnapper drove in the ruined city of Alkamar, and are again attacked by shadows.  Defeating them, they find Sardath, who was kidnapped by an old foe, Mortan, who found the process to animate shadows with Pi-Radiation in the ruined city, and planned to use them against Adam.  Adam studied this phenomenon, figuring out a way to defeat Mortan's creations by making himself invisible.  Then, with his foe defeated, got to see Alanna again, where the pair renewed their affections.

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Remembering Artist Frank Frazetta

Remembering master fantasy and science fiction artist Frank Frazetta (February 9, 1928 - May 10, 2010), better known for his incredible paintings...

...but here, with a look back at his classic Buck Rogers covers for Famous Funnies from December, 1953 to March 1955, where you can see his greatness develop for the future!

Famous Funnies 209 and 210

Famous Funnies 212 and 213

Famous Funnies 214 and 215

Famous Funnies 216 and 211

Sunday, February 6, 2022

Remembering Artist Rich Buckler

Remembering artist Rich Buckler (February 6, 1949 - May 19, 2017) on his birthday.

Rich had done much work for both DC and Marvel, as well as some independent comic work, but, here are some of his team book covers from the 1970s...likely some of the best stuff he is remembered for as he connected the DC Universe!

Challengers Of The Unknown


Teen Titans


Freedom Fighters


Secret Society Of Super-Villains


Justice League Of America



Wednesday, February 2, 2022

A Pair Of Two-Face Catwoman Issues

On this doubly special date, time to take a double look at two issues of Catwoman, featuring Selina Kyle, a Batman foe who became much friendly to Batman, and Harvey Dent, a former friend of Batman who became a deadly foe!

Let's just pull up to the sidewalk and take a look see, shall we?

Two-Face Part One: Two Cats In One

Two-Face escapes Arkham Asylum in Catwoman #46 (June, 1997) written by Doug Moench, penciled by Jim Balent and inked by Ray McCarthy, and has a new plan.  To steal a first edition of Stevenson's "The Strange Case Of Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde".  

The only problem....the book has already been stolen by a cat burglar.  Not Catwoman, but Alley Cat, some competition for Selina, both of whom were dealing with known fence Zee, as Alley Cat wanted to unload the book.  Zee set up a buy at a warehouse, where, Two-Face double crossed the seller (thinking the thief was Catwoman, but now knowing it was a second feline lady...), setting the warehouse on fire, trapping Catwoman alone with the book surrounded by flames!

Two-Face Part Two: Two Ways To Skin A Cat

Picking up where the last issue left off, Catwoman #47 (July, 1997) by Moench/Balent, but inked by Scott Hanna, Selina escaped the flames with the priceless tome, preventing it and herself from being engulfed by flames. as the rest of the cast had already fled the warehouse.

Selina met with Two-Face's duo, to set up another meet to sell the book.  After having a confrontation with Alley Cat at Zee's house, Selina went to await Harvey coming for the book.  Two-Face planned another double cross, but Catwoman was ready for it and captured Harvey for the Gotham City Police.  Selina even stopped Alley Cat from trying to take the book as well, turning it over to Moreland McShane (a Gotham cop charged to hunting Catwoman, whom she worked for as Selina).  Selina was left, pondering her own duality.