Since almost everyone is on lockdown waiting for things to improve (and maybe because I’d like to do something fun in between emergency patients), I thought I would go scan and post some DC stuff that I have but don’t often see in other places. Maybe some other folks might be interested too. If you do, awesome, hope you enjoy it! Please let me know if you do and I’ll dig up some other stuff.
The first item is from 1978, at a time when some movie theaters sold movie souvenir programs along with weeks old popcorn (ok, maybe just my theater). Of course, this program is for Superman: The Movie. And so, to paraphrase Brodie in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, “And on that note, we cue the John Williams music!”
These are rad. I love movie souvenir programs. There are some really great Japanese souvenir programs. Definitely one of those things I would collect if I had the space and money, haha. Thanks for sharing!
@KamAndi80 : You’re welcome! IIRC, it wasn’t a giveaway, but I didn’t purchase it. I was with my dad, so I’m sure he picked up the tab (and I rewarded him by pointing out all the things that wasn’t in the comics, like how that issue of Action Comics wasn’t real and how Baby Kal-El didn’t fly to Earth in a giant chandelier! He was a saint for putting up with my mouth back then! ) It was something they sold at the concession stand for movies back then. I believe I also have one for the re-release of Star Wars (before that whole “A New Hope” stuff)
@TheWarlordofNML : You’re very welcome! Thanks for checking it out!
Ok, next bootleg is a quick one. (The one after that will be bigger.)
In 1965, author Jules Feiffer, previously known for his work with Will Eisner (particularly “The Outer Space Spirit” with Wally Wood) and later known for his screenplays for Mike Nichols’s “Carnal Knowledge” and Robert Altman’s “Popeye”, as well as many other works of note, had his book published by The Dial Press entitled “The Great Comic Book Heroes”. It’s not my favorite work of his, particularly when it becomes something Gary Groth would love, which would explain why Mr. Groth later republished it under the Fantagraphics brand but without what made it so charming. What gave it charm is after Mr. Feiffer’s essay, it included reprints of Golden Age Comics in what I believe is the first time reprints were included in a format that could be taken more seriously than usual for that time. For this and more, I would contend this book is very important.
No, I’m not including all the reprints, I’m only including two pages. The first is of Captain Marvel (The real Captain Marvel! Only real Captain Marvels say “Shazam”, any others are just pretending and hiding behind trademark law!) However, keep in mind that this was 1965, after the time Fawcett was forced to stop publication of the Captain but before DC got the license (in 1972) to continue the adventures of the good Captain. With this knowledge, I hope one can realize why this appearance is so rare and significant (in a pre-internet era…heck, possibly before Arpa-net!) and also can understand Mr. Feiffer’s caption.
The second page is the copyright page, which I’m guessing is the last time a Captain Marvel appearance had a sole Fawcett copyright (I believe Shazam (1973) had a NPP (pre-DC) copyright, while the 1977 hardcover “Shazam, From The 40’s To The 70’s” from Harmony had both Fawcett and NPP copyrights, plus a DC Comics copyright in very bold print.
In 1984, DC published Superman #400. This issue was truly amazing! It was LEGEN…(wait for it!)…DARY! IMO, this is the comic that had so much talent, far surpassing any other regularly published comic before or since in the amount of sheer talent.
To coincide with this comic, DC Comics also published a portfolio of 16 B&W plates from the pin-up pages in the comic. There are two exceptions. One, the plate penciled and inked by Mr. Terry Austin is not in the comic (Boo!). Two, the plate drawn by Mr. Jim Steranko was instead pulled from the first and second pages of the 10 page story Mr. Steranko made specifically for this issue (which, I believe, is the only time Mr. Steranko wrote and drew interior art for DC Comics).
(As impressive as these pin-ups are, I can’t help but think there should have been more pin-ups from people like Ms. Trina Robbins, Ms. Marie Severin, and the truly incredible Ms. Ramona Fradon. The powers-that-be (or maybe superpowers-that-be) at the time certainly went outside the box by including a humorous pin-up by Mr. Jack Davis. Consequently, perhaps someone could have tried to include something funny by Ms. Lynn Johnston from “For Better Or For Worse” or Ms. Cathy Guisewite from “Cathy”. Maybe something from Ms. Dale Messick, since Clark Kent, reporter from Metropolis, meeting Brenda Starr, reporter from Chicago, has a tad more logic than Superman carrying around Little Orphan Annie and Sandy the dog. Alas, this was not the case. I suspect there was a reason for that, but I don’t think I need to get into that here.)
The 16 B&W plates were inside a presentation envelope that had a painting (which was also the cover of Superman #400) magnificently done by Mr. Howard Chaykin. It was not an archival quality envelope and over the years, causing some staining. Consequently, you may noticed some yellowing on the bottom of plate #1 and #9 . What follows will be the front cover, the back cover, and the 16 B&W plates.
This was truly monumental!
P.S. If you’d like to do a side-by-side comparison between color and B&W, the pin-ups from the comic are posted later in this thread. Open the following URL in a separate window for the color section.
Unfortunately, the sixteenth and final plate is not with me right now. It is at another location and due to travel restrictions and the nature of the pandemic, it shall stay there for the time being (no signs of the virus from myself, just a necessary abundance of caution). I’ll scan and enter it into this spot at a later date.
@Vroom : Glad you enjoyed it! Since I originally did those scans, I found different scanning software that appears to play better with my scanners. After I rescan and doing some A/B comparisons, I may edit the old ones out and repost new pictures.
I found the GCBH book when I was a little kid in one of those mall bookstores at the time (B.Dalton or Walden), back when there was no graphic novel section and instead it was placed in the humor section. Consequently, I probably saw it next to a bunch of Garfield the Cat books
If it can help you reminisce about those wonderful, pandemic-free days of yesteryear, here’s a copy of the cover:
@KamAndi80 : I hope you and everyone else are enjoying it. It seems so bizarre now that, back in the day, Mr. Kirby’s drawing of Superman’s face was redrawn to conform to a company style. I assume the image in the portfolio was not, beyond what Mr. Austin’s inking added.
@TravisMorgan : Very glad to hear that! I’ll be adding another couple of portfolios in the days ahead (one of them is just…kinda…odd), assuming that people are enjoying this and hopefully I’m not overstaying my welcome here (and what I’m about to write might push the limits of that).
@IGbigjoe.mobile : Well, I hear what you’re saying about old and cheesy. Unfortunately, we’re experiencing days where something that could be dismissed as old and cheesy a month or two ago might actually be remembered with a certain fondness. I’m sure there a point in my life when I probably would not have cared for the movie “A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood”, but two nights ago, it worked for me.
As for “Superman: The Movie”, I first saw it when I was a little kid with my dad. We saw it in a theater that originally opened back in the 1920’s in the days of vaudeville. A truly grand theater. Today, after much restoration, the theater still exists. A couple of years ago, my then-girlfriend wanted to see Christopher Cross (who I might dismiss as old and cheesy, but I liked his theme song for “Arthur”) and he was playing in this theater. And thus we went, and I re-entered this over 1100-seat theater, complete with balcony, for the first time in many years.