Saturday, February 28, 2009

365 Days with Ben Grimm: Day 59

What If? #37
Panel from What If? #37 (February 1983), script by Tom DeFalco, pencils by Arvell Jones, inks by Sam De La Rosa, colors by Dave Billman, letters by Janice Chiang

Separated at Birth: Leggo my logo

X-Men #56 and #135
L: [Uncanny] X-Men #56 (May 1969), art by Neal Adams and Tom Palmer
R: [Uncanny] X-Men #135 (July 1980), art by John Byrne and Terry Austin
(Click picture to X-cess-size)

Saturday Morning Cartoon: Rupert and the Frog Song

Rupert and the Frog Song (1985), directed by Geoff Dunbar, featuring the voices of Windsor Davies, Paul McCartney, and June Whitfield

Friday, February 27, 2009

Tonight!: The most shocking, intense, frightening, exciting Bully-post ever!

ASM Annual #13When you're a fan of Marvel Comics, you have to learn to live with a little bit of hyperbole in your comics. When very issue is described in impossibly over-the-moon terms as "senses-shattering" or "mind-blowing" or "weasel-flavored" or "written by Brian Michael Bendis" you learn to take those big boastful banners with a grain of salt, not to mention the entire pretzel. Nobody ever "demanded it," this saga will not "change the way you look at our hero," and this is never a comic that will "beat you into an unconscious heap and kick you out in the gutter, put its feet up on your coffee table and eat all your sandwiches." Uh uh, no way.

But that's part of the fun of Marvel Comics...the gleeful hucksterism of Mister Stan Lee and company telling us that the four-color fantasy we hold in our sweaty little hooves is the greatest thing since the invention of Eli Whitney's gin-flavored cotton, true believer! Take a look at Amazing Spider-Man Annual #13, f'r instance. After all, it does say, right on the cover, "We guarantee it! The strangest Spidey story of all!" (Keep in mind of course, that the issue where he eats hot dogs with the Norse God of Mischief Evil hadn't even been published yet.) I'm not certain that you shouldn't verify that statement with the Attorney General and the Better Business Bureau before you lay out your six bits for this ish. After all, it even says, right at the top of the cover: "King-Size Annual, and this comic book is nowhere near as big as even your tiniest king.

Still, let's open Spidey Annual lucky number thirteen...

Amazing Spider-Man Annual #13
All panels from Amazing Spider-Man Annual #13 (1979), script by Marv Wolfman, pencils by John Byrne, inks by Terry Austin, colors by Glynis Wein, letters by John Costanza

Hey! It's pretty much the same scene as on the cover! Well, at least they can claim that "this scene actually does appear in this comic book!" We also get to see the bragging and boastful "We confidently predict—this is the strangest Spidey Saga—ever!!" So, Doctor Strange is gonna be in it, huh? Hmmm, let's take a closer look at that gasconadic getup:

Amazing Spider-Man Annual #13

Sufferin' spiders! "Don't dare peek at the surprise ending of our latest Spidey thriller!"? But I wanna! Aw, c'mon, Stan Lee, let me peek...I ain't gonna tell anybody! Oh good, nobody's looking, so let's peek! I'm sure it's a startling, amazing, spectacular, webby ending that will shatter my senses and eviscerate my eyeballs and other tingly stuff. Are you ready for the most shocking ending ever to Spider-Man story? The most thrilling and gasp-inducing conclusion to Old Webhead's saga? Brace yourself, folks, for here it comes...(takes a deep breath)

Amazing Spider-Man Annual #13

Oh. It's's a to be continued.


Mister Lee, can i have my seventy-five cents back?

365 Days with Ben Grimm: Day 58

Marvels: Eye of the Camera #1
Cover of Marvels: Eye of the Camera #1 (February 2009), art by Jay Anacleto

Arroooo from You: ROM: Spaceknight #30

The hills are alive
And it's pretty frightening...

Oh, hi! Welcome to the midnight hour, where, as my good pal Mister Pickett once told me, his love comes tumbling down, and he likes waiting until then, because there's no one else around. Except hey, look, here you are, and here I am, and here's another viewer-submitted arroooo! So you can takes your shining love and your twinkling eyes, Mister, I'm here for the arroooo!

Tonight's Arrooo from You, is submitted not actually by you, unless your name happens to be Chris Sims, webmaster of the Invincible Super-Blog (not to be confused with Sue Storm's Invisible Super-Blog). Cheerful Chris is the chief of all things kick-ass in the comics blogosphere, purveyor of bears punching the Punisher in the puss, amiable annotator of Anita Blake, founder of Bring It On Week, boss of Batman bludgeoning with a battery, accelerator of the Action Age of Comics. Oh, and he likes ROM: Spaceknight, too.:

ROM #30
Panel from ROM: Spaceknight #30 (May 1982), script by Bill Mantlo, pencils by Sal Buscema, inks by Joe Sinnott, colors by Ben Sean, letters by Jim Novak

Thanks, Chris! For your arroooo, I hereby award you the much-coveted ISB (Invincible Super-Bullyprize)! Thank you for all the face-kicks, too! (But please take off your boots next time, okay?)

Wanna be inducted into the House of Arroooo? You can too (arroooo!) simply by emailing me a kicky, ginchy, totally dreamy arroooo (or a similar sound effect) scanned from any comic book we haven't covered here yet. Make sure you tell me what comic book it comes from, and email your scans to this address: email address

Or, you can post it on your own blog and send me a link so I can link back and properly credit you for your arroooo!

Join us next time when special guest star Wolfman Jack joins in on our howling-mad festivities, and tells us all about the time he guest-starred on Galactica 1980! Be there or be octagonal, cool cats and cattesses!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Let's count off more of the 5,000 Hats of Jack Kirby! (Earth Hats Department)

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Just one more of the 5000 hats of Jack Kirby

Hey, wait, some of those are kind of spacey and don't look like they're from Earth at all. Oh well, that's what you can expect when you count The 5,000 Hats of Jack Kirby!

Don't see exactly what you're looking for in a fine Kirby™ brand hat? Why not try shopping one of our other fine departments of The 5,000 Hats of Jack Kirby, here, and here!

365 Days with Ben Grimm: Day 57

MTIO #40
from Marvel Two-in-One #40 (Marvel, June 1978), plot by Roger Slifer, script by Tom DeFalco, breakdowns by Ron Wilson, inks by Pablo Marcos, colors by Phil Rachelson, letters by Irving Watanabe

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Doc Bruce Banner, belted by finance charges

The Incredible Hulk!RAWR! Puny humans bother Hulk! Stupid humans, because Hulk is the strongest one there is! Hulk also smartest one there is, because Hulk know when stupid Leader or Abomination or stupid stupid Red Hulk bother Hulk, Hulk smash them! Hulk smash them good! Hulk always win because Hulk is strongest one there is! Not little orange Rock Man! Not stupid Robert Downey Junior in tin can suit! Not even puny Banner can stop mighty Hulk!

Incredible Hulk #160

But when Hulk smash everybody bothering Hulk, Hulk often have a big problem. Hulk frequently wearing purple cut-offs and Hulk's dapper Arrow shirt either hanging in shreds or back there on ground about forty miles where puny Banner went away and Hulk came out! That good shirt too! Hulk angry he tear good shirt! Rawr!

Incredible Hulk #160

What Hulk to do? Hulk not carry spare shirt in cape. Stupid human! Hulk not wear cape! What you think, Hulk dumb Superman? HA HA HA HA! Hulk laugh at that. HA! Hulk goes. HA! You amuse Hulk, puny human. Hulk smash you last!

Incredible Hulk #160

That why Hulk always make sure Hulk bounce across desert with American Hulkpress trav...Hulk make silly mistake. Hulk say "Hulkpress." Hulk not mean that. American Express Traveler's Cheques! They safe, secure, accepted at many, many merchants all over many Hulk cannot count them! Maybe even four. Maybe.

Incredible Hulk #160

Also, Hulk's good friend Tina Fey totally spokesperson for American Express. Tina Fey smart. Also pretty! Hulk say, you go, girl! You smash puny man who not award Hulk steak knives even though Hulk make second-most sales in fourth quarter! Rawr!

Incredible Hulk #160

So even when Hulk smash shoes and split socks and tear shirt and pop belt, Hulk is OK! Hulk will get by! You think Hulk crumble? You think Hulk mumble? No! No! Not Hulk! Hulk survive! As long as Hulk know how to buy new clothes, Hulk know Hulk stay alive! Hulk got brand clean shirts to buy! Hulk got all new clothes to try! Hulk survive! Hulk survive!

Incredible Hulk #160

American Express have cards in many pretty colors!

Incredible Hulk #160

But Hulk like Green Amex best! Rawr!!

Incredible Hulk #160

So you not forget, puny human! American Express! Hulk not leap from Gamma Base without it!

Incredible Hulk #160

365 Days with Ben Grimm: Day 56

Captain America v. 4 #18
Panels from Captain America v.4 #18 (November 2003), script by Dave Gibbons, pencils by Lee Weeks, inks by Tom Palmer, colors by Dave Stewart, letters by Rus Wooton

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

And then there was the time the Avengers met Skrull Humphrey Bogart and his Skrull mobster gang on a blimp-shaped space-casino in another galaxy.

The Avengers meet Skrull Humphrey Bogart
Page from Avengers Annual #14 (1985), script by Roger Stern, pencils by John Byrne, inks by Kyle Baker, colors by Christie Scheele, letters by John Workman
Click image to Sydney Greenstreet-size

Special bonus panel: Hercules approves!:
Avengers Annual #14

365 Days with Ben Grimm: Day 55

Fantastic Four: ¡Isla de la Muerte! #1
Panel from Fantastic Four: ¡Isla de la Muerte! one-shot (February 2008), written by Tom Beland, art by Juan Doe, letters by Dave Lanphear
(Click picture to Uatu-size)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Ten of a Kind and Today in Comics History, February 23, 1945: Uncommon valor was a common virtue

"Among the men who fought on Iwo Jima, uncommon valor was a common virtue."—Admiral Chester W. Nimitz

Sixty-four years ago today, February 23, 1945, Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal captured the image of US Marines and a US Navy corpsman raising the American flag during "Operation Detachment"—the battle for the Pacific island of Iwo Jima. Read more about the raising of the flag and the famous photograph here, and enjoy these homages to one of the most iconic images of the twentieth century:

(More Ten of a Kind here.) See also.

365 Days with Ben Grimm: Day 54

Code of Honor #1
Panel from Code of Honor #1 (January 1997), script by Chuck Dixon, art by Brad Parker and Tristan Shane, letters by Chris Eliopoulos

Sunday, February 22, 2009

365 Days with Ben Grimm: Day 53

FF #300
Panels from Fantastic Four #300 (March 1987), script by Roger Stern, pencils by John Buscema, inks by Sal Buscema, colors by Glynis Oliver, letters by John Workman