Saturday, January 14, 2012

Same Story, Different Cover: Oh, what a strange magic

L: Amazing Spider-Man Annual #2 (1965), pencils and inks by Steve Ditko
R: Doctor Strange v.1 #179 (April 1969), pencils by Barry Windsor-Smith
(Click picture to 177A Bleecker Street-size)

366 Days with Alfred Pennyworth, Day 14

Splash page from The Batman Adventures v.1 #29 (February 1995), script by Kelley Puckett, pencils by Dev Madan, inks by Rick Burchett, colors by Rick Taylor, letters by Rick Starkings

Friday, January 13, 2012

Today in Comics History, Friday the 13th: Nothing gets past Batman

from "The League of Ex-Convicts" in Batman (1940 series) #103 (DC, October 1956), script by Arnold Drake, pencils by Sheldon Moldoff, inks by Charles Paris, colors by Pat Gordon

And a very happy Friday the Thirteenth to you too, from Batman and Robin and Bully too!!

cover of Batman (1940 series) #40 (DC, April 1947), pencils by Jack Burnley, inks by Charles Paris, letters by Ira Schnapp
cover mildly Photoshopped by yours very stuffed truly

366 Days with Alfred Pennyworth, Day 13

Panels from Detective Comics #356 (October 1966), script by Gardner Fox, pencils by Sheldon Moldoff, inks by Joe Giella

And now you know...the secret of the Outsider!

(I'm still wondering why he always stayed inside, though.)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

More about the Vision than you ever wanted to know.

In the spirit of The Vision in a Sweater and a Bathrobe and The Vision in a Turtleneck comes these astonishing follow-ups from the synthezoid men call...The Vision! In...something. This time it's...

The Vision in a Speedo!

Panels from (top to bottom) The Avengers #137 (July 1975); The Avengers v.3 #23 (December 1999); What If? v.2 #9 (January 1990)

Special Bonus! From the immortal Avengers #254, here's an all-new, all-elegant fashion parade by Vizh! He shops at Casual you don't have to!

The Vision in a Polo Shirt, Sex Dungeon Wear*, and Hanging Around the Playboy Mansion!

Panels from The Avengers #254 (April 1985), script by Roger Stern, breakdowns by Bob Hall, finishes by Joe DelBeato and Joe Rubinstein, colors by Christie Scheele, letters by Joe Rosen

Extra Special Bonus!: what if the Vision had the same musculature as Rob Liefeld's Captain America**? We'd all freak out, that's what!

Panels from The Vision #1 (November 1994), script by Bob Harras, pencils by Manny Clark, inks by Al Vey and Mike Machlan, colors by Joe Andreani, letters by Bill Oakley

And if you've come this far, you can't avert your eyes in time to unsee


Think that's bad enough? Does that make you feel uncomfortable? Then maybe you haven't noticed the crowning point in the Vision's miniseries of the nineties skeeviness:


I'm pretty sure that's about all you want to know about The Vision for quite some time.

*Not that I know anything about that.
**Persons of a nervous disposition should not click on this link. Probably too late, sorry.

366 Days with Alfred Pennyworth, Day 12

Panels from Detective Comics #356 (October 1966), script by Gardner Fox, pencils by Sheldon Moldoff, inks by Joe Giella

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Little Cool Things: Bill Nighy will get you if you don't watch out

Superhero comic books focus on the big: the boistrous, the loud, the bombastic. But don't forget to focus past the action to check out the background details: the elements that aren't integral to the plot but which are delightful little bits of stage dressing. In other words: keep your eyes peeled for the little cool things.

Hey, everybody...let's go back to the nineties! Hey, come back! Stop running away! We're not really going back to the 1990s! No, see, it's okay...we're just' gonna look at comic books from the nineties.

Hey, where you goin'? C'mon back everybody!

Okay, now that we've settled that, let's look at 1992's New Titans Annual #8. How nineties is it? It's so nineties that everybody has a mullet! Nightwing has a mullet!

Panels from The New Titans Annual #8 (1992), by a whole lotta guys including, of course, Marv Wolfman

It's so nineties that Beast Boy Changeling has a mullet!

It's so 1990s that Starfire has a mullet!

Anyway, my point...and I do have that this issue has a pretty neat Little Cool Thing. Part of the "Eclipso: The Darkness Within" crossover event of '92, the issue's climactic goodie versus baddie battle takes place in a museum's Egyptian wing. (Not guest-starring Hawkman, for once!) One of the pages is bordered with a full frame of hieroglyphics. Presumably, if Eclipso can decipher these, he can take over the world, extinguish humanity, and shut down all the Panera Bread cafés. What a dastardly plan!

Did ya spot the Little Cool Thing? Of course ya did! (Because I know my readers are smart and brilliant and eagle-eyed and not susceptible to off-the-hand buttering up.) So, you saw the LCT...but can you decipher

That's not Egyptian...that's Interlac, the universal language of the DC Universe's galactic beings, the one-millennium-forward future of The Legion of Super-Heroes, and some of the more remote villages of Markovia, home of the tourist slogan Visit Markovia, the poor man's Latveria! Long-time Legionnaires could probably read this in their sleep, but off-hand the only Interlac letter I usually recognize is "E," mainly because Element Lad used to wear it on his uniform, thus following the twentieth century custom of wearing your first initial somewhere on your costume (see: Superman, Aquaman, Captain America, Coil-Man, Fluid-Man, Multi-Man...) but also of having really, really great perms.

...that is, when he wasn't busy dressing like one of Darkseid's minions...

Believe me: Element Lad has had lots of rotten costumes. But let's poke through his closet another day. So to speak.

To decipher the Interlac hieroglyphs, just pull out your handy Interlac translation chart, clipped from the back of LSH #311!

Or, look for the archaic "inter-Net" on your McCauley Omnicom and dial up the charmingly primitive Wikipedia to find a fuller Interlac guide, including numbers and capital letters!

Capital letters?!? At last, people other than k.d. lang can join the Legion!

Carefully translating the Interlac, we can find that it reads, as far as we can see of the letters:
Here, let me put it into a more familiar state so you can perhaps fill in the letters:

Which of course means the earth is under threat from the menace of British actor Bill Nighy! Bwah!

No, no, I kids the Bill Nighy. The actual translation is likely THE END OF THE WORLD IS NIGH, which is fitting for an Eclipso story, and also because there's only a few pages left in New Titans Annual #8. Only a few lines left in this post, too, which is long enough to show you another cool thing from NTA #8: the moment when Nightwing mistakenly thought the comic book was in 3D!

That's all, except for a final comment. Always remember...

366 Days with Alfred Pennyworth, Day 11

Panels from Detective Comics #356 (October 1966), script by Gardner Fox, pencils by Sheldon Moldoff, inks by Joe Giella

Bemused? Baffled? Bewildered? Bedeviled? Bewitched? Be-de-be-de-be-de-Buck? Tune in tomorrow, folks!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Things Bully Got for Christmas: Chairs

366 Days with Alfred Pennyworth, Day 10

Panels from Detective Comics #340 (June 1965), script by Gardner Fox, pencils by Sheldon Moldoff, inks by Joe Giella

Monday, January 09, 2012

Things Bully Got for Christmas: A Christmas Cracker

366 Days with Alfred Pennyworth, Day 9

Panel from The Brave and the Bold #187 (June 1982), script by Charlie Boatner; pencils, inks, and letters by Jim Aparo, colors by Adrienne Roy,

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Ten of a Kind: A little less conversation, a little more Action Comics

Born this day in 1935, we remember Elvis Presley.

(More Ten of a Kind here.)