Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Strange Adventures #209

Strange Adventures #209 (On Sale: December 26, 1967) features just another wonderful Neal Adams Deadman cover.

"How Many Times Can a Guy Die?" is plotted by Carmine Infantino, scripted by Jack Miller and drawn by Neal Adams. Deadman suspects that the Eagle was responsible for his death. He takes over the body of a circus hand named Pete and leaves a note for the Eagle which claims that he knows about his crime. The Eagle brings the note to Vashnu who recognizes the handwriting as Boston Brand's.

Neal's magnificent two-page spread of the Eagle fighting Deadman in Pete's body.

Deadman then follows the Eagle and learns that the acrobat is really a thief. The Eagle and his gang steal some jewels, so Deadman attempts to gather evidence while in Pete's body. The Eagle catches Pete and tries to kill him. Deadman, still animating Pete, is able to stay alive until the police arrive. The cops take the Eagle into custody, but they also confirm that the Eagle was responsible for another theft elsewhere at the time of Boston's murder. This story was reprinted in Deadman #3.

The back-up story is "The Man with Four Minds" by Ed Hamilton and Carmine Infantino and is a reprint from Strange Adventures #69.

Edited by Jack Miller.

Fox and the Crow #108

Fox and the Crow #108 (On Sale: December 26, 1967) features another Stanley and his Monster cover by Winslow Mortimer. This is this title's swan song.

"The Monster of City Hall" by Arnold Drake and Winslow Mortimer and featuring Stanley and his Monster begins the issue.

It is followed by "Surprise Package" and three other untitled and uncreadited Fox and the Crow stories.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

Detective Comics #372

Detective Comics #372 (On Sale: December 26, 1967) has Neal Adams' seventh cover of the month and the first one on a purely Batman book. I'm not crazy about the coloring on this one, but the figures are really nice.

"The Fearsome Foot-Fighters" is by John Broome, Sheldon Moldoff and Joe Giella. Batman is confronted by some strange thefts in which the thief leaves I.O.U. notes in place of the stolen items. Batman follows clues which lead him to a gang of foot fighters from Karonia. The real thief is Marne Zoldin, a Karonian freedom fighter who needed money to fund his attempts to overthrow the dictator of his country. The foot fighters find Zoldin first and kill him.

The back-up Elongated Man story, "Elongated Man Throws His Weight Around," is by Gardner Fox, Gil Kane and Sid Greene. The Elongated Man and his wife attend a county fair where Ralph witnesses a pickpocket rob one of his young friends. Ralph stops the thieves and returns the stolen money to his friend, who has earned a job as a strong man at the fair. The Elongated Man also learns about a "big job" being planned that night. He stays on the fairgrounds until the gang strikes.

Edited by Julius Schwartz.

Brave and the Bold #76

Brave and the Bold #76 (On Sale: December 26, 1967) sports Neal Adams' sixth cover of the month for DC, this one featuring the odd combination of Batman and Plastic Man.

"Doom, What is Thy Shape?" is by Bob Haney, Mike Sekowsky and Jack Abel. Batman begins tracking a series of bizarre crimes. The trail leads him to a subway tunnel where he encounters a group of Plastoids, androids made of plastic. The Plastoids and their creator, the Molder, trap Batman in plastic and leave him to be killed by a subway car. Fortunately Batman is rescued by Plastic Man who has been tracking the Molder too.
This story does not specify which Plastic Man appears here. The first Plastic Man originated on Earth-2 and immigrated to Earth-X. Plastic Man #7 establishes that the original Plas has aged and now has a son that is active on Earth-1. There is also a Plastic Man that is native to Earth-1. This story takes place on Earth-1 as evidenced by Batman's appearance. Since it occurs while the son of the original Plas is active, it shall be assumed that the Plastic Man in this story is the original Plastic Man's son. Later Brave and the Bold team-ups feature the Plastic Man who is native to Earth-1.

The back-up story featuring Robin, "The Man Called '50-50'," is a reprint from Star Spangled Comics #128 and is by David Reed and Jim Mooney.

Edited by George Kashdan.

Adventure Comics #365

Adventure Comics #365 (On Sale: December 26, 1967) features Neal Adams' fifth cover of the month for DC..

"Escape of the Fatal Five" is by Jim Shooter, Curt Swan and George Klein. When the peaceful planet Talok VIII becomes a belligerent warlike world, the United Planets Director calls upon the Legion to investigate. The world's heroine, Shadow Lass, who had been off-planet on a mission, accompanies four Legionnaires, Superboy, Brainiac 5, Cosmic Boy, and Karate Kid.
As Talok's warlords have completely sealed off their world, the five heroes parachute into a barren desert, intending to make their way into Talok's capital, which they do despite obstacles placed in their path by the mysterious agency behind Talok's transformation.

Gaining entrance to a fortress, the heroes are struck by rays which teleport each into a death-trap. Karate Kid finds himself trapped inside a gigantic, hollow diamond, Cosmic Boy encounters five large, non-magnetic, metal balls which rush at him in a short hallway, Superboy is slowly being crushed in a tiny sphere, Brainiac 5 is imprisoned in a small chamber with spiked walls moving in on him, and Shadow Lass appears in a room flooded with bright, glaring lights, which weaken her darkness-casting power and can eventually kill her. Reprinted in DC Special Blue Ribbon Digest #8 and Legion of Super-Heroes Archives Vol. 7 HC.

This issue also contains an 8-page feature: "The Origin and Powers of the Legion of Super-Heroes."

Edited by Mort Weisinger.

Action Comics #359

Action Comics #359 (On Sale: December 26, 1967) features another dramatic cover by Neal Adams.

Inside "The Case of the People Against Superman" by Leo Dorfman, Curt Swan and George Klein continues from last issue. Superman stands trial for the death of Ron Noble, who was killed during an exhibition boxing match with the Man of Steel. Noble was really a criminal, who swallowed a poison pill to frame Superman. Famed lawyer Earl Barton represents Superman, while district attorney Alonzo Kroll hopes to make a name for himself by getting Superman convicted.

Choosing a jury is difficult because Superman is popular among the citizens of Metropolis. When the trial begins the district attorney makes his case that Superman can't safely control his powers.

For his defense, Superman is able to take the courtroom back in time to view the actual death of Noble.

The back-up Supergirl story is "The Super-Initiation of Supergirl" by Otto Binder and Kurt Schaffenberger. When Supergirl sees a group of sorority girls hazing pledge Joan Bryant with cruel pranks she sets out to stop them. The Girl of Steel pledges the group herself, so the girls come up with pledge stunts that could expose Supergirl's secret identity.

Edited by Mort Weisinger.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Swing With Scooter #11

Swing With Scooter #11 (On Sale: December 21, 1967) features a pretty nice Joe Orlando cover.

Inside we begin with two Scooter stories, "What a Blast," drawn by Joe Orlando and "Femme Fatale," drawn by person unknown. Next is a Kitty Karr story (Gwenny! I didn't know...) and another Scooter story, "I Was a Teenage Teenager," both also by persons unknown. The book ends with an untitled Sylvester story by, you guessed it, persons unknown.

Edited by Jack Miller.

Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #81

Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #81 (On Sale: December 21, 1967) features a great Neal Adams cover. The second issue I bought and I was hooked I tell you, hooked!

"No Witnesses in Outer Space" by is by Leo Dorfman and Kurt Schaffenberger. Continuing from last issue, Lois has moved to Coral City and started a new life. Superman misses her and decides to go back in time to repair their relationship. He plans to arrive at the birthday party he missed, but circumstances cause him to be delayed again. After concluding once again that the past can't be changed, Superman returns to the present.

Lois, in her new job as a nurse, assists Dr. Culver with an experimental gas test performed on death row convicts. Some of the convicts break loose and take Lois as a hostage. Superman arrives to stop them, but Lois is exposed to the gas. The gas gives Lois limited E.S.P. and allows her to read Superman's mind. She finds out that he does love her, but his excuse that she would be a target if they married is a real fear he has.

Lois realizes that she can't marry Rand Kirby as she had planned, but also can't bear to hurt him. When her E.S.P. gives her a vision of the future in which Superman is trapped by Kryptonite in space, she sees Rand rescue him. However, her vision shows Rand dies in the process.

Lois stows away on Rand's rocket and saves Superman herself. When the Man of Steel is free of the Kryptonite, he snaps Lois's lifeline in space.

The back-up story is "How Lois Lane Got Her Job" reprinted from Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #17 and is by Otto Binder and Kurt Schaffenberger. During a celebration of her anniversary at the Daily Planet Lois tells Clark Kent how she got her job by getting three scoops without any help from Superman. Lois relates how she caught a safe company employee who was selling safe combinations, how she got a picture of a reclusive Rajah who was really a jewel thief, and how she beat a deadline by sending her story on an archeological find in a bottle to reach the Planet. Clark recalls the events surrounding each story and realizes that Superman’s actions nearby inadvertently helped Lois get each of the scoops, but Clark decides to keep the knowledge to himself.

Edited by Mort Weisinger.

Hawkman #24

Hawkman #24 (On Sale: December 21, 1967) sports one of the uglier Dick Dillin and Jack Abel covers I have seen in quite a while.

"The Robot Raiders from Planet Midnight" is by Arnold Drake, Dick Dillin and Charles Cuidera. Assigned to protect General Foster, who is to preside over an Armed Services Day parade, Hawkman notices that the general salutes with the wrong hand, exposing him as a robot impostor. Other military leaders and his own wife have been similarly replaced, and Katar tracks Shayera through space. He arrives on a sunless planet, and is set upon by winged beasts, which he defeats with his refrigio-ray. Disguising himself as a robot, he infiltrates, but is easily detected, and he and Shayera are united at gunpoint. They learn of this world's plan to invade Earth, and are then forced into combat with beasts in an arena.

The back-up story is "The Man Who Grew Wings" a reprint from Strange Adventures #65 by Otto Binder, Sid Greene and Joe Giella.

Edited by George Kashdan.

Girls' Love Stories #133

Girls' Love Stories #133 (On Sale: December 21, 1967) sports a cover pencilled by Jay Scott Pike (am I the only own who thinks there is something a little Shatner and Nimoy about these two guys?).

"The Remembrance of Love" by persons unknown begins the issue and is followed by "A Lesson in Love" which is inked by Bernard Sachs. Finally is "Love Cheat" drawn by Howard Purcell.

Edited by Jack Miller.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Sugar and Spike #75

Sugar and Spike #75 (On Sale: December 19, 1967) sports a Sheldon Mayer cover.

The first story is "The Mystery of the Mischievous Marble" which is written and drawn by Sheldon Mayer. the back-up story features Doodles Duck, is untitled, was reprinted in Best of DC #28 and is also written and drawn by Sheldon Mayer.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

Star Spangled War Stories #137

Star Spangled War Stories #137 (On Sale: December 19, 1967) sports a Russ Heath War That Time Forgot cover marred by some really dreadful coloring.

The first story is a War That Time Forgot story, "Fight to the Last," by Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert. That is backed by "Mud Soldier" by Howard Liss and Jack Sparling and "Human Booby Trap," a reprint from Our Fighting Forces #1 by Robert Kanigher and Jerry Grandenetti.

Edited by Robert Kanigher.

Metal Men #30

Metal Men #30 (On Sale: December 19, 1967) features a cover by Ross Andru and Mike Esposito.

Inside we have "Terrors of the Forbidden Dimension" by Otto Binder, Gil Kane and Mike Esposito. This is the beginning of a three-issue run by Binder and a two-issue stint by Kane.

Edited by Robert Kanigher.

Heart Throbs #112

Heart Throbs #112 (On Sale: December 19, 1967) sports a cover pencilled by Jay Scott Pike.

"Sweet Mystery of Love" is penciled by Howard Purcell (why do I keep thinking, " last I've found you!"?). This is followed by "Temporary Sweetheart," a reprint from Girls' Romances #69 and is drawn by Arthur Peddy and Bernard Sachs. Lastly we have "3 Girls -- Their Lives...Their Loves, Episode 11" penciled by Jay Scott Pike.

Edited by Barbara Frielander.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Superman #204

Superman #204 (On Sale: December 14, 1967) has another cool Neal Adams cover. This was the first issue of Superman that I purchased.

The issue begins with "The Case of the Lethal Letters" by Cary Bates, Rose Andru and Mike Esposito. Superman receives a warning that harm will befall his friends if he does not abandon his crime-fighting career. When Lana Lane and Lori Lemaris are both attacked and disappear, Superman suspects that Lois Lane will be the next target. Despite his efforts to protect her, Lois also disappears.

Superman announces that he will end his career and asks that his unknown opponent return the missing girls. Following his announcement, television reporter Lorraine Delon returns to her hideout in preparation to kill the kidnapped women. Superman follows her after picking up her excited heartbeat following his announcement.

Lorraine incapacitates Superman uses Q-Energy which originates from another universe. She explains that her real name is Lorraine Lewis, a brilliant female scientist. She holds a grudge against Superman because his girl friends with the same initials have upstaged her own achievements. Reprinted in Limited Collectors' Edition C-31.

Next is "The Duplicate Superman," reprinted from Acton Comics #222 and created by Otto Binder and Al Plastino. Superman is divided into two beings during an experimental Q-bomb test. One Superman does not possess X-ray vision, while the other is missing telescopic vision. Together the two Supermen take turns as Superman and Clark, appearing in the same place at the same time for Lois Lane.

Later, Superman-T turns criminal and steals a gold plated statue. Superman-X confronts him, but is forced away to deal with an emergency. Alone, Superman-T constructs a lead shield from the inside of the statue.

The final story is "The Fortress of Fear" by Cary Bates and Al Plastino. An alien life force takes control of Superman's Fortress of Solitude. The Fortress itself then attacks the Man of Steel and nearly defeats him.

Edited by Mort Weisinger.

Our Army at War #190

Our Army at War #190 (On Sale: December 14, 1967) has a cover by Joe Kubert featuring Sgt. Rock's 6 Battle Stars.

We begin with "What Makes a Sergeant Run?," a Sgt. Rock reprint from Our Army at War #97 by Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert. Sgt. Rock is pestered by a new recruit who asks him what a sergeant is. Before Rock can come up with an answer, Easy Co. comes under fire. They survive and take an enemy occupied farm house. Rock is pestered again and again by the recruit, but each time he is interrupted. Easy defends their position against a tank. Rock rescues the recruit and takes out the tank. Afterwards, the soldier has his answer without Rock saying a word. Sgt. Rock's actions have taught the kid what he wanted to know.

Next is "Tank Raiders", a Haunted Tank reprint from G.I. Combat #90 by Robert Kanigher and Russ Heath. The crew of the Haunted Tank stops to refresh themselves after a battle. While bathing, the tank is stolen by a group of enemy soldiers. Jeb and his crew chase down the tank in a jeep. They push the jeep off a cliff to block the road below. When the tank stops, the crew retakes it from enemy hands.

That is followed by "Death Dive," a Johnny Cloud reprint from All-American Men of War #84 by Robert Kanigher and Irv Novick. Johnny Cloud and the Happy Braves fly escort for a group of bombers. The bomber flight leader tells Johnny that this is his final mission. When the bomber is shot down by enemy fire, Johnny follows the plane to the ground and helps the wounded pilot out of the plane. German soldiers on the ground commandeer the plane forcing Johnny to pilot a bombing run on his own Navy.

Next we have "Jumping Jeep" reprinted from All-American Men of War #38 and created by Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert.

Next is "Trail of the Terror Rockets," a Mademoiselle Marie reprint from Star Spangled War Stories #89 by Robert Kanigher and Mad Magazine favorite Mort Drucker. Mademoiselle Marie attempts to locate a secret German missile site. While disguised as a washer woman, Marie falls for a trick planted by Commandant Von Ekt. She eludes capture, but she is unable to learn the correct location.

When Marie attempts to rescue a captured pilot, who has seen the missile launch site, Marie herself is captured. She is taken to a labor camp, which she discovers is the missile site. She signals some Allied bombers with a mirror, and they destroy the site. Marie and the prisoners, including the captured pilot, overpower the guards and escape the camp.

That is followed by "Underwater Gunner," a Gunner and Sarge reprint from Our Fighting Forces #51 by Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert. After taking out a machine gun nest on the side of a cliff, Gunner and Sarge encounter an enemy tank positioned on a river bank. Gunner and Sarge enter the river and swim toward the tank. Though they aren't as good as frogmen, they manage to destroy the tank.

After the battle, Sarge decides that they could use some real frogman training, so he asks his brother Eddie who is a navy man to teach them. Eddie leads Gunner and Sarge underwater where they are attacked by enemy frogmen. They fight off the frogmen only to encounter an enemy submarine. Somehow, they manage to change the course of a torpedo and take out the enemy sub.

The issue concludes with "Foxhole Pilot," a reprint from G.I. Combat #50 by Robert Kanigher and Irv Novick.

Edited by Robert Kanigher.

Falling In Love #97

Falling In Love #97 (On Sale: December 14, 1967) has another great cover by John Rosenberger.

The issue begins with "An Age Limit on Love" which was produced by persons unknown. This is followed by "Memory of Love," a reprint from Falling In Love #17 drawn by Arthur Peddy and Bernard Sachs. The final story is "The Next Best Thing to Love" drawn by John Rosenberger.

Edited by Jack Miller.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Young Romance #152

Young Romance #152 (On Sale: December 12, 1967) has an amazing cover by John Rosenberger, who came to DC in 1964 after years of working for American Comics Group and Archie, where he drew The Fly and The Jaguar. In a few years he would work on Lois Lane and Wonder Woman as well.

The issue begins with "All I Want is You" which was produced by persons unknown. This is followed by "Nicolette," a reprint from Girls' Romances #67 drawn by Bernard Sachs. The final story is "Hide Her Love" drawn by John Rosenberger and reprinted in Heart Throbs #153.

Edited by Jack Miller.

World's Finest Comics #173

World's Finest Comics #173 (On Sale: December 12, 1967) has a Curt Swan and George Klein cover. This is the first issue of World's Finest Comics I purchased.

"The Jekyll-Hyde Heroes" is by Jim Shooter, Curt Swan and George Klein. Dr. Aaron is apprehended by the World's Finest Team for illegal human science experiments. When he gets out of jail, Dr. Aaron decides to take his revenge on Superman and Batman. First he learns which of their villains that they fear the most, then he uses psyche-distorter chemicals on them. The chemicals cause physical and psychological transformations which turn Batman and Superman into Two-Face and the space villain Kralik (being my first issue of World's Finest, I thought Kralik was a well-known and established Superman villain. Only later did I realize that Shooter had invented him for this one story and that he was never heard from again.).

As Two-Face and Kralik, the former heroes begin attacking Metropolis and each other. Robin deduces that the heroes have been turned into villains, but he is captured by Dr. Aaron before he can summon help. However, when Batman in his Two-Face guise decides to kidnap Dr. Aaron himself, the scientist is forced to drink his own chemicals and becomes the Composite Superman.

The back-up story is "The Super-Key to Fort Superman" reprinted from Action Comics #241 and created by Jerry Coleman, Wayne Boring and Stan Kaye. While visiting his Fortress of Solitude Superman discovers a message written on the wall which reveals that an intruder has penetrated the Fortress. Superman seals the entrance, but later learns that the intruder has returned.

Edited by Mort Weisinger.

Justice League of America #60

Justice League of America #60 (On Sale: December 12, 1967) has a Mike Sekowsky and Murphy Anderson cover. This was the first issue of Justice League I purchased.

"Winged Warriors of the Immortal Queen" is by Gardner Fox, Mike Sekowsky and Sid Greene. Zazzala the Queen Bee again attempts to press the Justice League into her service, but only succeeds in paralyzing J'onn J'onzz, Hawkman, Aquaman, and Wonder Woman. Succeeding in gaining control of the Atom, she reasons that she must reduce the other heroes in size in order to overpower their wills. She then changes Flash, Green Arrow, Green Lantern, Superman, and Batman into tiny winged thralls.

Having managed to open the vials of immortality elixir, Zazzala has gained immortality, but finds herself gradually becoming paralyzed as a side-effect. She therefore intends to send the League after the components of an antidote to the original serum.

When Batgirl, who has followed Batman, invades her headquarters, Zazzala changes her into another thrall. Green Lantern and Atom procure a special urn from the planet Gram, Superman and Flash acquire a heat-globe from the planet Ishtan, and Batman, Batgirl, and Green Arrow bring back a liquid from Peremunda.

After taking her antidote, the Queen Bee intends to keep the heroes as her slaves. Reprinted in Justice League of America Archives Vol. 7 HC and Showcase Presents: Batgirl Vol. 1 TPB.

The back-up story is "The Seeing-Eye Humans" a Captain Comet reprint from Strange Adventures #38 by John Broome and Murphy Anderson.

Edited by Julius Schwartz.

G.I. Combat #128

G.I. Combat #128 (On Sale: December 12, 1967) features another terrific Russ Heath Haunted Tank cover.

"The Ghost of the Haunted Tank," a reprint from G.I. Combat #95 begins the issue and is by Robert Kanigher and Russ Heath. Jeb Stuart receives a cryptic warning from the ghost of General Jeb Stuart. When the Haunted Tank is attacked by an enemy tank, Jeb uses the warning to escape. Then when the crew is knocked out, the general destroys the enemy tank.

The rest of Jeb's crew begins to think him crazy for believing in a ghost. Later when the Haunted Tank encounter six more enemy tanks, they are able to survive by positioning themselves in the middle of the enemy formation.

After the tanks are destroyed, Jeb's crew tie him up, believing that he is crazy. Slim takes command of the tank.

The back-up is also a reprint, this time from G.I. Combat #94 and is also by Robert Kanigher and Russ Heath. In "The Haunted Tank Vs Killer Tank" Jeb Stuart and the crew of the Haunted Tank approach the town of Crucy along with B Squadron. The squadron receives a radio message from the enemy warning them to turn back. The squad ignores the message and presses on towards the occupied town.

On the way the tanks are destroyed one by one by mysterious means. The radio warning even told the tank commanders which order the tanks would be destroyed. Jeb's tank is the next on the list.

Edited by Robert Kanigher.

Blackhawk #239

Blackhawk #239 (On Sale: December 12, 1967) has another Dick Dillin and Charles Cuidera cover. Two questions: 1. Why does the "killer that Time Forgot" remind me of Ma Hunkle? 2). Damn, the old Blackhawk uniforms sure look great! OK, that last on wasn't really a question.

"The Killer That Time Forgot" is by Bob Haney, Dick Dillin and Charles Cuidera. In a snow bank atop the alps, a man who has been frozen in the ice awakens and frees himself. The man walks to a nearby town where a museum is being robbed by a group of Blackhawk impostors. The man attacks them, then walks away.

When the real Blackhawks are called to the town, they recognize the man as the Iron Hammer, a Nazi they fought during World War II. The Nazi was thought to have been killed under an avalanche, but now the Blackhawks know he survived.

The back-up story is "End of the Line" reprinted from Our Army at War #12 and created by John Reed, Gene Colan and Bernard Sachs.

Edited by George Kashdan.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Adventures of Bob Hope #109

Adventures of Bob Hope #109 (On Sale: December 7, 1967) has Neal Adams' last Bob Hope cover. There are two reasons for this: First, Neal was doing more covers and serious strips for DC and second, the Adventures of Bob Hope was cancelled with this issue.

"Is There a Witch Doctor in the House?" is by the standard team of Arnold Drake and Neal Adams. There is also a short back-up story untitled (If there's one thing I can't stand...) featuring Liz.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

Atom #35

Atom #35 (On Sale: December 7, 1967) has another cool Gil Kane and Sid Greene cover.

"Plight of the Pin-Up Atom" is by Gardner Fox, Gil Kane and Sid Greene. Ray Palmer learns that the foster parents of his lab assistant Enrichetta Negrini were injured during a robbery at their home, he investigates as the Atom. The crooks return to the home to steal a collection American Primitive artwork. The Atom tries to stop them, but he is knocked out and taken prisoner. The gang leader tries to make the Atom a part of one of his other collections, but he fails to remove the Tiny Titan's size control belt.

Next is "Col. Blood Steals the Crown Jewels" also by Gardner Fox, Gil Kane and Sid Greene. When Professor Hyatt pulls a strange jeweled object from the Time Pool, the Atom enters it to investigate. He discovers that the object is one of England's Crown Jewels. While in the past, the Atom stops an attempt by Colonel Tom Blood to steal the jewels. When he returns to the present, the Atom learns that Blood was later pardoned by King Charles, and he suspects that the attempted robbery may have taken place with the king's consent.

Lastly we have a "Demand Classic" reprint from Strange Adventures #41, "Last Day on Earth" by John Broome and Sy Barry.

Edited by Julius Schwartz.

Challengers of the Unknown #60

Challengers of the Unknown #60 (On Sale: December 7, 1967) has a completely unconvincing cover by Bob Brown, which also suffers from some really poor coloring.

"The Thing That Could Not Die" is by the standard team of Arnold Drake and Bob Brown and is followed by "2 Hours to Die," a reprint from Challengers of the Unknown #41 by France Herron and Bob Brown. Prof pilots a mini-sub to the ocean floor to conduct some demolition work. His sub becomes trapped by some large boulders. His explosives are set to go off within two hours. The other Challengers each attempt to rescue Prof before the bomb explodes. Ace and Red both fail and are injured in the attempt.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

Unexpected #105

Unexpected #105 (On Sale: December 7, 1967) has a Bob Brown cover. This is the first issue using this name as the first 104 issues were published as Tales of the Unexpected. This becomes DC's first horror anthology book.

"The Night I Watched Myself Die" by Carl Wessler and Bob Brown was later reprinted in Unexpected #159. Next is "Daydreams That Became a Nightmare" drawn by Lee Elias. That is followed by "The Island of the Enchantress" draw by Ruben Moreira and reprinted from House of Secrets #7. Lastly is "The Human Phantom" by Otto Binder, Gil Kane and Joe Giella and reprinted from Strange Adventures #48.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Our Army at War #189

Our Army at War #189 (On Sale: December 5, 1967) has a Sgt. Rock cover by Joe Kubert.

"The Mission Was Murder" is a Sgt. Rock story by Robert Kanigher, Joe Kubert and Jack Abel. It is followed by "Tag for a Tail Gunner," a reprint from Our Fighting Forces #1 by France Herron and Arthur Peddy. Rounding out the issue is "You Can't Bust a Sergeant" by Howard Liss and Jack Sparling.

Edited by Robert Kanigher.

Flash #176

Flash #176 (On Sale: December 5, 1967) has a fairly spooky Carmine Infantino and Murphy Anderson cover.

"Death Stalks the Flash" is by John Broome, Ross Andru and Mike Esposito. Illness befalls Iris Allen causing her to become delirious. In her fevered state, Iris fears for the life of her husband the Flash. Worried about his wife, the Flash is able to use his super-speed to transport himself into the dream dimension (Wow! Is there anything he can't do just by moving fast?). He finds Iris's dream and watches as a dream version of himself battles Death.

Next is "Professor West -- Lost, Strayed, or Stolen?" also by John Broome, Ross Andru and Mike Esposito. Professor Ira West attends a workshop to improve his memory. He recognizes another student in the class, but he cannot remember from where he knows him. After the workshop, West follows the man outside and suddenly remembers that he saw the man digging a hole outside Central University. The man is really a crook, who wants to find some buried loot that he has forgotten. The crook and his gang then force Professor West to lead them to the buried loot.

When Professor West fails to return to his daughter's house, Iris sends the Flash to look for him. The Flash uses a tracking device in Ira's watch to find the professor.

The third story is "Open the Door, Earthman" a reprint from Mystery In Space #34 by Otto Binder, Carmine Infantino and Bernard Sachs.

Doom Patrol #117

Doom Patrol #117 (On Sale: December 5, 1967) has a dramatic Bob Brown cover.

"The Black Vulture" is by Arnold Drake and Bruno Premiani. The Chief is deserted by the Doom Patrol after his new relationship with Madame Rouge causes him to neglect his duties as their leader. He then must fight alone against the Black Vulture, an old foe who has become a costumed criminal with a bird motif. The Doom Patrol returns in time to help battle the Vulture and his trained birds, but they in turn must be rescued by the arrival of the Chief's Indian friend, White Feather, and his warriors, who also have an old score to settle with the Black Vulture.

The back-up story is "The Man of 100 Wigs" by Jack Miller and John Prentice, a reprint from Tales of the Unknown #3.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

Batman #199

Batman #199 (On Sale: December 5, 1967) has a nifty Carmine Infantino and Murphy Anderson cover adorning what was the first issue of Batman that I purchased 40 years ago. The cover is a cool idea and puts into the reader's mind that Batman is a best seller and scarce and you better get your copy while you can. Great marketing idea by Schwartz.

"Peril of the Poison Rings" is by Gardner Fox, Sheldon Moldoff and Joe Giella. The batman and Robin stop a robbery at the Norwood Estate, but while most of the gang are sent to prison, gang-leader Rembrandt Dickens escapes capture, Dickens then begins a career as a comic artist, writing true crime tales involving jobs that he planned.

When his gang is eventually released from prison, Dickens gives them poison rings. When they encounter Batman and Robin again, the Caped Crusader is scratched by one of the rings. Batman is then forced to track down the latest Batman comic book which contains a clue to Dickens's identity and location.

Next is "Seven Steps to Save Face" also by Gardner Fox, Sheldon Moldoff and Joe Giella. When Batman and Robin stop a robbery in progress, the crooks capture Robin and substitute a midget in his place. Batman then sees the midget in a Robin costume knocked out, so he lets the crooks go to save his partner. He brings the impostor back to the Batcave before realizing his mistake. The midget then learns his secret identity and uses a belt radio to pass the information to his gang.

Finally there is also a solo Robin story this issue, "Operation 'Escape," drawn by Jim Mooney and reprinted from Star Spangled Comics #124.

Edited by Julius Schwartz.