Weather Related

We’ve picked our date for our annual eBay Canadiana Auction: it will go live Friday, May 19th and finish up Monday, May 29th. This will be our 3rd Canadiana auction and will easily be our biggest and best yet; we already have over 200 lots lined up on our way to a 300-plus lot auction. If anybody has any cool Canadiana collectibles they want to sell contact us through the ICE Collectibles website. Last year we had a copy of the insanely rare Better Comics #1; this year we’ll be offering up a piece even rarer! Details to come.

I just figured out I’ll be missing the Montreal Comic Con this year. I’ll be travelling to Europe at that time. Damn, I liked going to that show. Maybe I can find a con on the Continent in mid-July to early August? Probably not where I’m heading; unfortunately the Balkans is not a hotbed for collectibles! I’ve always envied the great Harley Yee with him setting up in London England, Sydney Australia, and all over; it’s a ton of work but the places that man has seen. He tells me it’s mostly just hotels and convention halls but I don’t believe a word of it. I was thinking of going down to the Motor City show just outside Detroit in late May, that show was always a good one to buy at. I would imagine I’d really have to use my haggling skills as I assume a lot of a dealer’s stock has old price stickers on it. When I used to set up at a lot of cons I never had time to go back over all my inventory to adjust prices before every show so the stuff that was gaining in value often sold quickly at the cons while the stuff going stale would just sit in the bins with me unaware that the stuff is now priced out of the current market. I’m assuming there are more “stale” books in a dealer’s bins these days and I’d hope the dealers would realize that and be a lot more negotiable with the price. One way to find out.

This week’s “heading to eBay auctions” pile had a run of Weapon X from Marvel Comics Presents in it. As I was quickly grading the books I stopped to admire Barry Windsor Smith’s cover to #79. This one just stood out from the pack for me, very stylistic and very interesting, it was an easy pick for my cover of the week.

I was leafing through a copy of Feature Comics #103 and was blown away by Reed Crandall’s work on the Doll Man story. The whole story had Citizen Kane vibes and Crandall played with innovative angles for his panels. Crandall also has an eye for the ladies as is evident on this page. Great stuff.

Here it is! Is this the most iconic comic book ad ever? This is the one I had in mind when I posted the ad hall of fame idea a couple of weeks ago. Of course, it would depend on when you came up through the hobby but most of us collected back issues and we’d all be used to ads from at least the 1960s. This ad came from Creatures on the Loose #30 which was published in 1974: the ad looks obviously older, at least from the 60s if not back into the 50s. Why change a classic?

Our latest weekly ice collectibles eBay auction ended last night and I’d like to highlight the Batman #54 graded at CGC 4.0. Golden Age comics have been a bright spot within the recent downward trend in collectible comic values. Special issues and special covers have been strong but even regular run issues like the Batman #54 pictured are strong. Our copy sold for $400 USD which is above the price a 4.0 realized last year. Golden Age is where it’s at right now.

Walter Durajlija
Walter Durajlija

Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton Ontario.

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Chris Meli
1 month ago

I notice that I can’t be LIVE FROG this week. Easy come, easy go.

Golden Age is always where it’s at. Anything above Fine in Golden Age is automatically unusual. I just can’t get interested in a “9.8” when there are a gazillion “9.0s” out there. Of course I might still want a copy because it’s a cool book, but ponying up for one is not enticing. On the other hand, paying for a nice copy of a Golden Age book when almost every other copy out there is a rag is definitely on the table. People can argue whether it is F/F+/F-, but it is still a bona fide collector’s item.

Since everybody is so crazy over first appearances, how about “first appearances” of these classic ads? I guess they hit all of the books published in that month, but still a possible collecting strain.

Gerald Eddy
Gerald Eddy
1 month ago

Growing up in Colorado I was always miffed as a kid by the DC ads/coupons for a discount into Palisades Amusement Park a that I could never take advantage of. Anyone 55+ people out there ever do that?

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

That’s right Chris- once you’ve basked in the light of LIVE FROG, it is hard to go back to being mere Chris Meli ! My condolences…

I have been a fan of Barry Windsor Smith’s work since I discovered him on Conan the Barbarian. Naturally, I bought all of the Marvel Comics Presents ‘Weapon X’ issues when they were issued in triplicate! Love the work- he did the script, pencils, inks, colours & most of, if not all of the lettering! Very dense work, intense…you have to look hard to figure out what is happening in some panels! I’ve kinda lost track of him in recent times- although I still love his art, I don’t care much for the VALIANT universe or for RUNE or any of the modern super-heroic stuff he’s done. I guess he has bills to pay like the rest of us & guys like IMAGE thus benefit from his talent.

FEATURE COMICS is a weird Quality title. I like it, I collect it- but I find it ….weird. Many of the covers on this title are very, very lame. Kinda like that ACE COMICS cover you pointed out many months ago. The covers stood out on the comic rack, they called out to the reader…but they are lame! Many of the contents of the typical Feature Comics are ‘filler’ material except for The Doll Man which is very good! There are a few features in Feature Comics that are good to reasonable, but a good number of pages in every issue is wasted on ‘filler’ stuff, mostly humorous. Quite a few early Quality comics had very poor covers [ SMASH COMICS is another such title ] but they are saved by some of their contents. Reed Crandall’s work is world class and is reason enough to collect Feature Comics. Very early appearances of Doll Man were by Lou Fine, with covers by FINE, but most are just lame. Always look inside a FEATURE comic, no matter how poor the cover is, as that is where the magic is. I guess the covers is what keeps the value of Feature Comics down, they look just ‘..ick’ slabbed….but I have noticed an up-tick in activity lately. Maybe they are being finally caught up in the rising tide of GA interest ?

OK- question of the day- Where was the first appearance of that Charles Atlas ad ?? It appeared EVERYWHERE!- in comics, pulps and slicks! Probably in digests too! It appeared for ever! A classic ad that will never die !

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

Charles Atlas first made a splash in the early ’20s, and the cartoon ads became a feature in the ’30s. They began appearing in comic books in the 1940s, so pretty much from the beginning. If you Google him you can see images of the many forms the ads took over the years.

Spider
Spider
1 month ago

Mel…how did you NOT tell Live Frog about Windsor Smith’s opus Monsters?

LF, grab yourself a copy of Monsters, it’s intense and emotionally taxing but absolutely brilliant. I borrowed a copy from the library….3 months later I had to revisit the book again, it just sits in your brain and peculates.

X-Men #205 is another fantastic BWS book: great cover and the interiors are fantastic!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Spider- I have Monsters- I just haven’t found the time to read it yet.

I collected every BWS book I could find, from X-Men #53 to Archer & Armstrong & Rune. Unfortunately, I had no interest in reading any of the Valiant stuff or Rune [ I did try ] & dumped it all. Have not followed BWS since as I simply do not care for the modern superhero stuff that he is/was doing, but I DID get Monsters & WILL read it. After that, I may get it slabbed.

BWS left comics for a while in the 1970’s & pursued fine art. He produced a number of lovely prints & even got some work in Hollywood. When he came back to comics in the mid-1980’s, it was BIG NEWS for me! I was waiting- MARVEL FANFARE #15 was the result, a lovely cover & 19 page Thing story, all by BWS- story, art, colours & lettering! I bought several copies & still have them all !! The X-men issues were special too-four issues- #186, #198, #205 & #214 and are well worth chasing down. Unfortunately, he did not do too much work upon his return & his output is erratic, with bits & pieces of his work popping up here & there. Shouldn’t take you long to find it all!

Interestingly, BWS has done very little work for DC- a handful of pin-ups & some work on Heroes for Hunger #1 in 1986. I wonder why?

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Since you guys are enjoying Daredevil right now, it wouldn’t hurt you to track down a copy of #236 which is all by BWS [inks by Bob Wiacek] & features the Black Widow too. Cover by Simonson/Sienkiewicz doesn’t hurt, tho’ it’s only a portrait [John Romita did the framework for that portrait, so you romitafans can be happy too!].

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

Leave us not forget Red Nails! Absolutely my favourite Conan story! And The Studio was a wonderful snapshot of a moment in time when, astounding as it may seem, BWS, Kaluta, Wrightson and Jones all breathed the same air, and could look over each other’s shoulder while the magic happened. Takes my breath away!

And, speakng of Charles Atlas, anybody out there a Flex Mentallo fan?

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Oh crap!- I almost forgot about the MACHINE MAN mini-series from 1984-85. Four issues, all art by BWS [ with layouts by Herb Trimpe] . I STILL have not read this! [or did I??]

I am sure Walt has this set in that big warehouse find that he got a year or two ago. I’m sure he will sell you a set cheap, right Walt ?? We have not heard much about this collection lately- a little bird told me it’s mostly Micronauts, Vigilante & Rom in those long boxes! What’s the scoop, Walt ???

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

OMG!- Now you’ve done it Mel !- why did you mention RED NAILS ??!! This is without fail THE Conan story by BWS & Roy Thomas ! Thankfully you can still get Savage Tales #2 & #3 quite inexpensively [ as Man-Thing is not in those issues! ] & I recommend that you do so, as they are vital to any collection of REH’s work ! Lots of Conan story & features, plus work by Williamson, Brunner, Wrightson, Morrow, Steranko & others, PLUS a classic reprint by Maneely! All of the Savage Tales issues in this first series are superb, but the Conan issues are just the ticket! RED NAILS has been reprinted a bunch of times, but these first printings are damn special & still affordable. Go get them, you will not be disappointed !

The original REH RED NAILS was first serialized over three issues of Weird Tales from July to October 1936 [soon after REH’s suicide], with two covers by Brundage & one by J.Allen St John. Sadly, these are no longer cheap [July 1936 has an all-female human sacrifice cover by Brundage!] but they are NOT RARE! so there is still hope that you may get one for a fair price. I think the Allen St.John cover is magnificent, but because it has no Brundage babes on the cover, might be cheaper to obtain. The RED NAILS story has been reprinted countless times, but these original Weird Tales mags give you all the other goodies to boot- Clark Ashton Smith, Edmond Hamilton, August Derleth, Robert Bloch ,H.P. Lovecraft [letter] & so many more! with art by Virgil Finlay. Don’t you dare slab these things! – that would be a crime against humanity !!! I think I have all three issues, but cannot be certain on that human sacrifice cover- have to go digging…dig deep….

https://comics.ha.com/itm/pulps/weird-tales-july-1936-popular-fiction-condition-fn/a/121902-12758.s?ic4=GalleryView-Thumbnail-071515

https://comics.ha.com/itm/pulps/weird-tales-august-september-36-popular-fiction-1936-condition-vg-/a/121524-12749.s?ic4=GalleryView-Thumbnail-071515

https://comics.ha.com/itm/pulps/weird-tales-october-1936-popular-fiction-condition-fn-/a/7246-96671.s?ic4=GalleryView-Thumbnail-071515

Highest price for July 1936 on Heritage is $1500 !! Yowza!!

Chris Meli
1 month ago

I have the Machine Man mini-series and the pb reprint LIVE FROG. I will sell you the mini-series for $1000. NOT!!! Suck on that LF!!!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

I have my copies of the Machine Man series, Meli- I have them in duplicate. I just can’t recall reading them. You can put your copies on ebay. Let us know how you make out…

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

[I tried to post this earlier, but either it got held for moderation or has been somehow ‘lost’. I included some links to the images for three classic Weird Tales covers from the Heritage Auction archives. If this post appears twice, it is not my fault. here it is again without the links-]

OMG!- Now you’ve done it Mel !- why did you mention RED NAILS ??!! This is without fail THE Conan story by BWS & Roy Thomas ! Thankfully you can still get Savage Tales #2 & #3 quite inexpensively [ as Man-Thing is not in those issues! ] & I recommend that you do so, as they are vital to any collection of REH’s work ! Lots of Conan story & features, plus work by Williamson, Brunner, Wrightson, Morrow, Steranko & others, PLUS a classic reprint by Maneely! All of the Savage Tales issues in this first series are superb, but the Conan issues are just the ticket! RED NAILS has been reprinted a bunch of times, but these first printings are damn special & still affordable. Go get them, you will not be disappointed !

The original REH RED NAILS was first serialized over three issues of Weird Tales from July to October 1936 [soon after REH’s suicide], with two covers by Brundage & one by J.Allen St John. Sadly, these are no longer cheap [July 1936 has an all-female human sacrifice cover by Brundage!] but they are NOT RARE! so there is still hope that you may get one for a fair price. I think the Allen St.John cover is magnificent, but because it has no Brundage babes on the cover, might be cheaper to obtain. The RED NAILS story has been reprinted countless times, but these original Weird Tales mags give you all the other goodies to boot- Clark Ashton Smith, Edmond Hamilton, August Derleth, Robert Bloch ,H.P. Lovecraft [letter] & so many more! with art by Virgil Finlay. Don’t you dare slab these things! – that would be a crime against humanity !!! I think I have all three issues, but cannot be certain on that human sacrifice cover- have to go digging…dig deep….

Spider
Spider
1 month ago

Yeah LF, the Machine Man series is good – solely based on the art – his wires (aka Weapon X machinery) are on full display on this 4 part run.

Well done LF..good call! the DD#236 by BWS is another good book. Now go and read Monsters šŸ™‚

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

Hey Walt
It actually turns out that the bully kicking sand in his face was a real story that happened to him when he weighed only 97 pounds!!!

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

By the way, for you trivia buffs out there, Charles Atlas was born in Calabria in southern Italy as Angelo Siciliano. You can ask almost anyone, and they are not likely to get the answer. I like to keep random facts at hand, because you never know when they might come in handy! My latest trivia wins were simpy because, once I have read something, I have a very hard time forgetting it. Here’s one of my latest conquered challenges: William and Arthur sold their first motorized bicycle in 1903. What were their last names? I’m gonna let the CBD crowd take a stab at that. Or how about this one? Who is the most famous Dutch painter of all time, Van Dyke, Van Rijn, Van Eyck or Van Gogh? People don’t believe me when I say Van Rijn, because they all, practically without fail, choose Van Gogh. But…Van Rijn’s first name happened to be Rembrandt! Get’s ’em every time!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

William & Arthur Davidson- the founders of Harley-Davidson. Gosh Mel- even I knew that one ! [ I am a master of wikipedia !!!] I am very interested on the Military motorcycles that they produced during WW1 & WW2. Classic stuff !

Seeing as you like Dutch artists, here is one for you- who is the most famous Dutch soccer player of all time ? What famous Dutch soccer team did he play for ??
Trick question- how many times has the Dutch national soccer team won the World Cup ??

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

LF
Close but no cigar, I’m afraid. Their names were William Harley and Arthur Davidson, which you actually probably know.

Speaking of trivia, I was just watching a Buster Keaton documentary, and, at the bottom of one of the posters for the Keaton family, were the words “Nuf sed!” Of course I always figured it was one of those handy phrases Stan just lifted from somebody else and called his own! I can’t find an earlier Stan reference than the letters page of FF #19. Apparently though it was in common usage in the19th century! That, for some obscure reason, made me think of Alfred E. Neuman, who most people think first appeared on the Ballantine paperback edition of The Mad Reader. Would you believe, however, that he actually first appeared in Benjamin Franklin’s Poor Richard’s Almanack, where his face appeared at the top of the page of an ongoing feature titled Alfred’s Poor Almanac?! I guess everything old really is new again!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

“Their names were William Harley and Arthur Davidson, which you actually probably know.”- D’oh ! That’s what I meant !! I’ll take that cigar- is it a Maduro ??

Have they actually figured out CONCLUSIVELY where Alfred E. Neuman came from ?? I don’t think so. That image was quite popular back in the late 1800’s and popped up in many places ! Kurtzman discovered an image of this kid on a postcard at the Ballantine offices circa 1954 & began to use the image in Mad magazine- it was first used on the cover of THE MAD READER paperback in 1954, predating it’s use on Mad #21 in 1955. Check this out, from wikipedia-

“Neuman’s precise origin is shrouded in mystery and may never be fully known. A collection of early Neumanesque images can be found in Maria Reidelbach’s comprehensive work, Completely Mad: A History of the Comic Book and Magazine (Little, Brown, 1991). Mad publisher Bill Gaines gave Reidelbach total access to the magazine’s own files, including the collection of Neuman-related images that had been assembled for a 1965 copyright infringement lawsuit.[21]

The earliest image cited in Reidelbach’s book is from an advertisement for Atmore’s Mince Meat, Genuine English Plum Pudding. She wrote that, “[d]ating from 1895, this is the oldest verified image of the boy…. The kid’s features are fully developed and unmistakable, and the image was very likely taken from an older archetype…”[16] After the publication of the book, an older “archetype” was discovered in an advertisement for the comical stage play, The New Boy, which debuted on Broadway in 1894. The image is nearly identical to what later appears in the Atmore’s ads.[22]”

I have several great books on Kurtzman & Mad Magazine & have followed this with interest. It is unlikely that we will ever find the real first appearance of Alfred, but am happy to be proven wrong. Check out the wikipedia listing for Alfred E. Neuman if you wish to learn more- this is fascinating stuff !

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

I need to watch more Buster Keaton ! With every passing day, I appreciate silent cinema more and more!

Spider
Spider
1 month ago

Mel, speaking of artists…did you here about the thieves who stole several impressionists paintins, got them out of the building and were found in rear of the abadndoned vehicle several hundred kilometers away???

Apparently they didn’t have any Monet to buy Degas to make the Van Gogh!!!

thank you, thank you! here every Thursday night and remember…try the veal!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Har Har ! Spider- you remind me of ‘Peter Porker-the Spectacular Spider-Ham’ [ get it ? Spider-Ham ??!!]

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Just found this article online about how mindless investment can destroy a hobby. It’s focus is on stamps, but a lot of it is applicable to comics. For those who care…

https://leofinance.io/@denmarkguy/perspective-how-turning-hobbies-into-investments-often-destroys-them

Let’s not forget about Dutch tulip bulb mania back in the 1600’s- people were selling their homes to buy rare tulip bulbs !!! How did that turn out ??

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

Priceless, Spider! Just priceless!

And LF, “soccer?” If you called football soccer in our Limey household, you would have had your ears boxed! Of course, sports on TV meant that I was hiding in my room reading, expanding my mind, while my father and brother parked themselves in front of the boob tube, jumping up and down and screaming. I just don’t get it! Never did. Never will.

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Yep, the sport is ‘football’, but if I start to talk about football here, most of you will think I’m talking about the NFL or CFL. When I ask “who is the most famous Dutch football player of all time?” you’ll be puzzled, as there ARE a few Dutch guys playing American [& Canadian ] football, but I don’t think any of them are as famous as Johan Cruyff !

Cruyff played for AJAX [& Barcelona] and neither he or the Dutch National team have ever won the World Cup.

I am not a chest-thumping football hooligan, but I do like to have a game on the telly when I am doing stuff around the house. This background noise is pleasant & is not interrupted by commercial breaks [ until the half-time break]. I like to keep up with my favourite teams and follow ‘the story’ that unfolds with each game. Yep, every game is part of a bigger story which is not complete until the season ends. It is kinda like watching a soap opera, with lots of twists & turns, mayhem & confusion and not always a happy ending !

Spider
Spider
1 month ago

Mel…how did you NOT tell Live Frog about Windsor Smith’s opus Monsters?

LF, grab yourself a copy of Monsters, it’s intense and emotionally taxing but absolutely brilliant. I borrowed a copy from the library….3 months later I had to revisit the book again, it just sits in your brain and peculates.

X-Men #205 is another fantastic BWS book: great cover and the interiors are fantastic!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

That’s right Chris- once you’ve basked in the light of LIVE FROG, it is hard to go back to being mere Chris Meli ! My condolences…

I have been a fan of Barry Windsor Smith’s work since I discovered him on Conan the Barbarian. Naturally, I bought all of the Marvel Comics Presents ‘Weapon X’ issues when they were issued in triplicate! Love the work- he did the script, pencils, inks, colours & most of, if not all of the lettering! Very dense work, intense…you have to look hard to figure out what is happening in some panels! I’ve kinda lost track of him in recent times- although I still love his art, I don’t care much for the VALIANT universe or for RUNE or any of the modern super-heroic stuff he’s done. I guess he has bills to pay like the rest of us & guys like IMAGE thus benefit from his talent.

FEATURE COMICS is a weird Quality title. I like it, I collect it- but I find it ….weird. Many of the covers on this title are very, very lame. Kinda like that ACE COMICS cover you pointed out many months ago. The covers stood out on the comic rack, they called out to the reader…but they are lame! Many of the contents of the typical Feature Comics are ‘filler’ material except for The Doll Man which is very good! There are a few features in Feature Comics that are good to reasonable, but a good number of pages in every issue is wasted on ‘filler’ stuff, mostly humorous. Quite a few early Quality comics had very poor covers [ SMASH COMICS is another such title ] but they are saved by some of their contents. Reed Crandall’s work is world class and is reason enough to collect Feature Comics. Very early appearances of Doll Man were by Lou Fine, with covers by FINE, but most are just lame. Always look inside a FEATURE comic, no matter how poor the cover is, as that is where the magic is. I guess the covers is what keeps the value of Feature Comics down, they look just ‘..ick’ slabbed….but I have noticed an up-tick in activity lately. Maybe they are being finally caught up in the rising tide of GA interest ?

OK- question of the day- Where was the first appearance of that Charles Atlas ad ?? It appeared EVERYWHERE!- in comics, pulps and slicks! Probably in digests too! It appeared for ever! A classic ad that will never die !

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Spider- I have Monsters- I just haven’t found the time to read it yet.

I collected every BWS book I could find, from X-Men #53 to Archer & Armstrong & Rune. Unfortunately, I had no interest in reading any of the Valiant stuff or Rune [ I did try ] & dumped it all. Have not followed BWS since as I simply do not care for the modern superhero stuff that he is/was doing, but I DID get Monsters & WILL read it. After that, I may get it slabbed.

BWS left comics for a while in the 1970’s & pursued fine art. He produced a number of lovely prints & even got some work in Hollywood. When he came back to comics in the mid-1980’s, it was BIG NEWS for me! I was waiting- MARVEL FANFARE #15 was the result, a lovely cover & 19 page Thing story, all by BWS- story, art, colours & lettering! I bought several copies & still have them all !! The X-men issues were special too-four issues- #186, #198, #205 & #214 and are well worth chasing down. Unfortunately, he did not do too much work upon his return & his output is erratic, with bits & pieces of his work popping up here & there. Shouldn’t take you long to find it all!

Interestingly, BWS has done very little work for DC- a handful of pin-ups & some work on Heroes for Hunger #1 in 1986. I wonder why?

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

William & Arthur Davidson- the founders of Harley-Davidson. Gosh Mel- even I knew that one ! [ I am a master of wikipedia !!!] I am very interested on the Military motorcycles that they produced during WW1 & WW2. Classic stuff !

Seeing as you like Dutch artists, here is one for you- who is the most famous Dutch soccer player of all time ? What famous Dutch soccer team did he play for ??
Trick question- how many times has the Dutch national soccer team won the World Cup ??

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

Charles Atlas first made a splash in the early ’20s, and the cartoon ads became a feature in the ’30s. They began appearing in comic books in the 1940s, so pretty much from the beginning. If you Google him you can see images of the many forms the ads took over the years.

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Since you guys are enjoying Daredevil right now, it wouldn’t hurt you to track down a copy of #236 which is all by BWS [inks by Bob Wiacek] & features the Black Widow too. Cover by Simonson/Sienkiewicz doesn’t hurt, tho’ it’s only a portrait [John Romita did the framework for that portrait, so you romitafans can be happy too!].

Chris Meli
1 month ago

I notice that I can’t be LIVE FROG this week. Easy come, easy go.

Golden Age is always where it’s at. Anything above Fine in Golden Age is automatically unusual. I just can’t get interested in a “9.8” when there are a gazillion “9.0s” out there. Of course I might still want a copy because it’s a cool book, but ponying up for one is not enticing. On the other hand, paying for a nice copy of a Golden Age book when almost every other copy out there is a rag is definitely on the table. People can argue whether it is F/F+/F-, but it is still a bona fide collector’s item.

Since everybody is so crazy over first appearances, how about “first appearances” of these classic ads? I guess they hit all of the books published in that month, but still a possible collecting strain.

Gerald Eddy
Gerald Eddy
1 month ago

Growing up in Colorado I was always miffed as a kid by the DC ads/coupons for a discount into Palisades Amusement Park a that I could never take advantage of. Anyone 55+ people out there ever do that?

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

I have my copies of the Machine Man series, Meli- I have them in duplicate. I just can’t recall reading them. You can put your copies on ebay. Let us know how you make out…

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

Leave us not forget Red Nails! Absolutely my favourite Conan story! And The Studio was a wonderful snapshot of a moment in time when, astounding as it may seem, BWS, Kaluta, Wrightson and Jones all breathed the same air, and could look over each other’s shoulder while the magic happened. Takes my breath away!

And, speakng of Charles Atlas, anybody out there a Flex Mentallo fan?

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

By the way, for you trivia buffs out there, Charles Atlas was born in Calabria in southern Italy as Angelo Siciliano. You can ask almost anyone, and they are not likely to get the answer. I like to keep random facts at hand, because you never know when they might come in handy! My latest trivia wins were simpy because, once I have read something, I have a very hard time forgetting it. Here’s one of my latest conquered challenges: William and Arthur sold their first motorized bicycle in 1903. What were their last names? I’m gonna let the CBD crowd take a stab at that. Or how about this one? Who is the most famous Dutch painter of all time, Van Dyke, Van Rijn, Van Eyck or Van Gogh? People don’t believe me when I say Van Rijn, because they all, practically without fail, choose Van Gogh. But…Van Rijn’s first name happened to be Rembrandt! Get’s ’em every time!

Chris Meli
1 month ago

I have the Machine Man mini-series and the pb reprint LIVE FROG. I will sell you the mini-series for $1000. NOT!!! Suck on that LF!!!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

[I tried to post this earlier, but either it got held for moderation or has been somehow ‘lost’. I included some links to the images for three classic Weird Tales covers from the Heritage Auction archives. If this post appears twice, it is not my fault. here it is again without the links-]

OMG!- Now you’ve done it Mel !- why did you mention RED NAILS ??!! This is without fail THE Conan story by BWS & Roy Thomas ! Thankfully you can still get Savage Tales #2 & #3 quite inexpensively [ as Man-Thing is not in those issues! ] & I recommend that you do so, as they are vital to any collection of REH’s work ! Lots of Conan story & features, plus work by Williamson, Brunner, Wrightson, Morrow, Steranko & others, PLUS a classic reprint by Maneely! All of the Savage Tales issues in this first series are superb, but the Conan issues are just the ticket! RED NAILS has been reprinted a bunch of times, but these first printings are damn special & still affordable. Go get them, you will not be disappointed !

The original REH RED NAILS was first serialized over three issues of Weird Tales from July to October 1936 [soon after REH’s suicide], with two covers by Brundage & one by J.Allen St John. Sadly, these are no longer cheap [July 1936 has an all-female human sacrifice cover by Brundage!] but they are NOT RARE! so there is still hope that you may get one for a fair price. I think the Allen St.John cover is magnificent, but because it has no Brundage babes on the cover, might be cheaper to obtain. The RED NAILS story has been reprinted countless times, but these original Weird Tales mags give you all the other goodies to boot- Clark Ashton Smith, Edmond Hamilton, August Derleth, Robert Bloch ,H.P. Lovecraft [letter] & so many more! with art by Virgil Finlay. Don’t you dare slab these things! – that would be a crime against humanity !!! I think I have all three issues, but cannot be certain on that human sacrifice cover- have to go digging…dig deep….

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

Oh crap!- I almost forgot about the MACHINE MAN mini-series from 1984-85. Four issues, all art by BWS [ with layouts by Herb Trimpe] . I STILL have not read this! [or did I??]

I am sure Walt has this set in that big warehouse find that he got a year or two ago. I’m sure he will sell you a set cheap, right Walt ?? We have not heard much about this collection lately- a little bird told me it’s mostly Micronauts, Vigilante & Rom in those long boxes! What’s the scoop, Walt ???

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

OMG!- Now you’ve done it Mel !- why did you mention RED NAILS ??!! This is without fail THE Conan story by BWS & Roy Thomas ! Thankfully you can still get Savage Tales #2 & #3 quite inexpensively [ as Man-Thing is not in those issues! ] & I recommend that you do so, as they are vital to any collection of REH’s work ! Lots of Conan story & features, plus work by Williamson, Brunner, Wrightson, Morrow, Steranko & others, PLUS a classic reprint by Maneely! All of the Savage Tales issues in this first series are superb, but the Conan issues are just the ticket! RED NAILS has been reprinted a bunch of times, but these first printings are damn special & still affordable. Go get them, you will not be disappointed !

The original REH RED NAILS was first serialized over three issues of Weird Tales from July to October 1936 [soon after REH’s suicide], with two covers by Brundage & one by J.Allen St John. Sadly, these are no longer cheap [July 1936 has an all-female human sacrifice cover by Brundage!] but they are NOT RARE! so there is still hope that you may get one for a fair price. I think the Allen St.John cover is magnificent, but because it has no Brundage babes on the cover, might be cheaper to obtain. The RED NAILS story has been reprinted countless times, but these original Weird Tales mags give you all the other goodies to boot- Clark Ashton Smith, Edmond Hamilton, August Derleth, Robert Bloch ,H.P. Lovecraft [letter] & so many more! with art by Virgil Finlay. Don’t you dare slab these things! – that would be a crime against humanity !!! I think I have all three issues, but cannot be certain on that human sacrifice cover- have to go digging…dig deep….

https://comics.ha.com/itm/pulps/weird-tales-july-1936-popular-fiction-condition-fn/a/121902-12758.s?ic4=GalleryView-Thumbnail-071515

https://comics.ha.com/itm/pulps/weird-tales-august-september-36-popular-fiction-1936-condition-vg-/a/121524-12749.s?ic4=GalleryView-Thumbnail-071515

https://comics.ha.com/itm/pulps/weird-tales-october-1936-popular-fiction-condition-fn-/a/7246-96671.s?ic4=GalleryView-Thumbnail-071515

Highest price for July 1936 on Heritage is $1500 !! Yowza!!

Walter Durajlija
1 month ago

Great dig for that Charles Atlas info Mel, thanks. I do like Chris Meli’s idea of 1st ad appearances!

Reading Red Nails was like eating magic mushrooms for me, was quite a trip.

Spider
Spider
1 month ago

Yeah LF, the Machine Man series is good – solely based on the art – his wires (aka Weapon X machinery) are on full display on this 4 part run.

Well done LF..good call! the DD#236 by BWS is another good book. Now go and read Monsters šŸ™‚

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

LF
Close but no cigar, I’m afraid. Their names were William Harley and Arthur Davidson, which you actually probably know.

Speaking of trivia, I was just watching a Buster Keaton documentary, and, at the bottom of one of the posters for the Keaton family, were the words “Nuf sed!” Of course I always figured it was one of those handy phrases Stan just lifted from somebody else and called his own! I can’t find an earlier Stan reference than the letters page of FF #19. Apparently though it was in common usage in the19th century! That, for some obscure reason, made me think of Alfred E. Neuman, who most people think first appeared on the Ballantine paperback edition of The Mad Reader. Would you believe, however, that he actually first appeared in Benjamin Franklin’s Poor Richard’s Almanack, where his face appeared at the top of the page of an ongoing feature titled Alfred’s Poor Almanac?! I guess everything old really is new again!

mel taylor
mel taylor
1 month ago

Hey Walt
It actually turns out that the bully kicking sand in his face was a real story that happened to him when he weighed only 97 pounds!!!

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

“Their names were William Harley and Arthur Davidson, which you actually probably know.”- D’oh ! That’s what I meant !! I’ll take that cigar- is it a Maduro ??

Have they actually figured out CONCLUSIVELY where Alfred E. Neuman came from ?? I don’t think so. That image was quite popular back in the late 1800’s and popped up in many places ! Kurtzman discovered an image of this kid on a postcard at the Ballantine offices circa 1954 & began to use the image in Mad magazine- it was first used on the cover of THE MAD READER paperback in 1954, predating it’s use on Mad #21 in 1955. Check this out, from wikipedia-

“Neuman’s precise origin is shrouded in mystery and may never be fully known. A collection of early Neumanesque images can be found in Maria Reidelbach’s comprehensive work, Completely Mad: A History of the Comic Book and Magazine (Little, Brown, 1991). Mad publisher Bill Gaines gave Reidelbach total access to the magazine’s own files, including the collection of Neuman-related images that had been assembled for a 1965 copyright infringement lawsuit.[21]

The earliest image cited in Reidelbach’s book is from an advertisement for Atmore’s Mince Meat, Genuine English Plum Pudding. She wrote that, “[d]ating from 1895, this is the oldest verified image of the boy…. The kid’s features are fully developed and unmistakable, and the image was very likely taken from an older archetype…”[16] After the publication of the book, an older “archetype” was discovered in an advertisement for the comical stage play, The New Boy, which debuted on Broadway in 1894. The image is nearly identical to what later appears in the Atmore’s ads.[22]”

I have several great books on Kurtzman & Mad Magazine & have followed this with interest. It is unlikely that we will ever find the real first appearance of Alfred, but am happy to be proven wrong. Check out the wikipedia listing for Alfred E. Neuman if you wish to learn more- this is fascinating stuff !

LIVE FROG
LIVE FROG
1 month ago

I need to watch more Buster Keaton ! With every passing day, I appreciate silent cinema more and more!

Spider
Spider
1 month ago

Mel, speaking of artists…did you here about the thieves who stole several impressionists paintins, got them out of the building and were found in rear of the abadndoned vehicle several hundred kilometers away???

Apparently they didn’t have any Monet to buy Degas to make the Van Gogh!!!

thank you, thank you! here every Thursday night and remember…try the veal!

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