Thursday, October 30, 2014

Joe Shuster's Charlton Ghost

Bill Molno was a Charlton mainstay for a decade or more on the anthology books; I see his occasional series entries mostly on the Westerns. Unless I've missed earlier stories, his debut at the company in 1954 was ghost pencils for Joe Shuster. Mark Evanier gives Dick Giordano's explanation of the ghosting in a comment on the previous post .

Here's a page from "The Well of Fear" in Strange Suspense Stories 21 compared with one from about three and a half years later—after Joe Shuster's credits are long gone—"The House of Man," Out of This World 7 (Feb/58). Molno is inking himself on this one
Strange Suspense Stories 21 and Out of This World 7
There are a few more stories with Shuster's credit at Charlton that I haven't seen—hot rod ones, for instance. Unsigned 1954 stories penciled by Molno and inked by others include "Food for Thought" (SSS 20, Aug), "Who Will He Be?" and "This Bite Is Sweet" (SSS 21, Sept), "Mental Wizard" and, possibly, "The Crusher" (The Thing 16, Sept), and "Where Do They Lurk?" (This Magazine Is Haunted 19, Aug). I mention them thinking of the uncredited Jerry Grandenetti pieces in the mid-Sixties that have been misattributed to Joe Orlando, for whom he was ghosting elsewhere at the time. There are other "Shuster" stories in the GCD that could be looked at a second time.

Bill Molno Stories Ghost-Penciling for Joe Shuster
(Inked by Ray Osrin except as noted)

Crime and Justice


July/54 19  The Death Watch [RADIO PATROL]
Sep/     20  The Anniversary Gift [MR & MRS CHASE]
A Deadly Circle [RADIO PATROL]
Nov/     21  The $64,000 Question [MR & MRS CHASE]
Road Pirates
Finale for Fingers

Racket Squad in Action


A-S/54 12  Robbery by Appointment
The Ransom Swindle
Protection Game
O-N/     13  Malignant Model Agency
The Basketball Scandals

Space Adventures


M-J/54 11  Interplanetary Safari (inked by Dick Giordano)

Strange Suspense Stories


July/54 19  Give Back My Body (no inker signature)
Sept/     21  The Well of Fear
Nov/     22  The Secret of the Box

The Thing

Sept/54 16  Death of a Gambler (inked by Vince Alascia)

This Magazine Is Haunted

July/54 18  The Last Earl (inked by John Belfi)
Sept/    20  Quest of the Beyond

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Carl Memling at Charlton--Who Knew?

I was looking for Carl Memling scripts at Timely/Atlas in the Fifties, where he's known to have written for the horror anthologies (I haven't found any of his there yet); but with his style fresh in my mind, when I was merely reading some Fifties Charlton comics and not expecting to recognize writers, I happened across him. A Memling trademark that I've mentioned before is sirens or car engines going "Rowrrrrr."

Crime and Justice 19, The 64,000 Dollar Question--'Rowrrrrr'

There are one or two more Crime and Justice scripts that could be Memling's, but I'll err on the side of caution and leave them off for now. I'll get to more titles eventually; he wrote quite a bit in two years or so.

The writers known to have done some work for Charlton in the early-through-mid-Fifties include Walter B. Gibson, Bruce Hamilton, Ken Fitch, Harry Shorten, and Jerry Siegel. Fitch was one writer who, in addition to scripts written directly for Charlton, had work published there out of other companies' bought-out inventories. Joe Gill was writing for Charlton around 1954 but didn't become their house writer, filling almost all the pages, for another few years.

Carl Memling Scripts in
Crime and Justice


July/53 14  Down the Drain
Three O'Clock Shadow
Sep/     15  Vacation from Violence [MR & MRS CHASE]
Behind Locked Doors
Stormy Crossing
Eye Witness
Nov/     16  Peril on the Pacific [MR & MRS CHASE]
The Hatchet Is Buried
Feb/54 17  No Way Out
Apr/     18  Killer on the Loose [RADIO PATROL]
Terror under the Big Top [MR & MRS CHASE]
July/     19  Three's a Mob
Sep/     20  A Deadly Circle [RADIO PATROL]
Nov/     21  The $64,000 Question [MR & MRS CHASE]
Road Pirates

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Carmine Infantino Starts Off in Comics with Cap

I don't think anything earlier has been found: Carmine Infantino hit the ground running in comic books with a handful of stories on a major character, Captain America, in 1943.

From Cap 27, note the face of the French Underground fighter Pierre in panel 1; more to the point, look at him running in panel 6.
Cap 27 Blitzkrieg to Berlin

Infantino-pencilled stories in Captain America

June/43 27  Blitzkrieg to Berlin
July/     28  The Vultures of Violent Death

I dithered over whether the one-month earlier "Invasion of the Killer Beasts" was by Infantino—it seems so much cruder—but then I found that the Marvel Masterworks reprint credited him as one of the pencillers (others unknown), so I'll go along with that.

in U.S.A. Comics


May/43 The Invasion of the Killer Beasts

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Blackhawk Writers 1956

Blackhawk 107 One Minute Till Doom--Quality's final Blackhawk story

This will echo the lists for Quality's Exploits of Daniel Boone and Robin Hood Tales in 1956. Joe Millard had been writing for Quality for some time; Robert Bernstein was Quality's final writer before they gave up the ghost in 1956. It's been pointed out that the plot of Blackhawk 101's "The Lost Island" is lifted from Marvel Boy 1's "The Lost World" (Dec/50); but although Bernstein was writing for Timely/Atlas at that point, I can't find his stylistic prints on the Marvel Boy story.

Blackhawk Writers 1956

Jan/56 96  7 Graves for 7 Blackhawks Joe Millard
Case of the Missing Blackhawk  Millard
Doom in the Deep Millard
Feb/    97  The Horde of the Bat Millard
Hitler's Daughter Millard
Revolt of the Slave Workers Millard
Mar/    98  The Phantom Saboteur Millard
The Temple of Doom Millard
The Black Flag Millard
Apr/    99  The Queen of Blackhawk Island Millard
The War That Never Ended Robert Bernstein
The Underground Menace Bernstein
May/    100  The Delphian Menace Bernstein
The Citadel of Hate     ?
The Steel Scorpion Millard
June/    101  General Steel Millard
Satan's Paymaster Millard
The Lost Island Bernstein
July/    102  Master of Mankind Millard
The Doom Cloud Millard
The Red Professor's Secret Bernstein
Aug/    103  The Super Race Bernstein
The Man Who Stole Tomorrow Millard
Menace from the Skies Bernstein
Sept/    104  Rescue under Fire Bernstein
Treachery in the Antarctic Bernstein
The Jet Menace Bernstein
Oct/     105  Nightmare Cruise Bernstein
The Red Kamakaze Terror Bernstein
The Master of Treachery Bernstein
Nov/     106  The Flying Tank Platoon Bernstein
Stars of Disaster Bernstein
The Red Raiders Bernstein
Dec/     107  The Winged Menace Bernstein
Red Timetable of Treachery Bernstein
One Minute Till Doom Bernstein

Bernstein spells "Kamakaze" with an "a" throughout the story in #105, although the cover has it "Kamikaze."

Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Model for Doc Played Flash Gordon

This is either a huge coincidence or a very esoteric in-joke on the part of cover artist Gray Morrow. I know which one I go with.

Buster Crabbe; Doc Caliban

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Woolfolk Records 1953/04

SSWS 14--Pitchfork Army
DC and Orbit are the companies buying the scripts.

The "$100,000 on Clark Kent's Head" syndicated strip sequence ends at eight weeks.

My transcriptions of William Woolfolk's records, to the end of his career in comic books, continue with May 1953 in this post. He began his records with September 1944 after a few years of writing comics; he didn't describe any story further than the feature name through December 1944. I began blogging these transcriptions with January 1945's, when he began putting in descriptions. But a list of the strips he was writing is better than nothing (and I can find the publication of one or two through number of pages or his style), so those four months of 1944 will be my posts when I return to this subject.

April 1953 Comic Book Scripts by William Woolfolk

6 pg  Superman syndicate 2nd week
Superman strip, May 25-30/53
10  I Put a Price on Love girl who takes men for all she can get
"I Put a Price on Love" Love Journal 21, Nov/53
Battle of the Alamo only the flag survives to tell the story
"Ghosts of the Alamo" All-American Men of War 7, Oct-Nov/53
Superman syndicate 3rd week
Superman strip, June 1-6/53
12  Superboy coronation of Lana Lang
"The Coronation of Lana Lang" Adventure 192, Sept/53
Superman syndicate 4th week
Superman strip, June 8-13/53
Farmers Can't Fight farmer vs. Hessians in the Revolutionary War
"Pitchfork Army" Star Spangled War Stories 14, Nov/53
Superman syndicate 5th week
Superman strip, June 15-20/53
Superman syndicate 6th week
Superman strip, June 22-27/53
Fighting Heart gal loves a prizefighter
10  "Fighting Heart" Love Diary 37, Oct/53
12  Superman syndicate 7th & 8th weeks
Superman strip, June 29-July 4, 6-11/53

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Ray Cummings Writes Captain America

Ray Cummings, once a secretary/assistant to Thomas Edison, wrote science fiction and horror for the pulp magazines, beginning with The Girl in the Golden Atom in 1919 and on to around 1950. One novel, The Exile of Time, was reprinted by Ace Books in 1965 with a new cover painting by 1940s Captain America cover artist Alex Schomburg—appropriately enough, since Cummings had scripts in some of those Cap issues.

Cummings is credited with "The Princess of the Atom" in Captain America Comics, but without his actual name mentioned—the coming attraction in issue 24 just calls him the author of Girl in the Golden Atom. "The Princess of the Atom" two-parter uses the basic situation of "Girl in the Golden Atom"—miniaturizing into an atom world by means of a drug—but otherwise is a new plot.

The noticeable style characteristic on "Princess" that led me to the first of the other stories is "Oh migosh."

Cap 25 Princess--'Oh migosh'

He's known to have written Sub-Mariner and the Human Torch too, but so far, concentrating on Cap, I have yet to run across any stories of those characters by him. Another pass through the Caps may well find more Cummings stories.

Ray Cummings scripts on Captain America

Apr/43 25  The Princess of the Atom
May/     26  The Princess of the Atom Part II
June/     27  North of the Border
Aug/     29  The King of the Dinosaurs
The Case of the Phantom Engineer
The Case of the Headless Monster
Sep/     30  The House of the Laughing Death

on Captain America in All Winners

Win/43-44 11  The Case of the Yellow Fire Monster

on Captain America in U.S.A. Comics

Sep/43 10  The Cylinder of Death