It’s a Bright sunny day here in the swamp, and that’s bumming me out. But yesterday was Wednesday, and you know what that means. Now I got a lot of digging to do in this terrible sunshine before Mother Night wraps these muddy, overgrown hills in her dark embrace and I work another graveyard shift at the… well you can probably piece it together from the papers tomorrow, so let’s get this thing started.
In the stash today we have Batman #4, Silver Surfer, James Bond: Eidolon, two issues of Lobster Johnson which have piled up, and Hillbilly #2, featuring my old favorite Eric Powell Character, Buzzard.
Next we have some dollar bin finds from my travels to other swamps. I found some old issues of Godzilla, from the 90’s Darkhorse series. This includes the first two issues of the initial series, and all with covers by Art Adams, a fellow monster lover. Godzilla is a favorite in this house, both of my own and Mr. Kittycat Jackson, as you can see from him lurking next to that pile in the photo. Mr. Jackson likes to think he bears a likeness to the great beast, particularly the grey, pear-shaped Godzilla of the most recent movie.
Then we have Detective Comics #603, with a team up between Batman and The Demon, my favorite Jack Kirby creation. It’s a great cover by Norm Breyfogle, who alongside Brian Stelfreeze has my money for the best Batman artist of the 90’s, and it was nice to have it back for a dollar. Then I have TWO first issues of Red Sonja, one, a dollar bin find of the second or third series from 1982, the other the premier issue of the first ever solo series for the character from 1977.
Red Sonja 1982 is drawn by Tony DeZugina, one of my favorite Conan artists of all time. He was a regular artist on the Savage Sword of Conan series, and did some amazing sketchy black and white work like the above example. He has an incredible knack for light and shadow, and texture. But he also was a fantastic storyteller, who really explored over-all design in his page layouts, and even his drippy, candle wax, psychedelic fonts he would draw up titles with. This particular issue of Red Sonja is solid, but not the best example of his work. Red Sonja 1977 however, is written by Conan shepherd Roy Thomas (The character is another Robert E. Howard creation, introduced in the comics via Conan’s titles) and Clara Noto, and drawn by Frank Thorne.
The Art and color here are fantastic, it oddly displays a lot of the qualities I love about Tony DeZugina’s work, more so than the actual Tony DeZugina issue. It’s also worth noting the co-writer credit for Clara Noto, as this was the moment in the mid 70’s when Marvel actively recruited female writers to write a lot of their female characters. It was a well intentioned, but sometimes misguided and somewhat exploitative move, but it was still notable progress for the mid 70’s in an industry dominated by men. Click on the above artwork for a larger view.
That’s it for today boils and ghouls, I gotta go find my shovel. See you next time.