Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Brian Bolland's DCU

Hard to believe this is nearly 30 years old now but still looks fresher to me than DC's NEW 52!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Bob Powell's Terror--You Decide!

The ever-inventive Craig Yoe has devised a clever way to get potential reader input on his next book, BOB POWELL'S TERROR, before the volume is even at the printers! In fact, it can't go to the printers at all without YOUR help! Craig had a cover mockup--that still can be seen on Amazon--but while it was a cover illustrating a Powell story in the book, it was not itself by Powell. It was decided that it has to have a cover by Powell himself!

This is where you come in. If you're on Facebook, go to the Official Yoe Books page at . If you haven't yet "liked" the page (and if you're on Facebook, you'll know what I mean by that), then do so and you immediately become eligible to cast your vote for one of the four covers seen above for BOB POWELL'S TERROR. Autographed copies of the book, due out at Halloween, will be awarded to three lucky voters. Voting runs through Friday at Midnight EDT with the winning cover to be announced on Facebook and Twitter next Monday!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy Jack Kirby Day

The King would have been 94 years old today! I had planned on spending the day with him anyway as I'm proofing an upcoming book on him but I was heartened to see that many of my Internet friends and acquaintances chose to do so, also! The King may be gone but definitely not forgotten! Seen here is perhaps my favorite art of my all-time favorite superhero, Captain America. By Kirby, natch, from 1966, presumably inked by Don Heck as it resembles the famous "Gods" portraits that the two of them did around that time or soon afterwards.

Silver Age Sub-Mariner Splash Page Sundays # 28

A nice detailed street scene with Marvel's trademark grey buildings. Good to see Namor in regular clothes again like in so many of his Golden Age stories.

Sal Buscema and Mike Incognito get credit for this alternately dull but kind of fun page. Roy Thomas then follows with a script to match. Dull...but very different in this series and kind of fun.

Points for "bizarre" go to the anonymous colorist who alternately colors our hero's hair brown or purple as opposed to its traditional blue-black. Yikes!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Meet Booksteve at the Cincinnati Comic Expo

This year's CINCINNATI COMIC EXPO is fast approaching. I wasn't able to go last year but they've made it virtually impossible for me to miss it this year by moving it to within walking distance. A long and most likely painful walk for me at this stage but a walk I've made a number of times.

Tickets are inexpensive and we pre-purchased them back when we had more money than we do now so we are definitely attending this year. If you are, too, look for me walking around with my spanking new BOOKSTEVE T-shirt and say "Hi."

This year's actual guest list is impressive, too, with highlights (for me at least) including the legendary Jim Steranko, the equally legendary Stan Goldberg, Golden Age artist Allen Bellman, Archie writer Craig Boldman, veteran penciler Jose Delbo (he did the YELLOW SUBMARINE comic!), recent CAPTAIN AMERICA artist Butch Guice, the ever-popular David Mack, one of my favorite of the newer artists Chris Sprouse, Vanguard publisher J. David Spurlock, Batman film producer and Archie writer Michael Uslan, and I may even get to meet Rick McCollum, a one-time local artist back in the seventies who went on to bigger and better things! Sadly, I'll have little to no money for the dealers' room but still should be much fun. I hear from all corners that last year's first one was a blast! If you're in the Greater Cincinnati area in mid-September, there are a lot worse ways you could be spending your day. Come hang out with us comics geeks.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Real Booksteve's Library

August 21st marked the 6th anniversary of Booksteve's Library, the blog. I have always referred to it as a "vast and virtual" personal library so many of you might have thought I was speaking on purely metaphorical terms. The original concept of the blog was for me to just grab something off the shelf and write about it. The virtual part refers to various online scans or videos or such that I might post on subjects of my interest. But the Library is still here...a little weathered...but still here. Thus, in honor of our anniversary, here are a few brand new shots of the ACTUAL Booksteve's Library! Pardon the mess. I'm afraid that even though we've had to downsize considerably since the blog began, it's always in a constant state of flux. New additions have been sparse over the past four years and often come from review copies, really cheap Amazon orders or books I've actually worked on. To be honest, with our financial issues in recent years, I would most likely have sold much of what you see left here if not for the fact that the going rate for, say a 1974 book on Humphrey Bogart, was about $3.00 while to me these things are all priceless. There is a vague semblance of order in some areas whereas more recent acquisitions are often shelved via available space. There are a few more bookcases upstairs that house some humor, David's books and most of my wife's genealogy religion and personal comics stash. My remaining comics boxes are also upstairs. Again, what's left doesn't have any real resale value but they're mostly good readin'!

So there you have it! Warts, junk, medicine bottles and all. The real Booksteve's Library! Comments? Questions?

Oh, by the way, an online friend is sending me a life-size cardboard Bettie Page. Gotta figure out where to add her. Hmmm....

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Mary Tyler Moore

One of my earliest favorite TV shows was THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW and thus one of my first crushes was inevitably on Mary Tyler Moore. Funny, never afraid to make herself look silly for a laugh and yet quietly sexy, classy and not as much of a cartoon character as Lucy or other funny females on TV. After failed attempts at Broadway and film stardom, she reinvented herself for an amazingly successful second act that ended up nearly dominating TV in the seventies with a new series, spin-offs and other shows from her production company.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Silver Age Sub-Mariner Splash Page Sundays # 27

Well, this one's colorful, that's for sure. A tad dull in its subject matter but nicely drawn by Buscema and Esposito.

One presumes, since it had long been established that Dorma can't breathe out of water at all, that this is IN water. You certainly can't tell it, though. No concession to it at all--no plants swaying, no bubbles, no guppies swimming by... zip. Isn't that some sort of smoke rising from whatever that is on the right? Perhaps they just forgot he was supposed to be under the sea.

The book was still well-written by "Roy the Boy" but seemed to be coasting a bit at this time.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Groucho's Final Photo?

Not sure if this was really the final photo take of the one, the only Groucho but this newspaper clipping originally published just before his death on this date in 1977 thought so. Groucho is reading his "own" book, THE GROUCHOPHILE, a marvelous book that I suspect was tinkered over quite a bit by other hands as it reads as though written by a much more "aware" individual than Mr. Marx was known to have been in his final years.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Stray Pussycats

Longtime readers may recall that my very first published article--way back in 1988--was an AMAZING HEROES article about Marvel's most obscure heroine--PUSSYCAT! Written anonymously at first bit later signed by Larry Lieber, the strip appeared in various Men's mags published by Marvel's parent company at the time and featured art by Wally Wood, Bill Ward and, eventually, Jim Mooney. It wasn't really all that explicit and the strips were filled with silly puns and leering males. In 1968, a one-shot magazine was published by Marvel featuring many of the early strips along with sone new art by Bill Everett. What many may not realize is that the strip continued for some time after that, building up enough inventory to fill at least a couple more issues that never came. Here are a few PUSSYCAT original arts odds and ends found on the Net. All are non-collected strips and all were credited to Jim Mooney (although one looks like Ward to me). Under Mooney's brush, our heroine resembles no less than Gwen Stacy with Little Annie Fanny's body! Not a bad combination.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Sydne Rome

Although I've heard of her for more than 30 years, I don't think I'd ever seen actress Sydne Rome in a movie before yesterday and I fell in love. She's beautiful, innocently sexy and funny as all get out! Born and raised in Akron, Ohio, her film debut was in SOME GIRLS DO, the second 007-style Bulldog Drummond film made in the late sixties. After that she remained in Italy starring in movies such as Roman Polanski's WHAT and becoming a major star throughout Europe as a model, on television and later as an author and exercise guru.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Elvis Is Everywhere-Mojo Nixon

On the 34th anniversary of the passing of Elvis Presley.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Silver Age Sub-Mariner Splash page Sundays # 26

This issue of SUB-MARINER from 1970 features a second attempt at reviving an obscure 1940 Timely character called the Red Raven. A previous attempt in X-MEN was also by Golden-Age loving Roy Thomas.

The Raven only appears here on the splash in the title box, however, itself perhaps a little too big. What I like about Namor though is that he looks a bit wet! A zillion times he comes out of the water in comics looking pretty darn dry. Even here he looks pretty dry other than his tousled hair.

Nicely laid out, drawn and colored with Sal Buscema and Mr. "Gaudioso" continuing on the art.