The Sandman Saves Christmas

A campy good time awaits in this rare Kirby Christmas story!

Unusual Heroes: Dell's Dracula

Dell's Monster turned Superhero gimmick is campy fun.

Horror-Mood: On A Pale Horse

How would you like to have the Grim Reaper's job? Zane finds out!

Mystifying Marvels: Krull #1-2 (1983)

A forgotten 80's Sci-fi movie and it's forgotten comic adaptation!

DC Diversions: EKKO

Dr. Hawks dons the Ekko suit as murderballs and mayhem await!

Spotlight: Gene Day's Black Zeppelin

A plethora of hidden gems await in Day's dream anthology.

Unusual Heroes: Captain Zilog! #1

Ride the rails of insanely outdated computing technology with Captain Zilog!

Rockin' Bones #1

Monsters, Aliens and Punk Rockers...oh my!

Goin' Underground: Monolith

A couple of Larry's turn out an underrated comix gem.

Cult Classic Comics: Freakwave!

Get your Fog-Mask on, it's time to ride the Freakwave!

The Phenom of Phase

Fanzines never had this much firepower!

The Skull Killer

Pulp Fiction + Underground Comix = Classic

Saga of the Victims

70's exploitation at it's best.

The L.I.F.E. Brigade

Cheesy characters flourish within an underground art style.

Light Comitragies

A strange relic from the psychedelic era.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Science Addiction: Track Rabbit (Geoff Vasile, 2007)

Track Rabbit #1 is the first mini-comic created by Geoff Vasile. It features a tale called, "Look To The Stars" which tells the story of Peter, a science fiction-reading geek who gets dumped by his artsy girlfriend and finds himself entrapped in another relationship with a girl named Anthea. Peter digs Anthea at first, but soon realizes they have little in common.

To combat the stresses he's enduring in the relationship, Peter decides to build a spaceship...out of his own science fiction novels.

Peter's plan involves taking Anthea for a quick ride in his creation and then dumping her...however, his plans change as the ship loses control and the troubled couple find themselves traveling through space, and eventually, another planet appears.

The ship endures a hard landing and the engine blows up shortly after they arrive. Several months after the crash-landing, Peter and Anthea meet the planet's inhabitants...which are cute alien monkey thingies. Anthea loves 'em, while Peter does not get along with them at all.

The ship eventually turns back into a pile of science fiction books for Peter to read, while his relationship with Anthea gets decidedly casual as she befriends the alien monkey thingies. One day a spaceship appears, only to lift Anthea and her new found friends off to another planet. Anthea says goodbye to Peter, and offers an explanation as to why she is leaving him on the planet to die.

This is a great first work and mini comic by Geoff Vasile. He has since produced a few more issues of Track Rabbit. Be sure to check those out as well as his other works, and you can find more info at his website here:

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Goin' Underground: Color (Print Mint, 1971)

I've been buying a lot of Underground Comix from the early seventies lately, and came across this beautiful artifact created by renowned underground artist Victor Moscoso. Color shares more than a few historical references within the Underground Comix realm. It was the first underground work published in full color, as well as the first to become a full-fledged 11-minute short film entitled Cosmic Comics.

Moscoso rose to fame with his contributions to R. Crumb's Zap Comix during the scene's heyday, and his brand of cute, bendable characters within psychedelic worlds became his trademark artistic style. This work in particular was used as a storyboard for an animation project that never got off the ground, but was picked up years later by Amsterdam film-maker Olaf Stoop as a short film project (the aforementioned Cosmic Comics) which is currently out of print.

Victor Moscoso's Color is a psychedelic trip of funny, violent, and sexually explicit artwork. The whole experience begins within the cover itself, where a spaceship orbits another planet. The spaceship turns into a fish, and the fish swims in a fish tank. The fish tank sits on a table in a living room, where a couple are shooting the breeze on a couch. The couch turns into some sort of bad guy, who proceeds to beat the living hell out of the couple. From there, the strip descends into a wave of violence as the man attempts to deal with the intruder.

Once the villain is taken care of, the strip proceeds to get sexually explicit as the couple get hot and heavy with each other. I've decided not to share these pages here, but you get the idea....the couple go at it until a climatic ending, where they explode as the man yells, "Nothing Lasts!". The spaceship enters the frame and also gets it's freak on with a woman while birds crash into the planet in the background.

More sexually freakish insanity ensues as a man turns into a giant penis and is used as a mount for a servicing prostitute. The strip ends as the spaceship heads back out into space as a giant robot-bird grabs the ship and brings it back to the mothership, which proudly claims the backpage of the issue.

Moscoso's artwork really shines in Color, and you can see his various inspirations as homages to M.C. Escher and Salvador Dali make appearances here. His use of inks and coloring should also be noted, as they really add literally another dimension to his artwork.

Color may have been just another artistic acid-trip from the era of Underground Comix debauchery, but it also served as inspiration for art aesthetics and stands as a microcosm for it's time. The sex, drugs and violence of the early 70's still drip off the pages of my worn and tattered copy, albeit full color.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Unusual Heroes: Tigress #1 (Basement Comics, 1997)

With a busier schedule and some out-of-town trips I was unable to post as many Halloween comics as I would have liked, but no worries...I will save the rest for next year. Now that October has faded into memory, time to get back to the good ol' obscure stuff.

Tigress #1 is based off of the below illustration by Mike Hoffman, which is inspired by the beautiful artwork of a man that goes by the name of Frank Frazetta. It amazes me how many people Frazetta's art has inspired to pick up a pencil and begin drawing, and Hoffman is no exception. He captures the essence of Frazetta's style perfectly here, with a story to go along with it that would make Wally Wood proud.

The story involves a strange, uncharted world full of prehistoric dinosaurs, giant bugs, and....well cat-women. A rocketship approaches the planet, responding to a beacon sent by a lost rocket years before.

The crew land and find themselves face-to-face with Tigress, the cat-woman who holds a mysterious past with the previous astronaut of the missing rocket. Tigress befriends the crew and leads them to the crash site of the missing rocket, but before they know it they are attacked by a giant dinosaur.

Things get hairier as the crew find themselves at the mercy of the other cat-people, and Tigress is captured by her own people and tied to a stake for her role in helping the humans.

The first issue of Tigress might be a very simple science fiction story...but that's why I like it. It's more of an ode to the aforementioned artists/writers than anything else, which is right up my alley. Unfortunately Tigress only lasted two issues, but the character has appeared in various other series under different publishers since then. Any fans of Frazetta or Wood might be inclined to check this out.