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Ride the rails of insanely outdated computing technology with Captain Zilog!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

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Hidden Gems: Sandman saves Christmas in “The Seal Men’s War on Santa Claus” (DC, 1982)

I've got a Santa Claus-sized Hidden Gem for you this Christmas, and it's penciled by none other than the King of Comics himself...Jack Kirby! Originally created as a feature in Sandman #7, “The Seal Men’s War on Santa Claus” never saw the light of day in the original Sandman series due to the title's cancellation, but eventually appeared in Best of DC Blue Ribbon Digest #22 five years later.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Spotlight: Bissette & Veitch's Bedlam! (Eclipse, 1985)

"Welcome to Bedlam! The inmates are waiting for you..." - Stephen Bissette

Bedlam! was a two-issue collaboration between Stephen Bissette and Rick Veitch published by Eclipse Comics in 1985. It's a horror anthology of sorts with stories and artwork by both artists, and a lot of the stuff is pretty amazing.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Unusual Heroes: Dracula #1 (Dell, 1966)

Although Halloween passed weeks ago, I never got a chance to post about Dracula, the Dell superhero version from 1966. Dell's Dracula was part of an attempt to merge Universal monsters into superhero form, and similar versions were released featuring Frankenstein and The Werewolf.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Hidden Gems: "The Night of the Demon" from Haunted #36 (Charlton, 1978)

Today's gem is called "The Night of the Demon", a story that first appeared in Haunted #36.

Friday, October 25, 2013

DC Diversions: Elvira's House of Mystery #11 (DC, 1987)

The one and only Mistress of the Dark took over DC's House of Mystery series for an eleven-issue run in 1986-87. This final issue was billed as a Giant-Sized Halloween Spectacular, and featured a beautiful cover by the late, great Dave Stevens.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Horror-Mood: On A Pale Horse (Innovation, 1991)

I can't let Halloween pass us by without a few obscure Horror gems! First up is Innovation's adaption of Piers Anthony's On A Pale Horse, from his Incarnations of Immortality series. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Mystifying Marvels: Krull #1-2 (1983)

The 1983 Sci-fi movie Krull is a guilty pleasure of mine. There's a lot for me to like about this movie even if the acting wasn't so great: Amazing cinematography, a kickass weapon called the Glaive, Rell the Cyclops, a young Liam Neeson, and the Black Fortress and it's monstrous overlord, The Beast. The soundtrack is pretty fantastic as well.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

DC Diversions: Ekko

DC Diversions is a new feature here at OTBP that will take a look at some of the more obscure characters and hidden gems among the DC universe. Today's diversion is Ekko, a story that was featured in three issues (#4, 5 and 6) of New Talent Showcase in 1984.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Spotlight: Gene Day's Black Zeppelin, Part Two

Part two of our spotlight on Gene Day's Black Zeppelin anthology continues into issue #2,  beginning with a sci-fi epic called "Quiet in the Green".

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Spotlight: Gene Day's Black Zeppelin, Part One

Gene Day was one of those rare creative minds where if you missed him. Getting his start in Canadian fanzines and Skywald magazines such as Psycho and Nightmare, Day eventually moved into his dream job -- working for Marvel primarily as an inker for Master of Kung Fu, Star Wars and many more.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Hidden Gems: Doug Moench and Bill Sienkiewicz's Godhood Continuum

Hidden Gems is another new feature which will focus on rare work and appearances by popular writers and artists in obscure or lesser known publications.

Cravin' Kirby: The U.F.O.

This is the first of a few new features planned for OTBP. Cravin' Kirby will be a weekly examination of Jack Kirby's fantastic artwork, from panels and splash pages, to concepts and interesting "King Kirby" stories.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Unusual Heroes: Captain Zilog! #1 (Zilog, 1979)

It's time for another Unusual Hero, so let me introduce you to Captain Zilog, who became the face of Zilog Inc., the microcontroller manufacturing company. It was 1979, and Zilog had just released the Z8000, a 16-bit microprocessor for computers, and wanted to come up with an eye-popping brochure for their latest product at the upcoming Wescon conference.

And from the looks of things, they found the right guys to make it. Lou Brooks wrote and designed the idea, while the legendary Joe Kubert provided the pencils, and by adding a rich amount of four-color brightness Captain Zilog was born.

The first part of the comic details the origin of Captain Zilog as we watch programmer Nick Stacey get eaten by a glowing CRT screen, where he is given a microprocessor which shall be the "beginning of a new freedom for man's imagination!"

Before we know it, Cityville is invaded by a giant spaceship inhabited by the diabolical Dr. Diabolicus, who warns the citizens that he is now the SUPREME MASTER! Nick finds a restroom to turn into Captain Zilog and the battle begins.

The Cap uses his innate knowledge of microprocessing power to trick Dr. Diabolicus into faster, more lethal moves!

It's very strange reading about the kind of technology we had way back in 1979. To see 8 megabytes of computing power as the godsend back then is a thing to behold. I mean, take a look at some of this tech!

The second part of the story focuses on Dr. Diablolicus' plans for revenge. He decides to use his miniturization process to shrink down to microscopic size, allowing him to infiltrate Captain Zilog's computer! But as you are about to see, the Z8000 is one computer not to mess with!

The Zilog Z8000 CPU went on to become one of the first true multi-user systems that could share resources before networking became common, but was soon overshadowed by Intel brand microprocessors in the early 80's.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Science Addiction: Alpha and Omega (Spire Christian Comics, 1978)

It's been awhile since I've posted a Spire Christian Comic (the last being In His Steps), so how about we take a look at possibly the coolest Christian comic ever conceived by Spire and Al Hartley? That comic would be Alpha and Omega, a sci-fi take on Adam and Eve from the Book of Genesis.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Cult Classic Comics: Warlock 5, Part Four

Our fourth and final installment taking a look at the Warlock 5 series from Aircel begins with a head scratcher. Remember the cliffhanger in issue #3, with Zania holding all of the Guardians hostage with a nuclear warhead? Yeah...well that seems all but forgotten here, as issue #4 ignores the previous story.

Cult Classic Comics: Warlock 5, Part Three

The third issue has all five Guardians of the Warlock 5 working together to stop the Wraiths from coming into their dimension, after Argon blew up Zania's gate to hell in the last issue.

Cult Classic Comics: Warlock 5, Part Two

Continuing on with this week's look at Warlock 5 is an in-depth look at issue #2, which features probably the most insane and hardcore Guardian of the bunch, Zania. We pick up where the last issue left off, with Zania and her undead minions ambushing Tanith and Savashtar. And as you're about to see, Zania spares no expense...

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Cult Classic Comics: Warlock 5, Part One

This week I'm going to tear into Warlock 5, an 80's series that I consider to be a cult classic within the B&W comics realm. Published by Aircel Comics in 1986, Warlock 5 was created by writer Gordon Derry and artist Denis Beauvais, who together weaved a complex tale of five Guardians engaged in an epic power battle for control of the Grid, a portal where all parallel dimensions intersect. One problem -- the Grid is located here on Earth, and it's their battleground.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Fanzine Fever: A+Plus #2 (Megaton, 1977)

A while back I wrote about a strange fanzine called A+Plus #1. The stories inside were pretty obscure and off-the-wall, and I had wondered about the second issue after seeing this cover above, with a giant Gargoyle in a business suit. It's a neat cover, and I've finally got my hands on a copy.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Goin' Underground: Rockin' Bones #1 (NEC, 1992)

Who says OTBP is dead? We're back, baby! And I have to apologize for the insanely long hiatus. A renewed vigor and love for video games led me to create another blog, called videodyssey (specializing in obscure games, of course), but other than that it has just been a bout of pure laziness on my part. I am happy to say that I am back and ready to up the ante on this blog, with all kinds of cool and obscure comic madness.

Let's kick this thing off with 90's underground comix gem Rockin' Bones #1 by New England Comics. The Rockin' Bones series was the brainchild of one Darren Merinuk, whose distinctive brand of retro-kitsch rock art will blow you away.

Right away we are introduced to Darren as he let's us in on what to expect in this first issue:

There are several different stories in this first issue. Monsters, Aliens, Punk Rockers...they're all here in a glorious lo-fi rock n' roll mash-up. Here are a few of my favorites:

In "I Was A Rockabilly Werewolf", Ronnie learns a vital lesson in women, being a werewolf, and revealing to much information in a song...

"Rock 'N' Roll Confidential" is a throwback tale reminiscent of the Pre-Code Horror scare of the 50's:

One of my favorites is "Mutant Lobsters At Large!", which appears to be an homage to Roger Corman:

Another favorite is this one page story "She Was A Hippie Vampire":

We are also treated to this splash page of absolute Monster Mayhem:

This is just a snippet of the awesomeness to be had in Merinuk's Rockin' Bones series. I believe the series lasted three issues, but Merinuk has gone on to make artwork for several album covers (you can see a bunch here). His artwork is amazing and really stands out, claiming a genre of it's own. Also be sure to check out In The Rubber Room, which is Merinuk's art blog where he is still posting his amazing works today.