Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Colossal Comic # 21

Colossal Comic #21, April 1962
Cover artist: Hart Amos

Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen: The Radioactive Boy
Otto Binder/Curt Swan/Ray Burnley
(Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #17, December 1956)

The Man Who Was Three Men
Sid Gerson/Mort Drucker/Frank Giacoia

Earth's Unlucky Day!
John Broome/Sy Barry
(Strange Adventures #40, January 1954)

Batman with Robin The Boy Wonder: The Rainbow Batman
Edmond Hamilton/Sheldon Moldoff/Stan Kaye
(Detective Comics #241, March 1957)

The Green Arrow: The Make-Believe Archer
George Papp
(Adventure Comics #182, November 1952)

Batman with Robin The Boy Wonder: Batman's Secret Helper
Dick Sprang/Stan Kaye
(Batman #106, March 1957)

The Elephant Who Saved The Earth!
Sid Gerson/Gil Kane/Bernard Sachs
(Strange Adventures #43, April 1954)

Superman: Superman of Skid Row!
Al Plastino
(Superman #89, May 1954)

The Traffic Cop of Space!
Jack Miller/Howard Sherman
(Strange Adventures #43, April 1954)

Collector's Item!
Jack Miller/Mort Drucker/Joe Giella
(Strange Adventures #28, January 1953)

Captain Comet: The Phantom Prize Fighter!
John Broome/Murphy Anderson
(Strange Adventures #43, April 1954)

Superboy The Adventures of Superman When He Was a Boy: Clark Kent, Prisoner!
John Sikela
(Superboy #37, December 1954)

Superman: The Man Who Sped Up Superman!
Wayne Boring/Stan Kaye
(Action Comics #192, May 1954)

Captain Comet: The Planet of Ancient Children!
John Broome/Murphy Anderson
(Strange Adventures #42, March 1954)

The Interplanetary Counterfeiters
Otto Binder/Mort Drucker/Bernard Sachs
(Strange Adventures #45, June 1954)

The Man Who Couldn't Die
Emil Gershwin
(Adventures into the Unknown #35, September 1952, TBC)

Batman with Robin The Boy Wonder: Terror at Mystery Castle
Bill Finger/Sheldon Moldoff/Charles Paris
(Detective Comics #246, August 1957)
Note: originally titled Murder At Mystery Castle

Superboy: The Greatest Show on Earth
Otto Binder/Curt Swan/Creig Flessel
(Adventure Comics #220, January 1956)

From Eternity to Here!
Sid Gerson/Gil Kane/Joe Giella
(Strange Adventures #40, January 1954)

Last Day on Earth!
John Broome/Sy Barry
(Strange Adventures #41, February 1954)

The Plant That Plotted Murder!
John Broome/Murphy Anderson
(Strange Adventures #44, May 1954)

Plus the following fillers: Moolah The Mystic, Peg, Little Pete, Casey the Cop


mcannon said...

>The Man Who Couldn't Die
Emil Gershwin
(Adventures into the Unknown #35, September 1952, TBC)>

That citation matches up with my home-made ACG Index.

Interesting - that's the first instance I've seen of an ACG (American Comics Group) story turning up in a Colossal.

While non -DC material, sourced from companies like ACG and Magazine Enterprises (Ghost Rider, Bobby Neson, Durango Kid, etc) showed up in the KGM anotholgies from around 1960 (not sure exactly when it started), ACG material had pretty much vanished by the mid-60s - around the time the parent company ceased operations in 1967 -and the ME material also ceased appearing in KGMs by the end of tthe 60s. I assume that either KGM's licence to use the material expired and no renewal was forthcoming, or the company simply decided that this material was no longer worth using.

I favour some form of the latter theory; Westerns were less popular than superheroes by this time, so the ME material could go, and science fiction reprints and new mystery/horror material from DC cold easily relace the ACG material. So by the end of the 60s, the "mainstream" KGM anthologies (I'm excluding oddities like Climax Adventure)were no longer overwhelmingly DC in content, but pretty much _all_ DC.


spiros xenos said...

Thanks for the note Mark.

You're correct about the citation, there is a story called "The Man Who Couldn't Die" in ACG's Adventures into the Unknown #35.

The reason I put in the caveat TBC is that "The Man Who Couldn't Die" doesn't appear to me like a typical ACG story - you know that 'look' they have, with the pseudonymous credits in a neat box and the outline around the story title. This looks to me like just another DC Strange Adventures-type story. Even the lettering looks to me like it could be a DC comic. And I'm afraid I'm not familiar with Emil Gershwin's art to call it either way.

Also, the title is used on a few other comics stories, according to the GCD.

And as you suggest, it's odd for an ACG reprint to appear in a Colossal Comic. The overwhelming evidence to date is that Colossal Comic repackaged reprints which previously appeared in the K. G. Murray pamphlet titles. (Having said that, there are instances of 'odd' material in Colossal Comic. For example, #13 has a Captain Triumph story. And I believe #10 has some similarly unexpected material, but I'm only going on memory as I don't have a copy to hand.)

So, while I'm tempted to go with the hit on the ACG index and GCD - after all, the page count matches too - and call it as being from Adventures into the Unknown #35, I just note that it is pending confirmation.


mcannon said...

Giday, Spiros
I haven’t seen the actual :Man Who Couldn't Die" story, but have it listed in the ACG index that I complied from the GCD some years back.

Also according to the GCD, Gershwin did very little work for DC – only some “Starman” stories in the early 40s- whereas he did a lot of ACG work. Whereas the GCD does list a few other stories with that title, none seem to me to be likely candidates.

So the weight of evidence would seem to indicate that "The Man Who Couldn't Die" is indeed an ACG story. While it may not have the typical ACG logo, this style wasn’t universal - though it was common - in the company’s early days. I've identified a number of reprinted pre-Code ACG stories in KGM's ""Haunted Tales" and various Gredown comics that are missing that distinctive logo style.

If you ever get a chance, send me a scan of the title page, and I’ll give you my expert (hah!) view.



Anonymous said...

A further belated note on this... Mighty Comic 56 ( also has a story called "The Man Who Couldent Die". Without pulling the issue out, my records have it at 7 pages, while the AGC story is listed in GCD as 9 pages.

However, something interesting is going on as this issue of Mighty also includes several other stories from this issue of Colossal: The Phantom Prize Fighter; The Interplanetary Counterfeiters and The Man Who was Three Men. That's (probably) four stories the same in each.

Colossal 21 is from 1962 and Mighty 56 is later, in 1966. I suspect they both have an earlier Australian source -- perhaps an issue of Strange Adventures or My Greatest Adventures from the 1950s.


Anonymous said...

And yet another note that I think might solve the issue. GCD has a story listed in Strange Adventures 44 -- "The Man Who Wouldn't Die" that is 7 pages. I'd be pretty confident we are dealing with a typo in GCD. I'll can't currently find anything independent to verify the real name of the story isn Strange Adventures 44.

If my guess here is correct, than we may just be dealing with a few left-over stories being pulled out of the KGM inventory cupboard for the Colossal. I don't currently have evidence of there use in the 1950s.