Friday, December 27, 2019

Gredown's Fear Zone


The cover to Gredown's Fear Zone was painted by Manuel Brea Rodriguez:


It previously appeared on the cover of Vilmar's Panico #10, 1972 series:


It also appeared on the cover of Panico #16, 1978 series:


The contents are as follows:

Legacy of Terror
The House and its Ghosts
Secret Coffin, originally published in Weird #v3 [2]#1 [5], January 1968 
The Haunted Cane!, originally published in Adventures into the Unknown #168, October-November 1966
The Medallion, originally published in Midnight Tales #12, April 1975
The Red Army, originally published in Midnight Tales #12, April 1975
The Midnight Philosopher cont., originally published in Midnight Tales #12, April 1975
The Green Man, originally published in Midnight Tales #12, April 1975
The Dagger 
The Professor and the Pixie!, originally published in Out of the Night #17, October-November 1954
The Well, originally published in Creepy Things #1,July 1975
Don't Play With Lions
A Tomb of Ice, originally published in Tales from the Tomb #v6#3, May 1974
Don't Let The Ghost Take Shape!,originally published in Forbidden Worlds #140, November-December 1966
The Thing, originally published in Horror Tales #v2#5, September 1970 

There are four unidentified stories:





Three of these carry the Editorial Vilmar-Barcelona-The Illustrated copyright attribution. 

Many of the stories in this issue also appeared in other Australian titles published by Gredown and K.G. Murray. Indeed a couple of the pages of A Tomb of Ice include revealing notation traces of the previous printing:


The writing has been crossed out but you can still make out the title partial title Strange, and Page 17 before the Fear Zone note. This page was previously published in Strange Experience #10 page 17:


The Thing is also printed in Strange Encounters #10.

The primary one-stop source of The Midnight Philosopher reprints in Australia is K.G. Murray's Midnight Tales series. The Midnight Tales sequences in this issue do not appear in the Planet Comics series. The Midnight Philosopher cont. sequence in this issue is presented as a two-page sequence between The Red Army and The Green Man. In Midnight Tales #12, the story The Snow Men! appears between these two pages but it is not included in this issue. It appears in its proper context, along with The Red Army and The Green Man, in Gredown's Crypt of Creatures #1 and Murray Publishers' Ghostly Tales Album #12

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Horwitz's Battle Action #68 and Marvel's Battlefront #3


The cover to Horwitz Publications' Battle Action #68 is illustrated by Maurice Bramley:


This issue reprints the four stories in Marvel's Battlefront #3. The four stories - Spearhead!, Kill Or Be Killed, Breaking Point and Follow-Up - are chapters of a single story, written by Don Rico and illustrated by Jerry Robinson, and told from the perspective of a tank.

There are two advertisement dates in this issue - B.A /7/60 and H.C/8/60 - suggesting this issue was published shortly before July 1960.

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

My Love #1: The Yaffa edition


This is the cover to Page Publications' My Love #1:


It originally appeared on the cover of Marvel Comics' My Love #3:


The contents are as follows:

A Boy, A Girl, and My Broken Heart!, originally published in My Love #1, September 1969 
Must I Live Without Love?, originally published in My Love #1, September 1969 
I Dream of Romance!, originally published in My Love #1, September 1969 
Jilted!, originally published in My Love #2, November 1969 
He Doesn't Know I Love Him!, originally published in My Love #2, November 1969 
I Do My Thing--No Matter Whom It Hurts!, originally published in My Love #2, November 1969 
Love Isn't In The Cards for Me!, originally published in My Love #3, January 1970 
The Man I Must Not Love!, originally published in My Love #3, January 1970 
The Drop-Out and the Debutante!, originally published in My Love #3, January 1970 

This issue also includes black and white reproductions of the relevant Marvel covers sans trade dress:



As per Our Love Story #1, My Love #1 is effectively a trade paperback collection of the first three issues of the Marvel series.

This is the only issue in the series that I have seen. 

I can confirm some of the stories in this issue were previously published in Australia by K.G. Murray.

Dating this issue is difficult inasmuch as it is $1.00 cover-priced Yaffa. It does not conform to the profile for ongoing series which began in 1977 with a $0.50 cover price and ended a few years later with $1.10 regular cover price issues or $0.75 digest-sized issues, and there is no indicia date. At this stage my best guess is this from mid-1981, but this is open to revision.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Our Love Story #1: The Yaffa edition


This is the cover to Page Publications' Our Love Story #1:


It originally appeared on the cover of Marvel Comics' Our Love Story #2:


The contents are as follows:

Why Did I Lose You, My Love?, originally published in Our Love Story #1, October 1969
--But Oh, My Lonely Nights!, originally published in Our Love Story #1, October 1969
We Dare Not Marry!, originally published in Our Love Story #1, October 1969
I Love Him--But He's Hers!, originally published in Our Love Story #2, December 1969
We'll Never Meet Again!, originally published in Our Love Story #2, December 1969
I Can't Forget You!, originally published in Our Love Story #2, December 1969
But How Can I Love A Square?, originally published in Our Love Story #3, February 1970
Only One Can Win!, originally published in Our Love Story #3, February 1970
The Hurt And The Heartbreak!, originally published in Our Love Story #3, February 1970

This issue also contains black and white reprints of the relevant Marvel covers sans trade dress:  



Yaffa's Our Love Story #1 is effectively a trade paperback collection of the first three issues of the Marvel series

I have not seen any other issues in this series. As this is #1, presumably there were more issues expected, and it is also possible a previous edition of this issue was published, but again, not that I've seen.

Nor have I seen many copies of this issue in collector's circles. If you spot a copy it's worth picking up for the Romita, Buscema and Colan goodness in black and white.

Many - possibly all - of these stories were previously published in Australia in various K.G. Murray comics.

I believe this issue was published c.June 1982.

Monday, December 23, 2019

Master of Kung Fu: The complete Yaffa cover gallery


Here's a cover gallery of my complete run of Page Publications' Master of Kung Fu:

 Master of Kung Fu #1, c.late 1977

 Master of Kung Fu #2, c.May 1978

 Master of Kung Fu #3, c.May 1979

 Master of Kung Fu #4, mid/late 1979

 Master of Kung Fu #5, c.June 1980

 Master of Kung Fu #6, c.September 1980 

 Master of Kung Fu #7, c.December 1980 

 Master of Kung Fu #8, c.April 1981

 Master of Kung Fu #9, c.June1981 

 Master of Kung Fu #10, c.October1981

 Master of Kung Fu #11, c.April 1982 

Master of Kung Fu #12, c.October 1982 

Master of Kung Fu #NN, c.late 1982/1983

The first four issues and #12 are regular-sized issues, and the rest are digest-sized - #'s 10 and 11 being 'tall' digest-sized issues. 

The dates are my guesstimates based on the data to hand, and are open to revision.

Some of the issues are recycled printings. #6 is a reprint of #1, and #12 is a reprint of #2. #2 was also reissued as Kung Fu Master #NN and #1 was reissued as Martial Arts Action #NN. There may be more retitled reprints to be uncovered.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Midnight Tales: The complete Murray Publishers cover gallery


As Wikipedia advises, "Midnight Tales was an American horror-suspense anthology comic book series created by Wayne Howard and published by Charlton Comics from 1972 to 1976. The book was "hosted" by Professor Coffin (a.k.a. the Midnight Philosopher) and his niece Arachne (the book followed a standard formula where each issue's first story was a framing sequence divided up among the other stories)."

After the Charlton series expired Murray Publishers put out their own Midnight Tales series. Here's a cover gallery of their six issue run:

 Midnight Tales #1, c.November 1977

 Midnight Tales #2, c.March 1978

 Midnight Tales #3, c.June 1978

 Midnight Tales #4, c.mid/late 1978

 Midnight Tales Album #5, c.January 1979

Midnight Tales Album #6, c.March 1979

The dates are my guesstimates based on available information including data available on AusReprints.

The first four issues are 48 pages (52 including covers) with a $0.40 cover price, and transitions to Album-sized 80 pages (84 including covers) with a $0.60 cover price. The transition coincides with a change of printer from Kenmure Press to Comprint.

These issues follow the format of the Charlton series in which framing sequences introduce the short 6-page stories. The issues contain complete Charlton issues, supplemented by material related to other Charlton series such as Unusual Tales or Creepy Things interspersed amongst the Midnight Tales stories.

Midnight Tales features including The Midnight Philosopher were published in other Murray comics such as Doomsday and Ghostly Tales Album. Instalments were also published by Gredown in titles such as Crypt of Creatures and Fear Zone.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Super-Villain Team-Up: The complete Yaffa cover gallery


Here's a cover gallery of my complete run of Page Publications' Super-Villain Team-Up:

 Super-Villain Team-Up #1, c.February 1978

 Super-Villain Team-Up #2, c.September 1979

 Super-Villain Team-Up #3, c.May 1980

 Super-Villain Team-Up #4, c.mid/late 1980

Super-Villain Team-Up #5, c.February 1981

Super-Villain Team-Up #NN, c.May 1982

The first two issues are regular/magazine-sized issues, and the rest are digest-sized issues.

The publication dates for #'s 1, 2, 3 and 5 are as accurate as I can manage at the moment with the data available, but I'm pretty sure they are accurate within a month. The date for #NN is based on a newsagency marking, and although it is likely a 1982 issue, it is possible it is from 1983.

As discussed before I do not think there was a Super-Villain Team-Up #6 with new material. The 'excess' material was published in The Champions #6 Black Panther #7.

Super-Villains Team-Up #NN is the only recycled edition I am aware of, but it is possible more exist. 

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

All Star Adventure Comic #35


K.G. Murray's All Star Adventure Comic #35 was published c.October 1965:


The cover is from DC's Mystery in Space #100:


The story contents are as follows:

The Secret of the Double Agent, originally published in Mystery In Space #100, June 1965
The Death of Mark Merlin, originally published in House of Secrets #73, July-August 1965
Killed By His Friend!, originally published in Charles Starret as The Durango Kid #32, October 1954
[Untitled] Begins "Look what I found in this cave...", originally published in Mystery In Space #100, June 1965
Sorry, Wrong Dimension, originally published in Strange Adventures #178, July 1965
The Man Who Robbed A Thousand Minds, originally published in Gang Busters #57, Apr- May 1957
The Men Who Bombed The Sun!, originally published in Mystery in Space #22, October-November 1954
The Golden Palomino, originally published in Bobby Benson's B-Bar-B Riders #3, September-October 1950
The Planet Collectors, originally published in Mystery In Space #100, June 1965
Secrets of the Test Squad, originally published in Gang Busters #57, April-May 1957
The Renegade Robots, originally published in Tales of the Unexpected #89, June-July 1965
The Man in the Martian Mask!, originally published in Mystery in Space #20, June-July 1954

These are all DC stories apart from Killed by His Friend! and The Golden Palomino which are Magazine Enterprises features.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

The Last Mile of Space in Murray comics


DC Comics' Mystery in Space #17 is cover-dated December 1953-January 1954:


I don't believe this cover by Murphy Anderson was reprinted by K.G. Murray. There was no local edition of Mystery in Space in the 1950's, and the cover does not appear on a later issue of All Star Adventure Comic or Five Score Comic Monthly, the most likely hosts.

The cover story The Last Mile of Space was presented in All Star Adventure Comic #36 c.December 1965:


Here's a scan of the original splash page:


If this is an accurate representation of the original issue, I would happily live without the washed out off-register colour and opt for the clean lines of Anderson in the black and white printing.

This story was reprinted by DC in the early 1970's with a new cover image by Anderson in Strange Adventures #229:


This cover was reprinted, with some alterations, on the cover of All Star Adventure Comic #78:


The splash page includes writer and artist credits as per the reprint in Strange Adventures #229:


The reprint in Strange Adventures #229 has been recoloured and is an improvement on the original:


The final page of the story in Strange Adventures #229 ends with an instalment of Scienti-Fact:


This page is replicated in the All Star Adventure Comic #78 printing:


The original page from Mystery in Space #17 included an advertisement:


For obvious reasons the advertisement was not included in All Star Adventure Comic #36. Instead, as was standard K.G. Murray practise, the panel borders were extended to fill the page:


Two of the panels have extraneous white space, whilst one has extended art. The final panel has inked-in white space. The extended dark sky is tonally suited to the sombre finale. 

Anderson swiped himself when he drew the new cover for Strange Adventures #229. However, he had already paid homage to himself many years earlier on the cover of Justice League of America #19:


This cover was published by K.G. Murray on Mighty Comic #40:


This is a classic cover in its own right, as is The Super-Exiles of Earth! - but we can discuss this issue another time.