COVER STORIES for 10/07/2007
COVER STORIES INSTALLMENT #126
Welcome, faithful readers (and those of you joining us for the first time) to the latest installment of Cover Stories, the weekly column in which I, Jon B. Knutson, present a group of covers with a common theme!
This week's theme is "Circus Time," and I'd imagine most of these covers you'll be seeing for the first time!
Here's Crack Comics #55, cover-featuring Captain Triumph, wearing one of the less-distinctive costumes in comics (heck, it's not much different than the later Steel Sterling's, save for the jodhpurs). I like the look on Hercules and the barker there, too... priceless!
Reed Crandall did the cover for this issue. Inside, he also provided the art for the Captain Triumph cover story, "Brain Against Brawn," followed by Inkie by Al Stahl, Molly the Model by Bernard Dibble, Hack O'Hara (creators unknown), Pen Miller by Klaus Nordling, Floogy the Fiji (creators unknown), the text story "The Mine Robbers" featuring Captain Triumph, Dewy Drip by Dibble, and Beezy by Dibble. All the Bernard Dibble features were short fillers.
Not everything is happy with circus covers on comics... usually, it's quite the opposite! Check out House of Mystery 8, with the tattooed man there, and a tattoo appearing that prophesies death!
Ruben Moreira did the cover art, as well as the art for "Tattoos of Doom" inside, which was reprinted in The Unexpected #133. Also in this issue, "Nemesis From the Grave" by Howard Purcel and Charles Paris, "Puppet's Revenge" by Jerry Grandenetti, and "The Grim Jester" by Curt Swan and Ray Burnley.
Next up is Terrific Comics #1, in which a kid gang (well, is two kids a gang?) take on what has to be an evil circus. And take a look at the guy at the very bottom of the cover, the guy holding a knife... then look at his legs. Is it just me, or does it look like one leg has a loose-fitting pant leg covering it, while the other one is bare? And I don't see how that clown fits around him, especially with the position of Mr. Skirt's head!
Don Rico did the cover art, as you can see. The publisher of this title was Et-Es-Go Magazines, which I've never heard of before! The features inside were Kid Terrific, Juggernaut, Mr. Nobody (art by John Giunta), "Murder on a Moonbeam" by Don Rico, "Backwash" by L.B. Cole, "Spawn of the Poppy" by Gack Grogan and Jack Alderman, "Formula of Fate" by Nina Albright, and Buck 'n' Broncho.
A brief bit of Googling shows that Et-Es-Go Magazines may have been associated with Holyoke.
Of course, as I've often said here, you can pick pretty much any theme and find a Wonder Woman cover fitting that theme... and here's Wonder Woman 71, just one of several with a circus theme! One wonders what's enabled that dangerous rhino to start breaking loose in the first place, though... maybe it didn't like the white shirt with the red flowers worn by the guy with the green pants running away?
This cover was by Irv Novick. However, inside the book, it was all Robert Kanigher writing and Harry G. Peter doing the art on the stories "One Woman Circus," "Ring Around the Earth," and "The Dream Invasion."
I can only guess that Novick did the cover art because Peters' art on covers wasn't selling that well anymore. But that's just a guess, mind you!
Join me next time for another installment of "Cover Stories," when we'll be back to "Comics They Never Made," and in the meantime, you can check out my blog, "Jon's Random Acts of Geekery," at http://waffyjon.blogspot.com for photos of classic toys, other comics covers, comic book advertisements, monster movie stills, and other musings and ramblings by me, or email me with comments about this column at !