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Tony's Online Tips
Reviews and commentary by Tony Isabella
"America's Most Beloved Comic-Book Writer & Columnist"

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TONY'S ONLINE TIPS
for Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Candy 59

"Tony's Back Page" appears in every issue of Comics Buyer's Guide at the end of its price guide. For the time being, the feature has switched from sterling tales of my life to extended coverage of comic books scheduled to appear in my forthcoming book, 1000 Comic Books You Must Read.

Candy #59
Writers: uncredited
Artists: uncredited
Quality Comics (January, 1956; © 1955 Comic Magazines)

"America's Favorite Teen-Age Girl" is my favorite comics teen-age queen. Candy had a long run in Police Comics alongside Plastic Man and the Spirit, and her own book ran 64 issues. Her funniest adventures were by her creator Harry Sahle, who was also a top "Archie" artist and writer in the 1940s and 1950s.

Sassy Candy was like Archie's Betty in that she came from a typical middleclass family and like Veronica in her determination to get whatever she wanted without regard for her long suffering boyfriend Ted. This 36-page issue had four Candy stories with typical teen comics themes: hot rods, babysitting, knitting a sweater with disastrous results, and the ever-popular mistaken identity at a costume party. There are no credits on the stories, but TV writer Jack Mendelsohn is known to have done some writing on the title in the 1950s.

Sailors "Bob and Swab" are the stars of the issue's fifth story in which their leave starts going awry by the first panel of page two and just keeps getting worse and worse.

******

TONY POLLS

Every week, we post new Tony Polls questions for your balloting entertainment. Here are the results of the questions we asked two weeks ago.

If someone had fallen way behind on their comics reading, which of these Vertigo characters/titles would you recommend they catch up with first?

Fables.....63.38%
Madame Xanadu.....11.27%
Scalped.....5.63%
Air.....4.23%
Hellblazer.....2.82%
Jack of Fables.....2.82%
Young Liars.....2.82%
House of Mystery.....1.41%
Northlanders.....1.41%
Unknown Soldier.....1.41%
DMZ.....0%
Other.....2.82%

If someone had fallen way behind on their comics reading, which of these WildStorm characters/titles would you recommend they catch up with first?

Astro City.....61.19%
Ex Machina.....26.87%
Chuck.....4.48%
World of Warcraft.....2.99%
Gen 13.....1.49%
Stormwatch PHD.....1.49%
X-Files.....1.49%
Authority.....0%
Fringe.....0%
Gears of War.....0%
Wildcats.....0%
Other.....0%

Since I'm the "someone" of these questions, I didn't vote on them. However, I'll mention I have been reading Ex Machina in trade paperback and enjoying it immensely.

In response to these polls, Chris Gumprich wrote:
The problem with these questions is they invariably translate to "What's your favorite comic from these choices?" I'm not really qualified to answer that, because I'm down to three or four comics a month (something unthinkable ten years ago). Of the selections, the only one I read is DMZ. Do I think you would like it? Yes, I do. Do I think you would like it more than, say, current pollleader Fables? I don't know, can't say, haven't read Fables since the first trade.

This is my roundabout way of saying "I wish there were more monthly comics that I could enjoy, especially now that they're priced so high (Canadian)."

My write-in answer: "I don't know."

On another note: thanks for your recommendation of the AC reprints. Even at the high price - ten bucks a pop - I was enjoying both Men of Mystery and Best of the West. Happier yet with their customer service; I had a problem with a DVD I purchased from them, and their service was above-and-beyond. Nice folks.
In Tom Batiuk's Funky Winkerbean, single father Les Moore is being pursued by two women, Cayla Williams and Susan Smith. Which you most like him dating?

Cayla Williams.....50%
Susan Smith.....24.07%
Neither.....25.93%

The outcome of this vote makes me very happy...because my pal Tom Batiuk and I have often disagreed about Susan Smith. She's the former student of Les' who tried to interfere in his long-distance romance with Lisa and who has, I think, the potential to become a bunny-boiling psycho. I don't like her.

By contrast, Cayla is a terrific match for Les. Both of them are single parents raising daughters who are athletes. They enjoyed each other's company and friends and it seems their relationship is progressing. Good for them.

Amusingly, despite all the times Tom and I have talked about these characters, it never really hit me that Cayla and Les are an interracial couple. Not until I read a couple articles about how their being an interracial couple hasn't generated any complaints to the newspapers carrying the strip. Normally I would mock such articles. After all, they are articles about something that didn't happen. But, you know, I feel real good about this not being any kind of issue for newspaper readers. Good for us.

Moving along to our current Tony Polls questions, you can vote on them here:

www.worldfamouscomics.com/tony/poll

Thanks for spending a part of your day with me. I'll be back tomorrow with more stuff.

Tony Isabella

<< 05/12/2009 | 05/13/2009 | 05/14/2009 >>

Discuss this column with me at my Message Board. Also, read Heroes and Villains: Real and Imagined and view my Amazon Wish List.

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THE "TONY" SCALE

Zero Tonys
ZERO: Burn your money before buying any comic receiving this rating. It doesn't *necessarily* mean there's absolutely nothing of value here - though it *could* - but whatever value it might possess shrinks into insignificance before its overall awfulness.

Tony
ONE: Buy something else. Maybe I found something which wasn't completely dreadful in the item, but not enough for me to recommend it when there are better comics available. I only want what's best for you, my children.

TonyTony
TWO: Basic judgment call. I found some value, but not enough to recommend it. My review should give you enough info to decide if you want to take a chance on it. Are you feeling lucky today, punk? Well, are you?

TonyTonyTony
THREE: This denotes something I find perfectly respectable. There are better books out there, but I wouldn't regret buying this item. Based on my review, you should be able to determine if it's of interest to you. Let the Force guide you.

TonyTonyTonyTony
FOUR: I recommend anything earning this rating. Unless you don't like the genre, subject matter, or past work of the creators, I believe you'll enjoy this item. Isn't it uncanny how I can look right into your soul that way?

TonyTonyTonyTonyTony
FIVE: Anything getting this rating is among the best comicdom has to offer. You should buy/read this, even if the genre/subject matter doesn't appeal to you. It's for your own good. Me, I live for comics and books this good...but not in a pathetic "Comic-Book Guy" sort of way.



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