Chuck Gower

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About Chuck Gower

  • Boards Title
    TOTAL NEWBIE

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    Gentlemen's Club Manager
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    Thailand

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  1. I think there's no question in anyone's mind that over the next 20 years, we're going to see some amazing collections come to market, due to... time... But, even in the case of OO collections from the Golden Age, would they still be like the Mile High Collection? Those books were bought, read, and stored, by an ADULT - meticulously filed away - where no one touched them for decades... An original owner today would've been a kid when he bought an Action #1... how old was he when he decided to preserve it? How did it escape the first couple of decades of brothers and sisters and cousins and friends and parents and general carelessness, when no one could even conceive the idea of its value or collectibility like we do today? Not saying it CAN'T have been preserved all of these years... just that it's a very rare thing... Now multiply that by 18-22,000 comics. We MAY someday see an Edgar Church type collection again... it's possible, but I think his point is that they do not 'keep showing up.' It was an amazing, possibly one of a kind collection, that we may never see it's type of again, even with the tidal wave of collections coming over the next 20 years or so. There'll be some amazing, mind blowing collections... but the MH collection will be a hard one to beat. Starting with a 9.4-9.6 Action #1.
  2. LAUGH COMICS #222 - Talk Dirty to Me! As Archie got into the ’60s and 70’s, the amount of sexual innuendo obviously cooled - partly because of the Comics Code and partly because Archie Comics as a company brand, saw the wholesome family brand as a viable path to success. They were RIGHT... it worked out great for them for decades - by the mid to late 60’s they were no longer leading in sales, but as an overall publisher, they were very strong. But every once in a while you could still find an issue of Archie though that had its fair share of wink wink nudge nudge moments... (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with cover art by Dan DeCarlo) Al Hartley probably doesn't get the recognition that he should, mainly because he spent a great deal of his career doing a pretty good Dan DeCarlo impersonation. That's ok though. Because as many stories as they can fit in of Archie going to the beach, that's drawn in that clean house style is A-ok with me! (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with art by Al Hartley with inks by Jon D'Agostino) You'd think Archie was the one waiting all these years to hear VERONICA say those three little words... (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with art by Al Hartley with inks by Jon D'Agostino) But she isn't done! I don't think Archie knows what hit 'em! (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with art by Al Hartley with inks by Jon D'Agostino) But Veronica isn't the only one who can make double entendre's... Betty IS after all, the wilder one... Here, Al Hartley looks a little more like Al Hartley in his art. Maybe it's because he doesn't have the house expertise of Jon D'Agostino inking his pencils. Not knocking it... it still is a quality Archie Comics production. And I love his occasional cloud formations on the horizon to fill out the scenery. On the horizon? Who does that? Anyway... I love it! (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with art by Al Hartley) Obviously, you'd NEVER see a panel like this in today's Archie. It was, what they call an 'off color' remark then, it's pretty much a complete no-no now. And I guess it makes sense that it's Reggie who makes the comment! (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with art by Al Hartley) And he isn't letting up! (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with art by Al Hartley) And then Al Hartley draws the hottest female in the whole comic as Archie's 'reward' for being nice to the lost little girl! 'Venus' is, of course, extremely appreciative of Archie looking out for her sister and the rest of the gang realize, THEY are the dum-dums! (LAUGH COMICS #222 cover-dated September 1969, on newsstands July 1st, 1969, with art by Al Hartley)
  3. Bought some Marvel magazine's from Dan - tight grading, great packaging - all around great transaction! He even threw in an awesome freebie! Highly Recommended!
  4. BEWARE! The CLAWS of The CAT #1-4 - Social Justice with Good Art! Beware the Claws of... The Cat! was a 1972 Comic Series that lasted 4 issues. It was a part of Stan Lee’s idea to expand readership to a female audience. Of course, today this would be seen as radical and liberal and social justice warrior activity and denounced as some declaration of war vs the male species. In reality, then like now, Marvel was just looking for more suckers to buy their comics. It didn’t work, unfortunately, and it’s a shame because this is a series I always liked. I didn’t find it in a dollar box (that’d be sweet), but I DID just reread it in the Tigra Softcover collection put out by Marvel, so I wanted to review it here. (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #1 cover-dated November 1972, on newsstands August 22nd, 1972, with cover art by Marie Severin with Inks by Wally Wood) Issue #1 does the flashback origin while in the current story and the Marie Severin/Wally Wood art is a good combination. Legend has it that Wood turned in the art with the Cat completely naked and Marie had to add her costume and white out the naughty bits. (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #1 cover-dated November 1972, on newsstands August 22nd, 1972, with art by Marie Severin with Inks by Wally Wood) Writer Linda Fite, part of Marvel’s efforts to get female creators to take part in the project, does a good job of giving us a Marvel style story and setup... and even giving the female character a great deal more to her than we're used to for female characters... (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #1 cover-dated November 1972, on newsstands August 22nd, 1972, with art by Marie Severin with Inks by Wally Wood) The art though... tends to be a little more geared to the male reader...! (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #1 cover-dated November 1972, on newsstands August 22nd, 1972, with art by Marie Severin with Inks by Wally Wood) The bad guy is set up well as a male chauvinist, making the Cat's victory even sweeter, but the whole point of it isn't to be too preachy... though I'm curious to know if Marie changed the look of the villain to resemble Wally Wood...? (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #1 cover-dated November 1972, on newsstands August 22nd, 1972, with art by Marie Severin with Inks by Wally Wood) Ultimately they try and play the 'Peter Parker/Spider-man' angle, as they'd again try to do later on with Spider-Woman. Marvel had success with Spidey, so I guess they figured it wouldn't hurt to try it again on other characters... (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #1 cover-dated November 1972, on newsstands August 22nd, 1972, with art by Marie Severin with Inks by Wally Wood) With #2 we get a Romita cover and Daredevil villain. Marvel liked to do this to quickly incorporate the new hero into the world of Marvel Comics. Personally, I think they’d have been better off creating a new cool villain, especially since I always thought the Owl was lame. (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #2 cover-dated January 1973, on newsstands October 24th, 1972, with cover art by John Romita) Marie Severin more prominently does the art on this issue with Jim Mooney inking. And it’s pretty darn good. I actually think this issue probably looks most like what you'd expect of a well done Marvel Comic. (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #2 cover-dated January 1973, on newsstands October 24th, 1972, with art by Marie Severin and inks by Jim Mooney) In #3 we again get a lame rehashed villain (Commander Kraken from Sub-Mariner... right? I had to go check.) and a new artist in Paty Greer (layouts) with Bill Everett finishes. Rich Buckler does the cover, though apparently, Romita had to do alterations with Frank Giacoia inking. (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #3 cover-dated April 1973, on newsstands January 2nd, 1973, with cover art by Rich Buckler, alterations by John Romita and inks by Frank Giacoia) Paty Greer's art in this is a little different, but... in a good way. And Bill Everett's inks, give it a nice touch. Geez, I'd have taken this over a Sal Buscema with Vince Coletta inking any day. It feels very... 'independent comic' in its layout and style and... that probably was NOT what Marvel was looking for. I know a lot is made about their 'House Style' and their need to make everything fit within the structure of what they were doing, but... personally, I like it better when the artists get overly creative and interesting. It's one of the reasons I always liked this series... (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #3 cover-dated April 1973, on newsstands January 2nd, 1973, with art by Paty Greer, and inks by Bill Everett) The final issue has a Romita cover, making it look perhaps cooler than what follows (though he probably agonized about having to draw those bulls) - yet another lame rehashed villain (Man Bull from Daredevil) and another artist change. (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #4 cover-dated June 1973, on newsstands March 6th, 1973, with cover art by John Romita) The hard-luck lady thing continues as the Cat laments her powers and responsibility. Ya know... if they REALLY wanted her to have a reason to feel guilty about her powers, they should've let Dr. Tumolo die, and... ah, whatever. (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #4 cover-dated June 1973, on newsstands March 6th, 1973, with art by Jim Starlin and Alan Weiss with inks by Frank McLaughlin) If you’d told me going in that Jim Starlin and Allen Weiss we’re going to do the art with Frank McLaughlin on inks I’d have been pretty excited to see the results. Unfortunately it none of their best work. It’s not BAD, it just... nowhere in the realm of Captain Marvel #26 and #27, which it came out in between. Most likely Starlin did some breakdowns, Weiss did some finishes and maybe both did some touch-ups and then McLaughlin came in to ink it in a rush (he's much better than this). (BEWARE! The CLAWS of the CAT #4 cover-dated June 1973, on newsstands March 6th, 1973, with art by Jim Starlin and Alan Weiss with inks by Frank McLaughlin) Overall though, as I said, I enjoyed this series and still read it from time to time. In fact, I'm going to finish this 'Tigra' trade paperback where these stories came from and review the rest of it very soon!
  5. BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Batman started out as Robin? I found this beauty in $1 box. Like... when was I ever going to read a Batman Annual #2? I’m not a big Batman fan in the first place, but this is one that turned out to have a few surprises. It WAS, however, coverless, so... here's a reproduction... (BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Cover Dated Winter 1961 - on Newsstands November 16th, 1961 - cover art by Curt Swan, Sheldon Moldoff and Sprang) Ok... what's good about it? For one, most of these stories are drawn by Sprang, who’s work in Batman I LOVE. It’s just so stylized in its own way, I almost love it as much as H.G. Peter, though I think Sprang probably has a better grasp of storytelling. Of course, they’re all listed as Bob Kane work in the book - we just now know it was guys like Sprang and Sheldon Moldoff that we’re actually doing the work. What’s kind of a crock about this Annual - not that it matters now - but at the time, this was all reprints! If I was a regular Batman reader in 1961, I’d feel a little ripped off by that. At least give me ONE new story. (BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Cover Dated Winter 1961 - on Newsstands November 16th, 1961 - Reprinted from Batman #86 - Cover Dated September 1954 - on Newsstands July 14th, 1954 with art by Sprang but listed as Bob Kane) The first story is kind of a hoot as Batman faces death from “The Bends” when he ventures too far underwater and the bad guy, “Slant” Stacey takes advantage of it. Of course, Batman comes up with all kinds of improbable ways around it. (BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Cover Dated Winter 1961 - on Newsstands November 16th, 1961 - Reprinted from Batman #86 - Cover Dated September 1954 - on Newsstands July 14th, 1954 with art by Sprang but listed as Bob Kane) Sprang's art and style was hugely influential in the Batman TV show from the '60s and here you can practically see the into to the show where the host of bad guys are in line to get walloped by the Dynamic Duo. (BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Cover Dated Winter 1961 - on Newsstands November 16th, 1961 - Reprinted from Batman #86 - Cover Dated September 1954 - on Newsstands July 14th, 1954 with art by Sprang but listed as Bob Kane) Man, they must’ve run out of ideas for this strip by the mid-50’s, as the next couple of stories are Batman becomes a Scottish Lord, Batman becomes an Indian Chief, Batman and Robin become Jungle Adventurers, Batman the Magician, Super Power Batman ... ugh. (BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Cover Dated Winter 1961 - on Newsstands November 16th, 1961 - Reprinted from Batman #86 - Cover Dated August 1953 - on Newsstands July 1st, 1953, with art by Sprang but listed as Bob Kane) (BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Cover Dated Winter 1961 - on Newsstands November 16th, 1961 - Reprinted from Batman #86 - Cover Dated September 1954 - on Newsstands July 14th, 1954 with art by Sheldon Moldoff but listed as Bob Kane) There’s also a Batman Calendar for 1962, though how you’re supposed to put this together with destroying your comic is beyond me. This DC Comic came out the same month as Amazing Adult Fantasy #9 featuring Tim Boo Ba! and in between Fantastic Four #2 and #3. One that’s interesting is “When Batman was Robin”. It’s the obviously NOT canon story of how when Bruce Wayne was training to be a detective, his mentor gave him a Robin outfit and that’s how he got his start... though here it looks like the long lost mentor is coming back to reveal his secret identity. Not exactly canon at this point, but an interesting take for the time. Unfortunately, the rest is a little too much of this: (BATMAN ANNUAL #2 - Cover Dated Winter 1961 - on Newsstands November 16th, 1961 - Reprinted from Batman #86 - Cover Dated September 1954 - on Newsstands July 14th, 1954 with art by Sprang but listed as Bob Kane)
  6. Small show in Maryland that's every couple of months... when I'm in the states, I always stock up on some great reading material. I DO however, mostly see them for $4-$6 a pop though.
  7. Exactly. As if George Lucas didn't have a generic formula he consistently repeated and co-ordinated it with toy sales. It's been a money grab since they started offering it with the success of the original.
  8. @ $3 each The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu 5 VG 4.0 1st App of Manchurian Dirty Front cover, Chipping $10 The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu 6 VG/FN 5.0 rusty Top Staple $6 The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu 9 VG 4.0 Dirty Front, Holes Front Cover on "red guys leg" Cover $5 The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu 11 VG- Dirty Back Cover Neal Adams $7 The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu 30 FN- 5.5 $6
  9. Yes. Conan has done an amazing job of turning that place into what it is today.
  10. Ya know, I'm not even sure if they ship over here...
  11. What's "a while back?" Many of the issues they had 6-7 years ago, they've made right. And why would you order a book of there's through eBay when you can get it cheaper on their website? When a book gets super hot overnight and you get 100 orders for 10 copies, someone is getting shorted. If it's some modern, I'm sure it's readily available now for a cheaper price. But no one wants it now to flip do they? That window has passed. Yes, for flippers, the site may have its inconveniences if someone beats you to the punch. But blaming them because you missed their e-mail? How is that their fault? You're in the minority. For both readers and picky grade people, they're the biggest selection available. For people looking to flip, not so much.
  12. BUT... the book is graded by MYCS, NOT the seller. Too many 'prices' I see sold for on eBay are suspect and grading is almost always an issue unless you're dealing with a regular experienced seller you know you can trust. When you buy something from MYCS, you get a strictly graded book, unlike ebay where you get god knows what sometimes. MYCS, may not be setting the market on a lot of these books, but they ARE gobbling up the market, because they a) advertise like crazy everywhere and continue to expand their customer base, b) made a conscious effort a couple of years ago (maybe a good 7-8 years ago) to strictly grade, and c) BUY, BUY, BUY like crazy. Add to that d) their packaging is top notch, e) their processing/shipping times have gotten MUCH faster, f) they accept multiple forms of payment and g) the dad has pretty much left the building. Not everyone has 24 hours a day to spend on this stuff like some of you, and just want an easy place where they can go to get their books and not have the hassle of being hustled, or conned through shill bidding or messing with those Paypal clowns. Why WOULDN'T someone go there over eBay?