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About tomo

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    The Collectinator
  1. So why December of 1978? Well, there was a movie released that month called Superman The Movie, that's why! A favorite complaint these days is that neither Marvel or DC has appropriate books on the shelves to take advantage of the heat that is generated by comic book movies. So how did DC do back in 1978 at the golden age of superhero movies? Not too shabby! All-New Collectors' Edition: Superman The Movie #C-62 was right there to take advantage of the hype, with an issue dedicated to the movie itself! The FFE's had ceased publication a few years prior, but they revived the title for one more issue with Famous First Edition Superman #C-61. How they neglected to print this issue back in 1974-1975 when they printed copies for Batman #1 and Wonder Woman #1 remains a mystery, but the timing worked out for them in the end. As for the other books that month? Pretty standard mid-to-late Bronze Age stuff. Thanks for reading, and have a great weekend!
  2. Yesterday we took a look at the dawn of the Bronze Age with the Superbooks. It would be about another year, however, for the Superbooks to start hitting their stride with some classic Bronze Age goodness. For me, the quintessential Superman Bronze Age book is Superman #233, so let's see what else was on the newsstands that month as well. Aside from having the most iconic of Neal Adams' Superman covers, this issue starts a year-long story of a de-powered Superman by Denny O'Neil. While this was supposed to reset the status quo, it was largely contained within the pages of Superman and lasted only as long as Denny O'Neil stuck around. Those eleven issues are now affectionately known as the Sand-Superman Saga. It has its rightful place in Superman history, but honestly...80% of the reason is that cover! Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #107 has another Rose & Thorn back-up, and nothing screams Bronze Age like street-level vigilantism. Superboy #171 has one of the better (and all too rare) Carmine Infantino Superman covers. Great stuff! I'm not much of an historian for Aquaman, but was Aquaboy ever really a thing? Jack Kirby was just getting started on his Fourth World epic, and we get Darkseid's second appearance here in Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #135. ...and is that another cover in the "people vs. Superman" theme on Action Comics #396? Suddenly he's the Rodney Dangerfield of super-heroes. Another decent month in the world of Superman!
  3. is this round's participation trophy! Although I'm sure the "winnah" emoticon that I got is the real deal!
  4. Grades in. Back to grading on my phone, as studying the high-res pics did me no justice these last few rounds...
  5. Continuing on for the theme of the week, let's set the time machine forward a few years to April of 1969 to see both the end of one era, and the dawn of another. The end of the Silver Age is a hard one to pin down, and there's a ton of debate to be had. I, myself, like to keep things simple and generally assume that the end of the 12¢ books also ends the Silver Age, and this is the month that it happened. I sorted the books by release date, so you'll see that it starts with 10¢ books and ends with the 12¢ books. Aside from Adventure Comics #381, which features the debut issue of the solo Supergirl stories, there is no real tonal shift per se. It was more of a gradual shift as the civil rights movement started to shift the consciousness of the country forward. We do get a great month of Neal Adams covers though! Superboy #157 features another in the all time favorite "people vs. Superman" theme. Superman and Batman duel it out gladiator-style in World's Finest Comics #185. While not one of his most iconic covers, he gets the honor of doing Supergirl's first issue from her headlining run in Adventure Comics. He's also credited with inking the Curt Swan cover for Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #120, but I'll be darned if I can see any of Curt left in the final project. Superman #217 is a giant-size issue, featuring a great load of reprints with the first appearances of Brainiac, Metallo, Lori Lemaris, the pre-Kara Supergirl, and of course...Mala! Four Neal Adams covers and a bunch of classic reprints? I call that a win!
  6. That's the one bonus of being a run collector. It's like having your own personal time machine. Of course, it can only go back in time...bummer
  7. Yesterday I was a little surprised that I was able to go all the way back to November of 1959, with having a complete set of all the Superbooks on sale for a particular month. I thought for sure that my oldest set would've been in the early 12¢ era. I ended up being wrong twice, as not only could I go farther back than I thought, but the next instance of this happening is way into the second half of the Silver Age. It takes another 7 ½ years for my collection to once again have all of the Superbooks for any particular month. I give to you, the Superman newsstand of June 1967... There's two things to notice here. First, we have three different cover dates for the books that were on sale during June of 1967. The monthly books are all cover dated August, while the 80 Pg. Giants are dated September and October. I don't claim to have a PhD in cover dates, but I do know enough that the month on the cover is supposed to be the month that the books were to be removed from the newsstand, and not the actual month that they were released. Why they decided to give Lois' 80-pager an extra month over Jimmy's is curious. I'm guessing it's because the Lois book was released during the last week of June. For future newsstand months, I should probably put them in order of release date, rather than my typical fashion of ordering them by the age of the title (e.g. Action always goes first, then Adventure, World's Finest, Superboy, etc...) The other thing that sharp-eyed readers may notice is that there is a book missing...Superman #199. This book is the first Superman/Flash race, and a true key for any Superman or Flash collector. So why is it missing? Here's why... About 8 years ago or so, I finished up the small run of the Silver Age Superman/Flash races, which includes the following... Superman #199 Flash #175 World's Finest #198-199 When I laid them all out in order, it was a perfect example of the linear storytelling we all enjoy so much. The first book has the two heroes right at the start of the match, then Superman pulls ahead, then Flash pulls ahead, then to the last book where it is neck and neck over the finish line. I loved the way they looked so much, that I hired my sister to mat and frame them for me! She ended up doing it for free as a birthday present, and they've been hanging up in my office ever since.
  8. So I was ruminating on the state of my Superman collection the other day, as I am getting close to checking off all of the 12¢ books from Superman and Action Comics. That made me curious as to how far back I could get in my collection, and have the entire month of Superman books represented. I figured it would be early in the 12¢ run somewhere, but to my surprise it was late in the 10¢ era instead. Step out of the time machine, and welcome to the world of November 1959! No key issues for this month, but the Superbabies are quite popular as we get both a Superboy and a Supergirl Superbaby story. Since Supergirl only made her first appearance less than a year prior, I'm guessing that this is the first Supergirl Superbaby story? See, there is a key here after all! Now I know what your thinking..."Hold up, how can there be a story of Supergirl when she was a baby as she came to Earth as a teenager?" Blame it on the fountain of youth she inadvertently swims through while rescuing a drowning native in a far off exotic island. And that is why Silver Age stories never get boring. There's always a fountain of youth around when you need one to spice up a story! While the cover for Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #14 teases a Batman appearance, it's not to be. It's all a ruse by Supergirl meddling in her cousin's love life trying to make Superman jealous. This is Supergirl's first appearance in Lois' book and her third outside of Action Comics, after guest-starring in Jimmy Olsen's and Superman a few month's prior. The Superboy #78 is the real winner from this month however, as not only do you get a great Jor-El cover, but all three of the stories inside are gems. Since the aforementioned debut of Supergirl had just happened and proved a hit, I guess Superboy wanted to get in on the action as the opening story has Clark changed to Claire Kent, Super-Sister! Hey kids, look! It's Supergirl as a brunette! The second story gives us the origin of Clark's super-suit, while the last one gives us a view into the early life of Mr. Mxyzptlk and the origin of their longstanding feud. Good stuff! All in all, a solid month, and it's especially great if you are a Supergirl fan. I do wonder though, how this period played out if you were a Superman fan who was still of the age where girls had cooties.
  9. Grades are in. Kudos to @thirdgreenham for picking a couple of books that are definitely going to separate the boys from the men in round 2. These higher grade books are so much more volatile than the low and mid grade miss one or two little things and you are off in la-la-land with your guess. Hopefully my theory of gut instinct minus a grade level or two won't let me down.
  10. The only apologies necessary are from the ones who now necessitated 5 more rounds of 9.8's that look like 9.2's. Census be damned, I loved looking at those old books!
  11. Lastly for this week of low content anagram fun, let's see what we can do with this latest round of purchases from the wilds of eBay. A nice little run of high-grade Weird Western Tales featuring Jonah Hex! Such good stuff. I especially like this cover Weird Western Tales #25 from December 1974. Jonah Hex riding out on horseback from a pit of quicksand! How badass is that?! Anyways, anagrams... Jonah Hex = ? I got nothing here. Hex is an enigma even in the world of anagrams. Weird Western Tales = Tawdriest Newsreel Newsreels wouldn't be a thing for another 50 years in Hex's world, but I can only imagine that if they were around in the wild west, they would've been quite tawdry! Have a great weekend everyone, thanks for reading!
  12. I'm so jealous. I saw him in concert about 15 years ago, and it was a great show. I can't believe it's been that long.
  13. D'oh...I can't believe I missed that Lois anagram. That's so perfect for the always pining after Superman, Silver Age Lois.
  14. Yesterday I mentioned that I'll pick up lower grade 12¢ books to help fill out the run if the price is right, well on these the price was right! The focus of my collection is completing Action Comics and Superman, but I've slowly been filling out the secondary and tertiary titles as the opportunities present themselves. After enjoying the heck out of @Silver's Superboy Complete thread over in the Silver Age Forum, I decided to bump the Superboy collecting up a notch as there are some great books in there. Thanks to @SOLAR BOY for another killer sales thread that had some of those Superboy books I enjoyed seeing over in @Silver's thread. And thanks for the freebie too! With this haul, and yesterday's, that brings me pretty darn close to filling out all of the Action Comics and Superman 12¢ books, as I need only 12 more Actions and 16 more Supermans. Hopefully by the end of the year I can finish off that mini-goal and be able to fully concentrate on the 10¢ books. And what do the anagrams have to say? Superboy = Buy Ropes Superman = Man Purse Not to much secret insight there. Let's try the creators on these issues. Leo Dorfman = Elf Doorman Edmond Hamilton = Damned Monolith Al Plastino = Nasal Pilot Curt Swan = ... Tread lightly on that last one, as there are some decidedly NSFW anagrams there.
  15. I picked up a couple of early 12¢ Action Comics off of eBay recently to help fill out the run. Action Comics #290 from July 1962 and Action Comics #306 from November 1963. I realized long ago that trying to fill out a run of both Action Comics and Superman was going to be a herculean task at best. With that in mind, I settled on a minimum grade for the 12¢ books to be at least a nice presenting F/VF. I'll obviously make exceptions, however, if I come across some beaters at a price I can't resist. I love that cover for #306, as it tells a hell of a story with just one image. It's got it all...Clark Kent in peril, kryptonite, a 3rd world generalissimo, a cigarette smoking mastermind, the secret identity in jeopardy, etc... If I can't have world-shaking super-villain fist fights, than these are the type of stories that I really enjoy from the Silver and Bronze Ages. Anyways, on to the anagram fun! Clark Kent = Tank Clerk Let's see...Clark is essentially the clerk that handles the routine duties for the tank that is Superman. I'll buy that. Fun fact (and a peek behind the curtain): I use the internet to figure out my anagrams, and so far "Clark Kent" are the letters that have generated the least amount of anagrams, with only 3 total. That man's in a class by himself! Lois Lane = Los Alien My spanish is rusty, but that means the alien, right? Action Comics = Iconic Mascot That makes a lot sense, seeing as how this title birthed the original superhero!