Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Your Tax Dollars At Work--Anti-Mosquito Propaganda!!

In 1943, Theodor Geisel was a captain in the U.S. Army...

At the time, the U.S. was sending a lot of troops to various tropical areas...

...so the War Department had good old Dr. Seuss draw up a pamphlet educating soldiers on the dangers of malaria!

It was a pretty elementary effort, as you can see...

...but Seuss drew great mosquitoes!

OK, so it ain't War And Peace...

Huh...Dr. Seuss writing about "strip teasers"!!


Sure, it was cheap and rudimentary...but it's more than Congress is willing to spend these days on fighting insect-born disease....

This Is Ann is from 1943

Bold Fashion Choices--The Clothes Make The Music!!

Swell news, Archie gang:

Mr Lodge has hired your band to play one of his swanky parties!!

Oh, but there's one catch...

Well, it's not that bad, right?

Well, that didn't go well...

Yet, as the kids change their clothes...

And so...

And that's why KISS dressed up. Can you imagine how bad their music would be if they something else because someone told them to?!?

From Archie Annual #23 (1971)

Monday, August 22, 2016

Manic Monday Triple Overtime--They Can't Make This Work Why?!?

Just a periodic reminder that somehow, for some reason...

Fox can't make this concept work as a movie.

And that, due to ridiculous corporate politics...

...now we can't even get a goddamned comic book.

Sweet Aunt Petunia, people--GET YOUR ACTS TOGETHER!!

Thank you.

From Fantastic Four Annual #5 (1967)

Manic Monday Bonus--Ape Syntax Is More Complicated Than I Thought!!

Giganta has just been transformed from a gorilla into a powerful woman!!

But she hasn't mastered human language yet, though--so she communicates the best way she knows how:

"I hate thee--thou interfering she!"

As per usual, I challenge you all to use this sentence at work today!

From The Essential Wonder Woman Encyclopedia (2010)

Manic Monday--Archie As Ozymandias!!

Look on my Works, ye Mighty, and despair!

And that's just the "Giant" issues they had out of the time!

It's difficult to recall now what a newsstand juggernaut Archie Comics was back in the day. They put out a LOT of books. Month after month after month. To pick a date at random, Archie Comics had 20 books cover dated December 1978. Which was a hell of a lot then.

Sure, DC and Marvel had more--especially if you counted Marvel's reprint titles and black and white magazines. But Archie Comics' books were ALL about the same set of characters, in the same situations (aside from the odd Josie or Sabrina or even Jinx title).

Think about that for a moment. Archie was averaging 15-20 titles per month in the 1970s, probably their high water mark--and they were all about Archie, and Jughead, and Betty, and Veronica. Every issue, every page! And people think there are too many Deadpool or Harley Quinn books!!

Just ponder how many thousands--how many hundreds of thousands--of pages have been dedicated to our Riverdale teens over the years!! How many jokes, how many different outfits for the ladies, how many meals for Jughead...honestly, it's awe-inspiring. Whatever you thought of the quality, they kept putting out hundreds of story pages, month after month, year after year.

And now? Well, it's not exactly "the decay of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare," but the tables have certainly turned. DC and (especially) Marvel put out that many books every single week. Archie Comics, though, are down to their three monthly (mostly sort of) "relaunch" book, a few digests, Sonic comics, and some very-irregularly published horror tie-in titles. And Black Circle is pretty much dead, aside from Black Hood.

Of course, there are a lot of reasons for these changes, which you all already know. But this should serve as a reminder that no publishing empire is guaranteed to dominate forever. Things can change, in very unexpected ways, even if it seems like the status quo will be with us forever...

Ad appeared in Archie Annual #23 (1971). And yes, this is the only blog post you will read all day using Percy Shelley to describe Archie Comics...

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Miss Grundy And The Bechdel Test!

Y'all may not know this, but one of the first proponents of the Bechdel Test was Riverdale teacher Miss Grundy--long before the "test" was ever "invented."

Sadly, her stand was no match for Betty and Veronica!

The Bechdel Test--it cannot win against teenage hormones!!

From Archie Annual #23 (1971)