My Favorite Pulp Comics – Of All Time!

shadowdocsavageToday I’m listing out my Top 10 Favorite Pulp Comics of all time.

The rules are simple: it has to be a comic book based upon an actual pulp character. So The Rocketeer doesn’t count and neither does Will Eisner’s Spirit. Both may be pulp in “spirit” (Hah!) but they’re not based on actual classic pulp heroes.

So let’s get started, shall we?

10. John Carter, Warlord of Mars (1977, Marvel)
9. Tarzan (1972, DC)
8. Doc Savage Magazine (1975, Marvel)
7. Conan the Barbarian (1970, Marvel)
6. Savage Sword of Conan (1974, Marvel)
5. The Shadow (1973, DC)
4. The Shadow: Blood and Judgment (DC, 1986)
3. The Shadow Strikes! (1989, DC)
2. The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights (2013, Dynamite)
1. The Shadow: Year One (2013, Dynamite)

As you can see, my love of The Shadow may have tainted the list somewhat 😉

What are some of your favorites, folks?

My Favorite Pulp Comics – Of All Time!

shadowdocsavageToday I’m listing out my Top 10 Favorite Pulp Comics of all time.

The rules are simple: it has to be a comic book based upon an actual pulp character. So The Rocketeer doesn’t count and neither does Will Eisner’s Spirit. Both may be pulp in “spirit” (Hah!) but they’re not based on actual classic pulp heroes.

So let’s get started, shall we?

10. John Carter, Warlord of Mars (1977, Marvel)
9. Tarzan (1972, DC)
8. Doc Savage Magazine (1975, Marvel)
7. Conan the Barbarian (1970)
6. Savage Sword of Conan (1974, Marvel)
5. The Shadow (1973, DC)
4. The Shadow: Blood and Judgment (DC, 1986)
3. The Shadow Strikes! (1989, DC)
2. The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights (2013, Dynamite)
1. The Shadow: Year One (2013, Dynamite)

As you can see, my love of The Shadow may have tainted the list somewhat 😉

What are some of your favorites, folks?

My Favorite Pulp Comics — Of All Time!

shadowdocsavageToday I’m listing out my Top 10 Favorite Pulp Comics of all time. The rules are simple: it has to be a comic book based upon an actual pulp character. So The Rocketeer doesn’t count and neither does Will Eisner’s Spirit. Both may be pulp in “spirit” (Hah!) but they’re not based on actual classic pulp heroes.

10. John Carter, Warlord of Mars (1977, Marvel)
9. Tarzan (1972, DC)
8. Doc Savage Magazine (1975, Marvel)
7. Conan the Barbarian (1970)
6. Savage Sword of Conan (1974, Marvel)
5. The Shadow (1973, DC)
4. The Shadow: Blood and Judgment (DC, 1986)
3. The Shadow Strikes! (1989, DC)
2. The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights (2013, Dynamite)
1. The Shadow: Year One (2013, Dynamite)

As you can see, my love of The Shadow may have tainted the list somewhat 😉

What are some of your favorites, folks?

Georgia Literary Festival & My Favorite Pulp Comics

literary_festival_2013_logoSo today is the Georgia Literary Festival, which will be held in Milledgeville, Georgia. I’ve been the co-chair of the planning committee for this event over the past year and it’s been a lot of work.

A lot of work.

Did I mention that it has been a lot of work?

Anyway, we’re finally here on the big day and I’m hopeful that it will go smoothly and we’ll get a nice turnout. I was happy to be able to draft some of my New Pulp buddies into the mix – Bobby Nash, Van Plexico, Sean Taylor and Andrea Judy will all be on hand. Honestly, I’m most looking forward to getting together with those folks for dinner after the day is over!

As I mentioned yesterday, Rabbit Heart is back in print so I hope that all of you who have heard about it but never had the chance to read it will go pick up a copy. Given that it’s set in Milledgeville, as well, it’s very appropriate that it’s making its return!

The past few weeks I’ve doing lists of “favorites” — so this week I’m listing out my Top 10 Favorite Pulp Comics. The rules are simple: it has to be a comic book based upon an actual pulp character. So The Rocketeer doesn’t count and neither does Will Eisner’s Spirit. Both may be pulp in “spirit” (Hah!) but they’re not based on actual classic pulp heroes.

10. John Carter, Warlord of Mars (1977, Marvel)
9. Tarzan (1972, DC)
8. Doc Savage Magazine (1975, Marvel)
7. Conan the Barbarian (1970)
6. Savage Sword of Conan (1974, Marvel)
5. The Shadow (1973, DC)
4. The Shadow: Blood and Judgment (DC, 1986)
3. The Shadow Strikes! (1989, DC)
2. The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights (2013, Dynamite)
1. The Shadow: Year One (2013, Dynamite)

What are some of your favorites, folks?

My Favorite Pulp Heroes

1759222-conan_the_cimmerian_by_frank_choI’ve read a lot of pulp.

I mean, a lot.

So over the years I’ve found myself drawn to certain characters more than others — it’s natural, right? Not every series will connect with you in the same way. So I figured I’d list my ten favorite pulp heroes, counting down from 10-1. Some of them are from completely different genres than each other but that’s okay.

For the sake of the list, I kept it to ‘classic’ pulp heroes — so nothing from New Pulp is on this list.

Here we go:

10. The Spider
9. Thunder Jim Wade
8. Doc Savage
7. Norgil the Magician
6. Tarzan
5. John Carter
4. Conan
3. Seekay
2. The Avenger
1. The Shadow

For years, I would have put The Avenger at # 1 and The Shadow at # 2 but the sheer weight of Shadow stories and their excellence throughout has moved him into the top spot. I read every Avenger story years ago and I’m still reading Shadow stories for the first time (there’s over 300 novels!) so I think that has a lot to do with it. Seekay and The Avenger, it should be pointed out, are both written by Paul Ernst (though other people also contributed to later Avengers)… who happens to have also been the guy behind the evil Doctor Satan, one of my favorite villains. Ernst is right up there with Walter Gibson and Robert E. Howard as my favorite pulp authors.

What would your list be like?

It’s a Monday.

mellisa_clarke_10_001Yep, it’s a Monday here at Ye Olde Blog. Had a nice day yesterday with my family so now it’s back to the daily grind!

I continue to split my writing between Gravedigger Volume Two and Lazarus Gray Volume Five. Both stories are going really well – on the Tales of The Rook front, there’s still one story that I haven’t received so I don’t know when that volume will be scheduled. This will definitely be the last of the Tales of The Rook series and I have no plans whatsoever to return to the character any time soon. Tommy Hancock is still penciled in to write volumes 7-9 of the main Rook series and hopefully his schedule will allow him to do it, as it was a cool idea he had.

For those of you who follow me on Twitter, you’ll know that I went off on a little rant last night about fans of certain classic pulp characters who seemed actively opposed to new adventures featuring their favorites. I don’t understand that at all. If I love something, then I want it to be a living, breathing property and not confined to just stories from nearly a hundred years ago. Though they might not want to admit it, new stories generate new excitement. For whatever reason, Barnes & Noble doesn’t stock the excellent Sanctum reprints of classic Shadow novels. But if there were new novels, perhaps timed to coincide with a new film or tv series? They’d be on the shelves — I lost track of how many different editions of John Carter of Mars I saw at Barnes & Noble in the months leading up to the release of the film! Had the film been more successful, would I have been interested in new John Carter stories? Yes! I love the old ones but I am not automatically opposed to continuations of beloved heroes. The large number of Sherlock Holmes pastiches I’ve read can testify to that. Have all the new Holmes stories been good? Nope. Some have been awful. Did any of them ruin the classics for me? No. And if you don’t want to read new stories? Then don’t!

And as for folks who say “But I wouldn’t be able to afford new books *and* the reprints!”

Cry me a freakin’ river. Welcome to the real world, where people have to make decisions. Do you think Lucasfilm/Disney sits back and says “Maybe we should put out less Star Wars merchandise since the fans can’t afford to buy everything?”

Hell no! People pick and choose what they buy — and I’d love to have so many choices of Shadow or Avenger product that I had to make decisions like that!

Our model today is the lovely Mellisa Clarke, who was one of the visual inspirations I had in mind for Charity Grace (aka Gravedigger)

Take care!

Satuday Matinee: The John Carter Animated Project (1936)

dejah_thoris_19_by_paulrenaud-d5461j8Every Saturday I find a movie or clip that I think will appeal to the fans of this blog. Since most of you enjoy action/adventure, I tend to focus on something that falls into that category. This week we’re looking at the 1936 attempts at creating a series of theatrical features starring Edgar Rice Burroughs’ John Carter of Mars. As you’ll see, it’s a real shame that we didn’t get a chance to see this in completed form. It looks GORGEOUS. It’s only a couple of minutes long but it will really whet your appetite for what could have been…

Our accompanying artwork is from Dynamite’s Dejah Thoris series and is by the talented artwork Paul Renaud. She looks quite spiffy, I think.

Enjoy!

A Tough Decision… Plus: Dynamite’s Pulp Comics for June 2013

masks08_cov_rossI almost committed myself to a major undertaking. It had gotten so far that I’d created a blog for it and even scheduled the first four posts… but then I came to my senses last night. While it’s good to do things for the benefit of the New Pulp community, ultimately I’m just one person… and I have my own writing & imprint to focus on. While I hope that someone else will step forward to save the day and keep this project going, I can’t let that force me into doing something that would result in a whole of work on my behalf without any real payoff other than some vague sense of ‘doing good.’ I did the New Pulp Bestsellers List for several years and it was a lot of work — I put in my time for the good of the community, I think.

And, yes, I know that’s all very vague, isn’t it?

In happier news, I came up with the germ of an idea for the Weird West story I’m writing for Mechanoid Press and have started that. Another new character to play with! Always fun. I’ll have to avoid the temptation to start another series, though. I have enough of those! 🙂

Anyway, let’s move on!

Since Dynamite is publishing The Shadow and its related comics, I’ve been reading quite a few of their books lately. Their pulp line keeps expanding and I’ll soon be trying The Black Bat & Miss Fury, in addition to Masks, The Shadow and The Shadow: Year One. I figured I’d post all their pulp related solicitations for June 2013 here since I usually end up talking about some of them on The Shadow Fan Podcast.

THE BLACK BAT # 2
Brian Buccellato (w)
Ronan Cliquet (a)
Jae Lee, Joe Benitez, Ardian Syaf, Billy Tan (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/5

The redemptive quest of The Black Bat continues! As the cloaked hero launches his campaign against his criminal former clients, he must save the police from a mysterious captor. What darkness from Tony’s past threatens his newfound war on crime?

MISS FURY # 3
Rob Williams (w)
Jack Herbert (a)
Joe Benitez, Paul Renaud, Billy Tan, Wagner Reis (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/5

In 1943, Miss Fury is drunk and suicidal, dangling off the edge of Manhattan’s highest skyscraper. In 2013, she’s racing in a high-speed bike chase through Washington, DC, in pursuit of time-traveling Nazi agents. Which reality is true? Meanwhile, CIA Agent Harmon uncovers the true identity of those who unhinged her from time…

THE SHADOW: YEAR ONE # 5 (OF 10)
Matt Wagner (w)
Wilfredo Torres (a)
Matt Wagner, Alex Ross, Chris Samnee, Howard Chaykin (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/26
NOW 10 ISSUES!
The Shadow pursues his crusade against crime, and Margo Lane struggles to fit into Lamont Cranston’s mysterious world. Meanwhile, Big Gun Massaretti’s senseless gang war disrupts the mobs of New York, prompting a daring heist that draws the Master of Men like a moth to flame. And finally, an intrepid reporter relentlessly pursues The Shadow’s secrets, closing in!

THE SHADOW # 15
Chris Roberson (w)
Giovanni Timpano (a)
Alex Ross, Jason Shawn Alexander, Tim Bradstreet,
Francesco Francavilla (c)
4 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/19
The Shadow has come face-to-face with the killer known as “The Light,” and barely managed to survive. Who is this mysterious woman? Where has she come from? And how has she gained mystic skills and martial abilities that make her a match for The Shadow himself?

MASKS # 8 (OF 8)
Chris Roberson (w) Dennis Calero (a)
Alex Ross, Ardian Syaf, Sean Chen, Stephen Segovia (c)
4 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/26
The startling conclusion to the best-selling miniseries! The mysterious master of the Justice Party stands revealed – but is it too late for the greatest crime fighters of all time to stop the party’s far-reaching plans? Join The Shadow, Green Hornet, Zorro, The Spider, Miss Fury, and other pulp legends as they bring two-fisted justice to those who would corrupt the law!

MARK WAID’S THE GREEN HORNET # 4
Mark Waid (w)
Daniel Indro (a)
Paolo Rivera (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/26
Now that the Green Hornet is out of control, only one man stands a chance of bringing him down–his partner, Kato! What’s the voice that Britt Reid is hearing–and is he alone in hearing it?

GREEN HORNET LEGACY # 38
Jai Nitz (w)
Jethro Morales (a)
Phil Hester (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/19
What’s worse than a supervillain? Green Hornet asks that very question when he teams up with the nefarious Nikki Stripez to crack a ring of human traffickers in Century City. What will this deal with a devil cost Britt Reid? Heroes and villains unite!

THE SPIDER #13
David Liss (w)
Ivan Rodriguez (a)
Francesco Francavilla (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Teen+ • 6/5
It’s the beginning of an epic showdown that will change The Spider forever! The Fly is the Spider’s most dangerous enemy – a wealthy madman with no goal but power – and no hesitation to kill. Richard Wentworth has sacrificed happiness in order to protect the city he loves, but is he prepared for the betrayals to come?

DEJAH THORIS AND THE GREEN MEN OF MARS # 5 (OF 8)
Mark Rahner (w)
Lui Antonio (a)
Jay Anacleto (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature • 6/12
To keep the peace, Dejah Thoris must keep a dreadful secret – the inhuman acts she witnessed and endured at the hands of outlaw Tharks. To reveal such horror would break the alliances that John Carter forged, pitting all of Mars in a race war. But the price of her secrecy grants the brutal Cult of Hok free reign to launch a terror campaign of their own!

WARLORD OF MARS # 31
Arvid Nelson (w)
Leandro Oliveira (a)
Joe Jusko, Lucio Parrillo (c)
2 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature • 6/26
The Red Planet is a world of secrets, but Martians lack the innate curiosity of Earthlings. Why? Because on Mars, the past can come back to haunt you – literally! When John Carter discovers the inner workings of a mysterious tower over his capital, he unleashes an ancient evil that could lay waste to his empire!

WARLORD OF MARS VOL. 3 TP
Arvid Nelson (w)
Daniel Sampere, Stefano Martino, Leandro Oliviera (a)
Joe Jusko (c)
FC • 168 pages • $19.99 • Mature • 6/26 (C:0-1-2)
John Carter has freed Mars from Issus, the false goddess whose tyranny once ruled the entire planet… but at a great personal cost. Dejah Thoris, his beloved princess, was kidnapped by a renegade priest bent on revenge! Activating a doomsday device to destroy the fragile Martian atmosphere, the evil Shang flees into the unknown regions of the north. Carter, aided by his son Carthoris and trusted alien pet Woola, must unite the many races of Mars — despite the ages of distrust and open warfare — to avert Judgment Day!

WARLORD OF MARS: DEJAH THORIS # 28
Robert Place Napton (w)
Carlos Rafael (a)
Wagner Reis, Fabiano Neves (c)
2 regular covers will be shipped in equal ratios
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature • 6/5
The Machine Men march on Helium, and the Red nations position themselves for war! Meanwhile, Dejah discovers that someone from her past has been conscripted into service by the Machine Men… and intends to settle a score with the Princess of Helium!

DEJAH THORIS 2014 CALENDAR
FC • 12” x 12” • $14.99 • Advance-solicit. In stores August 2013 (C:0-1-2)
The beautiful heroine of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ science fiction masterpiece Warlord of Mars graces every page of this 2014 calendar! Dejah Thoris, bride of John Carter and warrior princess of Barsoom, commands attention with her powerful presence and alluring looks. Journey to the faraway Red Planet twelve months of the year with this exotic Martian goddess!

Tales of The Rook, Pulp Comics & More!

img-thingRead the second of the submitted Tales of The Rook stories last night (this one was by James Palmer) and it really rocked. This volume should be quite interesting, in that we have a couple of classic Max Davies tales, one starring his daughter Emma and another set in the far future, where the legacy of The Rook is being reborn. The first book was focused almost entirely on the ‘classic’ Rook, with the exception being Percival Constantine’s Pulp Ark nominated short story, which starred the Ian Morris Rook. This one will really show the full range of The Rook’s little slice of my pulp universe and that’s a good thing, I think.

The section of New Pulp that’s based in the comic book world continues to grow. I’ve been doing reviews of Dynamite’s Shadow series, as well as the crossover title Masks, over on The Shadow Fan Podcast but there’s a lot more out there. Dynamite has seemingly replaced Moonstone as the New Pulp publisher of choice, with series devoted to The Shadow, The Spider, Tarzan, John Carter and (soon) The Black Bat. They’re also pushing Miss Fury as a pulp title, given her placement in Masks. Obviously, she was never published in pulp mags back in the day but they’re going with the broader definition of pulp. Most of these books have been very good and certainly better than the abomination that was First Wave. Now, they’re not *perfect* (as listeners of my podcast know, I’m not too keen on certain elements of Dynamite’s Shadow revival) but I’m enjoying them nonetheless. I would never encourage anyone to buy something “just to support it” — comics are way too expensive for that. But if you love pulp, I would say “try them.” If you like them, give them your hard earned dollars. If you don’t, you gave it a fair try.

I’ve been getting several sketches from George Sellas in recent days, which will be pieces designed for The Rook Special Edition Volume Three. As always, they are *gorgeous*. He sent me the cover sketch last night and I’m seriously in love with it. Give me a couple of days and I’ll provide you with a sneak peek.

People keep asking when Reese Unlimited next release will be out and my answer is still the same — I’ve been told that March, April & May are the three months where your budget’s going to be stretched thin. Either Lazarus Gray Volume Three: Eidolon or Gravedigger will be out in March, followed by the other in April. May will see The Rook Special Edition Volume Two. I realize that volumes 3-6 are not available in eBook format at present and unfortunately, you’ll have to wait for the Special Editions to be rolled out in order to get them. I’m hoping that by the end of 2013, you’ll have Volume 1-4 all back in print. Fingers crossed….

 

Hump Day Happenings

goth_girlSo the past few days have been interesting. I finished off an editing job for Radio Archives, took some big steps towards finishing off the Liberty Girl project, received a lot of awesome goodies from Tommy Hancock in my email and then got some very exciting news about the potential Rook animated project! Unfortunately, I can’t talk about the news yet but keep your fingers crossed ’cause it could be really, really cool!

I’ve been considering doing something new soon — something very “un-pulp.” I’ve thought about working more on the Rabbit Heart sequel but I think I might want something completely original. We’ll see. It’s nothing very clear yet, more just a desire than an idea.

In other news, I’ve been reading several Judge Dredd things lately and really enjoying them. Judge Death has very quickly moved into my list of all-time favorite villains. Death has such a simple origin and premise – but I’ve found that many of the really classic characters are like that. They’re NOT overly complicated and I think that adds to the iconic nature they have.  So far, I’ve read the Brian Bolland collection, the Dredd vs. Death! novel and I’m working my way through The Complete Case Files Volume 5 now.

Not sure what the next Reese Unlimited project to be published will be. Pro Se has Rook v2, Lazarus Gray v3 and Gravedigger all ready to go into the editing and formatting phase so it’s just a matter of what they decide to do first.

Watched the John Carter movie again this weekend — box office be damned, that’s a good movie.

Usually, there’s some connection between the images I choose to go with these posts and their subject matter. Today, not so much. I just like the picture.