Doc’s Corner for the Week of 6/14/2022 (WAYBACK WEDNESDAY EDITION!)
Feeling nostalgic and getting the opportunity to do a deep dive into some back issue boxes, this week found some real gems in those scuffed up white long boxes.
PETER PORKCHOPS #12 DC COMICS (OCT. 1952)
Way back in the early 1950’s, the comic book marketplace had changed. Superheroes were no longer the popular force and comic companies were throwing anything against the wall to see if it would stick. Love comics, westerns, and of course, cartoons. With most licensed characters already scooped up, comic publishers created thier own. One of DC’s more popular characters was Peter Porkchops. Appearing in 62 issues of his own title, Peter and his friend/nemisis Wolfie were always knocking heads and getting into all sorts of zany schenanigans. With 3 stories in this issue including the cover story where Peter inherits a medieval castle, this is old school Merrie Melodies type fun. Along with some sort stories featuring characters such as Goofy Goose and Biggety Bear and some puzzle and how to draw pages, this was well worth your childhood dime. What none of us realized back then was that Peter would return in the 1980’s as a member of Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew as the superhero known as Pig-Iron! I give it an 8 out of 10 Grahams.
SUPERMAN’S GIRLFRIEND LOIS LANE #113 (G-87) (SEPT. 1971)
For those of you not of a certain age bracket, the G-87 numbering referred to the fact that while this issue was technically #113 of the Lois Lane title, it also fell into the DC Giant Size series. And this brilliant idea has been an absolute asset to comic collectors since. This was only one of the ways DC made use of their extensive collection of older stories. At this point in time DC had just started adding reprint stories to their comic title to be able to up the page count and price to 25 cents. So if you can bump up the story count to 7 stories with a couple of bonus pages, surely that would be worth 35 cents? Most of these giants focused loosely around a central theme. In this case, the “Strangest Love Stories Ever Told”. And we do get those! Aliens! Monsters! Weird hybrid versions of Lois! But by far, the real worth of this issue is the reprinted two pages from an unpublished Golden Age Flash Comics featuring the Golden Age Rose & Thorn. With art by the amazing Joe Kubert, it also feaures a cameo by the Golden Age Green Lantern and a mention of Wonder Woman. This would have made for an amazing issue and its appearance in this title makes perfect sense as a new version of the Rose and Thorn character was currently appearing in the Lois Lane title in the non giant issues. This one pulls out all the stops! It gets a 10 out of 10 Grahams which considering that this is a collection of older issues is a bit of a feat.
SUPERMAN’S PAL JIMMY OLSEN #131 (G-74) (AUGUST 1970)
Almost a year earlier, Lois’s co-worker Jimmy Olsen got his own Giant issue with #131. And this time our theme was Super Curios. A burglar kit from the future, a magic want, and the amazing spectacles of Dr. X are only a few of the seven stories presented here. All of these tales show the amazing creativity that the artists and writers of the extended Superman universe had. Aside from this title, Superman could also be found in his own title, Action Comics, World’s Finest, Justice League of America, and Lois Lane. That was a lot of Superman stories month after month! But somehow they made it work. The most unique story here is the case of the unwanted Superman Souvenirs. Unique and intriguing, this tale also gives us one of those “can you solve the mystery before we do” gimmicks which was very popular at the time. This is 64 pages of fun. I give it a 9 out of 10 Grahams. (One of the things that always aggravated me and still does is why there was never a Superman’s Boss, Perry White title?)