Saturday, November 28, 2009

Jingle Belle Volume One (Oni Press)- 2009 Christmas Countdown

To get things rolling with this year's Christmas Countdown, I figured I'd share a guilty little pleasure I've been enjoying for a few years now: Paul Dini's Jingle Belle...

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Saturday, November 7, 2009

Charlton Bullseye #5: WarHund (Charlton Comics, 1982)

From Wikipedia:

Charlton Bullseye was the title of a Charlton Comics short-lived showcase comic series published in 1981. Several new story using their "Action Heroes" appeared, before they would sell them to DC Comics. After the cancellation of this title, stories intended for it would be published in "Scary Tales" #36-40, which explains the superhero story "Mr. Jigsaw" in #38 and "Dragon Force" in #40.Contents: 1/ Blue Beetle and The Question with art by Dan Reed. 2/"Funny Animal" stories featuring the first appearance of Neil the Horse by Arn Saba. 3/Swords and Sorcery/Science Fiction 4/The Vanguards by Larry Houston. (All-woman super team) 5/The Barbarian, Warhund with art by Chas Truog and colors by Wendy Fiore. 6/Thunder Bunny by Martin L. Greim. (first appearance) Mike Mauser story by Rick Burchett. 7/Captain Atom with art by Dan Reed and Nightshade by Bill Black. 8/Horror stories 9/"Bludd, the Ultimate Barbarian" a science fiction barbarian story. Art partially done by Gene Day. 10/Thunder Bunny In 1985, a final attempt at a revival was spearheaded by new Editor T.C. Ford with a direct-market only version of Charlton Bullseye Special which featured work by then newcomers Amanda Conner, T.C. Ford and Chris Pridgen. United Comics, T.C. Ford's publishing house, plans to reprint this edition as Shockwave #1 in 2008.

I recently picked up a copy of Charlton Bullseye #5 featuring Warhund at a local dirtmal/fleamarket, amongst a stack of about 30 various Bronze Age oddball books and early/mid 1980s indy books for 50 cents apiece. Then, a weird coincidence happened...

I was bored one night, and after having finished reading the final issue of the recent DC Comics miniseries, The Last Days of Animal Man, I decided to break out my copies of Grant Morrison's run of the character's series and re-read them. In Animal Man #23, I ran across the following two panels (during Morrison's "Second Crisis" storyline)....

Seems that the artist of that particular run of Animal, Chas. Truog...the creator of Warhund.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Josie and the Pussycats 1971 Kellogg's 45rpm

In 1971, Kellogg's offered four .45 rpm records for 35 cents apiece featuring Josie and the Pussycats.
From Wikipedia:
In preparation for the upcoming cartoon series, Hanna-Barbera began working on putting together a real-life Josie and the Pussycats girl group, who would provide the singing voices of the girls in the cartoons and also record an album. Many of the songs on the album would be used in the cartoon as well.
The Josie and the Pussycats recordings were produced by La La Productions, run by Danny Janssen and Bobby Young. They held a talent search to find three girls who would match the three girls in the comic book in both looks and singing ability, and, after interviewing over 500 finalists, settled upon casting Kathleen Dougherty (Cathy Dougher) as Josie, Cherie Moor (actress Cheryl Ladd) as Melody, and Patrice Holloway as Valerie.
Janssen presented the newly formed band to William Hanna and Joseph Barbera to finalize the production deal, but was in for a surprise. Hanna-Barbera wanted Janssen to recast Patrice Holloway, because they had decided to portray "Josie and the Pussycats" as an all-white trio and had altered Valerie, who was African-American in the comic book, to make her white. Janssen refused to recast Holloway and threatened to walk away from the project. After a three-week-long stand-off between Janssen and Hanna-Barbera, Hanna-Barbera finally relented and allowed Janssen to keep Holloway, and changed Valerie back to being African-American.
Despite the popular belief that Valerie was the first African-American cast member on a regular animated series, the first African-American character was actually from another animated series about a rock band. Filmation Studios short-lived Hardy Boys series featured an African American drummer named Pete Jones (portrayed by real-life session drummer Bob Crowder in live segments), and it aired in 1969, a year before Josie and the Pussycats. However, Valerie was the very first female African-American cast member on a regular Saturday morning cartoon.
Theme song:
The show’s theme song, titled "Josie and the Pussycats", was written by Hoyt Curtin, William Hanna (under the pseudonym "Denby Williams"), and Joseph Barbera (under the pseudonym "Joseph Roland"). Patrice Holloway, the singing voice of Valerie, sings the lead vocal on the recording. A cover of "Josie and the Pussycats", performed by Juliana Hatfield and Tanya Donelly, is included on the 1995 tribute album Saturday Morning: Cartoons' Greatest Hits, produced by Ralph Sall for MCA Records.