Star Wars Marvel Comics Volume 1 Scans

Right after the first movie was released in 1977, Marvel published the Star Wars (A New Hope) story in the first six issues of a new series. The intent was to continue the series indefinitely with new stories not related to the film. Marvel’s run lasted 107 issues with the final comic published in 1987.

The artist on the first few books was Howard Chaykin (who revamped The Shadow for DC and made me a big fan of his work).  Some of the other artists included Carmine Infanto, Tom Palmer, Michael Golden, Dan Day, Walt Simonson, and Ron Frenz. Here’s some artwork from the series.

Star Wars #38 cover art by Michael Golden

Star Wars #38 with Boba Fett. Cover art by Gene Day

Y-wing fighter in Marvel Comics Star Wars

Princess Leia by Michael Golden

Star Wars splash page artwork by Michael Golden

Princess Leia kisses Luke Skywalker

Han Solo in Carbonite with Leai

Three ships: Luke's X-Wing, a Y-Wing, and the Millennium Falcon by Gene Day

The Deathstar explodes in this Star Wars comics adaptation

Splash panel with Darth Vader in Marvel Comics Star Wars

Star Wars Deathstar art by Howard Chaykin

Star Wars art by Howard Chaykin

The Daredevil & Black Widow TV Series That Never Was

Natasha Romanoff

As the saying goes,
Святое дерьмо! это комикс го-го!

Back in the 1960s, Angie Bowie (then wife of David Bowie) approached Stan Lee to see if she could get the rights for one year to develop and air a Black Widow and Daredevil TV show. Ultimately, the program was never produced because it was too expensive and the special effects would have been to difficult to create.

Heroin ChicAngela Bowie (b. 1950) was married to David for 10 years. She met him through a man that both were dating. Yes, you read that right. Then, somehow in their drug-addled and tempestuous union, they managed to produce a son. The son survived and went on to direct Moon, one of our favorite recent movies, and Source Code which was fun enough. Next up for the boy (Duncan Jones)? An Ian Fleming biopic project. Worthy topic, good sir.

Und zo, what we’ve learned is that great art can come from heroin and cocaine. Since our art is pathetic (actually it doesn’t exist, but let’s not mince words), we are going to take up both those drugs as well as throw in a dash of meth to put a modern spin on the whole affair. We’ll let you know how it turns out. Assuming we live long enough to do so.

Zounds! It’s another Comics A-Go-Go! infographic! Here we explore the effects of drug use with Angela and David Bowie doing the honors. Just take it from ol’ Nancy Reagan .. “Dope ain’t dope, yo-yo!”

Heroin, Cocaine, Recreation Drugs

After David Bowie went sober, realized who he was living with, divorced her and left to make a bunch of boring music and the single most unnecessary song and video in all of pop music-dom (a song which proved to be a perfect match for the sad pairing of David and Mick Jagger … during which time the not-so hush-hush gossip in the press led to folks in the know dubbing Bowie and Jagger “The Ambiguously Gay Duo” — a designation that inspired the Dana Carvey Show/Saturday Night Live vignettes of the same name — and there’s the animation/comic book tie-in you were waiting for), [… where we we? oh yeah …] Angie got all bitter and stuff.

Comic Book Characters

News of Angela Bowie as Black Widow and Ben Carruthers as Daredevil for the  TV show concept.

Anyway. You know how we feel about miscasts. Angie was a heroin waif and look liked she could pull off all of the physical stuff needed to play Natasha Romanova, Russian cum-S.H.I.E.L.D spy/action figure extraordinaire as well (a.k.a. as poorly) as Lynda Carter as Wonder Woman could. That was a hell of a sentence. Keeping it simple: Angie Bowie wouldn’t be a good Black Widow. Having said that, with her wig and ever-so-cheery imitation-Russian facial expressions, she fit the era, we suppose. Paul Gulacy may have based his 1980s version of Black Widow on Angie’s screen tests (see pictures below). The decidedly non-Daredevil-esque looking dude in the promo shots is Ben Carruthers whom you may remember from such movies as Shadows (1959) and The Dirty Dozen (1967). What an awful costume. Hornhead indeed. Reminds us of a cartoonish-looking alien with antennas. As for the sullen expression, we have to wonder if EVERYONE was on some sort of narcotic in the 1970s.  That would explain the fashion, entertainment, and even the politics of the era. We’re grateful to have grown up in the Ecstasy era instead.

In theory, the show was supposed to springboard off the chemistry of the Daredevil/Black Widow team-up and romance that had started just a couple of years earlier in the comics. We have to admit that we are actually curious to know what the whole disaster would have looked like. But we would probably regret that curiousity. So, we’ll settle for Scarlett Johansson.

Angela Bowie and Ben Carruthers

Black Widow comic book character

Here’s a Black Widow story from the early 1980s. Paul Gulacy did the art and Ralph Macchio wrote the story. Humphrey Bogart guest stars. Click on the links at the bottom of each page at the Gulacy website to read the whole story. Don’t stray too far, though. We want you back.

Sexy Black Widow

Here are some additional Black Widow illustrations from Paul Gulacy’s portfolio.

Sexy Black Widow character

Black Widow Marvel character

Sexy comic book character

Comic book artist Paul Gulacy

Bowie Family

Other than a penchant for strange hair styles, Duncan Jones has turned out rather normal in spite of his parent’s own penchant for hard drugs and nefarious sexual escapades.

Where did we leave off?

The Avengers Movie Review

Avengers Movie

Yeah, so, here’s where we’re at with this. For us to review the Avengers movie is really pointless because:

a) You’ve already seen it and don’t care about our opinions since you’ve formed your own.

b) You haven’t seen it yet but like about 3.7 billion other people, you will see it within the next couple of weeks and you still don’t care about our opinions.

c) You are a douche and won’t see it because “everybody else is going and I refuse to be a drone” in which case, you really don’t care about our opinions and you are going to go sulk in a corner.

Fighting it is pointless. You like comic books, you like movies, you like action, you like buzz. Enjoy The Avengers. We sure as hell did.

Avengers movie

Since the speculation about whether there will be a second Avengers movie is like wondering if the upcoming presidential election will have a viable third party candidate, the more pertinent discussion would be about what characters should join the group in The Avengers 2: Thanos Crashes the Party and Doesn’t Bring His Own Beverages of Either Alcoholic or Non-Alcoholic Composition (coming to theaters in not-nearly-fast-enough).

The Avengers: Marvel Comics

Say, where were Ant Man and the Wasp?

Toon’s Fave Tune: Dazzler and Céline Dion

DazzlerFor our next installment of  a Toon’s Fave Tune: Dazzler ♥ My Heart Will Go On (Céline Dion). Because her special ability is to convert sound waves to light, the purer the sounds, the more powerful her energy. Unfortunately, because Céline’s song is an onslaught of cacophony, Dazzler made the dubious mistake of using it in a recent X-Men rumble room exercise and had her ass handed to her by Husk*. Dazzler’s favorite song is particularly danceable but she puts on quite a light show when she’s out doing Karaoke.

So anyway, Dazzler (Alison Blair) showed up first in Uncanny X-Men #130 (1980). She was supposed to be a marketing cross-promotional character developed by Marvel and a record company. Problem? Yeah, disco died in the early 1980s so Dazzler was left without much luster. Oops.

Disco dancing

Go Dazzler! Go Dazzler! It’s your birthday. Uh-huh.

Dazzler Marvel CharacterHere we see Dazzler’s look get an update in the late 2000s. As a character though, she’ll never shake her roots. She’s still a roller-skating disco goofball. Having said that, as difficult as it is for a character with an unfortunate background to overcome its origins, Dazzler’s got nothing on this schmuck. Seriously? SERSIOUSLY?!!!! But yeah, it’s a toss-up between David Hasselhoff as Colonel Nick Fury (the tough as bull’s balls bad-ass of S.H.I.E.L.D), and the illegal-in-48-states version of Howard the Duck (can you believe it’s still legal to buy, sell, and rent VHS copies of it in Mississippi and South Carolina … for shame). Where do you weigh in?

David Hasselhoff

We do not have words …

Marvel Comics

Here you go: the most reviled mainstream comic book cover in history. Not because it’s particularly bad (Bob Larkin actually did a fair job), but because if you were a collector in the early 1980’s you owned 10 of these. For over three decades, NO ONE has ever bought another copy. In fact, if sellers were stupid enough to put one in a grab bag, they could assure themselves of a black eye.

Dazzler, Marvel Comics

It wasn’t that good the first time around, John.

Dazzler: Marvel Character

If the intent is to distract the opponent, Dazzler’s costume is probably going to do the trick. Forget the boobs, your eyes zeroed in on her crotch, right? Boom!

By the way, you’d think maybe Kate Winslet, née Ms. RMS Titanic 1999, would be the kind of gal that adores Dazzler’s favorite song. Nah. Not so much. Here’s what she had to say in the Daily Mail.

Celine Dion

OK, OK, I’m sick of it too.

Wardrobe Malfunction

Whoops. Am I coming or am I going? (Oh, please go Céline). This is how Céline Dion celebrated her infamous song: she wore this tragic hat and backward suit ensemble to to the Academy Awards in 1999.

It’s not that we don’t like Ms. Dion. Frankly, we don’t know her well enough to make any sort of judgment on her character. We only went to elementary school with her for one year. As far as we remember, there was nothing special about her during her time Ecoles Ste-Marie-des-Anges in Charlemagne, Québec. We do take exception to her doing this though …

Hey, whatever happened to Anastacia, BTW?

* Some mutant characters shouldn’t have been created like Husk, Cypher (Doug Ramsey), and Nimrod (or at least its name should be changed since more people know it as an insult than the name of a biblical character) to name a few. Lo, these three were created by Chris Claremont. Chris had his own ass handed to him too back in the 1980’s (see bottom of linked post).

And here’s your bonus. Ty Templeton takes his own poke at Dazzler (see the bottom of the post). We like that he mentions Dazzler and our second favorite Tintin comic album all in the same comment.

Marvel Damage Control: Cleaning up after the Superheroes and Supervillains

Cleaning up after superheroesWe talked about the Marvel Comics Damage Control series in a recent Tintin post. For years, comic book readers didn’t pay much attention to the fact that the epic fights between heroes and villains typically caused significant collateral damage. Eventually, it became clear that someone would have to clean the mess up and pay for it. Enter Damage Control, a for-profit construction firm created as a joint venture between Tony Stark (Iron Man) and Wilson Fisk (Kingpin). The clean-up projects are funded by individual or corporate insurance for calamities created by superperson activities. If no insurance is applicable, Damage Control can apply for funds from the Federal Disaster Area Stipend from New York City. There are competitors vying for the re-construction and cleanup projects, but Damage Control has superior capabilities and management (when the company isn’t embroiled in controversy).

First Appearance: Marvel Comics Presents #19 (1989)
Created by: Dwayne McDuffie and Ernie Colón
Location of operations: Manhattan (with a warehouse in New Jersey)
Toll-free number:  1-800-555-Mend
Status: previously publicly traded company; currently privately owned by the original founder, Ann-Marie Hoag.

Play the Marvel Damage Control Game!

Online Games