Commander Benson's News Posts (113)

Deck Log Entry # 133 Happy Thanksgiving 2011!

Friends, I’ve never taken the time to say this before, but I deeply appreciate the fact that you’re reading this.  It means you’re taking time away from the Big Game on TV, or from nibbling at the bowls of pre-feast snacks, or discussing politics with your oddball uncle, the one who insists that the Commies spiked our…

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Added by Commander Benson on November 24, 2011 at 6:30am — 4 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 132 Cereal Heroes

Ginger or Mary Ann?

 

The Addams Family or The Munsters?

 

Darrin # 1 (Dick York) or Darrin # 2 (Dick…

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Added by Commander Benson on November 2, 2011 at 1:39pm — 14 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 131 So, You Want to Join the Challengers of the Unknown (Part 2)

In Showcase # 6 (Jan.-Feb., 1957), four men---Ace Morgan, Prof Haley, Red Ryan, and Rocky Davis---survived what should have been a fatal air crash.  Deciding they were living on borrowed time, they continued to cheat death, tackling the riskiest of dangers head-on, as the Challengers of the Unknown.  It was a…

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Added by Commander Benson on October 10, 2011 at 11:30am — 6 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 130 So, You Want to Join the Challengers of the Unknown (Part 1)

There were only two qualifications.

 

1.  Be an acknowledged leading expert in an adventurous field.

 

2.  Walk away from a certain-death disaster.

 

That’s how the original Challengers did it, ‘way back in Showcase # 6 (Jan.-Feb., 1957).  “The Secrets of the Sorcerer’s…

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Added by Commander Benson on September 27, 2011 at 3:35pm — 8 Comments

From the Archives: Deck Log Entry # 23 Pow! Bam! Zowie! Batman Goes to Camp

For those who came in late, at one time in America, there were only three channels of television programming available, controlled by the networks NBC, CBS, and upstart ABC. Traditionally, all three networks debuted their new shows the second week in September every year. In 1965, the new fall season was scheduled to…

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Added by Commander Benson on September 3, 2011 at 9:37am — 29 Comments

From the Archives: Deck Log Entry # 22 The New Look Batman---Back to Basics

By 1963, the Batman titles were dancing on the edge of oblivion.

 

Clearly, putting the Masked Manhunter in a science-fiction milieu had failed to grab readers---which vindicated Bat-editor Jack Schiff, who had argued, insightfully, that SF ran contrary to the core concept of the Batman as a…

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Added by Commander Benson on August 19, 2011 at 12:30pm — 16 Comments

From the Archives: Deck Log Entry # 21 The Science-Fiction Batman---BEM's in His Belfry

Among amateur comic-book historians, National Periodical Publications (DC) editor Jack Schiff is often tagged as “the man who nearly ruined Batman.”

 

In the late 1950’s, the Batman was yanked from his familiar dark alleys and moonlit rooftops, to be thrust into alien…

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Added by Commander Benson on August 10, 2011 at 4:27pm — 11 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 129 Look! It's the Nut Who Walks Around in Pyjamas

Those of you who have been regular Deck Log followers have seen me discuss the mid-‘60’s phenomenon known as “Batmania” a few times.  It’s one of those things impossible to convey in the written word.  You had to experience it.  When the ABC network launched its new series Batman on 12 January 1966 . . . well,…

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Added by Commander Benson on July 26, 2011 at 10:00pm — 11 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 128 Deep in the Bug-Infested Jungle . . . .

Every so often, in order to put the subject of one of my Deck Log entries into perspective, I have to go back to before the beginning of the Silver Age.  Since I’ll be talking about that “Ninth Wonder of the World”, Congorilla, this is one of those times.  So let’s ratchet the dial of the Wayback Machine much farther…

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Added by Commander Benson on July 11, 2011 at 6:00pm — 12 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 127 The Silver-Age Challenge---Marvel Comics Edition . . . Answers!

O.K., folks---time’s up!  Put down your pencils and hand your papers in.

 

Actually, I was quite impressed with the posters who chimed in with responses.  Out of all ten questions, only one wasn’t correctly answered.  At least, not with the absolutely, positively proper answer.  However, even that one…

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Added by Commander Benson on June 22, 2011 at 7:49am — 9 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 126 The Silver-Age Challenge---Marvel Comics Edition

As promised, at the end of last year, this Silver-Age Challenge covers Marvel Comics.  Frankly, coming up with ten interesting, suitably difficult, Google-resistant questions proved to be a lot tougher than I expected.  I had set my target time for posting a Marvel quiz for June of this year, roughly six months…

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Added by Commander Benson on June 8, 2011 at 4:14pm — 14 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 125 The Lamp and the Lightning (Part 3)

Editor Julius Schwartz’s instincts had been on the money.  By the mid-1960’s, fans of the Flash and Green Lantern eagerly anticipated the regular spectacle of seeing their favourite heroes go into action together.  Writers John Broome and Gardner Fox had done a splendid job of building a friendship between Barry Allen…

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Added by Commander Benson on May 25, 2011 at 12:16pm — 3 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 124 The Lamp and the Lightning (Part 2)

Mail from fans thrilled over Green Lantern # 13 (Jun., 1962) and The Flash # 131 (Sep., 1962) hit editor Julius Schwartz’s desk like an avalanche.  It was early enough in the Silver Age that having two super-heroes meet and team-up was still an uncommon, and exciting, event.  As tempting as it might have…

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Added by Commander Benson on May 12, 2011 at 10:34pm — 9 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 123 Supplemental: The World's Second-Finest Heroes?

In this week’s Deck Log entry on the Flash and Green Lantern, there was some commentary on the subject of the J’onn J’onzz-Green Arrow team-up that appeared in The Brave and the Bold # 50 (Nov., 1963).  The question was raised as to whether or not DC intended to establish the Manhunter and G.A. as a regular…

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Added by Commander Benson on April 27, 2011 at 1:30pm — 30 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 123 The Lamp and the Lightning (Part 1)

In my last entry, I mentioned the close friendship between the Silver-Age Superman and Batman.  In fact, it started long before the Silver Age.  If you count all media, their friendship began in 1945, on the Adventures of Superman radio programme.  And it was validated in the comics in 1954, when the heroes…

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Added by Commander Benson on April 26, 2011 at 6:41pm — 11 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 122 A Forgotten Gem: World's Finest Comics # 149 (May, 1965)

“The Game of Secret Identities”

Editor:  Mort Weisinger  Writer:  Edmond Hamilton  Art:  Curt Swan (pencils); Sheldon Moldoff (inks)

 

 

 

The big news from National Periodical in the spring of 1964 was the debut of Batman’s “New Look”.   As part of…

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Added by Commander Benson on April 12, 2011 at 9:00am — 38 Comments

From the Archives: Deck Log Entry # 30 Scrapped Metal

The cover of Metal Men # 33 (Aug.-Sep., 1968) announced the New Metal Men.

 

And as savvy DC fans of the Silver Age understood, “New” was not a good thing.

 

As most of you know, I use the year 1968 to demark the end of the Silver Age.  For a variety of reasons resulting from…

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Added by Commander Benson on March 30, 2011 at 12:00pm — 6 Comments

From the Archives: Deck Log Entry # 29 Metal Scraps

Mr. Silver Age's recent re-posting of his article of the New Metal Men reminded me that, back in June of 2007, I ran two consecutive Deck Log…

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Added by Commander Benson on March 29, 2011 at 11:00am — 6 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 121 Dell Comics' "Horror"-ible Idea

“I was working in the lab, late one night, when my eyes beheld an eerie sight . . . .”

 

Blame it on William Dozier.  He was the television producer who brought Batman to the airwaves.  Batman debuted on 12 January 1966 and grabbed the public like few TV shows, before or since,…

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Added by Commander Benson on March 3, 2011 at 3:00pm — 19 Comments

Deck Log Entry # 120 The Avengers of Two Worlds

In one of my first Deck Log Entries, ‘way back when, I took a look at The Avengers King-Size Special # 1 (Sep., 1967), featuring the story “The Monstrous Master Plan of the Mandarin.”  The story was notable for its resemblance to the style in which Gardner Fox wrote the early Justice League of America…

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Added by Commander Benson on February 24, 2011 at 3:00pm — 26 Comments

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