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Author Archive for Brian Cronin

Wonder Woman ’77 Meets Bionic Woman: All the Easter Eggs from #3-4!

Wonder Woman ’77 Meets Bionic Woman: All the Easter Eggs from #3-4!

This is Comic Book Easter Eggs, where I spotlight notable “Easter Eggs” (basically hidden references) within comic books or other media (so long as it is connected to comic books somehow).

With issue #6 of Wonder Woman ’77 Meets the Bionic Woman getting released this Wednesday, we asked the writer of the comic, best-selling author Andy Mangels, for some of the secrets and easter eggs for the series so far. There are so many of these bad boys that we’re going to spread it out over three days leading up to the release of the final issue on Wednesday! So #1-2 yesterday, #3-4 today and then #5 tomorrow.

Be warned, there are spoilers ahead… but they’ll allow an appreciation for the immense research and knowledge that went into crafting this series that is selling out across the country and getting great reviews from critics and the fans!

NOTE FROM ANDY:

A quick note before you digest this list of Easter Eggs…

The WONDER WOMAN ’77 MEETS THE BIONIC WOMAN story was designed so that even casual readers could enjoy it.

But, like any good franchise, whether it’s Star Trek or Star Wars, Aliens or Buffy, or any number of comic books, anime, television, or film franchises, those fans who have a deeper knowledge and appreciation of the characers and their history want to know more!

So don’t look at these Easter Eggs and footnotes as a necessity to enjoy the action-packed story, but instead, look at them as a way to deepen the experience and view just how the puzzle pieces all fit together. It’s like a commentary track on a DVD; you can enjoy the project without it, or enjoy it even more with it.

Wonder Woman ’77 Meets the Bionic Woman #3 Easter Eggs

Cover: Cat Staggs’ cover for this issue is a very slight homage to a Neal Adams-drawn cover for the Wonder Woman record “The Return of Brunhilde.”

Page One, Panel Five: As in the comics of that time, Diana has a mental link to the invisible plane. Also, Jaime really was a stewardess in The Bionic Woman episode “Fly Jaime.”

Page Six, Panel Four: The Fembot in the background is Katy, Dr. Fanklin’s favorite, as played by Janice Whitby.

Page Seven, Panel Two: Solano’s first name, Thiago, is introduced here.

Page Seven, Panel Five: The Amazons thought they wiped Captain Radl’s memories at the conclusion of “The Feminum Mystique.” Apparently, they were wrong…
Also, Radl’s first name, “Horst,” is a Germanic invention by the author.

Page Eight, Panel Four: Played by John Houseman, Dr. Franklin was the creator of the Fembots. He inexplicably favored ascots.

Page Nine, Panel Four: As noted, the Fembot “son” of Dr. Franklin, Carl Franklin (played by Michael Burns), first appeared in The Bionic Woman two-parter, “Fembots in Las Vegas.” His explanation of faking his father’s death reveals why the OSI thought Dr. Franklin to be dead.

Page Ten: Although the start of this page recaps the introduction of Dr. Solano and Gloria Marquez in “The Return of Wonder Woman,” Gloria fills in what happened after the episode, and how she came to be Dr. Cyber! Solano was portrayed by Fritz Weaver, while Gloria was played by Jessica Walter.

Page Eleven, Panel Four: Played by Frank Gorshin in Wonder Woman’s “The Deadly Toys,” Dr. Hoffman has a very strange sense of humor.

Page Eleven, Panels Five-Six: As seen in The Bionic Woman’s “Biofeedback,” Ivan Karp is an expatriate American who has become an international information broker. Who or what “The Gerent” won’t be revealed until much later in the story…

Page Twelve, Panels Five-Six: Samarra is another of the countries named in “The Return of Wonder Woman,” along with Lauray. Samarra is also where the state of Amapa in coastal Brazil would be on a real world map.

Page Twelve, Panels Seven: Jaime references a line from Diana Prince in “The Return of Wonder Woman” when she hears Solano’s name. Nightshade was also the original name of Solano in early drafts of the episode’s script!

Page Seventeen, Panel Two: Yes, Rover can talk. Many people forget that, perhaps purposely, as his voice was annoying.

Page Seventeen, Panel Four and Six: Jim and Helen Elgin were the stepfather and mother of Steve Austin, and became guardians of Jaime Sommers as a teen when her parents died. They were played by Ford Rainey and Martha Scott on episodes of The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman. The importance of Jaime telling Jim she had flown a plane is because he piloted his own plane on the series!

Page Eighteen: Dr. Rudy Wells is responsible for the bionic implants in both Steve Austin and Jaime Sommers, and he was a regular on both The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman. For the latter series, he was always portrayed by Martin E. Brooks,

Page Twenty, Panel One: Lynda Wilson is an assistant of Rudy Wells, and appeared in the “Kill Oscar” three-parter. She was played by Corrine Michaels.

Page Twenty, Panel Two: Max/Maximillian is the world’s first bionic dog, and he appeared throughout The Bionic Woman’s third season. He was played by several German Shepherd dogs.

Page Twenty, Panels Five-Seven: Diana can make mental connections with animals, as seen multiple times on the Wonder Woman TV series.

Page Twenty-Two: The appearance of the Fembot quartet here is meant to reflect scenes from “Fembots in Las Vegas,” as these are some of the same models of Fembots. Peggy Callahan was Oscar Goldman’s secretary — played by Jennifer Darling — and she had the unfortunate luck of being replaced by evil Fembots in two different storylines. Sorry, Callahan, make that three.

Go to the next page for Easter Eggs from the fourth issue!

The post Wonder Woman ’77 Meets Bionic Woman: All the Easter Eggs from #3-4! appeared first on CBR.

Black Widow: Why We Owe Rocky & Bullwinkle for Natasha Romanov

Black Widow: Why We Owe Rocky & Bullwinkle for Natasha Romanov

This is Foggy Ruins of TIme, a feature that provides the cultural context behind certain comic book characters/behaviors. You know, the sort of then-topical references that have faded into the “foggy ruins of time.” To wit, twenty years from now, a college senior watching episodes of “Seinfeld” will likely miss a lot of the then-topical pop culture humor (like the very specific references in “The Understudy” to the Nancy Kerrigan/Tonya Harding scandal).

Reader Rob H. wrote in because he wanted to see a bit about the debt that Marvel Comics owes to the TV series, Rocky and Bullwinkle.

In case you’re not familiar with the program, Rocky and Bullwinkle was a cartoon variety series that aired from 1959-1964 by Jay Ward Productions…

One of the most popular characters on the show were the villainous Boris Badanov and Natasha Fatale, Russian spies who constantly clashed with our heroic moose and squirrel…

Boris and Natasha became very famous, even outside of the show, as the names “Boris and Natasha” became basically slang for spies.

Meanwhile, over in Marvel Comics, Stan Lee and Marvel Comics were making a lot of hay out of Communist villains in Marvel Comics. Lots and lots of villains were “dirty Reds,” but no one seemed to fight more Communists than Iron Man, who was pretty much the symbol of American capitalism.

One plotline had the Russians sending their own version of Iron Man after Iron Man called the Crimson Dynamo. Vanko, the Russian scientist who designed the Dynamo armor, ultimately defected to the States to go work for Tony Stark. That, naturally, did not sit well with his superiors back in Russia, so in 1964’s Tales of Suspense #52 (by Stan Lee, Don Rico and Don Heck), the Russians sent two new operatives after both Vanko AND Tony Stark.

Their names? Why, Boris and Natasha, of course!!

Boris ended up stealing the Crimson Dynamo armor, but then died when it short circuited. Natasha, the Black Widow, stuck around and continued to plague Iron Man. She even enlisted a carnival archer named Hawkeye to attack Iron Man. Hawkeye eventually couldn’t remain a villain and he ultimately got Black Widow to become a hero, as well.

Decades later (and one cool costume change by John Romita), Black Widow is now one of Marvel’s most prominent female superheroes…

And we owe it all to that Moose and Squirrel!

Thanks for the suggestion, Rob! If anyone else has a suggestion for a future edition of Foggy Ruins of Time, drop me a line at brianc@cbr.com!

The post Black Widow: Why We Owe Rocky & Bullwinkle for Natasha Romanov appeared first on CBR.

Wonder Woman ’77 Meets Bionic Woman: All the Easter Eggs from #1-2!

Wonder Woman ’77 Meets Bionic Woman: All the Easter Eggs from #1-2!

This is Comic Book Easter Eggs, where I spotlight notable “Easter Eggs” (basically hidden references) within comic books or other media (so long as it is connected to comic books somehow).

With issue #6 of Wonder Woman ’77 Meets the Bionic Woman getting released this Wednesday, we asked the writer of the comic, best-selling author Andy Mangels, for some of the secrets and easter eggs for the series so far. There are so many of these bad boys that we’re going to spread it out over three days leading up to the release of the final issue on Wednesday! So #1-2 today, #3-4 tomorrow and then #5 on Wednesday.

Be warned, there are spoilers ahead… but they’ll allow an appreciation for the immense research and knowledge that went into crafting this series that is selling out across the country and getting great reviews from critics and the fans!

As an aside just from myself, I wanted to give a brief shout-out to just how good this series has been. These types of team-ups are always fun, but rarely do you see series that maintain such a high-level of detail and love for the characters that it really serves as a beautiful tribute to fans of EITHER character, while at the same time, there is a coherent plot and a great deal of interesting action within the series. The artwork from Judit Tondora has been teriffic, as well. The whole thing hits pretty much all of the notes that you would want from a fun superhero adventure story, and that’s without getting into all of the nostalgia-based enjoyment that it brings fans. I have some friends who loved the shows but don’t read comics and I bought a few copies of #1 and gave them to them and they all really enjoyed them. That’s an impressive achievement from the series. Also, note that the trade paperback for the series is due out on October 11th, including a re-colored first chapter!

NOTE FROM ANDY:

A quick note before you digest this list of Easter Eggs…

The WONDER WOMAN ’77 MEETS THE BIONIC WOMAN story was designed so that even casual readers could enjoy it.

But, like any good franchise, whether it’s Star Trek or Star Wars, Aliens or Buffy, or any number of comic books, anime, television, or film franchises, those fans who have a deeper knowledge and appreciation of the characers and their history want to know more!

So don’t look at these Easter Eggs and footnotes as a necessity to enjoy the action-packed story, but instead, look at them as a way to deepen the experience and view just how the puzzle pieces all fit together. It’s like a commentary track on a DVD; you can enjoy the project without it, or enjoy it even more with it.

Wonder Woman ’77 Meets the Bionic Woman #1 Easter Eggs

Page One, Panel Seven: The story is set in 1977, during the third season of both shows.

Page Two, Panel One: The Cramer Building is named for Wonder Woman TV executive producer Douglas S. Cramer.

Page Two, Panel Five: Mentioned on Page One, this is the first time the TV Wonder Woman has been shown telepathically communicating with the invisible plane.

Page Three: The title of the issue is also how the characters are referred to in the script; it’s always ”Diana” and ”Jaime,” not their codenames.

Page Four, Panel Nine: The woman’s line is an homage to the same line in Superman The Movie.

Page Seven, Panel Three: Eve Welch was never given a last name on the Wonder Woman series, but she was given one in the original television script for her first episode, ”Light-Fingered Lady.” She was portrayed by S. Pearl Sharp.

Page Eight, Panel Four: Joe Atkinson appeared in the first half of the second season of Wonder Woman, as a director of the I.A.D.C. He was played by Norman Burton.

Page Eight, Panel Two: Played by Jack L. Ging, Chief Inspector Jack Hanson appeared in the three-part ”Kill Oscar” cross-over between The Bionic Woman and The Six Million Dollar Man.

Page Eight, Panel Eight: Despite being used regularly on Wonder Woman and occasionally on The Bionic Woman, due to a federal law, the Presidential Seal had to be altered for the comic!

Page Nine, Panel One: CASTRA is a new organization, created for this series.

Page Nine, Panels Two-Three: Played by Lloyd Bochner, Ivan Karp was in The Bionic Woman episode ”Biofeedback.” Bochner’s character is credited as “Kard” in the credits, but is clearly referred to as “Karp” in dialogue.

Page Ten, Panel One: ”Mission Clothes” is a reference to the Bionic Woman doll from the 1970s, which had a ”Mission Purse!”

Page Eleven, Panel One: Diana’s license plate reads ”72451,” the birthdate of actress Lynda Carter. In the printed comic, a production error meant that this was left out, but when recolored for the trade paperback, it was put in!

Page Twelve, Panels One: This helicopter is an Augusta Westland AW109.

Page Thirteen, Panel Three-Four: The electrocuted agent is Aaron Harvey, and the agent who helps Steve is Paul K. Bisson. They are two superfans who helped writer Andy Mangels on this project.

Page Twenty: The first comic appearances of I.R.A.C. the super-computer and Rover, the robotic delivery device, seen in Wonder Woman seasons 2-3. The unconscious technician made his only appearance on Wonder Woman in ”The Return of Wonder Woman.” Also, this was the first partial reveal of the mystery villainess Dr. Cyber…

Page Twenty-Two, Panels Five-Seven: The shadowy reappearance of the villainous Captain Radl, the Nazi who invaded Paradise island in the two part Wonder Woman episodes ”The Feminum Mystique.” The prisoner number 1106 is a reference to the birthdate of actor John Saxon, who portrayed Radl.

Go to the next page for Easter Eggs from the second issue!

The post Wonder Woman ’77 Meets Bionic Woman: All the Easter Eggs from #1-2! appeared first on CBR.

Comic Legends: Was Jughead Almost in the New Teen Titans?

Comic Legends: Was Jughead Almost in the New Teen Titans?

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the six hundred and forty-fifth week where we examine comic book legends and whether they are true or false.

Click here for Part 1 of this week’s legends. Click here for Part 2.

COMIC LEGEND:

Jughead was considered for being a New Teen Titan.

STATUS:

False

Once he was given the go-ahead to do a New Teen Titans series, Marv Wolfman quickly went to work on what the new team would look like. On his website, Marv writes in depth about his process and he also shares the memo about the book that he worked on at the time.

The three columns on the top are as follows. First, they are “celestial names,” as Wolfman was planning in including an alien in the group, so he wanted a far out name for that character (he noted “shucks” next to Ariel as Chris Claremont and John Byrne had just snatched up Ariel for their new Kitty Pryde character in X-Men, taking that off of the list)

The middle column were the characters who were definitely going to be on the new team.

The third column were possible new members. And wait…is that seriously Jughead Jones there??!?

Yes, he’s there, but no, it was not a case of DC Comics working out some sort of avant garde licensing deal all the way back in 1980. No, it was just a joke as Wolfman simply listed a bunch of teen characters. He also included Binky, DC Comics’ own Archie rip-off.

(to be fair, Archie Andrew is, himself, a riff on Mickey Rooney’s famous Andy Hardy character, so it’s not like they’re pure here, either)

So no, Jughead was never going to be on the Teen Titans. However, now that the idea is in your brain, you all totally NEED for it to happen for real now, right? Me, too!


Check out my latest Movie Legends Revealed – Did Peter “Chewbacca” Mayhew need special protection while filming in the Redwood forests of California to make sure people didn’t shoot him, thinking he was Big Foot?


OK, that’s it for this week!

Thanks to the Grand Comics Database for this week’s covers! And thanks to Brandon Hanvey for the Comic Book Legends Revealed logo!

Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is cronb01@aol.com. And my Twitter feed is http://twitter.com/brian_cronin, so you can ask me legends there, as well!

Here’s my most recent book, Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellent? The cover is by Kevin Hopgood (the fellow who designed War Machine’s armor).

batshark

If you want to order a copy, ordering it here gives me a referral fee.

Follow Comics Should Be Good on Twitter and on Facebook (also, feel free to share Comic Book Legends Revealed on our Facebook page!). Not only will you get updates when new blog posts show up on both Twitter and Facebook, but you’ll get some original content from me, as well!

Here’s my book of Comic Book Legends (130 legends. — half of them are re-worked classic legends I’ve featured on the blog and half of them are legends never published on the blog!).

The cover is by artist Mickey Duzyj. He did a great job on it…

If you’d like to order it, you can use the following code if you’d like to send me a bit of a referral fee…

Was Superman a Spy?: And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed

See you all next week!

The post Comic Legends: Was Jughead Almost in the New Teen Titans? appeared first on CBR.

Comic Legends: Which Comic Creators Were the Models for Cain and Abel?

Comic Legends: Which Comic Creators Were the Models for Cain and Abel?

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the six hundred and forty-fifth week where we examine comic book legends and whether they are true or false.

Click here for Part 1 of this week’s legends.

COMIC LEGEND:

Len Wein and another DC Comics assistant editor were the models for Cain and Abel.

STATUS:

True

In the late 1960s, Joe Orlando had a bit of a problem. He had just been hired to be in charge of DC’s horror titles (House of Mystery, House of Secrets, Tales of the Unexpected and a new series he was launching, The Witching Hour), but by this point in time, the books were mostly filled with reprints of earlier horror stories (horror stories being particularly easy to reprint since the books were anthologies without any continuity).

Orlando, though, felt it was kind of weird to just throw these old reprints out there without any sort of say so, so he decided that the comics needed a host. Orlando had broken into comics working for EC Comics and their horror titles had hosts, with the most famous being Tales From the Crypt’s Crypt-Keeper. Orlando later helped launch Warren Publishing’s successful line of black and white horror magazines in 1964. The three titles, Eerie, Creepy and Vampirella all had hosts (Cousin Eerie, Uncle Creepy and, well, you know, Vampirella). So this was clearly something that Orlando believed was beneficial to the comic books.

So in 1968’s House of Mystery #175, he introduced the new host of the series, Cain…

There’s a fun bit later in the issue by Sergio Aragones…

And a year later, he introduced Abel in DC Special #4…

Anyhow, as to the design of the characters. Back in the late 1960s, two fellows who were always hanging around the DC Comics offices were Marv Wolfman and Len Wein, barely out of their teens but raring to take the comic book industry by the storm. Meanwhile, another diehard DC Comics fan was Mark Hanerfield, who had gotten a gig as an assistant to Joe Orlando.

So Orlando based Cain’s appearance on Wein and then a year later, his assistant, Hanerfield, had Abel based on him.

Here are Wein and Hanerfield posing for their characters back in the day…

Pretty awesome stuff, right?

Thanks to reader Neil R. for suggesting I feature this one following the tragic passing of Len Wein.


Check out my latest Movie Legends Revealed – Did Peter “Chewbacca” Mayhew need special protection while filming in the Redwood forests of California to make sure people didn’t shoot him, thinking he was Big Foot?


Part 3 will be up on Sunday! Feel free to write in with suggestions for future legends to either cronb01@aol.com or brianc@cbr.com!

The post Comic Legends: Which Comic Creators Were the Models for Cain and Abel? appeared first on CBR.

Comic Legends: Did Uncle Scrooge’s Carl Barks Draw Tijuana Bibles?

Comic Legends: Did Uncle Scrooge’s Carl Barks Draw Tijuana Bibles?

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the six hundred and forty-fourth week where we examine comic book legends and whether they are true or false.

Click here for Part 1 of this week’s legends. Click here for Part 2.

COMIC LEGEND:

Carl Barks used to draw “Tijuana Bibles.”

STATUS:

I’m Going With False

Carl Barks is one of the most popular comic book artists of the 20th Century, and yet for most of that time, he did not even get credit for his stories, so people knew him only as “The Good Duck Artist,” as his work on Donald Duck and later, Uncle Scrooge (who Barks created), stories stood out so much from the rest of the books being put out by Disney that everyone knew that he was special…they just didn’t know his name.

When they all learned his name, he became comic book royalty throughout the world (although, annoyingly, the one place where he was not quite as famous was his home country of the United States, where Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge comics were never quite as held in the same esteem as they were around the world, despite being some of the best-selling comics of their era in the States. For almost a decade from the late 1940s through the late 1950s, there were essentially two perennial top sellers for comic book series – Superman and Donald Duck.

Anyhow, my pal Wayne asked me if it was true that Barks used to draw “Tijuana Bibles.” Tijuana bibles were crudely drawn, flimsy pamphlets that were filled with pornographic versions of famous comic strip characters and also famous celebrities.

Even Disney characters got into the act…

It would honestly not be THAT shocking if Barks HAD drawn Tijuana Bibles, as he was a struggling artist in his early days in the 1920s. However, Barks is so famous that we actually have a pretty good record of his goings-on in those times and it does not appear as though he ever did a Tijuana Bible.

That isn’t to say that Barks didn’t draw racy cartoons, as he most certainly DID. He often tried out for the men’s magazines of the era, who had racy comic strips in them. He eventually got an editing gig at one of them, a Minnesota-based magazine called the Calgary Eye-Opener. He worked there for roughly eight years. He left to get a gig working for Walt Disney as an animation artist. He left that gig to draw comic books and the rest became history.

During this time, he drew plenty of racy cartoons, like this one…

And there were plenty of nude drawings by Barks. But they were all for men’s magazines, like the Calgary Eye-Opener or for Dell Comics’ Ballyhoo…

So I’m going with a false here, even if perhaps Wayne really wanted to just know if Barks did racy cartoons back in the day, in which case the answer is obviously yes (heck, Barks kept doing racy drawings even after he was famous. It just wasn’t what he did professionally any more).


Check out my latest Movie Legends Revealed – Did Peter “Chewbacca” Mayhew need special protection while filming in the Redwood forests of California to make sure people didn’t shoot him, thinking he was Big Foot?


OK, that’s it for this week!

Thanks to the Grand Comics Database for this week’s covers! And thanks to Brandon Hanvey for the Comic Book Legends Revealed logo!

Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is cronb01@aol.com. And my Twitter feed is http://twitter.com/brian_cronin, so you can ask me legends there, as well!

Here’s my most recent book, Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellent? The cover is by Kevin Hopgood (the fellow who designed War Machine’s armor).

batshark

If you want to order a copy, ordering it here gives me a referral fee.

Follow Comics Should Be Good on Twitter and on Facebook (also, feel free to share Comic Book Legends Revealed on our Facebook page!). Not only will you get updates when new blog posts show up on both Twitter and Facebook, but you’ll get some original content from me, as well!

Here’s my book of Comic Book Legends (130 legends. — half of them are re-worked classic legends I’ve featured on the blog and half of them are legends never published on the blog!).

The cover is by artist Mickey Duzyj. He did a great job on it…

If you’d like to order it, you can use the following code if you’d like to send me a bit of a referral fee…

Was Superman a Spy?: And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed

See you all next week!

The post Comic Legends: Did Uncle Scrooge’s Carl Barks Draw Tijuana Bibles? appeared first on CBR.

Len Wein’s Snoopy-Inspired Batman Tale

Len Wein’s Snoopy-Inspired Batman Tale

Knowledge Waits is a feature where I just share some bit of comic book history that interests me.

We lost one of the all-time greats yesterday with the death of Len Wein. There are so many amazing Len Wein stories out there, but I thought it would be fun to share one of his most charming and most clever stories. I featured this bit as a Comic Book Legends Revealed many years ago, but I thought it would be nice to give it its own spotlight today, in honor Len. Speaking of Comic Book Legends Revealed, Len was always a great source for the column, as he would gladly talk about whatever topics I felt like asking about, even when he often didn’t remember the minutiae of plot points from 40 years ago (which is obviously quite expected).

Anyhow, today’s story begins in August of 1969 when Charles Schulz begins a series of strips in his Peanuts comic strip featuring his famous beagle character, Snoopy, writing a novel.

The story continued through early September…

These strips were part of a collection of Peanuts strips that became very popular in the 1970s.

Anyhow, in 1981, DC celebrate the 500th issue of Detective Comics. The lead story is an absolute classic, by Alan Brennert and Dick Giordano, about what if Batman’s parents WEREN’T killed? Would he still become a hero? However, there were a bunch of other stories in the issue. Len Wein wrote two of them. One longer one, spotlight the original star of Detective Comics, Slam Bradley (with art by Jim Aparo) and then one short two-pager, with art by Walter Simonson.

Check it out…

Click here if you want to enlarge the image.

Click here if you want to enlarge the image.

Yep, every caption was directly from Snoopy’s novel! How clever is that?

Len Wein was a very clever man. We’ll miss him greatly.

The post Len Wein’s Snoopy-Inspired Batman Tale appeared first on CBR.

What Is the Meaning Behind the Title ‘Giant Days’?

What Is the Meaning Behind the Title ‘Giant Days’?

Comic Book Questions Answered – where I answer whatever questions you folks might have about comic books (feel free to e-mail questions to me at brianc@cbr.com).

My buddy Aaron just asked this question on Facebook, so I figured I’d throw up a quick answer for him.

Giant Days is a delightfully funny comic book series by Boom! Studios (through their “Boom! Box” line) by writer John Allison and artist Max Sarin (previously, Lissa Treiman and Allison himself drew Giant Days stories, with Treiman launching the series with Allison and drawing the first six issues. She also drew a lot of the covers even after she left the interiors. Sarin’s been the interior artist ever since, working with inker Liz Fleming since around issue #24).

It is about three young women, Esther de Groot, Susan Ptolemy and Daisy Wooton, who are very different but still become friends at the University of Sheffield.

Here are a few sample pages featuring the cast (all pages by Allison and Sarin)…

So anyhow, Aaron wanted to know what the title of the book meant, exactly.

I asked John and he was kind enough to give me a quick explanation!

My feeling about the first year of university was that events were so formative that they felt huge. Every day seemed to bring some new wrinkle to life. Hence the name. I had a record by a 90s band (Olivia Tremor Control) called the Giant Day EP and that is where I got the actual title.

Here’s the EP…

Very cool, John, thanks!

So there ya go, Aaron! If anyone else has a question they’d like to see me address, just drop me a line at brianc@cbr.com!

The post What Is the Meaning Behind the Title ‘Giant Days’? appeared first on CBR.

Which Galaxy Are the Guardians of the Galaxy Guarding?

Which Galaxy Are the Guardians of the Galaxy Guarding?

Comic Book Questions Answered – where I answer whatever questions you folks might have about comic books (feel free to e-mail questions to me at brianc@cbr.com).

Reader Jason K. wrote in to ask which galaxy, exactly, are the Guardians of the Galaxy referring to when they say that they are the “Guardians of the Galaxy.”

In the original comics, it was plainly the Milky Way Galaxy…

They were all from planets within Earth’s solar system and their fights initially were centered upon freeing the planets within Earth’s solar system from the evil Baddoon invaders. Even when the Guardians began to travel around a bit more in the later years, the Milky Way was still the galaxy that they were guarding.

In the later comics, it is tricky. They formed on Hala, the Kree home world…

That’s in the bizarrely named “Large Magellanic Cloud” galaxy.

However, the name they took was just taking the name of the original Guardians of the Galaxy (they meet a time-traveling Vance Astro, who says he’s from the Guardians of the Galaxy and Rocket just steals the name)…

So it’s unclear if the name meant anything other than being a cool name.

In the film, they are on Xandar, which is in the Andromeda galaxy.

James Gunn has confirmed a few times that the galaxy that they are guarding is, therefore, the Andromeda Galaxy.

So there you go, Jason!

Thanks for the question! If anyone else has a question they’d like to see me address, just drop me a line at brianc@cbr.com!

The post Which Galaxy Are the Guardians of the Galaxy Guarding? appeared first on CBR.

Comic Legends: Which Avenger Artist’s First Issue Was Cut Into Pieces?

Comic Legends: Which Avenger Artist’s First Issue Was Cut Into Pieces?

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the six hundred and forty-fourth week where we examine comic book legends and whether they are true or false.

Click here for Part 1 of this week’s legends.

COMIC LEGEND:

Steve Englehart disliked Dave Cockrum’s original art for Cockrum’s first Avengers issue so much that he cut up the pages to re-arrange the panels.

STATUS:

True

After leaving DC Comics, where he had become the acclaimed artist on the Legion of Super-Heroes feature, Dave Cockrum settled in at Marvel Comics (he initially intended to continue to do some side work for DC, but his departure from Legion led to DC’s higher-ups essentially black-balling him at the company).

He eventually became a semi-regular artist on Avengers, where he gained whole new group of fans for his outstanding work as the alternate artist on Avengers during the Celestial Madonna storyline (writer Steve Englehart was cleverly expanding the story through the use of Giant-Size Avengers specials, so no one artist could draw the entire storyline). He debuted on Giant-Size Avengers #2 (Neal Adams ended up doing some uncredited inks for Cockrum towards the end of the issue), with Hawkeye and Swordsman having to team-up to rescue the rest of the team…

Do note that this means that both Hawkeye and Swordsman could single-handedly defeat the X-Men in battle. Canon!

Here they are in battle with one of Kang’s robots, which are powered by the Avenger trapped within it…

Anyways, Cockrum’s art was VERY well-received by fans when this issue came out. Within a few years, he would be launching the All-New, All-Different X-Men with Len Wein.

However, you know who WASN’T as big of a fan of Cockrum’s art? Writer Steve Englehart, who didn’t have a problem with the figure work or anything like that, but he felt that the storytelling was all off. So Englehart literally used a scissors to CUT UP Cockrum’s pages and then re-arranged the panels in a way that Englehart felt told the story better.

Here’s one of those pages – note the top right panel…

Pretty amazing, huh? As noted, Cockrum drew a bunch more issues of the Avengers with Englehart, so obviously Englehart was fine with him otherwise, but it’s still amazing to see a guy do that to another creator’s work. But hey, everyone really liked the issue, so I guess it worked!


Check out my latest Movie Legends Revealed – Did Peter “Chewbacca” Mayhew need special protection while filming in the Redwood forests of California to make sure people didn’t shoot him, thinking he was Big Foot?


Part 3 will be up later on Sunday! Feel free to write in with suggestions for future legends to either cronb01@aol.com or brianc@cbr.com!

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