Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I Can't Believe It's Not The Chaotic World of Fletcher Hanks!

Today's stories are:
Tabu from Jungle Comics # 2 (February 1940)
Stardust from Fantastic Comics # 6 (May 1940)
Space Smith & Stardust from Fantastic Comics # 9 (August 1940)
Fantomah from Jungle Comics # 16 (April 1941)

None of today's tales are drawn by Fletcher Hanks. He worked on the first Tabu story, but I haven't seen any other stories of that character that appear to be drawn by Hanks. Stardust is one of the characters most associated with the artist, but today I'm presenting the only two stories Hanks mostly likely had nothing to do with. Space Smith was another feature that Hanks drew the early adventures for, but after about a half-dozen stories, he was no longer working on that feature. Fantomah is another character most fans associate with the artist, but she is the only one to have continued after Hanks had left the comic industry.

It shouldn't be a surprise to anyone who's been following my blog that I am a fan of the work of Fletcher Hanks. I don't think "he's so bad he's good", I simply think his style of art is unique, and his stories are straight-forward battles between good & evil, where the punishment handed-out by the heroes fit the crimes of the villains. There's an obvious decline in his work later into his comics career. I assume, based on his very short comic career, that he only got into drawing comics as a way to supplement his income (it is said that he painted murals and drew for magazines), so possibly, when his preferred career picked-up, he spent less effort on his comic stories, eventually leaving comics altogether.

Anyway, I'm presenting today's stories (taken from scans available at the Digital Comics Museum) for the Fletcher Hanks fans out there, so you can see for yourself what his characters were like when he wasn't drawing them. Personally, these stories seem bland by comparison, but that's just a matter of opinion.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Heroes of Rural Home Part IX

Finally, here's my last installment of "The Heroes of Rural Home". I started this little project over two years ago, and I really didn't plan on it taking so long to complete. Obviously, I haven't posted everything this company produced, so you might have to go to The Digital Comics Museum if you want to see the full series & all the stories those books contain.

Today's stories feature The Green Turtle from Blazing Comics # 5, and The Blue Circle, Maureen Marine and The Steel Fist from Blue Circle Comics # 5. Both comics carried a cover date of "March 1945".

Originally, both Blazing Comics & Blue Circle Comics were published by Rewl Publications Inc from (cover dates) June to September of 1944. From (cover dates) January through April of 1945, Rural Home Publishing Co took-over those two books (with "Enwil Associates Inc" named as the Copyright holder), and then added other titles to the mix, such as Red Circle Comics, Cannonball Comics, Laffy Daffy Comics, Mask Comics and Eagle Comics.

Green Publishing eventually would publish stories that might have made-up additional Rural Home books. Liberty Comics (May 1946) featured a Prankster story that wasn't found in Red Circle Comics, while the June 1946 issue of Roly Poly Comics featured new Steel Fist & Blue Circle stories. In "My 50th Post", I totally made-up a story about "Blue Circle Comics # 6" and provided a link for people to download the bogus issue as a lame attempt at an April Fools Day gag.

But enough yakking from me, already! Read & enjoy the last stories of The Green Turtle, Blue Circle, Steel Fist and Maureen Marine that Rural Home produced!

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