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Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1

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topic icon Author Topic: Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1  (Read 440 times)

MarkWarner

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Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1
« on: March 08, 2017, 06:51:15 PM »

Last week's Camera Comics #5 received a mildly enthusiastic thumbs up from the reading group. So here's hoping that this week's choice does at least as well, and hopefully better, as it is all mine!

I really rather like the art and stories in the "older" comics so went looking for one. After a long and arduous hunt (of at least 5 minutes) I found this which looks perfect. So fingers crossed that it will at least get a "Yes" from me!

The book is Detective Picture Stories #1. It can be found here http://comicbookplus.com/?dlid=15146 and the story we will concentrate on is the first one The Diamond Dick. But my prediction is I am going to devour this cover to cover!

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SuperScrounge

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Re: Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2017, 09:48:00 AM »

The Diamond Dick - Short and quick.

Murder in the Blue Room - Cute.

Police Patrol - Simple.

The Phantom Killer - Okay, although I wonder why Krautz didn't kill Brannigan when he had the chance.

Sapphire Seas - Not a bad set-up.

Wings of Crime - Wow! Some actual detective work! Not bad.

Roadhouse Racket - Nice.

The Tale of Timothy O'Toole - Okay.

Bogus Bills - Okay.
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The Australian Panther

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Re: Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2017, 01:09:41 AM »

Well 'the diamond dick' did nothing for me,but I liked the story 'The Phantom Killer' by George E Brenner. There were some clever bits of business in the storytelling, and I like a writer who can write with a sense of humor.
'The Phantom killer hasn't a ghost of a chance.'
Turns out Brenner created  "The CLOCK" who is credited with being the first masked hero in comics, (not the pulps)
He later went on to be chief editor for Quality.
Now " The Clock' is known as a Quality character.

https://www.lambiek.net/artists/b/brenner_george.htm

but the character features in Detective stories #5. For Centaur. It is on the site. So the character may also feature in other issues.   

Did he keep the copyright for himself?
 
Most databases don't credit him with having worked for Centaur.
 Detective stories #5 also has a 1937 story by Bob Kane.
(which is pretty dreadful) 

Thanks for making me aware of this title.         
 
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crashryan

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Re: Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2017, 05:40:54 AM »

I like this sort of comic: early Golden Age, a bit crude around the edges, and lots of detective stories.

Cover: They lie! "The Phantom Killer" is by George Brennan but it's not a Clock story. Inside Cover: Johnson Smith was around forever! Many of these gimmicks were still being sold when I read comics as a kid in the 1960s.

I appreciate that the contents page lists writers and artists, like pulp magazines did. I wish comics had continued to do that. It would have made art-spotting a lot easier.

"Diamond Dick": No, it's not a weird porno story. In fact it's not really a story--just a sequence of incidents. The presentation and dialogue remind me of radio plays, especially the way the characters keep naming each other. The art needs better backgrounds but isn't bad. The penwork gives the drawings a pulp-magazine feel. Why would a cop "sight his gun to shoot high?" Unless he'd always figured someone might take his gun away. At any rate at this close range I doubt the crook would have used the gunsight to aim.

"Murder in the Blue Room": The cartoony artwork clashes with the story, which is a typical drawing room mystery with a couple of weak jokes. The mystery's contorted solution is something else! I wonder why the writer has Spurlock say "Th'" all the time. Usually that signifies a lowbrow character.

"Police Patrol": Interesting to see Ed Moore in his formative days. There's a lot of Raymond influence here, but Moore is already developing the clean-line, shadow-free ink style he used in Charles Biro's comics. Moore certainly got a lot better with backgrounds and vehicles. That soap-foam gag must go back to Joe Penner. Usually it's applied to dogs.

"The Phantom Killer": The heck with the set-up, let's get to the action! That's what George Brenner does here. Brannigan certainly takes a beating. And Killer Krautz gets the drop on him twice. Good thing Krautz is a lousy shot. Speaking of twice, this is the second story in which the crook tries to bribe the cop. Brenner's art is appealing if a bit clunky, and he keeps the story moving.

Sorry, I didn't read the chapter of the serialized novel.

"Wings of Crime": The story's somewhat confused, but Victor Dowling seems to have put honest effort into it. He tries for naturalistic poses and doesn't scrimp on backgrounds. With a little more work on staging and figure drawing, he could be pretty good.

"Roadhouse Racket": The amateurish art almost sinks the story by itself, but the script does its part. Even in a comic book I find it hard to believe Miss Perry spends an evening with this bozo yet doesn't notice when he's replaced by a ringer. Buresch's drawing is just competent enough for a reader to spot the Roy Crane swipes. It's funny that the hero resembles Buz Sawyer, whom Crane hadn't invented yet.

"The Tale of Timothy O'Toole": Finding this story is like finding a pearl in the compost pile. Even at this early stage Bert Christman stands head and shoulders above the other contributors in writing and art. We can already see the Noel Sickles-influenced style that Christman perfected when he took over Scorchy Smith. Though the story wanders a bit, it has some good scenes. I like the old-fashioned auto chase at the end. I believe that if Christman hadn't run off to the war and got killed, he would have become a major figure in American comic strips.

"The Bogus Bills": I'm confused by the business about radio static. At the end Thurston talks as if he's just discovered that the counterfeit press creates static. However on the first page he already seems to know all about it. Pinajian's art is easy on the eyes, except for the big panel on the last page.

Summing up, this was a fun book. That subscription offer is sure a good value. Twelve 64-page issues for a buck!
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John Kerry

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Re: Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2017, 04:49:26 PM »

The cover of this book was rather sedate compared to what was to come in the future. I was looking forward to a "Clock" sory, being unfamiliar with that character. Ah well, such is life. Not sure about the first story. It seemed be missing some pages. Looking at the art it almost seems like someone took some illustrations done for pulp magazine, added a few and voila, we have a comic book story. The rest of the book wasn't too bad. It is easy to see that we are in the stage where the comic book is developing as a medium. I actually enjoyed The Spinner, even if I could see the ending in advance. All in all, not a bad book, and one I can see myself re-reading.
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Morgus

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Re: Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2017, 12:53:43 PM »

Man, you had to WORK for that dime back in the day. More then 60 pages and over half a dozen stories. I like the idea of a whole comic book devoted to one genre...When I was a kid DC would do that with their reprints sometimes.

Nothing fancy. Just a nice, meat and potatoes comic that keeps the pages turning. Wished the colouring had been all the way through, though.
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MarkWarner

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Re: Week 158 - Detective Picture Stories #1
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2017, 05:43:09 PM »

This looks a really packed comic so let's start ...

Egan of the Homocide Squad: Blimey, this gets stuck straight in right from the first panel. I found it all a bit confusing, but boy there is some great stuff in this. If I were selling this story on eBay I'd certainly use the words vintage, rustic and folk-art. Unless there is a major hiccup this book is going to get a BIG thumbs up.

Murder in the Blue Room:  A humorous take on Sherlock Holmes I followed this one easily and I am hooked on this comic.

Police Patrol: I wonder if villains really did say:

Quote

"Okay, coppers, put 'em up! One false move an' we'll fill you fulla lead!"


This was not so good ... but so what. After the first page of this story the comic has now become black and white.

The Phantom Killer: A lot of "blackness" in this one.

Sapphire Seas: Not just a text story, but a proper pulp serial. Back in the day they certainly gave you reading value!

Wings of Crime: A rather silly story about homing pigeons, but I am still loving the art in this book.

Roadhouse Racket: Really shows how attitudes to drink driving have changed over the years.

The Tale of Timothy O'Toole: A really fun quirky story and we are now back to color.

Bogus Bills: We are on the last story and by the looks of it the editor has decided to up the word count All done now. The story was not too hot, but the art was great.

Verdict: A BIG HIT. It is raw and naive and I loved it. Great reading value for 10 cents.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2017, 05:57:57 PM by MarkWarner »
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