Sunday, January 31, 2021

Batman and Dick Tracy in: "Knight and Day!"


Batman and Dick Tracy previously met in STF #1939 and first appeared together way back in a 2010 B&B Cover.... And this is a pairing that I'd love to see a real world crossover with.  Not just a one-shot, either - I think there's potential for an entire mini series here.  Just imagine  Batman and Tracy's rogues galleries going to war with each other, and our two heroes caught in the middle!  I know I would devour a tale like that. Heck, animate it!

Saturday, January 30, 2021

Wildcat and Black Cat (Vs. The Red Skull!)


I was surprised to find an early Red Skull image from Martin Nodell.  I had always associated him with DC Comics and Green Lantern.  I guess even in the Golden Age, creators would switch back and forth between companies.  Too bad this cover was almost completed before I realized he was the artist, I would have switched out Wildcat for Alan Scott.

I do like these two together, though.  They first met in STF #2875...

Friday, January 29, 2021

Deadman and Iron Fist


The extra high collar is an interesting fashion choice.  Doctor Strange has one, but that's understandable, as it is part of his magical cloak.  Then you have characters like Deadman, Iron Fist and Karate Kid who do not wear capes but still have the high collars.  Sure, it's unpractical for combatants to wear something that blocks their peripheral vision, but who cares when they look so cool?

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Gamora and Dart


Comics that were basically video game or toy tie-ins never really appealed to me, with a few exceptions and Atari Force was one of them.  I can't say I remember too much about the series, what really made an impression on me was the incredible art work of Jose Luis Garcia Lopez.  It is too bad that the series has never been collected to my knowledge, maybe that's a rights issue.  Some of the characters, especially Dart, had a ton of potential.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Rick Jones Vs. Snapper Carr


I'm a little surprised that we have not seen Rick Jones show up in the MCU yet.  He seemed to be such a big part of the comics when I was growing up, sharing adventures right alongside The Hulk, Mar-Vell, The Avengers and more.  Snapper Carr, on the other hand, just seemed to be there, and did not add much to the Justice League of America tales that he appeared in.  The only time he made an impression on me was when he betrayed the team.  He was ok in the robotic Hourman series, but I have lost track of the character since then.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Robo Force in: "Who Shot R2D2?"


Remember "Who Shot JR?"  I didn't even watch Dallas and I had to find out who did it.  It was a pretty big pop culture moment back in those pre-internet days - maybe because there was no way for the conclusion to be spoiled!

This is Robo Force's eighth appearance on the blog - They first became a team back in STF #150...  they battled Ultron in STF #202... they almost lost one of their own in STF #1450... they faced off against Brainiac in STF #1850...  they battled Magnus: Robot Fighter in STF #2090... a rival group was introduced in STF #2450... and that group had an adventure all their own in STF #2570...

Monday, January 25, 2021

Batman & Robin and The Fonz


For some reason the first meeting between Batman and The Fonz (a somewhat crude early MS Paint attempt from my B&B: The Lost Issues! days) has been one of this blog's most clicked on posts, and I have always meant to do a follow up.  When comics' historian and patron of this blog Marc Tyler Nobleman requested a Fonz jumping the shark theme, I finally had my opportunity.  I just hope visitors don't point to this cover as the moment STF lost its way...

Sunday, January 24, 2021

Catwoman Vs. The Blonde Phantom


If you think fighting crime in a long dress and high heels is a challenge, you should see how hard it is to train cats to attack your opponents on command.  This is the world of comics though, it doesn't matter how outlandish the concept may be as long as the depiction of it looks cool on the printed page!  At least that was the attitude back in the golden age, which is one reason those stories can be so fun.

Saturday, January 23, 2021

Red Tornado and The Falcon


Disney+ upcoming Falcon and The Winter Soldier series will explore Sam Wilson's decision to take over shield duties from Captain America.  There was a comic book counterpart to this story, and after a while the shield went back to Cap.  I wonder what will happen by the shows end, though?  Will it remain in Sam's hands?  Will Sam give it over to Bucky?  Or will Chris Evans rumored return to the role play into things?  Hopefully the delays are over and we will not have to wait too long to find out.

Friday, January 22, 2021

Ghost Rider and Casper


It's not a surprise to me that Harvey Comics were so popular during my formative comic reading years.  They had an interesting roster of characters and their house art style was appealing to my young eyes.  The short one to six page stories were perfect for a young reader and made the comics a great entryway to more complicated stories.  I do wish there were more creator credits though, it's tough to determine which artists and writers were responsible for what.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Man-Thing Vs. The Atom


For such an inhuman looking character, Man-Thing certainly inspired a lot of artists.  Looking over the comics that the muck monster has appeared in, I am impressed by how many striking covers and splash pages there are.  Maybe it's the swamp setting or the horror element to the character that got their creative juices flowing.  Whatever the reason, this ugly mug has been a part of a lot of beautiful artwork.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Han Solo and Guardian / Chewbacca and Sasquatch


Like many, I was getting a little Star Wars fatigue after the last few movies did not hit the mark.  Fortunately, The Mandalorian gets so much right about the property that it has brought me on board again.  I hope that Disney pays close attention to the positive reaction that the second season has received and uses what has been learned for the (many!) newly announced Star Wars related projects in development.  Hopefully the quality can be maintained.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Sgt. Fury and The Haunted Tank


The fact that DC Animation is finally releasing a period piece Justice Society movie has me hopeful that we will finally see some more of DC Comic's war stars show up either in that or a future project.  Imagine a animated wartime tale featuring Sgt. Rock & Easy Company, The Haunted Tank, The Unknown Soldier, Mademoiselle Marie, The Losers and so on.  I'm not sure how commercially viable it would be, but I would definitely check it out!

Monday, January 18, 2021

Dr. Doom Vs. The Teen Titans

Rumors are again resurfacing that Doctor Doom will be introduced to the MCU in the next Black Panther movie.  I can see there being perhaps some international intrigue between Wakanda and Lateveria, which could be interesting - but what then of the rumors that Atlantis and Prince Namor would be involved in the movie?  Is there a chance we will see a three-way conflict? It would be like an issue of Super-Villain Team-Up come to life!

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Galactus Vs. The Justice League of America in: "DOA Via JLA!"


The JLA previously faced of against Galactus in STF #117 and later in STF #2750, and I thought they should have a rematch, this time giving the Leaguers the upper hand. The diminutive World Devourer here is from the classic three-part Fantastic Four saga by John Byrne in which he is finally defeated, only to have Reed Richards realize he must be saved for the balance of power in the universe.  I remember riding my bike miles to the store just to get those issues off the racks, I was absolutely floored by them.  I'm glad to be able to do my riff on an iconic image from that epic tale.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Aquaman in the Marvel Universe


For this Anniversary Issue, I thought that it would be fun to spotlight one DC hero that never received the 100-Page Giant treatment back when that format was popular in the 70's.  Such an oversight must be remedied, and this blog is just the place to do it! This marks the first time Aquaman has met these characters, except for The Punisher - they also shared an adventure in STF #1438...

Friday, January 15, 2021

Vixen Vs. Sabretooth


This would be an interesting match up.  The animal kingdom infused power of the Tantu Totem versus a brute with rapid healing would equal some pretty cool action.  Not a lot of heroes can match Creed's savagery, but depending on what animal Vixen tapped into, she could get close.

Coming tomorrow:  STF #3200!

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Indiana Jones on The Planet of The Apes


It was announced yesterday that in addition to a fifth Indiana Jones movie, a new video game featured the character is in development as well.  There have been games featuring the character over the years, but I haven't played one since the 80's.  I've been revisiting Uncharted recently and I'd love to see similar kinds of gameplay in an Indiana Jones adventure.  They just have to make sure and include some cool action using his whip!

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Superman and Buffy The Vampire Slayer


I remember when DC Comics Presents came out, a new team up title featuring Superman as the anchor character.  While this was obviously a concept that appealed to me, I wondered if it would work as well as The Brave and The Bold, since Superman was so much more powerful than most potential guest stars.  Fortunately, most of the time, writers were able to effectively work around that.  One way to even the odds was to introduce a mystical or magical element in the stories, for which The Man of Steel was just as vulnerable to as his guest stars were.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

X-Men Vs. Solomon Grundy / Daredevil and Dr. Fate


It will be interesting to see if Solomon Grundy gets a larger role in the second season of Stargirl.  I do remember one of his less lethal rebirths led him to assisting Infinity, Inc. in the comics for a while, maybe they could go that route.  I guess it all depends on the CGI budget!

Solomon Grundy previously tormented the X-Men in STF #2997...

Monday, January 11, 2021

Electro Vs. Air Wave


Despite the fact that Sony is sharing Spider-Man with Marvel, they seem determined to build their own Spidey Cinematic Universe.  We know that there will be lots of returning villains from the previous Spider-Man movie incarnations appearing in the next film, but now rumors are swirling that their involvement will not end there.  Apparently Jamie Foxx's Electro is now slated for a solo film, like Venom, Morbius and the rumored Kraven the Hunter movies.  Once they have enough solo villain movies out, they will make a Sinister Six film, not sure that it will include Spider-Man or save that confrontation for a future big screen adventure.  It will be interesting to see how many of these rumors come to pass.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Adam Strange and Beta Ray Bill


Thor: Love and Thunder is supposed to start filming this week, and we still have no confirmation on whether Beta Ray Bill will show up.  It seems like a jam packed movie already with Jane Foster, Gorr The God Butcher, Valkyrie and the Guardians of the Galaxy already in the mix, would there even be room?  I imagine he would be a CGI creation, so his inclusion would be easy to keep under wraps.  Maybe we will be pleasantly surprised.

Saturday, January 9, 2021

Cool Commissioned art by Karl Heitmueller, Jr.

 Check out this cool cover recreation that Karl Heitmueller, Jr. created as a commission, based on STF #937 from this very blog!  Amazing work!

Here's the original cover, for comparison:

Pretty cool, huh?  I have enjoyed Karl's contributions to Back Issue magazine, so this was a thrill for me to see.   Be sure to take a look at more incredible artwork at his blog, Tough Guy Goods and Services

The Human Bomb joins The Invaders

 The Human Bomb had a simple concept and even simpler costume, but I always got a kick out of him as a kid.  I just liked the idea of a guy that could make his body combustible and survive to do it again.  Lots of heroes and villains could cause explosive destruction through weapons or energy beams from their eyes or hands, but this guy was the explosion!  I though it was cool then, and I think it's cool now!

Friday, January 8, 2021

Lara Croft enters The Tomb of Dracula


Lara Croft does raid tombs, after all - so why not one of the most famous tombs in fiction?  She's also faced off against somewhat supernatural creatures before, but could anything prepare her for an encounter with Count Dracula?  I still haven't seen the latest Tomb Raider movie, but I find both of the Angelina Jolie entries to be guilty pleasures.  Is the reboot with Alicia Vikander worth checking out?

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Shuri and Hawkgirl

 Continued from yesterday's cover, we see that our two heroines are ready to take the lead in this case.

It sounds like we will will be seeing Shuri (and possibly also M'Baku) donning a panther costume of her own in the sequel to continue the work that T'Challa began as Black Panther.  That made for an enjoyable story arc in the comics, and it will be interesting to see how the Marvel movies handle it, since this is a more permanent situation.

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Black Panther and Hawkman

 The Super Powers mini-series were generated to sell the toy line of the same name and I can't say that I remember the plot line.  I do remember picking them up because it would be the first time that I would see Jack Kirby illustrate some of DC's main heroes.  For some, like Batman and Robin, I didn't feel his style worked with as well as it  did others.  On the other hand, I really liked his rendition of Hawkman and would have loved to have seen what he could have done with an extended run on that character.

This is only the first part of a 2-part epic, so make sure you come back tomorrow for the exciting conclusion!

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Sandman and Spider-Man in: "Night Terrors!"


Warner Bros seems to want to get aggressive with their DC Comics movie release schedule going forward, as they have announced four theatrical films a year along with two straight to HBO Max releases for lesser known properties.  I think an HBO Max movie or series would be a perfect place to adapt Sandman Mystery Theater, the excellent 90's series featuring the original Sandman.  It's all right there on the page, the stories are even broken down into four-issue installments.  Even reading it back in the day, I felt like it was written with an eventual live action treatment in mind.

Spidey and Wesley Dodds first met in STF #1287...

Monday, January 4, 2021

Doctor Who and The Silver Surfer


My guess us that a phone booth was first used as the exterior for Doctor Who's Tardis partly because of budgetary reasons, as those original shows were produced inexpensively.  Whatever the reason, It's always been an interesting look for the Doctor's travelling headquarters.  Now that phone booths have all but become a thing of the past, it seems even cooler that a time traveler would use such a retro design.  Doctor Who may alter his appearance every few years, but I hope the Tardis never does.

Sunday, January 3, 2021

Spider-Man and Blue Beetle in: "Triumph of the Time-Killers!"


It's good to know that animators are currently hard at work producing the sequel to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, one of the greatest comic book movies ever made.  I look forward to seeing Miguel O'Hara, the Spider-Man of 2099, getting into the mix as well as whatever other variants they plan to include.  I just hope that the live action third Marvel Spider-Man movie doesn't steal its thunder too much, as that movie seems to be intent on opening up a spider-verse of its own.

Saturday, January 2, 2021

Wonder Woman and Captain America in: "A Mindwarp From a Monkey!"

This marks the 24th appearance of the WW/Cap team...

Well, I saw Wonder Woman 1984,   


and like most, I was let down after the first movie was done so well.  I've read reports that Patty Jenkins got rid of her co-writer from the first movie as well as replaced the effects and stunts crews, and it showed.  The opening Amazon scene was fun and promising, but didn't really connect to the rest of the film at all.  The mall fight was not well done, the effects and acting looked like something from an 80's kid's movie, not something just set in the 80's. Still, I should have savored it, since it was the last action scene or scene with WW in costume that there would be for another hour and 10 minutes!  The movie definitely needed better editing, scenes went on too long and the sparse action was spaced too far apart.  Cheetah was wasted, her character didn't need to be there for the plot and we have seen the same origin beats before for Riddler and Electro (not that they worked in those movies either).  By the time (over 2 hours in) that she showed up in Cheetah form (we don't get to see the transformation) It feels like a movie obligation and the effects were dark, murky, and unimpressive.  Diana's golden armor was built up to be amazing and then destroyed and discarded in moments, I guess that was all just to set up the mid credits cameo.  There were parts I liked.  All the acting was fine, I can't blame the performers for the script they were given.  Yes, the learning to fly scene was lifted from Man of Steel, but I still enjoyed it.  The invisible jet visuals were cool, although the scene as a whole was silly considering Steve could somehow fly a modern jet with his WWI skills and Diana made it invisible by rubbing her hands together like Mr. Miyagi from Karate Kid.  Finally, why didn't Steve just reappear (Like the wall and other things) instead of hijacking some innocent dude's body and life?  Neither Steve nor Diana seemed overly concerned with this violation, and indeed got intimate using the unwitting "handsome man's" (he didn't even get a name) body.  Diana only undid the wish because she was losing her powers, not out of concern for her and Steve's victim.  Highly unethical to say the least and I can't believe that plot point made it into the movie. As for the wishes, did everyone on Earth really make selfish wishes?  Not one person wished for world peace or something?  All that said, I still liked it better than Birds of Prey!

Friday, January 1, 2021

Warlock Vs. Khan


I watched Star Trek II again last night.  Ricardo Montalban's iconic performance as James T. Kirk's arch foe from that movie as well as the earlier series episode Space Seed still holds up today.  His commitment to the role with equal parts rage, confidence, swagger and obsession along with an interesting back story made Khan one of the all-time great screen villains. He's always fun to revisit.

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