Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Killers 01, 1947 / This is what Wertham was talking about

A notorious comic up today from Vin Sullivan's Magazine Enterprises featuring a nice L.B. Cole cover which promises corpses piled up high. I recently managed to get my hands on both issues of this series, and I was thrilled to get them even though they are in bad shape. This issue was missing a good chunk of the front cover so I appropriated the nicest image I could find from Heritage and polished it up a bit. Sadly, the inside front cover is missing a bit of the text of Gardner Fox's "The Killers Three", but hopefully someone can replace this or even just let me know what the words of the text are, and I can fix the page. The pages were pretty browned out and had been punched into a four hole binding, but I took the time to patch them up since it's a scarcer comic I was excited to scan.

This is one of those comics Dr. Wertham was talking about. It kicks off with a brutal and xenophobic tale of the yellow menace with art from Paul Parker:

There's all sort of different ways to kill a man, children, take notes. Axe to the head! Old school drive-by?

Or you can just hit em with your car


and if Murder doesn't faze those youngsters, how bout some whipping, oh my!

Shocking fun for sure, but it is most definitely mind-blowing that little johnny and suzy were picking these comics up at the five and dime.

The second story is "The Killer Behind the Killer" titled after John Chase, Baby Face Nelson's associate in arms. Things turn tough when the G-men get involved. Third up is "Poison Claw Killer". Always beware the scientist with the bad comb over and giant eyebrows. Fourth is "They Tricked the School Girl's Killer" in which a mob comes to lynch a suspected black laborer, completely passing over the strange blonde German florist in the cell next door. The odd and convoluted plan the cops use to gain a confession is not at all out of place in a golden age comic. The last story is from Vernon Henkel, "'Ace' High Private Eye". When a blond client comes into his office with a problem regarding her late father's stolen jewels, Ace responds, "Say no more Bay-Bee! Just cross my palm with enough silver." He may talk an odd slang, but he sure hurls a mean crystal ball.

Get the full scan Here

All in all, a fun comic, but it's hard to top the velocity of mayhem and ridiculousness in the first story. Perhaps there will be more outlandishness in issue 2...

Cheers and Enjoy,



John said...

Just a spectacular scan, good sir. I've long been a fan of your scanning craftsmanship, but I am embarrassingly late to your fine blog. I've enjoyed your insights (even to things that I am only mildly interested in, such as wrestling mags) even more than I've enjoyed your scans. You're doing wonderful work saving these artifacts. Thanks for your generosity of time and spirit!

John said...

Oops! Aratak, here! Ann is my lovely wife - wrong Google ID. The comments still hold, though, as she has been loving the old magazines, as well!

darwination said...

My scan of the second and final issue is here, enjoy!: