Category Archives: The 70s me

Kill, kill, kill

Art by John Hotchkiss

I jumped back into role-playing with gusto in late 1985, armed with Champions 3rd edition and a handful of enthusiastic friends. Before too long I was meeting lots of others playing the game, in person and through The Clobberin’ Times, and I got a good look at how plenty of people expected to play their heroes. How was it? Easy. In a word, they were killing all over the place.

Read the rest of this entry

Advertisements

Two villains

In the one-step-removed setting of the original Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, the president of the United States is the geriatric Richard Nixon in 1985, evidently president-for-life. In one respect, it’s not as fantastic as it seems: Ronald Reagan (born 1911) was actually older than Nixon (born 1913), thus “this geezer in the White House” as depicted in the comic – set in 1985, published in 1986 – was literally happening.

Read the rest of this entry

Mustache match

It’s the only unequivocally great villain protagonist book. And interestingly, he has no redeeming features at all: Dracula is a flat-out asshole, supremacist, bigot, casual serial murderer, and megalomaniac. Read the rest of this entry

The change of illusion

Six li’l issues of The Avengers. Do they really bear the whole weight of the history of Marvel Comics, and perhaps even of fan culture’s creative intestinal torsion? It can’t be that simple, but even at age thirteen-fourteen, I knew something was happening.

Read the rest of this entry

Elf-(ahem)quest

With pride, I say I was an original adopter of Elfquest in 1978. Yes, it was a purchase of Fantasy Quarterly #1, black-and-white on swiftly-browning newsprint, with clearly visible dots in the cover color separations, thus you did best to pull your head back and blur your focus a little. Read the rest of this entry

Scary war

I completely missed war comics as a kid, and the reason is easy: the covers scared the shit out of me, the few I found in the pile of comics I’d inherited, e.g. Sgt. Rock, no less than those I’d see on the stands when I started buying comics, like Weird War Tales and War is Hell. Read the rest of this entry

Your mama’s apocalypse

… was much worse than yours.

Read the rest of this entry

Still beautiful

Jungle Action #6

#6 (Buckler)

This is how I met the Black Panther, 1973-1974, age nine and ten, with “Panther’s Rage” in Jungle Action #6-19.  Read the rest of this entry

Gone ape indeed

In 1974 the big SF-media push was to “Go Ape!” I was so enamored of doing so at age 10 that I made it a point to imitate Roddy MacDowall’s ape-walk everywhere until brought to sanity by an unkind comment from my mom. Read the rest of this entry

G.I. Who

I did like my G.I. Joe. It was one of the 11-and-a-half inch versions slightly altered from the line launched in 1964, with the fuzzy hair and beard Read the rest of this entry

Cosmic muck

It was an amazing comic. A man has become a muck-monster, his humanity just a memory, seemingly limited to minor human-interest horror-adventures in a swamp, but somehow a magnet for society’s psychological ills, even attuned to cosmic insights, and eventually limping, looming into the central intersection of ultimate forces … Yeah, it’s great, man, Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing was really someth — wait, you’re talking about 1973?

Read the rest of this entry

Spider-Schlep

In one of the letter columns in the late-80s Question, Denny O’Neil refers to Peter Parker as a schlep, and always having been one. That’s Yiddish, and a little confusing because that precise word is a verb meaning to lug something inconvenient, but here, and as I’ve often heard or used it, it’s short for schlepper, meaning an inept, stupid person.

Read the rest of this entry

Todd's Blog

Todd Klein on lettering, literature and more

Longbox Graveyard

Marvel and DC comics and community