Friday, October 31, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Brave and the Bold #81

Brave and the Bold #81 (On Sale: October 31, 1968) has a great Batman and Flash cover by Neal Adams.

"But Bork Can Hurt You" is by Bob Haney, Neal Adams and Vince Colletta. This is Colletta's first super-hero inking job for DC and boy did it cause a stink. Adams was infuriated when he saw what Colletta had done to his pencils, going back and inking over Colletta in places in an attempt to salvage his work. Some also say that Adams got some of the later pages back from Colletta and had Dick Giordano ink them. It's been so long since I looked at this book that I really don't remember, but if ever two artists styles clashed it was Adams and Colletta. Neal made sure that Colletta never inked his work again.

Small-time hood Carl Bork suddenly discovers that he is invulnerable to any physical harm. Using his new ability, Bork takes over a local gang and stymies police who cannot stop the bulletproof crook. Even Batman is unable to beat Bork, who begins raising a criminal army to take over Gotham City.

Batman and the police try to hold off Bork, while the Flash searches the world for the source of Bork's power. He discovers that a statue of Bork is responsible, and it shares a mystical connection to its subject. Flash locates the statue, but, like Bork, it too proves to be invulnerable. Flash is finally able to damage the hand slightly with a laser, but the laser is not powerful enough to harm the statue further.

Batman notices that Bork's hand is no longer invulnerable. He believes that Flash is working on the problem and is inspired by the progress. Rather than risk a war in the streets of Gotham, he challenges Bork to a one-on-one fight. Bork's invulnerability proves more than a match for Batman. However, the Caped Crusader holds on to hope that Flash will come up with the answer to defeat Bork. His hope is rewarded when Flash is able to drag the statue into the sun where it is consumed. Once the statue is destroyed, Bork loses his power and is defeated by Batman.

Bork would return years later in a mutated form as a reformed criminal and an associate member of The Power Company, even getting his own book at one time. Reprinted in Best of the Brave and the Bold #2, Batman Illustrated by Neal Adams Vol. 1 HC and Showcase Presents the Brave and the Bold Batman Team-Ups Vol. 1 TPB.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

What Republicans Have Got to Answer For

This is some really sick stuff, some done with a crudeness that speak volumes regarding the perpetrator's intellect (and painfully obvious lack thereof), some a bit slicker, all of it disgusting. If you want to know why I will be rejoicing come November 5th, this is a good place to start. This party deserves to go away and never come back.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Don't Let This Be You!

Earlier this week over on the Tony Isabella Board friend and onetime intelligent person Jim Guida shocked all of his friends by announcing that he had voted for McCain:

I guess I am more superstitious than I thought and if I lived in a State where it mattered, I would have risked my life-long history of voting for the losing candidate (Kerry, Nader, Perot, Dukasis, Anderson, and Ford). And just to ensure a Democratic win, I marked my absentee ballot for McCain't. Fortunately, CA is a lock for JoeBama, but if, through some cruel twist of fate, Obama loses by one vote, I'll need a place to stay for awhile.
For a guy seeking a holy path in life we all found this pretty strange to say the least. Last night Scott Edwards posted this shocking video from the future:

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Bat Lash #2

Bat Lash #2 (On Sale: October 29, 1968) has a truly wonderful cover by Nick Cardy.

(Melinda's Doll) is written by Denny O'Neil and plotted and drawn by Nick Cardy. While escaping from a wedding that he doesn't watch, Bat Lash discovers the body of a dead marshal in the snow. He takes the dead man's coat and boots, then finds his orphaned daughter Melinda nearby. The girl is confused from shock and believes Bat is her father.

Bat Lash takes the girl to the nearby town of Serenity. The crooks that murdered the marshal try to kill him too. He discovers that they are smuggling guns to indians inside coffins. Bat finds evidence against the local undertaker proving his involvement. He arrests the crooks, then leaves Melinda with a woman in town before leaving town. Reprinted in Super DC Giant S-22.

Edited by Joe Orlando.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Gerard Damiano, R.I.P.

This is a terrible article on Damiano, which doesn't even mention that he took his Deep Throat money and made the best porn film of all time, The Devil in Miss Jones. Memories Within Miss Aggie was also pretty good as Damiano attempted to push the realm of porn into something a little deeper.

I still remember scenes from The Devil in Miss Jones though I haven't seen the picture in thirty or so years. What is really surprising is that the scenes I remember are not overtly sexual, but more go to the torment of the Miss Jones's soul. I think it was a powerful film and a one of a kind in the world of porn.


How could anyone support a party that would stoop this low? The Republicans are a party of low-lifes who know they cannot win unless they cheat. Just despicable.

A phony State Board of Elections flier advising Republicans to vote on Nov. 4 and Democrats on Nov. 5 is being circulated in several Hampton Roads localities, according to state elections officials.

In fact, Election Day, for voters of all political stripes, remains Nov. 4.

The somewhat official-looking flier - it features the state board logo and the state seal - is dated Oct. 24 and indicates that "an emergency session of the General Assembly has adopted the follwing (sic) emergency regulations to ease the load on local electorial (sic) precincts and ensure a fair electorial process."

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Keller Confession #163 Part Deux

When I posted my Keller Confession #163 item on the Tony Isabella board, my friend Dave Potts said the thought he owned that issue and posted this:

Pottts, you are a riot man!

Air Blade

I spent all of yesterday at the Learning & Product Expo: Art! in Pasadena at the newly built Pasadena Conference Center. It's actually newly half-built, as the major portion of it, a large conference/convention building is still under construction. The Conference Center doesn't quite still smell like fresh paint, but it's a pretty close call on that one. It is a nice, modern building, with poorly designed access to the attached parking structure and the most modern of public restrooms.

The mens room I ventured into had hands-free flush toilets, waterless, flushless urinals, hands-free soap dispensers, hands-free faucets and hands-free, motion-activated towel dispensers. If you were not interested in the towels though, they also had one of these:

I had to try it out, so by-passed the hands-free, motion-activated towel dispenser and gingerly placed my hands into the Dyson. As I slowly pull my hands back up past the air blades they scraped the water off of my hands. Once done my hands still felt a little wet to me and maybe I pulled them too fast through the blades. Or maybe it was because I knew I was about to get pastel dust all over my hands and knew they had to be completely dry.

Even so, I think it's a pretty cool invention, certainly much better than the common hot air drier you see in other restrooms.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Keller Confession #163

I have a confession to make. Sarah Palin never did anything for me (though oddly Tina Fey does), but Michele Bachmann, grrrrrr! Something about her eyes speak volumes to me.

(ashamed and slightly aroused in La Verne, Ca)

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Hawk & the Dove #3

Hawk & the Dove #3 (On Sale: October 24, 1968) has a nice action cover by Gil Kane.

"After the Cat" is by Steve Skeates, Gil Kane and Sal Trapani. Gone is series creator Steve Ditko, which must have made the writing a lot easier for Steve Skeates. Hank Hall hunts the streets for a notorious cat burglar known as the Cat. After days of searching he spots the crook during a burglary. Hawk tries to stop him, but his efforts only result in the destruction of property.

When Hank and others then accuse Don of cowardice, Dove goes in search of the Cat also. He finds the crook surrounded by police. Dove tries to stop the cops from firing on the Cat, only to learn that they were firing tear gas. This results in the police becoming victims of their own tactics, and the Cat flees. A cop then shoots and kills the burglar. Dove blames himself for causing the escalated level of violence. Reprinted in Teen Titans #39.

In "Twice Burned," also by Steve Skeates, Gil Kane and Sal Trapani, when Linda Kieves's father is beaten nearly to death by thugs, Hawk attempts to track down the perpetrators. Meanwhile Dove tries to stop Linda's brother from taking justice into his own hands by shooting the man who hired the thugs. Hawk succeeds in finding the thugs and beats a confession out of them. Dove also succeeds in stopping Mark Kieves, but only by nearly resorting to violence. Reprinted in 100-Page Super Spectacular DC-15.

Edited by Dick Giordano.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

IndyMac Plan Could be Model for Recovery

The FDIC seems to be doing good by the customers of my old company:

Under the FDIC's orders, about 4,000 IndyMac borrowers have been given more affordable mortgages so far. By this weekend, the bank expects to have sent out more than 15,000 modification offers to borrowers, who are saving $430 a month on average.

IndyMac's efforts, which are designed to save the FDIC money by curbing losses on foreclosed homes, are being closely watched nationwide. In fact, Bank of America Corp. is taking a similar approach with newly acquired Countrywide Financial Corp. as part of an $8.4 billion, 12-state legal settlement reached this month.

And now some Congressional Democrats and state officials say the FDIC's approach should be replicated as the Treasury Department buys billions in troubled mortgage debt as part of a $700 billion financial industry bailout.

"The country is in crisis," said Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller. "This is something that everybody should do."

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I Don't Think This Is How This Is Done

I got a phone call this weekend from someone on Proposition 8, the "gay people don't have the same rights as me" initiative. It went something like this.

Ring! Ring!

Them: Hi, my name is blah de blah and I live in La Verne. Can I tell you why I'm voting for Proposition 8?

Me: No.


40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Showcase #79

Showcase #79 (On Sale: October 22, 1968) introduces us to Dolphin in a cover by romance artist Jay Scott Pike.

"The Fantasy at 14 Fathoms" is written and drawn by Jay Scott Pike. Not only is this Pike's only non-romance artwork for DC, this is his only writing. In this, the origin of Dolphin, Chief Petty Officer Chris Landau and his partner Ben Harkey are assigned the task of recovering documents from a sunken U.S. Navy ship that has been underwater twenty three years. During their search of the ship, they discover a girl who can breathe underwater. They bring her back to their ship and name her Dolphin. She has gills that allow her to breathe water, but her lungs cannot sustain her in air for long, so she returns to the water.

While Landau and his team work to open the safe containing the documents, a typhoon approaches. The seamen convince Dolphin to help them get the documents out of the sunken ship's safe. The typhoon strikes before she can finish the job and the wreck is pushed into a deep chasm. Landau returns to his ship believing Dolphin and the documents lost forever. He is surprised when the girl surfaces with the papers in hand.

As the ship leaves the area to avoid the harsh weather, Landau invites Dolphin to return to home with him. However, the girl indicates that she belongs at sea and dives back into the water. It would be ten years before Dolphin would appear again and then only in the character-packed pages of Showcase #100. Then in 1984 Dolphin would reappear as one of the Forgotten Heroes in the pages of Action Comics #552 and #553. Dolphin would last appear in Crisis on Infinite Earths in 1985-1986.

Edited by Dick Giordano.

Judge Rules Indiana Voting Centers to Remain Open

In yet another loss for the GOP "Keep out the vote" effort, Republican attemtps to shut down early voting centers in Indiana, have failed.

The Lake County Board of Elections and Registration is hereby enjoined from terminating the operation of in person absentee voting currently being conducted in the offices of the Clerk of the Lake Circuit Court in the courthouse buildings in Gary, Hammond, and East Chicago and the offices of the Lake County Board of Elections and Registration in Crown Point.

It is further ordered that all ballots that have already been cast at the early voting locations in Gary, Hammond, East Chicago, and Crown Point shall not be invalidated except for instances of voter fraud.
I guess real freedom-loving, American-loving Americans don't want other Americans to have the freedom to vote.

To Sir With Love

I was watching a British invasion revival on PBS last week and saw a modern Lulu sing To Sir With Love. Man, is her voice still great singing the theme to one of my favorite films of all time. Here is a clip of Lulu singing live from the late 1960s:

Monday, October 20, 2008

Speaking the Truth

"In the final days of campaigns, the say-anything, do-anything politics too often takes over. We've seen it before. And we're seeing it again today. The ugly phone calls. The misleading mail and TV ads. The careless, outrageous comments. All aimed at keeping us from working together, all aimed at stopping change.

It's getting so bad that even Senator McCain's running mate denounced his tactics last night. As you know, you really have to work hard to violate Governor Palin's standards on negative campaigning."

-Barack Obama

Ouch! That cuts deep!

I Don't Want to Reopen a Whole Can of Worms...

...really...but, why do you think that Sarah Palin has refused to make her medical records public? What can she be hiding? Nope, I'm not going to say it, but I am still thinking it.

Michigan Republicans Admit to Efforts to Illegally Disenfranchise Voters

Democrats and Republicans have settled the suit seeking to prevent Michigan Republicans from using foreclosure lists to challenge voters. The MDP statement on the settlement says:
An agreement announced today by Obama for America, the Republican National Committee, the Democratic National Committee, the Michigan Republican Party, the Michigan Democratic Party, the Macomb County Republican Party, the Macomb County Democratic Party, and plaintiffs Duane Maletski, Sharon Lopez, and Frances M. Zick protects the voting rights of foreclosure victims. The settlement acknowledges the existence of an illegal scheme by the Republicans to use mortgage foreclosure lists to deny foreclosure victims their right to vote. This settlement has the force of law behind it and ensures that Republicans cannot disenfranchise families facing foreclosure.
Is there anything else to be said here?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

50 Reasons to Vote Obama

This should be viral man, viral I tell you!

McCain's Adoring Throng

Remember how in the last debate McCain was insulted that anyone would say bad things about the great people who show up for his rallies? Yeah, who wouldn't just adore these brain surgeons. Warning: stomach-wretch inducing footage of loyal Republicans at their very best.

What Do You Do...

...when you are the party people are running away from? How do you stop the bleeding of members? You steal them from the other party!

Something to remember when you see any growth in the number of registered Republicans.
SACRAMENTO -- Dozens of newly minted Republican voters say they were duped into joining the party by a GOP contractor with a trail of fraud complaints stretching across the country.

Voters contacted by The Times said they were tricked into switching parties while signing what they believed were petitions for tougher penalties against child molesters. Some said they were told that they had to become Republicans to sign the petition, contrary to California initiative law. Others had no idea their registration was being changed.
Just how many of the 70,000 Young Political Majors, or YPM, have registered this year as Republicans are actually people they duped into their registration?
The Times randomly interviewed 46 of the hundreds of voters whose election records show they were recently re-registered as Republicans by YPM, and 37 of them -- more than 80% -- said that they were misled into making the change or that it was done without their knowledge.
How pathetic the Republican party is that it has to trick people into registering as one of them.

This reminds me of 2004 when my son was registering for the first time. He registered on his college campus. The guy doing the registrations "suggested' that he register as a Republican, but he declined, saying he wasn't a "f***ing Republican." Unlike ACORN, who knows that is is a federal offense to not turn in a voter registration, even if you know it is bogus, this guy my son registered with threw away all of the Democratic registrations and only turned in the Republican ones. My son and all of his friends had to register at the last moment at the Post Office in order to vote.

Bottom line is you can not trust a Republican with your registration; they are the most cowardly and vile of thieves as they systematically attempt to steal your right as an American to vote. A pathetic excuse for a political party and one that deserves to go the way of the dodo.

Friday, October 17, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Flash #184

Flash #184 (On Sale: October 17, 1968) has a very dramatic cover by Ross Andru and Mike Esposito.

"Executioner of Central City" is by Frank Robbins, Ross Andru and Mike Esposito. Scientists at the Mt. Vista Ionospheric Observatory identify a burst of destructive energy headed for Central City. Iris Allen is able to contact her husband to warn him of the impending danger. Flash then tries to save the city by circling it at tremendous speed and setting up a repulsive shield. The energy burst is successfully deflected at the exact moment Flash's endurance gives out.

When Flash recovers from his exhaustive effort, he discovers that Central City is gone. A giant crater is all that remains. Flash believes his actions caused the destruction of the city, but he finds one survivor stuck in the mud. The survivor is a woman named Zoral, and she is actually from the future. She explains that she works for Dr. Yom, a future anthropologist who was conducting an experiment to bring a civilization from the past to his own time.

When Zoral returns to her time period, Flash hitches a ride. They discover that Central City has been transported intact into the future as a result of the freak circumstances involved with the energy burst. Dr. Yom wants sole credit for successfully bringing the city into the future and tries to eliminate Zoral and Flash when they learn the truth. Flash is able to defeat Dr. Yom and return Central City to its rightful place in time and space.

Edited by Julius Schwartz.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Friday, October 10, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Green Lantern #65

Green Lantern #65 (On Sale: October 10, 1968) has a very effective and dramatic cover by Mike Sekowsky and Joe Giella.

"Dry Up -- and Die" is by Gardner Fox, Mike Sekowsky and Joe Giella. While exploring the arctic looking for the magnetic north pole Neal Emerson falls into a crevasse. He becomes trapped near a glowing blue blob that is slowly dehydrating him and the entire planet. The blob combined with the magnetic properties of the north pole enable Emerson to issue a telepathic summons to Green Lantern.

In Evergreen City, Hal Jordan feels a compulsion to become Green Lantern. He encounters a gang of crooks, but the compulsion continues to pull him away making it difficult to stop them. Green Lantern finally defeats the crooks and overcomes the compulsion. He then continues on a date with Eve Doremus as Hal Jordan.

Emerson realizes his telepathic summons has failed, so he creates a mental duplicate of his evil personality, Doctor Polaris. The Polaris duplicate battles Green Lantern and temporarily stops him from using his power ring.

Edited by Julius Schwartz.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Does Anyone Else Think That...

...every time John McCain says, "I know how to do it," he really doesn't? I have no idea how many times he said it in the last debate, but my interest in the debate (if you could call it a debate) diminished every time he did say it 'cause he is always saying he knows how to do things he has never done: win a war, find Bin Laden, etc.

He said it almost as often as he said "my friends." What he didn't say, not even once, was "Sarah Palin" or, for the second debate in a row, "middle class." How can we be his "friend" when he doesn't even acknowledge that we exist?

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Unexpected #110

Unexpected #110 (On Sale: October 8, 1968) has a new logo and one of the creepier Neal Adams covers amplified by some wonderful color work.

We begin with a Johnny Peril story "Death Town, USA" by George Kashdan and Jack Sparling. That is followed by "Half a Man is Better Than None" by Dave Wood and Bill Draut and "The Last Executioner" by Dave Wood, Jerry Grandenetti and Bill Draut.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

The Moment McCain Lost the Election

Watch the CNN Independent voter graph on this piece. Obama destroys McCain, neuters him on, his supposed area of expertise, foreign policy.

Put a fork in him, McCain is done. As Mark Stein of the National Review said tonight:

Well I have gone outside and pulled up my Mcain/Palin sign. This election is over. I will vote for Mcain but I know that come Nov. 5 Obama will be our president-elect.
I feel sorry for Sarah Palin. A once promising career will be permanently connected to the landside loss of John McCain.
Hey, me and the National Review agreeing on everything except the sorrow!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

That One!

Good Lord is This Debate a Bore!

Geeze, what is the point of having people sitting there if they have to act like mannequins? McCain seems to flatline the Independent voters on CNN every time he attacks Obama instead of answering the question.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Republicans Have to Change What They Know Again

John McCain -- "Worth Fighting For"
"I made the worst mistake of my life by attending two meetings, the first with the chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board, the government agency charged with regulating the practices of the nation’s savings and loans, and a week later with four bank examiners based in San Francisco who were at that time investigating the investment and lending practices of Lincoln Savings and Loan of Irvine, California, owned by my good friend and generous supporter Charles Keating."
John McCain -- Interview Mar. 1, 2007 The Arizona Republic

"I was judged eventually, after three years, of using, quote, poor judgment, and I agree with that assessment."
John Dowd, John McCain's Lawyer

"But you know, Sen. Mitchell was the majority leader, and Howell Heflin was his stooge...And he was doing what he was told because the rest were Democrats in the hearing. So it's sort of a classic political smear-job on John."
It must be difficult for Republicans to keep up with what they are supposed to believe when it keeps changing all the time.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

It's About Time

Thirteen years late, but as they say, better late than never.

Friday, October 03, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Superboy #152

Superboy #152 (On Sale: October 3, 1968) has another great cover by Neal Adams.

"The 2 Faces of Superboy" is by Frank Robbins, Bob Brown and Mike Esposito. Superboy stops a pair of thieves from stealing the art collection of Mrs. Malcolm-Malcolm. The Mighty Mahaguru, a criminal mystic, decides to take revenge on Superboy. Along with his accomplice Henri Labrush, they convince Mrs. Malcolm-Malcolm to commission artist Pierre Lavisage to paint Superboy's portrait. Henri then abducts the real Lavisage and takes his place.

Superboy knows that Mahaguru is a fake, but he plays along and agrees to pose for the portrait. While Labrush begins his painting, Mahaguru hypnotizes Superboy. The crooks then use him to rob a bank. Superboy then becomes wanted by the law.

When he recovers from the hypnosis, Superboy realizes what he has done. Instead of showing up for his next session with Labrush, Superboy sends a robot in his place. The crooks then attempt to use the robot in a gold robbery. Superboy allows the crooks to believe they have succeeded, so that he can publicly expose them during the unveiling of his portrait. Superboy has also altered the painting which Labrush had created to make the Boy of Steel appear to be a monster.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

40 Years Ago Today From DC Comics -- Challengers of the Unknown #65

Challengers of the Unknown #65 (On Sale: October 1, 1968) has a odd looking cover by Jack Sparling.

"The Devil's Circus" is by Robert Kanigher and Jack Sparling. The Challengers receive a cryptic message from a mental patient that was found wandering the highway. The message leads them to Cobra Canyon where a giant alien awaits. The alien from the planet of Dread captures the Challs and forces them to battle insect creatures in an alien circus. The team members survive their battles, then lead the alien into a pit of quicksand.

The back-up story, "The Freezing Sun," is a reprint of the Challengers of the Unknown origin story from Showcase #6 and is by Dave Wood and Jack Kirby. Four men, Rocky Davis, Ace Morgan, Red Ryan, and Prof. Haley are scheduled to appear on the television show "Heroes". Ace is piloting the plane carrying the men to the show. The plane runs into poor weather, causing it to crash. The men miraculously survive. Red’s watch which should have been destroyed works perfectly, causing Ace to suppose the men are living on "borrowed time". At Prof’s suggestion, the men band together to take more risk as the Challengers of the Unknown.

A request for the daredevil services comes in from Morelian, an alleged descendant of Merlin. His assignment for the Challs is to open a mystic box that has four segments.

On a deserted island, Rocky opens the first compartment. Inside is a giant egg which hatches overnight into a giant humanoid creature. The creature walks across the ocean destroying ships and taking Red in the process. Ace and Prof. pursue the monster which eventually drops Red. Prof. eventually figures that the monster is composed of pure thought and wishes the creature away.

Red is returned to the island where Rocky has opened the second segment of the box. A freezing sun is inside which draws the heat from everything, freezing Rocky. Red manages to trap the sun in a vacuum sealed container.

Ace and Prof. return to the island, and Ace opens the third segment. A device which spins a web of plastic flies out at tremendous speed. The Challs follow the device to Australia, eventually gaining control over it with the container it was originally contained in.

When the Challs return to the island, Morelian has opened the final section of the box. Inside is a ring which supposedly gives him immortality. He flies off in his plane, but quickly crashes down upon the box. The box has what contained the immortality not the ring, which was sudden death.

Edited by Murray Boltinoff.