November 29, 2008

It Stalks the Public Domain - Avery and the Goblins

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Over here http://tinyurl.com/ditko-stories for related posts.

The 8-page "Avery and the Goblins" is the third and final Ditko story from Charlton's THE THING #13 [April 1954], and is by far the best of them, and one of the highlights of his 1954 work. The story, about an old man determined that he can find a way to escape from a goblin haunted castle with untold riches where others have failed thanks to his years of planning, has a few lapses, but the Ditko creatures and atmosphere are really good, echoing a lot of his later work.  The repeated close-ups of Avery's face during various scenes are really nice.

Most scans in this series adapted to my personal tastes from those found, and available for free download with registration, at the Golden Age Comics Download site. For comics on paper, the way god intended, first head over here for ordering info on his available creator owned material co-published with Robin Snyder (including his new book, DITKO, ETC...) and head over here for info on recent and upcoming books with Ditko from all publishers, including the recently revived DITKOMANIA,  Halloween issue now available, and now accepting PayPal for subscriptions.

Click images to embiggenate.

  
 

November 17, 2008

Upcoming Ditko - Creeper reprints

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And speaking of upcoming Ditko, looks like DC will reprint some Creeper next year in SHOWCASE PRESENTS THE CREEPER, which will presumably be a black and white book, though slimmer and cheaper than the existing SHOWCASE PRESENTS books. Listed at 296 pages, my count of Ditko's stories, including the one intended for SHOWCASE #106 comes to 254. Add in the non-Ditko half of BEWARE THE CREEPER #6 and some non-Ditko covers gets us up to 269. On the other hand, there are some other non-Ditko stories (BRAVE AND BOLD team-ups, a JLA issue, some solo stories in ADVENTURE) which might be included, so I wouldn't take it as a given that all the Ditko, including the unpublished story, will be included, though that would be a big selling point. Book's not out until next summer, so details won't be out for a while.

[note, this appears to have been canceled, and a colour hardcover appears on DC's schedule for 2010]

Upcoming Ditko - More Snyder/Ditko pubs

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Announced in the most recent issue of Robin Snyder's THE COMICS, some more Snyder/Ditko pubs. Some images at the usual place. In addition to the two 32-page comics (with some familiar faces) Snyder lists something called "The Ever Unwilling" as coming soon, which from the format I think will be a new essay or series of essays running in THE COMICS (subscription info to that also in above link).

November 14, 2008

It Stalks the Public Domain - Die Laughing

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http://tinyurl.com/ditko-stories for a list of posts in this series.

"Die Laughing" is the second Ditko story from Charlton's THE THING #13 [April 1954], a 7-page story about a group of fraternity pledges sent into a haunted house as part of a hazing, with the usual complications. This is one of the less inspired of the early Ditko stories of this year, without too much for Ditko to work his visual magic on beyond some good but standard views of the interior and exterior of the decrepit house. And the story is pretty cliche. I know I've read at least two stories with the same basic plot, one of them an EC story that I'm sure predates this.

Most scans in this series adapted to my personal tastes from those found, and available for free download with registration, at the Golden Age Comics Download site. To buy Ditko comics and things on paper, go over here for ordering info on some wonderful creator owned material and over here for info on recent and upcoming publications from all publishers. And subscribe to Rob Imes' revival of DITKOMANIA, now accepting PayPal.
  
 

November 7, 2008

It Stalks the Public Domain - Library of Horror

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List of early Ditko and links to those posted over here :  http://tinyurl.com/ditko-stories Link early, link often.

"Library of Horror" is the 7-page lead story from Charlton's THE THING #13 [April 1954].  Ditko actually does three stories for the issue, plus the cover, as it pretty much becomes a Ditko showcase for a few issues.

This is an excellent little horror story about a frustrated writer who can't seem to come up with stories any more. He finds a mysterious bookstore where he's offered access to the ancient books of the dead, but at the cost of bringing in bodies, dead or alive.  He chooses dead, and things spiral out of control from there.

Lots of stuff to like in this one, especially the demons and mystic realms, which might remind you of some later Ditko work.  I especially like the demonic desk on the top of page three, as well as all the mood creating spider-webs and smoke.  Also unusual in this story is the heavy use of mechanical tones, something seen in a handful of early Ditko stories, but not usually used this liberally. The top of page four is especially notable, I'd be curious if that effect was done by Ditko by hand on the original art or is some sort of post-production effect.

Most scans in this series adapted to my personal tastes from those found, and available for free download with registration, at the Golden Age Comics Download site. To buy Ditko comics and things on paper, go over here for ordering info on some wonderful creator owned material and over here for info on recent and upcoming publications from all publishers. And subscribe to Rob Imes' revival of DITKOMANIA, now accepting PayPal.


November 2, 2008

81 Ditko Splash Pages

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For obvious reasons, here's a slideshow of 81 Ditko splash pages from throughout his career. You'll find a little bit of almost everything in there, some iconic classics and maybe even a few things you've never seen before.

Check here if the embedding thing doesn't work for you or to get the code to put it on your own site, or here for a non-slideshow guide to the set.

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