April 10, 2009

It Stalks the Public Domain - Bridegroom, Come Back

As I mentioned yesterday, to my knowledge of the 28 stories by Ditko published by Charlton in 1954 (all of them and more listed here) only four have never been reprinted (there are a number of publishers doing public domain reprints that I don't have everything from, but I didn't see any of these stories listed among their offerings from a check of Ditko Fever). Three of them, already posted in this series, are "Homecoming", "Botticelli Of The Bangtails" and "A Nice Quiet Place".

So you've probably guessed that this is the fourth, "Bridegroom, Come Back" the 6-page story from THIS MAGAZINE IS HAUNTED #18 [1954]. It's also easily the best of the four. For one thing, the writing is definitely a notch or two above Charlton standard for the time, as you'll see there's a very clever story-telling gimmick with the narrator. And Ditko's art is at the top of his early form for most of the story, with some great faces, very good detail on the clothing (especially important to this story) and some very tight inking (look at those faces on the first page). This is definitely a highlight of Ditko's early work, and a must read.

Before you get to the story, the usual links:
Buy Ditko's creator-owned work including the latest DITKO ONCE MORE coming soon
Subscribe to DITKOMANIA, #72 shipping now
Check out new and upcoming Ditko publications
Download public domain comics, likely including the one this story is from

Click images to view at an increased size.


  1. A great deal of Ditko's earliest work is reprinted in my STEVE DITKO: EDGE OF GENIUS. About 160 pages worth.
    Greg Theakston
    Pure Imagination

  2. Order info on EDGE OF GENIUS and Greg's other books here (though the in-print status of the books seems to be out of date).

    In fact, if you get DITKO: EDGE OF GENIUS and STEVE DITKO'S THE THING AND OTHER STORIES, you'll have 23 of the other 24 Ditko Charlton stories from 1954 (and a lot more besides). You'll have to get THE DITKO READER #1 for the remaining story (anyone care to guess which one?).

    Greg, if you ever do another Ditko book, I hope it has the four never-reprinted story and the one other 1954 story not included in EDGE or THING.



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