November 13, 2009

Unusual Tales - Little Boy Blue

"Unusual Tales", a series presenting Steve Ditko's comics from 1957 to 1959 that are in the public domain.

"Little Boy Blue" is an excellent 6-page story from Charlton's TALES OF THE MYSTERIOUS TRAVELER #10 [1958]. I strongly suggest you scroll down to read it before reading any of my blatherings. Come back when you're done if you feel like.

Done? Man, that's something, isn't it?  The writing is definitely a notch above the standard for these stories, with an almost poetic rhythm, and Ditko's art pushes it even further.  In particular I like the use of the musical notes as design elements (something Ditko used a few times in his career), getting more and more pronounced until that climactic bit on the top of page six.  And of course the use of the Traveler on every page as the imposing background figure narrator was seldom done better. This is one of my favourite of the 1950s Ditko stories.

Some links to check out:
Buy Ditko's creator-owned work
Find out the answer to "When Is A Man to Be Judged Evil?" and other pressing questions
Find out about the fanzine DITKOMANIA
Running bi-monthly, covering all aspects of Ditko's career
Check out new and upcoming Ditko publications
Have there really been more reprints of SPEEDBALL than Ditko's 1956 work for Marvel? Why?
Download public domain comics, likely including the one this story is from
(scans in this series generally adapted to my personal tastes from those copies)

Click images to immerse yourself in the melody.


1 comment:

  1. Really nice work. I particularly like the way Ditko designs pages 2-6, where he uses the Mysterious Traveler in the background and incorporates the musical notes. It also helps to see them consecutively, as you've done here.

    Nick C.



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