February 9, 2010

Unusual Tales - A Matter Of Luck

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

To be clear, it's probably just as well some of these stories have never been reprinted...

"A Matter Of Luck" is the 5-page lead story from Charlton's UNUSUAL TALES #12 [1958].  As is often the case, the opening image presents a dramatic moment from later in the story.  In this case, the excitement is a man correctly guessing the number of beans in a jar.  And yes, sadly, that is as dramatic as the story gets...

So the main interest is in the Ditko art, even moreso than usual for these stories.  The lead character's hair is one of those signature Ditko styles, of course, as is his sometimes rather disconcerting smirk.  And page 3 gives us a small two-faced double-take that never ceases to amuse.

Some links to check out:
Buy Ditko's creator-owned work
A DITKO ACT TWO now available
Find out about the fanzine DITKOMANIA
New issue scheduled for next month
Check out new and upcoming Ditko publications
Creeper reprint inches ever closer
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 big-up.


  1. Cute little tale -- but I certainly get the impression that the writer got to page 5 and had to end the story!

  2. It seems a LOT of these short tales from publishers like Charlton, ACG, and the like are like that. It seems the stories really needs a couple of more pages, but instead things are quickly wrapped up in the last panel or two, with the main characters exposing on a few things to take care of any final story threads.

  3. I liked the story but agreed about the rushed-seeming end. It has a charming style to it, reminiscent of the Lee-Ditko fantasy 5-pagers. I bet if this HAD been reprinted by Charlton back in 1984 when I first became a Ditko fan, it would be a real sentimental favorite of mine.



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