Best of…


Thursday, November 15, 2007

Kick-ass Tom Sutton cover. Santoro, take notes.

It appears to be “year’s best” time, when people begin soliciting for one’s “top ten” comics of the year. In honor of that tradition, I give you:

The Outstanding Graphic Stories of 1967, as printed in Graphic Story Magazine #9, Summer 1968.

Will Eisner
The Spirit 2

“Master Time and Mobius Tripp”
George Metzger
Fantasy Illustrated 7

George Metzger
Graphic Story Magazine 8

Lee and Kirby
Fantastic Four 66 and 67

“The Aliens”
Russ Manning
Magnus, Robot Fighter 17-20

“Luck of the North”
Carl Barks [Heidi must be relieved–ed.]
The Best of Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge 2

“The Gifted Cockroach”
Will Eisner
The Spirit 2

“Showdown on Hydra Island”
Jim Steranko
Strange Tales 156-158

“Project: Blackout”
Jim Steranko
Strange Tales 160-161

Prehysterical Pogo
Walt Kelly

“Who Has Been Lying in My Grave?”
Arnold Drake and Carmine Infantino
Strange Tales 205

“Mr. A”
Steve Ditko
Witzend 3

Gee, times haven’t changed that much. Funny how most of this stuff is still considered classic– I gotta check out that Arnold Drake story. And, whatever else anyone says, that Steranko period is full of fantastic, retardo Kirby and Op-Art pastiches….man, I knew I shouldn’t keep my “collection” in the office. Ok, back to work. Honest.

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5 Responses to “Best of…”
  1. Anonymous says:

    Wow. That is a great list. I’ve never seen “Graphic Story Magazine” but I’ve read a few essays and interviews from it that were reprinted in The Comics Journal. It sounds like a great magazine, a precursor not only to Comic Art (as you suggested) but also to the Comics Journal (Gary Groth has suggested as much). It would be worthwhile for Dan or Tim to do an essay about “Graphic Story Magazine” highlighting its achievement. It seems heads and shoulders above the other fan magazines of the 1960s. Jeet

  2. Dan Nadel says:

    Yeah, I was just playing hooky re-reading some more of this issue and realizing how many of my ideas about comics were formed from reading my set of these back in 2000. I got a small run of them all at once that year and devoured them. There’s a fantastic review by Bill Spicer of Gil Kane’s His Name is Savage that goes into a concise argument about the problem of Alex Raymond’s influence on (then) contemporary comics. Nearly every problem he has is still being complained about today. Here’s a choice quote (and this is 1967!): “Emphasis on ‘illustration’ in the comics form–extension of the Raymond syndrome–has become a serious mental block in both the professional and fan communities.”
    Great stuff. GSM was also the first mag to kind of “revive” Basil Wolverton, devoting two issues to his work, including an entire issue of Bible illustrations. GSM is the best mag of its kind. The only contemporaneous publication that comes close is something called “The World of Comic Art”, which focused on comic strips, but in its publishing run in the late 1960s, logged a lot of great historical interviews and ephemera. The writing is so-so, but the material is fantastic.

    Hey Jeet, tell ya what, if you finish my 690 page Gary Panter book for me (going to press Monday) then I’ll write that article AND scrub your floors, for FREE!

  3. Johnny B says:

    I was every bit of 7 years old in 1967, but I read (and sadly, owned but do so no longer) many of these comics.

    Those Spirit stories were reprints of the late 40’s-early 50’s newspaper sections, from the second of two squareback 25ยข Harvey Comics editions. I would have chosen “The Visitor”, but there were no bad stories in either of them.

    “The Aliens” was one of my favorite series as a kid, appearing in the back of Magnus Robot Fighter…Manning outdid himself at drawing weird alien landscapes and beings.

  4. sakaridis says:

    I’m pretty sure the Arnold Drake comic is supposed to be Strange Adventures #205 and not Strange Tales. I don’t think Drake ever wrote an issue of Strange Tales and I’m almost certain that the title didn’t ever make it to 200 issues. Anyway, it’s a fantastic list and yeah, most of the books are considered classics nowadays.

  5. Inkstuds says:

    Awesome to see come respect for Metzger. He is a Vancouver institution. I will be doing an interview with him soon. It should be fascinating. He was pretty early in the underground scene.

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