Archive for the ‘Christmas Covers’ Category

Posted Tuesday, July 7th, 2020 by Barry

Sugar and Spike (1956) 44

Sugar and Spike find parenting isn’t as hard as grown-ups would have them believe in ‘Santa’s Parents.’

Sugar and Spike (1956) 44

Sugar and Spike (1956) 44

In another misunderstanding, the two tykes find themselves fending for themselves. Finding a remote control only brings more confusion to the holiday season as Santa does his job only too well courtesy of Sugar and Spike.

All is forgiven when the unexpected publicity brings mountains of money.

‘Little Arthur’s War’ is the second act. Santa dispenses justice rather than coal for the bratty Arthur.

Arthur gets his revenge – briefly – as he wreaks havoc with the push of a few buttons in act three. His reign of terror is ended and his destruction tallied in dollars and sense.

The final part of the four-act adventure is a lesson for the parents, who are taught they are never too old to learn.

Tucked between stories are some one-page funnies and a chance to make some greeting cards.

Maybe the sum and total of the book is another December survival.

Posted Thursday, June 25th, 2020 by Barry

Spider-Man Kids julehefte 2009

This is just a fun looking Christmas comic book. C’mon, Spidey and the Green Goblin duking it out over Santa? How could it get any better?

Maybe with some translation and background?

Good luck with that.

About all I could glean from the cover was the Danish to English translation stating the book has “posters, activity pages and lots of Christmas fun.” Secondly, it’s a Christmas booklet.

Hanging 10 on the ‘Net, I’ve not been able to find much on this comic book. If you have any knowledge, please contact Jeff or I. We’d love to feature this with more information.

Thanks to Yet Another Comics Blog for the heads up.

Spider-Man Kids julehefte 2009

Posted Friday, June 12th, 2020 by Barry

Mickey and Donald Christmas Parade (2019) 5

Christmas 2019 would not be complete without IDW’s Disney holiday offering from afar.

The fifth installment brought something new with Topolino – or Mikey Mouse – 3239, originally printed in 2017. The opening tale, ‘Mickey Mouse and the Lost Toy,’ is a which-way story. Our titular hero loses his gift for Minnie. Mickey’s fate is determined by the choices made by readers. Most don’t end well.

Mickey and Donald Christmas Parade (2019) 5

Mickey and Donald Christmas Parade (2019) 5

This is followed by a one-page funny called ‘Christmas in Mouseton.’ Mickey falls victim to an expanding waistline. This from Topolino issue 3083, circa 2014.

‘Christmas in the Money Bin’ is another one-page excursion, this time with Uncle Scrooge. Technology helps Duckburg’s most prominent citizen with his electric bill, but does little to enlighten the town. This is reprinted from issue 3083, too.

Skipping forward to 2016 and issue 3187, readers are welcomed by ‘Uncle Scrooge and the Christmas Contest.’

Scrooge sets his sites on the season’s hottest toy in hopes of closing a business deal. His holiday lesson is individuality is a valuable trait.

‘Christmas at the Farm,’ with Donald and Mickey, is another one-page affair. Mickey’s memory is longer than Donald’s in this retelling from Topolino 3083.

Peg Leg Pete gets top billing in ‘Christmas Spirit.’ One kind act can offer far reaching benefits, especially during the holidays. This from Topolino 3187, 2016.

The book finishes with two one-page funnies.

‘Christmas in Duckburg,’ with Donald and nephews, jumps the calendar by several months.

‘Christmas at Grandma Duck’s’ is another Donald vehicle featuring Uncle Scrooge.

The first of the last two was originally published in Topolino 3239, 2017 and Topolino 3135, 2015.

Posted Saturday, June 6th, 2020 by Barry

Unexpected (1956) 220

‘Santa Claus is a Killer!’

Robin Snyder and Sarah Gregory phoned this one in and stayed home for the holidays.

Work beckons daddy Denny, leaving mommy Margaret and daughter home alone. It just so happens a madman has escaped from a local asylum and is sporting a Santa suit. A literary shell game ends with an arrest, a surprise and salutation from the real man of the North Pole.

Horror veteran Ernie Colon provides the proper atmosphere with pencil and pen.

The opening salvo is the only holiday offering for this issue. Three more shorts, ‘The Bride is Aglow,’ ‘The Strange Guide’ and ‘Trollbridge’ close out the book.

Unexpected is a continuation of National Periodical’s Tales of the Unexpected running until issue 222 in 1982.

It was brought back as an eight-issue mini in 2006.

Unexpected began as a sci-fi title before giving up spaceships for ghosts. It became part of DC’s stable of horror-anthology titles that closed out the 1960s and ran till the early 1980s.

Unexpected (1956) 220

Posted Thursday, May 28th, 2020 by Barry

Alpha Flight (1983) 105

‘The Bachelor Party!’

Not a name you’d associate with a Christmas issue. It is what you get, courtesy of Scott Lobdell and Tom Morgan for the 1991 season.

It’s Christmas Eve and snowing. It’s also a night for bachelor and bachelorette parties.

Alpha Flight (1983) 105

Alpha Flight (1983) 105

The boys decide to down their pints at Corky’s Tavern. The girls choose a rowdier atmosphere at Cloisters, a male strip club run by former foil Pink Pearl.

The Christmas spirit comes from the guys who stop a robbery and show mercy on a suffering soul. The girls wind up in jail.

If you were a regular reader, this might be a fun story. Not on par with Incredible Hulk 417, but still a quirky excuse for some peace on Earth.

I am not a regular reader.

So, this issue is confusing and with little charm beyond what is perceived.

Alpha Flight is an early X-Men spin off. The team’s first appearance was in Uncanny X-Men (1963) 120.

Volume one ran from 1983 to 1994. It was relaunched with new characters in 1997. The team and title were revamped once again in 2004 with the All New, All Different Alpha Flight. In 2007 it became Omega Flight and, in 2011, became Alpha Flight again in volume four.

Posted Thursday, May 21st, 2020 by Barry

Sugar and Spike (1956) 38

Mysterious Secrets have Sugar and Spike worried their parents are mad at each other.

Sugar is dropped at Spike’s house while her parents do some last-minute shopping. She shares her concerns about the strange goings on at both homes.

The suspicions mount and the tots decide to hide presents so Spike’s parents will conspire to solve the mystery and not be mad at each other. As fate – and creator Sheldon Mayer – would have it, the garbage men are collecting trash.

Sugar and Spike (1956) 38

Sugar and Spike (1956) 38

Finding the presents, they assume they are rewarded for their services throughout the year as mail men and delivery men are.

The two sprites help solve the misunderstanding, but are relegated to a corner for their misdeeds.

Nanty Minerva’s Adventure with Santa Claus is another misunderstanding on both sides. She can’t understand why she scares Spike and Spike can’t understand why she doesn’t like him.

A Santa suit pulls both sides together in an unexpected way.

Foot Trouble has no Christmas spirit, but does question the choices we make.

Christmas Eve Battle shows there is justice in childrens’ worlds after all.

Another holiday offering from Mr. Mayer and his childish charges.

Posted Monday, May 18th, 2020 by Barry

Looney Tunes (1994) 10

The Looney Tunes revamp with DC offered its first of several seasonal outtings with issue 10.

Bugs and Daffy are struggling chimney sweeps in How the Wabbit Saved Christmas. Elmer is just struggling with his Christmas spirit. To buoy Fudd’s flagging festiveness, the duo decorates the fretting homeowners’ abode. That ends in disaster with demolition bringing Santa down.

To save Christmas – and give the story’s title credence – Bugs dons the red union suit and Daffy the red reindeer nose. Their travels take them to Tasmania, Paris and Mexico for special gifts before returning home.

Looney Tunes (1994) 10

Looney Tunes (1994) 10

The story has a happy ending for all but the Jolly One himself.

Sylvester’s is Trapped Up in the spirit of snooping in the second yuletide offering.

Bugs tortures Elmer in an untitled final funny of the book. Daffy has a walk-on guest appearance.

Readers were also treated to ‘A Carrot Christmas.’ This counting exercise helps Bugs learn how many carrots were left under his tree.

Tweety’s Twee Twimming Tips is a word search for items normally adorning the annual Christmas tree.

Merry Christmas from the denizens of the Looney Tunes universe – even if the big day is seven months off.

Posted Friday, April 3rd, 2020 by Barry

Marvel Digital Holiday Special (2008)

Marvel Digital Holiday Special (2008)

Marvel Digital Holiday Special (2008)

Marvel offered the Marvel Digital Holiday Special as an exclusive to their online subscription service Dec. 17, 2008.

In the first story, the X-Men herald the holidays and service with ‘If the Fates Allow.’ Storm, Wolverine, Iceman, Angel, Beast Cyclops, Colossus, etc. celebrate with a bittersweet loss of Kitty Pryde for the first Christmas without their youngest member.

‘Last Christmas’ is a prelude to Secret Invasion.

‘Werewolf by Eve’ is a one-page slapstick story of the Russell home.

Finally, the jolly, fat one borrows the Infinity Gauntlet in ‘Santa Claus vs. The Illuminati.’ The results are not good.

Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited was launched Nov. 13, 2007 with over 25,000 issues at the ready for fanboys.

Posted Monday, March 23rd, 2020 by Barry

Sensational Spider-Man (2005) 24

Sensational Spider-Man (2005) 24

Sensational Spider-Man (2005) 24

Peter finally finds the Christmas spirit in himself while looking for the perfect gift.

The hapless hero finds himself without the holiday cheer. He doesn’t know why. He started early and found the right gifts for the right people. Maybe it’s the bounty a recently returned Norman Osborn has offered for Spider-Man’s head. Or, the hard year and Mary Jane have had.

Fellow journalist Billy Walters surprises Peter with an unexpected gift. One for which Peter has no reciprocal present for. Soul searching – and his red and blue union suit – bring the answer.

Hydro Man also makes an appearance in this issue, but doesn’t add to the storyline.

Not a bad story for a time when Marvel was going through so much turmoil. I only recently stumbled across this by accident.

Merry Christmas from the merry Marvel team and the Spider-Man family.

Posted Wednesday, February 19th, 2020 by Barry

Batgirl (2017) 18

First, thanks to Jeff for not only bringing this issue to my attention, but adding it to my stocking stuffers from him for Christmas 2018.

Batgirl 18 is a serviceable issue. Other than it makes me feel old. Barb and two friends attend a Christmas party and Harley Quinn crashes.

Batgirl (2017) 18

Batgirl (2017) 18

The story makes me feel old in the fact I can’t see me at a mixer like that anymore. I wouldn’t begin to know how to dress, mingle or stay awake as late as it probably would have gone without interference.

This is not the Batgirl I grew up with. That incarnation was created by Julius Schwartz, Gardner Fox and Carmine Infantino; concept by William Dozer. She appeared in Detective Comics (1939) issue 359.

I also enjoyed Cassandra Cain and Stephanie Brown as Batgirl.

When DC unveiled the New 52 and Barbara Gordon was back complete with working limbs, I was thrilled. Gail Simone took the returned Batgirl through her paces for 34 issues and did an excellent job.

Barbara then received new writers and relocated to Burnside, a ward of Gotham City. More importantly she took on a new persona. Batgirl was now posting selfies and working personal media like a Kardashian.

Having never negotiated a Facebook page and only tweeted a year for an organization I belong to, I felt old.

On the precipice of 54 – as of this writing – social media is the tool of the devil to me. Too much drama. Too many egos asking to be stroked. I’m sure it has its merits, but not to me.

Oh, and Batgirl 18? A good read if you can’t remember when telephones hung on the wall and cartoons came only on Saturday mornings.