Archive for March, 2023

Posted Wednesday, March 8th, 2023 by Barry

Fantastic Four (1961) 176

“To write is human; to edit is divine,” Stephen King.

Again, for the Four Color Holidays veteran, you’ll remember really is a National Proofreading Day. Last year we celebrated with The Marvel No-Prize Book.

If case you’re a newbie, National Proofreading Day was created by Judy Beaver in 2011 in memory of her mother, Flo. Much like Sheldon Cooper (Big Bang Theory) she was a person who relished correcting others mistakes. To commemorate, daughter Judy chose March 8 to mark the day with her mother’s birthday.

Fantastic Four (1961) 176

Proofreading may take a backseat in today’s world of texting where punctuation and abbreviating words is common practice.

It shouldn’t.

There is still a place for proofreading. To those of you who have read more than one of these missives. To those of you who still like to crack open a book or read the news or a magazine. Mistakes can be ugly. They can be confusing.

In 1962, NASA lost contact and control with Mariner 1. It blew up 293 seconds after launch. It is believed a missed hyphen in the guidance code was the cause. A mistake that could have been caught by proofreading.

Anyway, enough with the boring stuff.

Today’s representation of the non-holiday is Fantastic Four (1961) issue 176 showcasing the then editor-in-chief of Marvel himself Stan the Man Lee.

While Stan is no stranger to typos, again, see The Marvel No-Prize Book, he was head honcho, even starting out as a proofreader at Marvel originally.

Plus, he was co-creator of the book’s guest star, the Impossible Man. In addition, half the Marvel Bullpen make cameos. Included with Stan are Jack King Kirby, George Perez, Roy Thomas, Joe Sinnott, John Verpoorten, Marv Wolfman, Archie Goodwin, Gerry Conway and Marie Severin.

Thomas, Wolfman and Goodwin were all former editors themselves.

The Impossible Man takes a tour of the Marvel offices after returning to Earth in the aptly named Improbable as it May Seem – The Impossible Man is Back in Town!

His unauthorized visit turns into a siege of sorts as Impossible Man decides he wants to be immortalized in the four-color Marvel Universe. Using his morphing ability and the illustrations of heroes and their tools of the trade, Impossible Man terrorizes the bullpen until Stan promises him his own comic book.

It may not have been published until 1991 with the Impossible Man Summer Vacation Spectacular 1.

Hopefully this reads well and there are no misspellings or miscues with the punctuation. But, if there’s a post where it would be appropriate, this would be the one.

Posted Wednesday, March 1st, 2023 by Barry

Aliens: Pig (1997)

Aliens: Pig

Aliens: Pig

In case your forgot to mark your calendars, today is National Pig Day – again.

Today is the day to celebrate all things swine. From the banks with our childhood life savings to the side order that complimented breakfast.

In case this is your first rodeo with the day, Ellen Stanley and Mary Lynne are the co-creators of National Pig Day inaugurated in 1972. Their wish was to recognize an underappreciated member of the animal kingdom and the most intelligent of the domesticated farm animals. Ones who have been the stars of books, cartoons and movies.

Granted this is a non-holiday more remembered in the heartland of America where today’s guests of honor are gathered for our future consumption. Surprisingly, it is also a popular pastime for many nursing homes. Residents are encouraged to present their collections of porcelain porcine or other sundry keepsakes.

Using Peter Porker, Porky Pig and, well, Porky again, it’s time to move on with a master of ceremonies.

This year we celebrate with a simple porcus.

In 1997 Dark Horse Comics continued their Alien franchise with Aliens: Pig. The one-shot was conceived by Chuck Dixon, maybe better remembered for all his work on the Batman family of books at DC Comics.  Henry Flint illustrated the tale and Andrew Pepoy inked.

The plot was simple enough: scavengers set out to raid a juicy ore tug wreck before its rightful owners arrive. One problem; a hive of Aliens have already staked claim at the site.

The solution was simple enough; release a pig with a low-yield nuclear device strapped to its back. Once inside the hive, detonate the gadget and partake of the plunder.

Of course, the best laid plans of mice, men and outlaws rarely go smoothly.

Aliens was one of Dark Horse Comics building blocks. The company licensed the rights to the franchise in 1988, two years after formation of the comic company.

Its first foray was simply Aliens, a six-issue mini followed by 37 further entries either in mini-series or one-shot format. That’s not including appearances in Dark Horse Presents or the Aliens vs. Predator outings.

Also outside the self-titled minis were Aliens vs. Predator vs. The Terminator, Batman/Aliens, Green Lantern Versus Aliens, Judge Dredd Vs. Aliens, Superman/Aliens, Superman and Batman versus Aliens and Predator and WildC.A.T.s/Aliens.

Not to overshadow the day, enjoy the other white meat however you like.