• Some really interesting stuff here. V for Vendetta needs no introduction, though readers in 1983 would have to wait till 1989 for the story to finish, in the color pages of a DC comic instead of in Warrior.

    The Brave and the Bold ended its run with issue 200, to be replaced with a new Batman title (which no doubt we’ll see tomorrow). The title would of course be used again on the Batman team-up cartoon of more recent vintage, as well in three non-Batman team-up series.

    Prior to DC Comics Presents 59, the Legion of Substitute Heroes were not a joke. Remarkably, Paul Levitz helped Keith Giffen remake these third-tier heroes into a running gag, until they disbanded the team and made team leader Polar Boy an actual member of the real Legion (and then, the leader of that team as well). Later writers would either embrace the absurdity of characters not good enough to join a team whose members included Matter Eater Lad, or tried everything possible to make them as capable as the main team.

    Ms. Tree was one of those comics that bounced from publisher to publisher, landing at DC at the end of the decade. I liked the stuff that Max Allan Collins and Terry Beatty did with her at DC, and would love to get my hands on the earlier issues.

    And Ben Grimm gets a solo comic, at least for the next three years, replacing Marvel Two-in-One.

    • mr_apollo

      The early issues of Ms. Tree weren’t bad. At the time I was willing to give anything from an indie publisher that was something other than superheroes a chance.

  • Rosy Fingers

    1. In that trio of ADVENTURE COMICS’ “Three Worst Villains in History,” one of these villains is not like the others. You’ve got Hitler. Sure thing. Nero. Uh-huh, fair enough. And Al Capone? The tax evader? Seems like a stretch… Why not, say, Atilla the Hun? Or Robespierre?

    2. There’s a fair amount of cartoonish silliness here, which appeals to me. SUPERMAN & THE LEGION OF SUBSTITUTE HEROES… THE SPECTACULAR J. JONAH JAMESON… SPIDER-MAN & FROG-MAN… whatever’s going on there with E-MAN. That Marver disclaimer “Warning: This story is not for the overly serious!” is like a hard sell directly to my sensibility.

    3. Was the Kool-Aid Man terrifying to American children? Because that guy is scary.

    4. This month, THE PHANTOM rehearses for the role of Riff in West Side Story.

    • The Ploughman

      I think I may have had that Kool-Aid Man comic. I didn’t find him terrifying, personally. We were well-versed in his tricks, so from time immemorial I was inured to the prospect of a giant anthropomorphic pitcher bursting through the wall in any particular building (or spacecraft) I might be occupying.

      • Rosy Fingers

        We’re all familiar with product mascots that implore us to consume their own: pigs spruiking pork products, Red and Yellow M&M’s, etc. But there’s just something so unseemly about how Kool-Aid Man’s blood is visibly sloshing around. That combines with his aggressive delivery to unnerving effect.

        • Miller

          Not to mention that he’s carrying around a miniature version of himself, right down to the shape, without regard for its potential sapience. Is that pitcher like his version of a ventriloquist dummy?

          I do appreciate his villains being explicitly tied to his commercial nature, anthropomorphizing a sensation and selling a product as a combatant against this aggressor is a time-honored strategy that works well for a comic.

          • Rosy Fingers

            I think it’s something much more insidious than a ventriloquist dummy. The little guy also has its blood sloshing about. I think it’s a Kool-Aid Baby.

            Kool-Aid Man’s certainly the right man for the job, vis-à-vis battling The Thirsties. Maybe in the next issue he could defeat the Insulin from planet Pancreas.

  • The Heart Of A Gnu Generation

    Something tells me Frank Miller’s Ronin features more scantily clad prostitutes than the original Japanese stories.

  • Babalugats

    That Kool-Aid comic is so ridiculous. Everybody knows astronauts only drink Tang.

  • Miller

    I can only assume the Texas State Fair booked the Uncanny X-Men as the undercard to Puppet Show.

  • Drunk Napoleon

    Theory: V For Vendetta and Escape From New York take place in the same universe.

    Also, I’m consistently amazed by how long genres like war comics, EC-style horror, and sword-and-sorcery remained in the spotlight.