Friday, June 21, 2013

The Grooviest Covers of All Time: Summer of 1978--the DC Explosion Begins!

Hey, hey, hey, Groove-ophiles! 35 years ago this month, DC tried one of it's boldest experiments ever, reformatting their entire line of comics from 36 page 35 cent mags with 17 pages of story to 44 page 50 cent mags with 25 story pages*. They called it the DC Explosion**, and man, did it thrill kids like Teen Groove. Those eight extra pages promised brand new back-up features starring old favorite characters--and a few new ones. These ads teased and pleased us during the Spring of 78...

Then during the first week of June the first wave rolled out. DC was doing their doggondest to produce comics that were actually worth the extra fifteen cents they were asking us to shell out. And doggoned if they weren't pulling it off--at least to my 14-going-on-15 year old eyes! Wouldn't you have been jumping for joy based on this collection of cooler-than-cool covers?

Bought this one before watching the premiere of GREASE!

*That's not exactly, wholly true. A few mags--Justice League and Superboy and the Legion, f'rinstance, were actually reformatted down from 52 page-with-34-story-pages-for-60 cents. For those mags the Explosion was a slight let-down. Oh, and the Dollar Comics went from 80 pages with 62 or 63 pages of story to 68 pages with no ads, which made them even cooler!

**Yeah, Ol' Groove knows about the dread "DC Implosion"--and we'll get around to that in August (which is exactly 35 years after I found out--the hard way--that the party was already over, since I had no access to fanzines at the time). If you want a head-start on all the doom and gloom, visit Christopher Elam's OWARI for the absolute best article I've ever read on the subject. Next month we'll look at how DC exploded in July, 1978. 'Til then, enjoy!


  1. You know this post makes me feel so sad, even after 35 years.

  2. Seems to me Teen Groove wasn't much of a Super Friends fan, as issue 14 came out in June '78 as well. I remember, 'cause I bought it at a newsstand. How do you plead?

  3. I'll admit, I'd "outgrown" Super-Friends, so I don't have it, but I have the cover to ish 14 cued up for July, 'cause according to the cover date (and the "next issue on sale on/or about" notice at the end of the story) t'was at least supposed to have come out in July. Hmmmmmm....

  4. Wow, this brings back memories; even though I was primarily a Marvel boy, I had quite a few of these. That Adventure dollar comic in particular was a favorite, and I still remember how quickly I snapped that off of the spinner rack when I saw it.
    Also, I just love(d) that first house ad. I remember back then I actually cut it out of one of my comic books and turned it into a pin-up.

  5. Man, most of these covers still make me want to find out what's inside...

  6. I only ever bought DC if there were no Marvels but I was surprised to see that I bought the Batman, Dynamic Classics and Hex from this post. I re bought the Dynamic Classics recently and I reckon that Hex cover needs to find a home at my house again too.



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