Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Black and White Wednesday: Alex Toth's Vanguard

What's happening, Groove-ophiles? Today's B&W Wednesday post is not only a veritable feast for the ol' eyeballs, but a missing link to the short-but-oh-so-complicated history of the meteoric Atlas/Seaboard line. Seems that when Howard Chaykin first sprung The Scorpion on publisher Martin Goodman and company, they didn't dig where Humble Howie was coming from. They then commissioned the master, Alex Toth, to try his hand at the property. Toth worked like a madman, completing a ten page strip in ten days--only to have it rejected, The Scorpion being given back (if only temporarily) to Chaykin. Toth knew he had something groovy in his hands, though, and reworked the strip as The Vanguard. A couple years later, Sal Quartuccio, publisher of the very cool ground level mag, Hot Stuf', ran the strip in (ta dah!) Hot Stuf' #4 (cover dated Spring 1977). Toth, since Vanguard was going to be published in b&w rather than the color, added gray tones, and before you can say "dy-no-mite!" Mark Forte's masked alter-ego finally saw the light of day.


  1. You had me at TOTH! God luv ya, Groove!

  2. Oh, Groove, how we love ya! Toth is probably the main person in the world responsible for my obsessive escapism.

    So very cool to see this. How you get stuff like this, I'll never know… but keep doing what you do!

    Hey… ever had any notion of bundling stuff up as a CBZ or CBR?



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Special thanks to Mike's Amazing World of Comics and Grand Comics Database for being such fantastic resources for covers, dates, creator info, etc. Thou art treasures true!

Note to "The Man": All images are presumed copyright by the respective copyright holders and are presented here as fair use under applicable laws, man! If you hold the copyright to a work I've posted and would like me to remove it, just drop me an e-mail and it's gone, baby, gone.

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As for the rest of ya, the purpose of this blog is to (re)introduce you to the great comics of the 1970s. If you like what you see, do what I do--go to a comics shop, bookstore, e-Bay or whatever and BUY YOUR OWN!