Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Decent Comics: "The Swami and...the Spectre" by Fleisher and Aparo

Dig it, Groove-ophiles! 'Tis no secret that one of Ol' Groove's all-time favorite series is Michael Fleisher (aided by Russell Carley) and Jim Aparo's Spectre from Adventure Comics. "Grim and Gritty" before it became a trend (and much more interesting than any g&g that came after), the Spirit of Vengeance laid down the law--and took out the bad-guys! Here's a classic from Adventure Comics #433 (February 1974): "The Swami and...the Spectre!"


  1. I LOVE this series. It's grotesque and violent but compelling. Aparo's art is ideal to present the mystery of the Spectre, make the ghost feel legit. Fleischer's stories are full of fury, and seeing the villains get brutal and lethal transformations was truly shocking. Spidey webbed them up for the cops but the Spectre took justice into his own immortal hands and dealt it with a grim ferociousness. Great comics!

    Rip Off

  2. One message Fleisher and Aparo imparted was that it wasn't very healthy to do wrong! Brrr...the gruesome endings the evildoers suffered. Part of the fun of this series was seeing what new bizarre way the Spectre would carry out the punishment.

  3. I will simply echo Key above. This was about the only DC comic I would buy as long as the Spectre was in the cover.

  4. ohh...Thanks for sharing this amazing and informative article.

  5. I cannot help but remember the notorious 1979 Comics Journal interview with Harlan Ellison that was conducted by Gary Groth. They both opined that Michael Fleisher's Spectre scripts revealed a sadistic lunacy, & Fleisher sued for two million dollars, saying they had destroyed his professional reputation with libellous remarks. Fleisher lost the case, but Groth & Ellison lost their friendship through the course of it all. Below are links to the interview as well as a summary of the court proceedings:



    Chris A

  6. There is a timeless quality to this series, that never gets old and while it is wholly a product of the Groovy age, it has nevertheless not dated in the least. Such a shame DC saw fit to bring it to a premature end. I believe one of the directions Fleisher said he would have taken, would have been to develop the relationship between Corrigan and Gwendolyn, I would have liked to have seen where that would have led. Thanks for sharing Groove.

  7. This is one of my favorite series; only more so today. There is a real sense of timelessness to these Spectre tales, even though there is a 70's vibe going through it: timelessness like what is found in the EC books or Creepy/Eerie. I really miss Jim Aparo, who was truly one of a kind. Thanks, Groove!



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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!

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