Friday, February 19, 2021

Still Truckin'/Sad Sack in "The Grudge"

 Greetings, Groove-ophiles! Ol' Groove is just checking in to reassure everyone that he (and DotGK) are alive and well--just buuuuuussssaaayy!

Writing/lettering/promoting your own comics it pretty time-consuming, but I love it! It's a great escape from work, Covid, and all the craziness that goes along with it. I just sent Diversions #4 to the printers, so it should be available via IndyPlanet in print and digital a few weeks from now. I also put it on DriveThruComics for all the .pdf fans out there. This issue is extra special because it features the last collaboration with my pal, the late Donnie Page. He created U.S. Flag and Liberty Lad (his version obviously, of Captain America and Bucky), long ago. A few years back we co-plotted the story, then in 2019, while battling cancer, Donnie drew this amazing, Groovy Age-style, wall-to-wall action mini-thriller in his (as he called it) "Sal Buscema-clone" style. This summer, inker/finisher John Gentil took on the task of getting the story ready for print by digitally enhancing and inking PHOTOS of the pages Donnie had taken with his phone--because he never got the chance to scan them. Herculean efforts like those of Donnie and John NEED to be published, so I'm thrilled to get this story into print. I'm especially thrilled that my friends Steven Butler and Mort Todd have allowed me to use their art (which they created to cheer Donnie up) as the cover. 

Art by Steven Butler/Colors by Mort Todd

There's also a a magnificently illustrated, by JW Erwin, Night Spider story in the issue...

...and Joe Koziarski rocked the modern/retro feel of super-science-hero Max Miracle, as well.

We also had a bit of a lark creating these faux snack cake ads in the style of the Groovy Age Hostess snack cake ads that ran in so many of our favorite comics...

Art by JW Erwin

Art by Joe Koziarski

The Guns & Rosa faux ad is in the OTHER book we sent to print (and DriveThru if you like your comics on the digital side), Guns & Rosa Special Edition #1. Joe Koziarski did the fantabulous cover, ad, and art for all the Rosa material (which was originally published in the first two issues of Diversions, but collected here in one mag for folks who like their anthologies to feature only one character). 

Ol' Groove has also been working on more characters/stories for  upcoming issues of Diversions, AND writing a prose novelette for an upcoming project that I can't speak of now, but will blow your socks off in the near future!

So, in short, Ol' Groove hasn't been a Sad Sack this year! And speaking of Sad Sack...Here's my favorite Sad Sack story from Sad Sack #200 (April 1968), with art (according to GCD) by Fred Rhoads--"The Grudge!"

George Baker's cover for Sad Sack #200

Oh, it's been a while since Ol' Groove has given a shout-out to some of his favorite blogs! Here are a few new-er ones that shine like Groovy Age stars (and you can always find them in the "Mind Blowing Blogs" list in the sidebar)!

Groove-ophile Michael Mead's Occasional Murmerings is one of Ol' Groove's favorite reads. He's currently discussing Jack Kirby's Fourth World mags as they each reach their 50th anniversary. Michael has an awesome spin on discussing these mags by showing how The King had his finger on the pulse of the times and how the real world helped him create the Fourth World. If you haven't been reading Michael's blog, you really need to check it out!

Attack of the 50 Year Old Comic Books by Alan Stewart is another must-read for all fans of the Groovy Age! Alan's delving into 1971, the year that Kid Groove turned into a full-fledged comicbook fiend, baby, and Alan is so adept at, not only recalling how he felt/feels about the comics, but the stories behind the creation of those comics that you just can't stop reading!

And Benton Grey's Into the Greylands is also covering good ol' 1971, but Benton's reviewing the groovy mags in his own inimitable way that add new insights that make you really think about the comics he's reviewing. Ol' Groove digs the way he looks at the mags with more of a modern eye, rather than just (yeah, like Ol' Groove) so much nostalgia. 

One last thing, Ol' Groove just has to thank Joeseph Simon and the gang at First Comics News for interviewing yers trooly about my fantasy creations, Kragor and Ash-Aman. As much as I dig rapping about the Groovy Age of comics, it's pretty cool to get to rap about my own stuff!

Cover art by Russ Martin

Stay safe and dry, Groove-ophiles, and I'll see ya next time! Pax! 


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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.

All other commentary and insanity copyright GroovyAge, Ltd.

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!