Superheroes continue to dominate pop culture right now and Balladeer’s Blog’s readers let me hear it when I go too long without a superhero blog post. Here is my look at the Fox Features Syndicate heroes from the Golden Age.
Secret Identity: Jim Andrews, electrical scientist
First Appearance: Science Comics #1 (February 1940)
Origin: Jim Andrews risked his life to contain a potentially deadly accident at the electrical lab where he worked, inadvertently gaining superpowers from the incident. He donned a costume and fought the forces of evil as Dynamo.
Powers: Dynamo could use his electrical powers to shoot electric rays from his hands, to fly, to surround himself with a force field and to magnify his own strength.
Comment: In his very first appearance this hero went by the nom de guerre Electro, but in his remaining 24 adventures called himself Dynamo instead.
Secret Identity: George Davis, big-game hunter
First Appearance: Wonderworld Comics #21 (January 1941)
Origin: George Davis’ career as a big-game hunter had brought him wealth and fame. Having met all the challenges of hunting members of the animal kingdom he decided to go after the most dangerous game of all: human criminals. To that end he donned a costume and took on supervillains and Nazi agents.
Powers: The Black Lion was at the peak of human condition and had the agility of an Olympic gymnast. He was also an expert at unarmed combat and could outfight multiple opponents at once. His totem animal the lion gave him superhuman healing ability. Continue reading
AHMED ALAMEEN, motion-comic creator and best-selling author of the novel PSYCHS, has just launched his independent graphic novel project THE EPICS OF ENKIDU! Regular readers of Balladeer’s Blog are familiar with my obsession with ancient mythology, so it goes without saying that I love the premise of this tale, which combines super-heroics with mythology and autism awareness.
The man-beast Enkidu, the foe-turned-friend in The Epic of Gilgamesh, has survived to the present-day. He surfaces in a hospital, suffering from amnesia. Can an encounter with an enigmatic superhero revive his memories or will these two figures, who should be allies, instead be doomed to fight it out in a tragic misunderstanding of Earth-shaking proportions? Continue reading
Balladeer’s Blog is once again proud to cover an exciting new work from some of the most daring and visionary creators in graphic novels today. BATTLE BRICK ROAD is a post-apocalyptic take on Frank Baum’s Oz stories twisted through the ingenious prism of artist ERIC WEATHERS and writer ZEB HATFIELD with lettering by FARAH NURMALIZA.
Get ready for Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion like you’ve never seen them before – as technologically and biologically enhanced warriors in a dystopian world that not even Mad Max could survive.
Battle-hardened, survival savvy Dorothea Gale – Thea for short – searches for her father through the futuristic technological wasteland called OZ (Operation Zephyr). At her side is the hovering A.I. named TOTO (Target Objective Tactical Overwatch) and the mysterious Scarecrow, a vigilante skilled with firearms AND a deadly scythe.
The bleak world of Oz has wound up divided into four separate spheres of influence, ruled over by the Watchers of the North, South, East and West. And some of those Watchers are downright WICKED!
The villains are served by their armies of perverted biological and technological creations, with only Thea, Scarecrow, TOTO, the Tin Man and the Lion standing against them.
Order your copies of this 52 page epic today via Indiegogo: Continue reading
Richard C Meyer’s fantastic team of mercenary superheroes nicknamed the Jawbreakers are back in action! They’ve been called the new AVENGERS, the new JUSTICE LEAGUE and the new X-MEN, and with good reason.
Meyer aka Ya Boi Zack is the man who recently brought readers the spectacular Stallone graphic novel project THE EXPENDABLES GO TO HELL. He’s also the creative mastermind of the IRON SIGHTS series. However, his most popular creations remain the superheroes in JAWBREAKERS, this time with art by Aaron Alfeche, main cover by Kyle Ritter and variant cover by Meyer himself.
JAWBREAKERS: GRAND BIZARRE, the third installment of the superteam’s adventures, features never before revealed secrets regarding the group of mighty mercenaries plus the mind-blowing menace of the Grand Bazaar. Said Bazaar appears on Earth once every 66.5 years and is a more hardcore version of the kind of foes that the Justice League Dark and the 1970s Defenders fought.
The title, Grand Bizarre, is a play on Grand Bazaar, so no, that’s not a typo on my part. To order this latest volume of Jawbreakers excitement: Continue reading
Balladeer’s Blog continues its examination of B.C. Boyer’s neglected 1980s superhero the Masked Man. For Part One click HERE
ECLIPSE MONTHLY Vol 1 #10 (July 1984)
Title: Frank Capra Memorial Hospital
Villains: Six armed and masked assassins
Synopsis: This was the final issue of Eclipse Monthly, which got canceled. The Masked Man was the most popular character in the anthology magazine and he graduated to his own solo title after this. Doug Wildey’s iconic old west gunslinger Rio was also featured in this issue along with Jetta Sixx, Wayne Truman’s heroic female pilot.
True to his word, the Masked Man (Dick Carstairs) has been at the side of Maggie Brown (his emerging love interest) each step of the way for her therapy. She is still at Frank Capra Memorial Hospital learning to cope with her new blindness following her injuries during our hero’s battle with the Joe Manfredi Gang last time around. Continue reading
Anna aka That Star Wars Girl, brings her considerable artistic abilities to the 50th Anniversary Celebration of horror icon Vampirella. Fresh story content is being created this year regarding the figure’s half-century of existence along with special commemorative covers.
Anna, a free-lance artist, pop culture critic, co-host of The J.A.C.K. Show and founding member of the Fandom Menace, has her Indiegogo project for Dynamite Entertainment up right now.
Not only does Anna’s cover (at right) look terrific, but the rose in Vampirella’s hand is in memory of Anna’s younger sister Ellen Rose, who passed away last June.
T-Shirts are also available (see below). Continue reading
Comic book legend Dan Fraga shook the industry recently when he joined up with the daring, iconoclastic creative titans led by Ethan Van Sciver, Richard C Meyer, Jon Malin and others. Those “outlaws” – as I always call them – have broken away from the stale, corporate, suffocatingly conformist confines of the Big Two publishers to pursue their own creative vision.
Fraga became the latest addition to these blacklist-defying rebels and has dealt with the harrumphing backlash with true swashbuckling, two-fisted panache. Dan ran up the ComicsGate banner for the revival of his Black Flag superteam in their first adventure in 25 years.
The heroes Sniper, Rascal, Geisha, Guerilla, Raiden and Shrine are back at long last in a 48-page adventure which fuses the very best aspects of western comic books with manga plus unique elements that are pure Fraga. To order your Indiegogo copies: Continue reading