Thru The Looking Glass
Thursday Story Day.
Something to read for the Christmas weekend. I was proud to recieved my copy of Twomorrows' comics fanzine Alter Ego #90, which has a 19 page article by yours truly on the writing career of Stan Lee in the 1940's and '50's, ie before his 'uncle's' company downsized in the late fifties and went on the revolutionize the comics industry with their 'modern' superheroes. As started by Roy Thomas Alter Ego originally had as it's subject matter the history and peculiarites of superheroes in comics in the golden, silver and bronze age (with a rough cut-off point somewhere in the 70's) and anything else that Roy liked or worked on. Since then the number of fanzines covering anything else than the newest comics has shrunk into very small numbers and Alter Ego seems to have tured into the only publication honoring, profiling and interviewing the comic creators of yesteryear (some of the interviews appearing after they have died at an already respectably old age). I have written for Roy before, contributing a couple of pieces about Harvey Kurtzman (based on rare Kurtzman stuff I had found) and a complete overview of all Mad comic imitations, which ran so long that it had to be cut into two parts. The first appearing in #86, the second to be in the upcoming #91. I have several more pieces in the pipeline, some already in Roy's computer, others still a surprise.
This article was written about two years ago and it flowed naturally from my work on a play about Jack Kirby, Joe Simon and Stan Lee called The King and I. I wrote The King and I for the 2000 comic convention in Bristol at the request (for a performance piece) by it's organizer Kev Sutherland. I knew Kev from SitVac, a private theatre company rehearsing and performing on stage sitcom scripts by new writers. As a Dutch comedy writer willing to entertain the idea of an international career, I had contacted them about joining them sometime (although nothing came of that). The play, which combined my knowledge of the career of Jack Kirby with my obsession with the nature of creative collaboration, practically wrote itself. It was performed at the convention with a huge succes, which even let to a couple of private production at the Bristol school for young actors. This year it will be performed at the Dutch comic convention by professional actors and I hope to finally e able to arrange at least on eproduction in teh US (preferably at a New York convention, but I am not picky). I hope that will lead to a tour of all US conventions. The play only has three major parts, with added bits for a chorus, which can be played by any attendants. In Bristol these chorus bits were coldread by some of the attending comic book artists, including Dave Gibbons (who told me afterwards the play gave him a couple of interesting new insights into the relationships of Kirby and Simon).
In the play, Stan Lee is the liveliest of the three characters. Although I used a couple of interiews for some of the bits, I also had to write Stan myself and in doing that, I found out a lot about the nature of his writing style. Years later, when more and more of Lee's comics material became available in scans and reprints, I decided to go through them to see if I could turn these observations into something solid. I did and I could. You will have to buy Alter Ego #90 for my earth shattering observations. There's also a digital version available from Twomorrows, which has the added bonus that lot of the illustrations are in color. And the illustrations are a major reason for getting this magazine. As always, Roy has found a lot of stuff to illuminate my points (including some rare Joe Maneely and Dan DeCarlo pieces I had sent him). The best one to me are a photo of Steve Allen and a caricature of Stan Lee, accompanying my observation that the their humor styles are very similar, showing that their glasses and hairdo were similar as well.
What Roy could not add, was some of the material I wrote in preperation for the article. As I say in the article, Stan Lee seems to have signed all of the stories he wrote in the fifties or at least most of them. I made a list of all stories he signed and some he didn't that seem to have his characteristics. In preparing the list, I also added short descriptions of all the stories in case I wanted to use them. In the end I used far less than I prepared, so I am presenting them here. A list of all horror' stories Stan Lee wrote and signed in the fifties, when he was the main editor of Timely/Atlas (as the many named company of his 'uncle' Martin Goodman is now usually called), with short story descriptions of most of them. For all eternity to see, or at least until the end of my Google account. I also tried to ad as many first pages as possible. The humor of the story completely follows his style and the job number fits in with two other signed stories he seems to have written on the same day. For more explenation of the job number thingy, see Alter Ego of have a visit at the Atleas Tales website, which lists the complete output of the company that would be Marvel.
But first, the list. I have added a couple of stories which might be by Stan Lee, but are not signed. This is the audience participatio aprt of this post. I have reasons for each of them to think they may be by Lee, but now you can see for yourself.
Stan Lee horror stories:
8954 Suspense #11 Haunted! Maneely 3 pages – a man returns to his house after a horrific accident. He overhears people in town saying it’s now a haunted house, but he doesn’t mind. Why not? Well, he’s the ghost.
9302 Suspense #12 The Trumpet! Maneely 2 pages – a mysterious blond haired man buys a paper and is disgusted by the amount of violence in the world. “I’ve had enough of it! I’m gonna go where I can blow my horn and never have to read a paper again!” Unfortunately, his horn is stolen on the train. But maybe that’s not a bad thing. When the train conductor asks his name he says it’s Gabriel... and disappears in the mist.
Sounds like a typical Stan Lee gag. It isn't signed, but it does have the typical Stan Lee abbreviations for colloqual language, like 'see ya' en 'I won't haveta'. Another argument in favor: both stories before this one are written and signed by Lee, so it might have been an afterthought after doing It's A Duck's Life. All stories at Timely were given a job number when they were paid and since Lee wrote at home, it is logical for him to have brought in his stories in batches.
9368 Astonishing #9 Who Dares To Enter??? Maneely 3 pages – “Did someone mention a haunted house? ... Did I hear you snicker and laugh to yourself?? ... True, a dead house and dead tenants are things used by writers of eerie tales to entertain the masses! No one really believes in ghosts, or haunted corridors, or strange lights come and go in a house that’s been deserted for over twenty years! Of course they don’t... but here’s the door... it’s open... well?’ A young reporter is send to the haunted Griswald House to spend the night there. Old Jeb Kenny, the caretaker will let him in. “I’ll come back with a story proving ghosts don’t exist!” So he sits there all night with Jeb Kenney, waiting for a sign of anything supernatural, but nothing happens. But when he returns, his editor gives him a clipping of a story the feb 9, 1926 edition of the Daily Globe: “Griswald Ghost Seen Again! For the third time a visitor has reported seeing the ghost of Jeb Kenny... the caretaker who was murdered a year ago!”
9731 Mystery Tales #1 Horror On Channel 15 Tumlinson 6 pages unsigned – in the small town of Larkin local television executive Bruce Baxter proposes a horror program that will shock the nation. He searches everywhere for ideas. In haunted houses, magician’s dens and cemeteries, but he realizes the horror he wants does not exist... except in his imagination. So he designs his own prop monster, a gruesome giant that comes alive when he is hit by electrical cables in rehearsal. Everyone thinks it’s one of Baxter’s publicity stunts, but the monster goes out and kills everyone in town.
This story is not signed by Lee, but it’s a six page tale where four or five would have been enough, it starts with a full page sequence from a big town horror show the hero wants to copy, there is a one tier sequence with minimal captions and the hero/villain's name is Bruce Baxter.
And here it is...
9926 Suspense #16 Alone In The Dark! Kida 7 pages – ten year old Donald Dugan is alone in the house with his uncle Claude. His parents go out at nights and leave him alone with uncle Claude to babysit him, but he doesn’t like it. In fact, he is sure his uncle is going to kill him. He remembers one night, when he was out of his room, he returned to find a knife sticking out of his blankets. When he finally confronts his uncle he admits it. He wants to kill him and his mother and father, before they can kill him. He pulls his knife. Donald doesn’t know what to do. A scream. When mom and dad they find uncle Claude dead and little Donald standing beside him. “I’m sorry, mommy! But you know ho hungry I get after the stroke of midnight!” “Leave the boy alone, dear! He can’t help it if he is only a werewolf, instead of a vampire like us!”
9927 War adventures #3 Cycle! Maneely 3 pages
9984/7 are all two-pagers
9988 Astonishing #12 The Torture Chamber Colan 7 pages –Eric Grimm is the best writer of horror stories in the world. He has wax figures of his most famous creations, such as Wolf Man and Vampire. But as his publisher reminds him, he needs to come up with something new. The public is getting tired of his weird villains. So he designs a torture chamber and picks up a hobo from the streets to record his dialogue while he is being tortured. Unfortunately the hobo faints and Grimm has to let him go before he is of any use to him. But then the wax figures come alive. Grimm hides in the torture chamber and waits for them to go away. “Eric - you fool, snap out of it. You’ve been working too hard! You’re cracking up! Nothing moved outside! Wax figures can’t come alive!” But they do... and they know how to operate a torture chamber... and now the greatest horror story of all time... will never be written.
A-021 Mystic #8 We Meet at Midnight Paul Reinman
A man communicates with the spirit of the Sphinx in order to learn the Egyptian's greatest secret. It turns out the Sphinx considers the Egyptian's greatest secret the process of mummification...which it proceeds to demonstrate.
A-070 Uncanny Tales #1 While The City Sleeps Heath 7 pages – Nick Kent is an F.B.I. agent who sees a flying saucer landing at a graveyard. Yellow creatures with the bodies of earthworms come out and crawl their way into the graves. The dead emerge from the graves as living men and woman and return to their ship. Nick Kent follows them and hears their leader explain that Martians have been substituting bodies of the human dead for their own. Soon they will outnumber the earthlings and claim the planet for their own. When Kent tries to tell his boss this story, he won’t believe him. The editor of the Globe tells him to go and tell it to the comic strip editor. He decides to go back to the ship to photograph the creatures, but they discover him and eat him up. “too bad they didn’t believe him! But then, they never believe him... till it’s too late!”
Here's the splash page...
A-109 Uncanny #1 Satan And Sammy Snodgrass Reinman 6 pages – It’s a slow day in hell and the devil goes to Lefty’s saloon looking for new... ‘tenants’. He meets Sammy Snodgrass, who never refused or lost a bet. The devil bets him that he will not grant Sammy any wish (and thereby winning his soul), whatever it is. So Sammy takes the bet. He wishes the devil will never claim his soul. So now the devil can claim his soul... but he can’t. Sammy leaves the devil to work that on out and he is still working on it.
Here it is in full...
A-110 Spellbound #3 The Worm 7 pages – Casper is a loser. His older brother Hugo has inherited the family fortune and he keeps Casper around as his personal lackey. He orders him around and calls him a worm instead of a man. He secretly loves his brother’s wife Violet, but when he asks her why she didn’t wait for him she calls him a worm, too. She dares him to kill his brother, but he can’t. Or can he? Casper has nightmares of killing his brother as a giant worm and decides to have a go at it. The worm has turned. He buys rat poison and mixes it with Hugo’s nightcap. When his brother lies dead on the floor, he runs to Violet, hoping she will have him now. But she turns as well and holds him under fire while she calls the police. They fight and the gun goes off. When the police arrive, Casper is paralyzed and he is pronounced dead, buried alive and left... for the worms.
A-322 Mystic #10 Death Notice! [Roth] 6 pages unsigned – Obituary writer Mack Maxon hates his job. He discovers he can kill people by writing their obituary before they die. He sells his gift to an escaped gangster, killing the judge who convicted him, the witnesses and all twelve jury members. But when he wants to take the money the ghosts of his victims come after him. This doesn't read as a Stan Lee story, but it is notable because riting abituaries was his first paid job as a writer. So he may have inspired the story at a story conferance. A-318/321 and A-324 are text stories, A-323 isn't yet identified at Atlas Tales.
A-340 Mystery Tales #3 The Vampire Strikes Heath 6 pages – blond haired Herman is a simple butcher, who doesn’t believe in vampires, even though the town he lives in seems to be haunted by a mysterious vampire killer. His father was from Austria and used to scare him with stories about them. The beautiful Wilma Lincher is in love with him, but for some reason he doesn’t return the feeling. He would rather lock himself in his shop. While the police is looking for the killer, he turns her away from his shop and locks himself in his refrigerator... and realizes too late it is the perfect spot for bat-like creatures to make their home!
Here it is for you...
A-439 Suspense #20 The Beast-Man Roth 6 pages
A-530 Uncanny Tales #2 The Man Who Melted Unknown 4 pages – Wolfgang Nobbledink was the world’s most absent-minded professor. When he takes his wife to the movies he even forgets who she is or if they have seen the movie. He even forgets what side of the room the door is on. He invents a liquid which will melt him down so he can kill his wife and disappear. Only he forgets one little thing... to invent a way to turn himself back to human form.
Here it is, a rare Stan Lee four page story from this period. The artist is unknown, but not unaccomplished. So someone womewhere must recognize his style...
A-566 Mystic #10 They Called Her A Witch! Heath 3 pager – In the Hungarian town op Liepzwig a man tries to defend a poor old lady when the townsfolk call her a witch. He goes to her house and is greeted by the old lady’s daughter. They wait togetehr for her mother, who is out for a ride. What does she ride on? Why, a broom of course!
A-595 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #9 Too Much T.V. 3 pager – Elmer has a new tv but his wife Hepzibah watches too much. How does he know it’s too much? Well, her head changes into a cathode.
A-596 Journey Into Unknown Worlds #12 two-pager unsigned, but adjacent to the signed A-595. After that A-597 is an unsigned war story (A Tank Can Also Die! 6pg [Tuska]), A-598 another unsigned war story (Midnight Raid! 6pg Colan) and A-599 another signed horror story (see below). I should reread those two war stories fo signs of Lee's style indicators.
A-599 Mystic #11 Death And Tommy Norton Romita 7 pages – Tommy Norton is a rich orphan being raised by his aunt and uncle. Aunt Elvira wants to kill him and Uncle Raymond is too feeble to do anything about it. Luckily Tommy also has a toy soldier he calls The Captain to protect him. One night Aunt Elvira decides to do it, killing her husband first when he tries to stop her. She enters his room with a poker held high. The next morning, she is found dead on the floor. The detective looks for the bullet. “I’ve got the bullet now! It’s made from cork... from a toy gun!”
The full story can now be seen at Karswell's The Horrors Of It All website.
A-614 Mystic #25 Have You Ever Seen A Huge, Black Vampire Flying Above You, Waiting To Swoop Down On You? Romita 4 pages – A little Austrian village is plagued by vampires. The town board of governers hold an emergency meeting to choose a new mayor, after the old one is killed by the vampires. They choose Herr Gustaff, because he has no family. But he knows he will never think of a way to destroy the living dead. Why? Well, he’s a vampire himself, of course.
A-617 Spellbound #5 I Have To Kill [Stallman] – a worker in a slaughterhouse has bad dreams about being led into a stockade together with other humans to be killed by cows. But when he wakes up he discovers he has killed his fellow workers.
A three page story that could be written by Stan Lee, as it has his type of gag ending. But it starts with a flash forward splash page and it doesn’t have the simple linear build-up of his stories. The job number is only three stories away from one of his signed stories, but A-616 is written by Carl Wessler (attributed by Doc V. through Wessler’s own records).
A-627 Strange Tales #9 The Voice Of Doom! Benulis? 5 pages unsigned – comic book publisher Hendrix installs a listening device to spy in his artists. But one day, as he clicks the button he hears a voice telling him it’s the last thing he’ll ever hear. The low, rasping voice describes his death and the horrors that will wait after it. At first, Hendrix thinks he must have been hypnotized, but then there is strange sound... and a green ghost comes from the device to take him away.
A-634 Strange Tales #9 The Man From Mars Shores? 3 pager - A good for nothing grifter called Freddie goes into a spaceship that says Do You Want To See Mars hoping to see a new movie for free, but ends up being the attraction in a Martian zoo. “When does the picture start?” “Picture? What picture?”
A-681 Spellbound #7 The Crank! Maneely 4 pages
A-682 Uncanny Tales #3 Crazy! Robinson 3 pages – a portly man decides to drive on after hitting a man with his car. When he arrives in a nearby village, he doesn’t understand why everyone is looking at him. But when he is dragged out of his car to be lynched he sees they aren’t crazy... the body of his victim is still hanging from his front bumper. Reads like an old urban tale.
A-683 True Secrets #21 Beauty Is Where You Find It! Pike 7 pages
A-705 Marvel Tales #109 The Cave Of Death Goldberg 3 pages unsigned – “No prison could resist the hulking strength of vicious brute Dorne until he fell into... the cave of death.” An escaped prisoner runs from the bloodhounds and falls in a cave. He can’t find his way out through the hole he fall through, but he finds another smaller hole, he might fit through if he slims down. He covers the hole with a heavy rock and waits. When he is thin enough to fit through, he discovers he is to weak to remove the rock. “I’ll never get out of here... never... never!” Stylistic hint: this story uses thru instead of through.
A-727 Actual Confessions #13 Love ‘em And Leave ‘em! Roth? 10 pages
A-770 Suspense #21 The Ghost Of Grimm Towers! DiPreta 7 pages – Barnaby Grimm is afraid the ghosts in his mansion are going to do him in, so he calls his nephew Carter to live with him. “The ghosts won’t haunt me if you are here!” Carter thinks his uncle is crazy, but this gives him a chance to scare him to death and inherit his money. He puts on a sheet and makes his uncle jump out of a window. Unfortunately, the butler has seen it all, so he has to die as well. Later that night, Carter is visited by both men, now ghosts themselves. They drag him off with them. But before he joins them, his uncle has one question for him: “Who’s crazy now??”
A-785 Mystic #12 The Hooded Horror [Infantino] 7 pages
A-903 Astonishing #17 I Can’t Move Roussos 4 pages – Burt Wallace is standing with his back against a building, watching a robbery turn to murder. He doesn’t do anything, while the mugger strips a man of his valuables. Even when the thief is gone, he doesn’t rush to the victim to help him. A policeman comes along and Burt warns him, still without moving. “I couldn’t help him!” “Why not?” “Because... because I can’t move from this spot!” The policeman tries to make him move, but he won’t. He decides to arrest the man for loitering and calls for help. Together with his colleagues he moves the man. He says: “You’re a real maniac! The way you were acting, you’d think you were holding up the building!” And while the building falls down on them, the man cries out: “I was!”
A-928 Spellbound #8 The Man Who Hated Children Post 4 pages
A-968 Battle #13 Troop Movement Massey 5 pages
A rare war story from the period when Timely's comics were still colored great. I know in the later period Marie Severin joined the staff and she is rightly revered for her work on the EC comcs, but mos of Stan Lee's output after 1956 looks like crap, mostly because of the cheap palet of colors and the tendency to slap great heaps of color over anything (more due to time restraints ha color sense, it seems). So, there. I said it.
A-993 Combat #4 The Mistake Of General Ming Kida 4 pages
B-066 Mystery Tales #5 Blackout At Midnight DiPreta 5 pages -
B-079 Strange Tales #11 The Devil And Donald Webster Reinman 7 pages
B-102 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #11 Ghosts In The House! Maneely 4 pages – An ace newspaper reporter joins a seance at Swami Mordo’s house to investigate his claims that he can speak to the dead. Swami Mordo tells him anyone can speak to the dead and goes on to prove it... by revealing that both he himself and his guests are dead. I guess this was before Swami Mordo became a Baron. Joe Maneely at his most impressive.
B-103 Suspense #23 Vampire, Beware! Everett 6 pages – Willie’s Wax Museum wasn’t doing too well. He needs something to make it scary again... something like... a real vampire. He goes to Hungary, the land of legendary vampires. He finds one and offers him part of the profit. But the vampire has a better idea. He displays Willie as ‘the only mortal who ever came to the undead of his free will!’.
B-104 Suspense #23 The Ugly Man Maneely 4 pages - Ignatz Nopply was a brilliant but ugly man. He had learned the secret of making the dead walk, turning a man into a werewolf, contacting the ghosts of the dead. But the only thing he had no power over was his face. Of course, he fell in love with the most beautiful girl in town. She tells him she wouldn’t go out with him if he was the last man on earth. So he goes to his laboratory and makes a special gass. After that he calls her: “Do you remember saying you wouldn’t go out with me if I was the last man on earth?” “Yeah! So what?” “Wanna bet?” from his window we see a street full of dead men.
B-122 Spellbound #7 The Vampire’s Bride Ayers/Bache 3 pages
B-144 Adventures Into Terror #13 Don’t Try To Outsmart The Devil! [Infantino] 8 pages – Mr. Murdock knows he is going to die but he doesn’t want to leave his gold behind. He persuades a little man called Igor to summon the devil for him. On the grave of an evil man he says a devilish incantation. “Satanus! Brutanus! Fires below! Devilish glow! Terrors of evil... hear me, oh devil...” And the devil appears. Murdock offers his soul in return for everlasting life, but the devil refuses it. He already has the man’s soul, because of his deeds in the past. Two pages are spend retelling those deeds, but after that the devil offers Murdock another deal. “I will grant your request if you will me your soul right now.. before death!” Murdock agrees. “I want the gift of eternal life! Let my heart never stop beating!” The devils aks him to lie down in a coffin to begin his rites... and the coffin is closed over Murdock, who will forever remain buried while his heart keeps on beating.
B-145 Astonishing #18 Vampire At The Window [Rosen] 3 pages
B-146 Astonishing #18 The Sweet Old Ladies (Ayers/Bache] 4 pages
B-147 Uncanny Tales #4 Nobody’s Fool! Maneely 4 pages – Bradbury Bulldozer, the editor of a line of horror comics with titles such as Bucket of Gore, Vampire Goodies, Crawling Creeps (as well as a line called Whamo! Bamo!, Flamo! and Zamo!), is a mean man. He treats his authors like scum, tearing up stories he doesn’t like. He is visited by a meak little man called Mr. Whibble, who wants to contribute a story. Bulldozer tears it apart. “Of all the stupid plots I ever read, this is the stupidest!” “What’s wrong with it?” “Well, for one you can’t expect readers to believe that werewolves walk the streets of New York disguised as ordinary men!” The little man is very sorry and changes into a werewolf himself. He is last seen leaving Bulldozer’s office, wiping his lips on his shirt sleeve.
B-148 Astonishing #19 Top Billing! 4 pages – Sprinkle and Smith were two of the funniest guys you could find anywhere. But as successful as they are, they are not happy. Smith wants to be billed first, because everyone assumes he is just the stooge of the act. Even in a bar, he overhears people talking about them: “That guy Sprinkle sure is a card!” “Smith ain’t bad either!” “Naw, I guess not! But Sprinkle must be the brains of the act! His name is first!” Smith decides to kill his partner, but something goes wrong and they both die in a fire. Now they are together always under one gravestone: “Here Lie The Ramians Of Sprinkle And Smith.” Just the way they would have wanted it.
B-149 Strange Tales #12 The Dumb Slob! [Tuska] 4 pages - The tramp steamer Emmy Lou has a new man aboard, the very dumb looking Rufus (probably from the abandoned comic Rufus the Doofus). “How’d you ever get on this ship, Rufus?” “I jus’ walked up the gang-plank! It was easy!” “How many years ya got before the mast?” “I dunno... who’s he?” The crew decide to kid him into climbing up the crows nest to look out for the edge of the ocean, so they won’t fall off. He warns them the edge is very close, but no one believes him. “Listen, Rufus! We’ll put you in a lifeboat and you can row back to stop any other boats from getting too close!” And of course, when he rows away, the ship drops off the edge of the ocean. “Gosh! They’re sure ‘nuff heroes! Every last one of ‘em!
Extra argument: B-147 and B-148 are written by Lee as well.
B-184 Astonishing #19 Back From The Grave 8 pages – In Red-occupied Czechoslovakia Carl Gottlieb flees from the soldiers as they break down the door of his father’s house and shoot him in cold blood. Professor Gottlieb was a nuclear scientist, who refused to build a bomb for the communists, so they sent the secret police after him. All alone, Carl contacts an old friend of his father who is a student of the black arts. He wants him to bring back his father from the dead. The friend tells Carl that he will find his father at the cemetery, but when the boy is away he warns the secret police. They shoot him over the grave of his father. Gottlieb rises from the grave, but he is too late, so he goes after the military for revenge. He kills the colonel responsible for his son’t death and also a surprise visitor... Joseph Stalin. “Many people didn’t believe this story.... but why was a communist captain discovered lying in the open grave of professor August Gottlieb? And why has no one taken a picture of Joseph Stalin in months? Can you be sure this story isn’t true?” This story appeared six months before the actual death of Stalin.
B-204 Suspense #23 Molu’s Secret! [Infantino] 6 pages. Squinty Williams was a bum and a murderer. When he tries to unload watch and ring of a man he killed in a pawn shop, he sees a shrunken head. Now there’s something that will make a profit. Squinty travels to Africa to learn the secret of shrinking human heads from the Jiuaro. The first thing he learns... that his shrunken head is worth more than the gold he offered for the secret.
B-233 Suspense #24 Horror Story [Tuska] 7 pages – Myron Morgan is a horror writer, who kills his friend Harry Wilks for inspiration. His editor Simon Grey wonders: “How can a man write so accurately about a murder? You would think he had committed a murder himself!” Grey tells him the next big trend is ghost stories, so in order to write a good story he has to find a real ghost! He goes to Madame Tania and she introduces him to a ghost, who takes him to a cemetery. “How did I get here?” “We dead have many powers! I can make you the only writer who knows how it feels to be dead!” He is lured into a coffin and buried alive. Now why would a ghost do that? “You see, Morgan, you summoned the wrong ghost! I am the ghost of Harry Wilks!”
B-234 Suspense #24 Boiling Point [Infantino] 7 pages – actor Roland Lester can’t get a job so he decides to moonlight as a model. He meets a pretty girl at the modeling agency and she falls for his act hook, line and sinker. When her friends warn her he is only using her, she follows him and finds out that he is buying another woman jewelery with money he borrowed from her. Their next job is a advertising job where she has to play a witch who is holding a man over a pot of boiling water. When the shoot is over and the photographer is away, she cuts the rope. When the he photographer returns Roland is gone. “I’m gonna order up some sandwiches! Would you like some boiled ham?” “No, thanks! I’ll never be able to look at a boiled ham again.”
B-235 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #12 Throw Another Coal On The Fire [Tuska] 4 pages
B-237 Marvel Tales #110 Foolproof! Heath 3 pages – slumlord Jack owns a building no one wants to rent. He tries to burn it down for the insurance. He works out how long it takes for the police to arrive and plans to be trapped in the building himself, to make sure he isn’t a suspect. But when he arrives at the top floor of the burning building to phone thee fire department, he realizes the phone in the building is a payphone... and he didn’t bring any change! A great sample of Stan Lee’s simple premises and great pacing. He really shows Jack working out the amount of time he will have before the fire department arrives and pulls us into the story that way.
B-267 Spellbound #9 The Vampire And The Lady! Heath 5 pages
B-274 Suspense #24 Back From The Dead! Maneely 6 pages – Distric Attorney Donald Bruce is a cruel man, who gladly sends an innocent man to the electric chair if he can get a conviction. Even his wife wonders how a man so cruel can live. Well, he doesn’t. He dies of a heart attack and immediately goes to hell, where he is created by the devil. He offers him a deal... if he can find one person on earth who is sorry he is dead, he will send him to the other place. As a ghost Donald Bruce goes back to earth to find no one is sorry he died, not even his wife. He returns to his grave, when he hears someone say he is sorry for him. It’s the devil, who is sorry that he will have to come along with him, for all eternity.
B-288 Spellbound #10 When Grugg Goes To Sleep! DiPreta 4 pages
B-305 Astonishing #20 Mystery At Midnight Colan 7 pages – a mysterious killer haunts the streets at night, trampling his victims to death. Through the impression of a label in one of the prints, they track down the store the shoes were bought. This leads them to one man, called Igor Rill. But he was sitting in his car all night when the murder was committed and he has witnesses. The police do some more digging and they find out that Rill had been in an accident and had an unusual operation. “Get a squad! We’re gonna arrest the ‘graveyard ghoul’!” It is Rill, who apparently was cut in half after the accident. You see: “The doctor who had operated on him had been a very clever man...”
B-306 Astonishing #20 When You Die! 3 pages – “200.000 light years away from earth is an obscure star named ‘Kraggoth’!”. All the living creatures are ruled by the ‘Shaggur’ and dream of a heaven where everyone is free. Many millions of miles past Kraggoth is a small asteroid named ‘Xxmth’. The inhabitants are dying a slow death because there is no food left to eat. They dream of a heaven where no one need ever go hungry. All thru the universe there are such stars and planets and asteroids... the little world of ‘Shaaa’ is one of the unhappiest. There is not enough room on the planet for everyone, so they imagine heaven that’s big enough for everyone to move around and breathe in. “yes, every living inhabitant in all the galaxy has a different idea of heaven! Some picture it as a place with the priceless gift of freedom! Some picture it as a place with an abundance of food... and some picture it as a land which is big and roomy and comfortable and friendly! How do you feel in America... where everyday you’re living in heaven?!”
B-307 Journey Into Unknown Worlds #14 The Light House Ghost [Tuska] 5 pages
B-332 Uncanny Tales #4 Worse Than Black Magic! Roussos 5 pages – Even as a child Kurt Brown was different from other people. As a twelve year old he liked to visit graveyards and as an adult he collected books on black magic. After graduation he bullies the caretaker of a graveyard to take him on as an assistant, so he’ll he a quiet place to study his black magic rites. Finally he hits on the one he was searching for. He summons a ghostly appearance that gives him the ability to speak and move one thousand times faster than any other human being. He gets his wish and uses the power to rob banks and outrun the police. But he forgets one thing... in order to be able to live 1000 faster than anyone else, he has to grow old and die 1000 times faster, too.
This is the same story idea as T-097 I Was The Invisible Man! The third story drawn by Jack Kirby on his return to Marvel in the late fifties – only there the main character is a scientist rather than a thief.
B-350 Mystic #16 Ghosts In The Night [Infantino] 6 pages – Communist general Ivan Zaroff tortures his prisoner Nicholas Petrov to get information about the underground headquarters, but he won’t give in. Zaroff has him shot, but not before Petrov promisses to return from the grave to destroy him. A week later Zaroff and a comrade returning from a cocktail party find a portret of Washington on his wall. Zaroff says it must be a joke. “But no human being could have walked through the door.” His comrade warns him: “No jokes! This is Russia!” The next day he walks into a meeting with an American flag on his lapel. And a few hours later the missing plans from an atomic submarine are found in his coat. Zaroff is captured and brought to the dungeon to be tortured himself. But even there death offers no respite. “You died hours ago when you were hit with that whip. You belong to us now... and you’ll never find peace!” Who’s us? The ghosts of his prisoners, of course.
B-351 Spellbound #11 Never Trust A Woman DiPreta 6 pages
B-359 Wild Western #26 The Ringo Kid! Pike 4 pages
B-380 Mystery Tales #6 Skull-Face DiPreta 5 pages -
B-381 Mystic #16 The Wooden Box [Roussos] 3 pages – a man with a skeleton face tries to pawn a mysterious box to a pawnbroker. He tells him it’s an enchanted box, which mustn’t be opened. When the man is gone, the pawnbroker opens it anyway and finds nothing inside. “I should have known! I’ve been tricked into lending money for a worthless box!” On the last panel we see there must have been something, though. His face is now a skeleton, just like the man’s.
B-382 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #14 A Shriek In The Night! Anderson? 3 pages. A bum on a park bench comes to the rescue of a pretty girl who is being chased by a man who looks like the monster of Frankenstein, without the bolts in his neck but with a flower in his lapel. The monster almost kills him, but he manages to break his neck. He asks the girl why the monster chased her. As she changes into a witch she says: “He had his reasons!!”
B-383 Marvel Tales #111 The Man Who Searched For Satan [Maneely] 4 pages
B-384 Astonishing #20 Living Doll! Robinson 5 pages – In a small town in Europe, people are murdered outside a doll shop. The owner of the shop tries to tell the chief of police that one of his dolls is the murderer. But the chief doesn’t believe him, not even when one of his own officers saw a doll running into the toy store just after another murder. When the shop keeper is murdered, they see how he could be so sure that dolls can be alive... he was one himself, which you can see by the great key in his back. The dolls must have killed him to keep him from spilling their secret (temporarely forgetting that the police would find out he was a doll as well). “To this very day, two police officers stand guard over a small group of toy dolls. Sooner or later, one of them will move... and the strangest murder case of all time will be solved!”
I already shared this story on this blog and am reposting it here.
B-399 Strange Tales #14 Horrible Herman Joe Maneely 6 pages
I seem to have forgotten this one the first time around, even thought it is mentioned on Atlas Tales. Let's hope it's my only slip. The scan is a bit waterlogged, but I am not one to look a given download in the mouth.
B-410 Uncanny Tales #5 Fear [Roussos] 5 pages – It’s 1975 and the world is on the brink of a war which will destroy mankind. The Russian president Zoltinoff is so convinced that the ‘capitalist beasts’ will destroy them, that he announces to launch an attack on them. “I know I have the support of my loyal subjects... and those who don’t support me will be shot on sight!” At the United Nations Headquarters the military commanders meet to discuss if they have to launch a nuclear strike first. The scientists suggests another approach. They launch a single rocket, which doesn’t detonate, but gets stuck in the ground somewhere in the Soviet. Zoltinoff arrives and first thing he does is have a few peasants killed so they know they aren’t allowed to touch the bomb. His scientists argue what type of bomb it is... a delayed action nuclear strike... a chemical bomb killing them as they speak... or does it have a death ray on board? The Russians are so scared of this unidentified bomb, that 40.000 people commit suicide and the army rebels. When the complete air force flies to Britain to surrender, Zoltinoff commits suicide as well. His second in command sends a telegram to the United Nations to tell them they have won the cold war. And what was in the bomb? Well, nothing of course. As a scientist explains... “No weapon on earth can ever defeat fear!”
Stan Lee did other variations on this theme later, but this must rank as his dumbest.Here it is, in all it's glory...
B-424 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #14 Horror On Haunted Hill! [Infantino] 6 pages – Grave digger Wilbur Collins notices a spaceship landing when he is digging a grave late one night. The space ship departs before he can see it up close, leaving behind a mysterious creature who tells him he is a convicted murderer from the planet Saturn, sentenced to be exiled on earth. Then he tries to kill Wilbur, but ‘because the creature from Saturn didn’t know about earth people to recognize the difference between death and unconsciousness’ Wilbur survives long enough to warn the police. “Space ship! Thing from Saturn! Exiled on earth! Must hide from humans! Cemetery hill... tree... he... ugh!” But there is nothing on the hill except a tree. Years later another criminal visits the place and decides to hide there, because no one would try to find there. But late that night, in the rain, he gets killed by the tree, who turns out to have been te Sturnian all along.
Stan Lee later used the same theme of a living tree in the Ditko drawn V-814, about an oak who comes alive after a nuclear bomb test.
B-431 Suspense #26 Worse Than Death! Unknown’[Roussos] 8 pages
B-434 Journey Into Mystery #5 Fright! Heath 7 pages – Mr. Drake, the managing director of a lunatic asylum, is not a very nice man. He likes to watch them being whipped by his strong man Kurt or even whip them himself if Kurt becomes too compassionate. He also mistreats his wife and yells at her over nothing. So when he finally kills one of the inmates, Kurt injects him with a drug that makes him act all weird and has him committed to his own asylum. Where his former victims are waiting for him.
Here it is all seven pages...
B-514 Strange Tales #14 The Man Who Talked To Ghosts1 artist unknown 4 pages
B-529 Mystery Tales #7 The Iron Man Draut? 5 pages. Julia Wyatt and Alonzo Greer are at the theatre watching an epic battle between a werewolf and a vampire, when Alonzo proposes to the beautiful Julia. She refuses him, but assures him it is not because she thinks he is ugly, which he is. He builds an iron man - a ‘lifeless hulk of machinery’ he calls Zero - to scare her into marrying him. But the robot returns to kill Alonzo. You see, Julia is a robot too and she waited all her life for someone like Zero. “Zero and I are going to be married, Alonzo... right after we finish with you.” The story opens with a page long battle between a werewolf and a vampire, which turns out to be a play, but neither the play, or it’s themes return in the rest of the story.
This story is the same as:
THE ROBOT MAN
Original Appearance: Journey Into Mystery # 77 Reprint: Fantasy Masterpieces # 10
Eric Krugg was a builder of movie monster displays. One day, Krugg met Diane Harper, whom he fell in love with at first sight. Diane rejected Krugg, telling him she was “waiting”. Krugg vowed to Diane that if he couldn't have her no one would. Driven by his obsession, Krugg spent a year building a robot in human form. After testing the robot, he sent it on a mission to kill Diane, figuring no one would be able to link him to the crime. Later, as Krugg waited in his home, the robot man returned with Diane. Diane thanked Krugg for building what she was “waiting” for - a mate; Diane then revealed herself to be a robot. After pushing Krugg out of an open window, the robotic couple left.
B-553 Adventures Into Terror #14 The Little People DiPreta 6 pages – a group of dwarves are being maltreated by a vicious barker at the carnival, but he can do what he want because one of them is a doctor who was convicted for malpractice and he took them in his custody. When he kills one of them, they take revenge by operating on him and giving him a dog’s head, making him a real barker.
B-637 Mystery Tales #7 Rudolph’s Revenge! Robinson 4 pages – Rudolph Nubbs is a street seller, who sells neckties for 25 cents a piece. His big dream is to save up enough to buy a $20 suit from Charlie Flipool. When Charlie hears this, he sells Rudolph a suit for $19.75. Rudolph can owe him the last quarter. “Are you sure it is my right size?” “Sure it is! Don’t worry about that shoulder being higher than the other! The floor is uneven!” But when it rains, the suit shrinks while it’s still on him. He wants his money back, but Charlie says that it isn’t his fault if it shrunk. And he still wants his 25 cents. Rudolph gives him a tie instead, which his friends don’t understand. “Rudy is so dumb he even gave Charlie a free necktie after the suit had shrunk!” Then they hear a shriek. Charlie has been suffocated by the tie. “What killed him?” “It ain’t my fault if the tie shrunk!” laughs Rudolph.
B-638 Mystery Tales #7 The Man Who Was A God Romita 3 pages – We’re in Nirobi. A murderer on the run threatens a native to tell him where the Muwambi tribe lives. He has heard they consider all white men Gods. After the black man tells him where to go, he kills him and travels to the Muwabi village. He is lead to the temple where they worship all white Gods. “You mean some of your other white Gods are still here?” “You shall see. The temple is ready for you.” There he sees what’s in store for him. While one of the Muwabi raises his machete he sees the skulls of the other white Gods. “We only worship heads!”
B-656 Adventures In Terror #15 He Kept Him In Stiches! Woromay? 3 pages
B-657 Spellbound #11 The Madman Peddy 3 pages
B-658 Mystic #17 The Vampire Winiarski 4 pages – A young boy called Teddy finds a dead body in an alley, but when he tells his parents they don’t want to believe him. When he says he thinks the man was killed by a vampire, his father wants to whip some sense into him, but mom intervenes. They send the boy to bed, who left wondering if vampires exist. The parents go to bed too. They go down the stairs to their coffins. “We don’t want him to expose us by accident!” “It could be very embarrassing... good night, dear!
B-658 Mystic #17 The Vampire Winiarski 4 pages
B-659 Mystic #17 Hate! Everett 3 pages – “did you ever see someone for the first time in your life, and hate him on sight? That’s the way it was with me when I saw my next-door neighbour for the first time!!!” Mr. Crewe hates his neanderthal looking neighbour. And every day it gets worse. At his doctor’s advice he travels to arizona for a holiday to forget it all, but when he gets there guess who’s there as well? He flips and kills the man. “And that’s why I find myzelf here bow – in the asylum! But you’ve got to get me out... before it’s too late! Because I’ve finally found out what my neighbour does for a living!!!” And as we see him walking to Mr. Crewe’s cell we realize he is a warden at the asylum and the baseball bat in his hand tells us he is finally getting his revenge.
B-688 Mystery Tales #8 The Madman DiPreta 7 pages – it’s the premiere of Hamlet and George White is giving the performance of his life. Earlier that week the producer had introduced the cast to his cousin, Henry Roscoe and asked that he would be given a part in the play. But Roscoe didn’t want just any part, he wanted to play the lead. Instead he was made the understudy. So he set out to sabotage George’s performance. On the final night he accidentally killed George’s wife, just as she was telling him she was pregnant and he went mad. So now he is playing Hamlet’s mad scene truly mad... and he has the perfect actor to play the disembodied head of Yorick... Roscoe!
Unsigned, but the subject matter, the Shakespeare opening, the use of ‘thru’ instead of ‘through’ and the length of the story suggest it could be a Stan Lee story. The job number doesn’t fit, though.
Here it is in full.
B-694 Adventures Into Terror #16 My Name Is Death! Maneely 3 pages – “Most women are born in a hospital... or at home! But not I! I was born in a laboratory, in the days of the Spanish Inquisition!” Who is this mysterious woman? When men are forced to kiss her they die. Even her inventor is forced in her arms. “Poor father, he made such a sorrowful looking corpse!” In the last panel we get to see her... she is a spiked coffin with a girls face painted on her front.
B-695 Suspense #28 With Intend To Kill Maneely 7 pages
B-721 Lovers #46 Possessed! Pike 5 pages
B-767 Wild Western #27 Six-Gun Showdown Tuska 7 pages
Doc Nesbitt has trouble upholding the law when the Rio Kid comes to town. You can see the ending coming from a mile away, but the pretty George Tuska artwork makes up for a lot... even though Doc Nesbitt looks younger than the Rio Kid...
B-789 Spellbound #13 The Dead Men Romita? LaCava? 6 pages
B-790 Journey Into Unknown Worlds #15 Maneely 2 pages
B-794 Battle #17 The Last Command Of Colonel Fong [Roth] 7 pages
B-796 Uncanny Tales #6 The Stooge Rosenthall 3 pages unsigned
I don't believe this gag story is by Lee, but if it is, it deserves credit as one of his first 'spider-man' stories...
B-798 Spellbound #13 The Dead Men Roth? LaCava? Heath? 6 pages – Harry Snide gets himself elected mayor by having his hoodlums use the names of dead people to vote for him. When he wins, he gets a call from the Graveyard Society. They want him to join... in the grave. “After all, we elected you, didn’t we?”
B-799 Spellbound #12 What Happened To Mr. Snively 5 pages – it’s 1963 and there’s a war going on. Mr. Snively the butcher is doing great business, despite of the rationing of meat. He badmouths the black market, but secretly he is hoarding cans of meat for his bomb shelter. If a bomb is dropped on New York, he’ll be safe. But when the bomb is dropped he realizes too late he forgot to bring a can opener.
B-800 Girl Confessions #23 The Long Engagement Pike? 7 pages
B-815 My Own Romance #27 Love Story [Infantino]/Kane? 7 pages
B-848 Marvel Tales #112 The House That Death Built Unknown 7 pages
B-884 Suspense #28 Two Hands [Winter] 2 pages unsigned
B-885 Lovers #48 Will You marry Me, Miss Smith? [Robinson] 7 pages
B-887 Spellbound #13 The Pitchman! Brown? 4 pages – Herman Hunkle is so dumb, he’ll buy anything. A street hustler sells him a $3.000 diamond ring for $5. “How can you sell a $3.000 ring for only $5?!” “Low overhead!” He comes back to buy some more stuff and the hustler sells him three watches that aren’t ticking. “They’re so well made that the insides are noise-proof!” After that he goes for the big one and sells him the Brooklyn Bridge. “I figure the bridge is worth around $50 million bucks... but we’ll knock off some dough for appreciation... I’ll give you a 10% discount and I’ll cut my commission! That brings the price down to 12 dollars and 45 cents!” The next day the hustler has a surprise. Herman has renamed the bridge to Hunkle’s bridge and is asking a 50 cent toll. “But you can go free anytime you want!”
B-941 Suspense #29 The Raving Maniac Maneely 4 pages – the editor od=f a line of horror comics, including Argh Comics, Zombie Chillers, Belvue Comics and Casket Comics is visited by an angry man who wants to know how anyone can publish such idiotic trash. “Do you think your readers are all raving maniacs? Do you expect them to swallow those ghosts and zombies and monsters?” “Heck, no! They read our stories... they don’t eat them!” He explains to the man that people like those kind of stories so they can forget about the news, showing him a newspaper with headlines such as: New H-Bomb May Destroy The Earth and Apartment House Fire Kills Seven Persons. The man doesn’t believe him and rants on. But he is picked up by two men in white coats who come to take him away. “We’ve been loking for this character for days! The last we heard of him, he was complaining to the mayor about the pidgeons in the park!” This story with gorgeous Joe Maneely art is reprinted in Craig Yoe’s Art Forum #2.
B-942 Spellbound #14 The Saddest Story Ever Told Winiarski 4 pages
B-950 Adventures Into Terror #18 Headache Maneely 5 pages
B-963 Suspense #28 The Poor Fish! [Everett] 5 pages – Ronald Riggs likes to fish... and he likes to torture them.When the game warden catches him fishing in a lake where fishing is prohibited, he strangles the game warden, just like a fish. Then a spaceship lands in the back of his garden and yellow men with four arms and four legs come out. They catch him and take him with them... but he dies in the rocketship, suffocating like a fish on dry land.
B-990 Journey Into Weird Worlds #16 The Masterpiece Maneely 3 pages
C-016 Astonishing #24 Poor Wilbur! Romita 4 pages – Wilbur Binkle is a horrible inventor. Every he invents goes wrong. The bulletproof vest for instance... it only worked when he was using blanks. “The only thing you ever invented taht was any good, was that new submarine of yours!” “It wasn’t supposed to be a submarine! It was to be a sink-proof boat... but it sank!” But his luck seems to turn when he invents a robot that’s indestructible and better than humans in any way. Still everyone is waiting for it to fail. “Something always goes wrong with his inventions! I wonder when it will start!” Well, they won’t have to wait long. When the robots realize they are better and stronger than people, they enslave them. Wilbur and his girlfriend end up scrubbing the floor for them.
C-017 Spellbound #14 Love Story Maneely 5 pages
C-019 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #17 The Gentlemen Of The Jury! Heath 6 pages – Nick Rico is a coldblooded killer. He shoots Gimpy Tuskak for blabbing on him and escapes a murder rap because he has hired the best criminal lawyer in town. Now that he knows he can’t be convicted, he starts killing people left and right, but his lawyer gets him out every time. When he tries to rub out twelve men at once, his girl friend has had enough and summons the devil to double cross him. And the devil granted her request... at the next trial the jury is made up of the ghosts of all the people he killed.
C-037 Suspense #29 The Man Behind The Blinds! Kida 6 pages – A writer of weird stories arrives at an inn with an odd mysterious atmosphere. The owners are the scariest-looking pair he has ever seen. They show him his room in the attic and tell him to be silent, or else he may hear him. Who is ‘he’? He’s their son, who stays in his room all day and night. The writer goes out to try and see him, imagining all sorts of weird things. But when he finally sees him through the blinds, he seems nice a normal young man. It’s only when the blinds are lifted, we see how weird this guy really is... his body is made up of stripes with nothing where the blinds blocked our few. Weird doesn’t begin to describe it.
C-038 Astonishing #24 The Stone Face Lawrence? 4 pages. F.B.I. agent Harry Jones has to try and stop chief communist spy Boris Zubotski from leaving the country with the stolen plans for the latest atomic weapons. But he gets captured and Zubotski gets away. He tries to free himself, but is hit by a bullet. He faints and dreams that the statue of liberty smashes Zubotsky’s boat. When he finally arrives at the harbor, it turns out the boat with the commie spies was sunk and all hands are lost. No one knows what happened... except Harry Jones.
C-065 Mystery Tales #10 What Happened To Harry? Tuska 5 pages – Harry Hoomple built a time machine from plans made by another scientist, a woman called Lucy. He wants all the fame for himself, so he kills her and flees to the past. He goes further than he wanted and is attacked by giant cave men. But when he wants to return, he realizes the machine runs on electricity and there is nowhere to plug in the cable.
And here it is...
C-066 Uncanny Tales #7 Planet Of Death Post 3 pages unsigned
Unsigned, but short story length and job number suggest it could be by Lee. After seeing it for the first time, I can ad a final clue... the splash page shows the use of 'thru' instead of 'through', one of Stan Lee's pecularities (and what's actually more peculiar is the fact that he didn't see the need as an editor to change it in other people's stories).
C-067 Marvel Tales #113 What’s New? [Heath] 5 pages
C-068 Journey Into Unknown Worlds #17 The Great Disappointment! Heath 5 pages
C-069 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #17 He Walks With A Ghost! Fass? 5 pages – “Your name is Barney Grill and you’re a no-good, mean, bullying hoodlum!” Small time crook Barney Grill has inherited his uncle’s estate in Europe. When he gets there, he starts tearing the place up, ignoring the pleas of the villagers. “You can’t, mein Herr! This cemetery has been here for generations! You can’t do away with it!” He digs up the graves with a huge power shovel, corpses and all. But when he sits down under a tree to rest for a while, the tables are turned and the power shovel comes after him. But who is steering the thing? Why, the corpses, of course! According to Doc Vassallo the corpses in the last panel have been redrawn by Carl Burgos, possibly to make the ending more horrific. The splash panel has also been partially redrawn, using the cover image. The main artists remains unclear, although Doc thinks it could be Myron Fass. In my opinion the art is to accomplished (albeit a bit dull) to be Fass’ often more extravagant work. It has something of Bill Savage work to me. At least it seems clear that the splash page was reworked by another artist in some way.
C-078 Uncanny Tales #7 I Was Locked Into A... Haunted House! Maneely 5 pages
Plot is duplicated in Journey into Mystery 80 (May 1962) --the comics being read and swapped are Mystic, Marvel Tales, Uncanny Tales. Also features a truly horrific scene to any comics collector--a rolled up copy of Journey Into Unknown Worlds in one character's back pocket. One panel has a newsstand for the discriminating 50s comic reader--you can see 16 different titles and they are all Atlas horror or war. Note added by Chris Brown.
C-113 Strange Tales #18 John Doe [Maneely] 7 pages – a professor claims he can make a robot with a human brain... a robot that can think.
C-114 Spellbound #15 The Living Dead [Infantino] 5 pages
C-115 Adventures Into Weird Worlds #17 The Man From Mars! Kida 3 pages – Young Bill and his dad see a flying saucer land. The father guesses they are from Mars and asks them to take them back with them, so they can escape the inevitable nuclear holocaust on earth. The Martina laughs. He gives them a photo of his home planet, showing a chaotic war scene and ads with a sad expression: “We’ve been flying over your planet to see if we could settle here!”
C-116 Adventures Into Terror #18 Vampire By Night Unknown 4 pages
C-131 Marvel Tales #113 Brother Of A Monster Unknown 4 pages
C-167 Uncanny Tales #8 Execution Day Maneely 3 pages – It’s execution day at the state prison. Our hero, van Klee is brought to the little room with the menacing chair to face his destiny. Trembling he goes in. A switch is thrown. A man fries in a spectacular silhouette. And van Klee is congratulated by his colleagues... the first time is always the hardest for an executioner.
C-168 Journey Into Mystery #8 Willy Brown Is Out To Get Me! Luster 3 pages – a weasely man is running from Willy Brown and no one will help him. Even a gun full of bullets won’t stop him. Why? Well, Willy Brown is dead and looking much worse than he did a week ago... when the sneaky man killed him.
Here it is...
C-169 Menace #1 One Head Too Many! [Everett] 7 pages
C-170 Journey Into Mystery #8 The Tough Guy! Maneely 6 pages – Muscleman Hank Klopp is a tough guy. Nobody pushes him around. So when the manager of his gym tells him to leave... he knocks him unconsious him to impress his girl, Dolly Simms. He things she loves him, but who’s just to afraid of him to leave. So when he gets robbed in the street at gunpoint and ends up in the hospital, she leaves him. “Now that little baldy pistol-whipped you, I am not afraid of you anymore! Goodbye, big man!” All alone in the hospital, he hears the doctors talk about a miracle drug that makes any man so strong nothing can harm him. He steals the test tube with the stuff and kills a guard to make sure no one finds out. But what he doesn’t know, is that he has a throat virus that will kill him if he isn’t injected with penicillin. And he is so strong, that no needle will penetrate his skin! Now, he’ll be the strongest corpse in the cemetery.
C-188 Menace #1 Poor Mr. Watkins [Roth] 5 pages
C-189 Menace #1 The Man Who Couldn’t Move! Tuska 5 pages
C-190 Menace #1 They Wait In Their... Dungeon [Heath] 6 pages
C-215 Justice #37 The Big Shot Rosen 4 pages
C-216 Wild Western #28 Stagecoach! Maneely 7 pages
C-217 Wild Western #28 The Brute Of Butte Gap Roth? 6 pages
C-252 My Own Romance #29 Love ‘em And Leave ‘em! [Roth] 5 pages
Title reused from ten-pager A-727, same artist!
C-255 Wild Western #28 The Killer! Forte 3 pages
C-256 War #20 They Called Me Chicken! Romita 6 pages unsigned, could be Lee
C-287 Menace #2 On With The Dance! [Heath] 5 pages
C-288 Menace #2 Burton's Blood! [Everett] 6 pages
C-289 Menace #2 The Man In Black [Tuska] 7 pages
C-290 Menace #2 Rocket To The Moon [Sinnott] 5 pages
C-323 Menace #3 You're Gonna Live Forever [Maneely] 7 pages
C-358 Men’s adventures #22 Deadline Romita 7 pages
C-359 Men’s Adventures #21 My Brother Must Die! [Infantino]/Kane? 6 pages
C-366 Men’s Adventures #21 The Secret Of The Flying Saucer Kida 3 pages
C-482 Menace #3 Werewolf! [Everett] 6 pages
C-490 Uncanny $9 Like A Chicken Without A Head [Crandall] 7 pages – A man is hit by an ambulance and is brought to the hospital. Everything is prepared for surgery. The hideous looking Dr. Feeney warns that the patient will die unless the other doctors use his method of operating. They don’t listen and the patient does die. A reporter who witnessed the exchange between Dr. Feeney and his colleagues, asks him what his new method is. He explains that he has perfected a method to cut the head from a patient, so it can be operated on without any risk to the rest of the body. He demonstrates his technique on a chicken, but the reporter doesn’t believe him. Disappointed Feeney throws away his formula that keeps alive a headless body... and takes his head in his hands... literally.
This story is not signed by Lee, but reads like one of his. The clues are – the length of the story – the way it starts with a gruesome action not directly related to the main characters, the pacing of the dialogue and the sequence on top of page two, where three panels are used to describe an action – each with only one line of text over it. The numbering is not consecutive with any other known Lee numbers, though.
No job number (around C-500/C-800) Adventures Into Terror #22 In One Ear... Gilby Crumshaw has two extra ears in his neck. So he kills people for their money to pay for an operation. But the doctor who operates on him is visited by the ghost of Gilby’s last victim... his dead father. He fixes Gilby’s ears allright... by cutting off the ones on his head and leaving the two on his neck.
C-607 Menace #3 Rodeo! [Heath] 5 pages
C-608 Menace #3 Men In Black [Romita] 7 pages
C-683 Menace #4 The Madman [Everett] 6 pages
C-705 Journey Into Unknown Worlds #21 The Devil’s Day Off! Maneely 3 pages
C-706 Uncanny Tales #10 Money Mad! Maneely 3 pages – Hiram Higgins doesn’t want anyone to have his money. Not even his sister, whose husband is ill and whose baby is starving. He has a special safe built, that only be opened with his fingerprints on a photoelectric cell on the outside of the door. So when he is accidentally locked in, he learns a very important thing about money... you can’t eat it.
C-753 Menace #4 Escape To The Moon! [Heath] 5 pages
C-784 Astonishing #26 Monkey Face! Stallman? 3 pages signed SL – ‘Monky Face’ Smith and his gang are robbing the Acme Company of their $20.000 payroll, when they are discovered by a night watchman. Monkey Face shots the him and runs away, mumbling that he would give his soul to change his looks. A man in a high hat who turns out to be the devil offers him a deal: if he will give him his soul, he will make him look normal. He takes the deal and is changed into a monkey. “You look normal now. And I might add that our new looks suit your nature much better than your old ones!”
C-785 Journey Into Unknown Worlds #20 The Secret Of Astroid #85 Evans 3 pages
C-787? Marvel Tales #117 Terror In The North Perlin unsigned
C-789 Adventures Into Terror #21 Stick And Stones Can Break My Bones Maneely 3 pages – Emperor Shi Hwang-Ti decides to built a wall to protect China from the Mongol invaders. His general Ho-Wing tortures the peasants to get the wall built. Every hole must be filled. And it is... the last hole is filled by a revolting peasant with Ho-Wings head.
C-807 Menace #4 Genius! [Maneely] 5 pages
C-814 Menace #4 A Vampire is Born [Kida] 6 pages
C-816 Journey Into Mystery #10 Now You See It... Kweskin 3 pages – a stage magician saws his wife in two, when he finds out she is cheating him with a guy named Raymond. When Raymond meets him after the show, he tells him that nothing can split up someone who’s in love. The magican has a surprise for Raymond. Unsigned gag story.
C-841 Adventures Into Weird Worlds The Plunderer! Romita 3 pages
C-952 Menace #5 Zombie! [Everett] 7 pages
C-968 Menace #5 Nightmare! [Tuska] 5 page
C-969 Menace #5 Rocket Ship! [Heath] 6 pages
C-969? Uncanny Tales #13 Where There’s Smoke Robinson (Forgione) 4 pages – man kills his business partner, but the smoke from the chimney betrays him.
C-999 Menace #5 Crack - Down! [Maneely] 5 pages
Stan Lee did some more stories for Menace (four in every issue until #8, which had only two), but I cut off my list there because he stopped doing horror stories for other titles. The entire run of Menace has recently been reprinted for the Marve Masterpieces Atlas Era series.
So here the last horror story he did for Menace #8...
Of course there were more signed stories after this, but this is where my reearch stops, because the main bulk of Lee's stories were done. There was one I think could be his after this, which I'll include just in case.
D-070 Mystic #24 His Wife Throws Things [Winter] 3 pages unsigned – Orman doesn’t have it easy. His wife throws things at him and everyone knows it. His supervisor sends him home to settle his personal affairs. “I could stand the pity and all the sly jokes... if only what she does were not so horribly dangerous!” Why is it dangerous? Orman explains when his wife throws dishes at him: “I’ve just read that there’s life on that tiny planet up in the sky! And someday one of those saucers you throw at me will hit that tiny planet.. and a lot of innocent creatures there will get hurt!"
There also was a later story without a job number Lee did with Jerry Robinson, which I shared earlier and am reposting.
No # - Suspense #29 Strong As An Ox! Robinson 5 pages – “Ignatius Strompp had two things wrong with him! One, he was small, weak and puny. Two, he was worth more than two million dollars!” Still, he can’t find a beautiful woman to love him. Then he meets an old man in the park, who is trying to kill himself. It’s a scientist who has lost his laboratory and his will to live. Ignatius hires the man to work for him and develop a potion that will make him strong as an ox. Ignatius turns out to be a bit of a slave driver, so we don’t really mind that when he finally drinks the potion the old man has concocted... he really turns into an ox.