Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Crime Can Pay

Wednesday Advertising Day.

This is the last before last of my posts with double Atlas Comics for sale. After I am back from my honeymoon, I will start putting them on e-bay, often at a lower starting price. I think the prices here are quite reasonable as well, so if you want to be sure to get a certain book, drop me a note in the comments section. When the books are up on e-bay, I will refer to this site, so people can select books to be added for maximum packaging. I can put seven or eight books in a $12 envelope, limiting the cost per book. After that I will also start selling other books, mainly stuff from other publishers.

Justice #31
November 1952
Cover by unknown

Artists: George Tuska, Jack Keller, Allen Bellman, Tony DiPreta
Condition: Good, would have been better but for a small piece missing from the right hand corner.
Guide price: $12
Offer price: $10

George Tuska had started at Gleason's doing crime stories. His work was very much appreciated and even imitated, for instance by Stan Lee when he was doing crime books at Timely. When he joined Timely in the early fifties, his inkline had beefed up considerably, making his caroony realism even more striking. The crime titles were giving way to the 'new' genres of horror and war, but some of them remained. Justice was one of them. In this book Tuska returnes to crime, using his new (and in my opinion even better) style. Tony DiPreta had done a lot of work for Gleason as well. He is a remarkable artist, who could adept his style to whatever was needed. It was only at Timely that he seems to have found a style of his own, a weird sort of realism, with a Dick Tracy like element of charicture, but totally his own. Sadly, in the early sixties he took over Joe Paloeka and dropped all of his individual quirks. Allen Bellman has a similar quirky style, that makes the story really speak.

Justice #34
Februari 1953
Cover by Sol Brodsky

Artists: Jack Keller, unknown, Allen Bellman, Vernon Henkel
Condition: Good minus, cover split and loose
Guide price: $10
Offer price: $6

More true crime stories, with Bellman's story telling the tale of a German tailor who stood up against the NAZI's for being rude (one of their more serious crimes apparently) in 1937. Hitler even appears himself to say he wants the case solved and shaking his fist.

Justice #46
May 1954
Cover by Joe Maneely

Artists: Gene Colan, Tony Mortellaro, Ed Moline, John Forte
Condition: Very Good, actually Fine book but for water stain on cover
Guide price: $25
Offer price: $18

With this issue the cover from this books gets the slogan: "Respectfully dedicated to the law-enforcement officiers around the nation, without whose selfsacrificing devotion to duty out society would fall prey to the underworld!" The water stain in the cover does not touch the image area, as you can see from the scan (which, although it is from Atlas Tales, is from my copy). The Gene Colan opener, a true story about an ecapes convict is worth the money alone. The John Forte story is very similar artwise to the one shown by Pappy's Golden Age Comics Blogzine recently.

Justice #47
June 1954
Cover by Sol Brodsky

Artists: Chuck Miller, Lou Ravielli, Bill Savage, Mac Pakula
Condition: Very Good, just some small creases along the sides
Guide price: $20
Offer price: $15

The Atlas Crime books used more 'serious' artists than the others, ot at least there wa less charicature and more 'realism'. This could give them a dull look, but with atists such as Chuck Miller and Lou Ravielli, there lots to admire. Mac Pakula actually does some of his best work here.

Justice #50
November 1954
Cover by Sol Brodsky

Artists: Dick Ayers, Ed Moline, Sam Moscowicz, Al Eadeh
Condition: Good, a bit beat, creases on the cover
Guide price: $10
Offer price: $7

Sam Moscowicz did a couple of stories with Joe Kubert, but apparently he was promoted to doing his own inking. Al Eadeh draws his usual ugly people, this time including someone who could be a contender for the Worst Haircut of the Decade.

Police Action #5
September 1954
Cover by Joe Maneely

Artists: Dick Ayers, Ed Robbins, unknown, Mort Lawrence
Condition: Good minus, bit beat, piece missing from right hand corner
Guide price: $10
Offer price: $7

Towards the end of the fifties most artists started to slick up their styles. One sample of that would be Mort Lawrence, whose work here looks as if he is auditioning for DC or a newspaper strip. Ed Robbins had been drawing the Mike Hammer strip for the newspapers and is more than suited for this book. His style is suitably butch and his scartchy inking makes it very lifely.

Crime Can't Win #12
September 1952
Cover by Sol Brodsky

Artists: Jack Keller, Manny Stallman (?), unknown, Marion Sitton
Condition: Fair minus, back cover ripped, front soiled and creased
Guide price: $10
Offer price: $8

Here's one for the art spotters. The first story could be by Manny Stallman, but has a weird comical vibe as well, usally missing form Stallman's work. The third story is competently drawn by a Jim Mooney-like artist but with some odd touches, almost as if the penciller and inker were'nt on the same wavelength. Pretty good story too, about an apparently insane criminal on the run capturing a kid as a hostage... with a pretty surprising and humane twist.

Crime Must Lose #11
February 1952
Cover by unknown

Artists: Tony DiPreta, George Roussos, Allen Bellman, Jack Keller
Condition: Good, some creases, some splittage of the spine, but holding on
Guide price: $15
Offer price: $10

This series is the one that escapes me the most. For some reasons there are none issues to be found, cheap as they are. These 'true crime' books could be pretty boring, with very little to be surprised at in the stories (whose main fault seems to be that they are well-told), but around this time Stan Lee artists did start to turn loose with their own styles. Both Tony DiPreta and George Roussos offer a lot of dark shadows and good storytelling here.

All-True Crime Cases Comic #47
November 1951
Cover by unknown

Artists: Jerry Robinson, Marion Sitton, Dan Loprino, Jim Mooney, Mike Sekowsky
Condition: Poor, would be Good, bit of a spine roll, 52 pages, but last story is missing large chunks of pages
Guide price (Good): $15
Offer price: $5 (with other books)

This book is ruined because of the damage to the last pages. I would get it for the Jerry Robinson story if I couldn't get it any other way. He was way ahead of anyone at that time. The Guide price for this book is rediculously low anyway.

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