Thursday, July 03, 2008

Jack Cole Week

I am not the first to put Jack Cole's comic book work from the late forties in my blog, or even the first to host a Jack Cole week. I urge you to check out The Horrors Of It All and Pappy's Golden Age Comcis Blogzine to see what they had to offer. Recently others seem to have joined in, so I have also entered a link for Fortress of Fortitude, which has reprinted one of Cole's Angles o'Day stories from the later issues of Ken Shannon. I would have offered one of those as some of his least known work, but this sample is to good to ignore. This later period of Jack Cole is his best in my eyes, with Angles o'Day in Ken Shannon, Mr. Midnight in Smash and his short run of horror stories in Web of Evil. It is said that these more realistic horror stories were inked by Alex Kotzky. He is another future Johnstone and Cushing employee, whom we'll see more of in the future. Before starting his own newspaper strip The Girls of Apartment 3G, he did a memorable series of ads from Philip Morris about a private eye called "Duke" Handy. This ad strip ran for more than half a year in 1958. Since I have most of the installments in several newspapers, I have been slowly scanning those in to present the whole thing to you. I was hoping to be able to offer you one a day, when I am away for holiday next Saturday, but I didn't manage to scan fourteen or even ten consecutive episodes - or find out how to pre-publish in blogspot.

So enjoy this Cole/Kotzky horror story from Web of Evil #9, the one before last issue he worked on. I checked on Horrors and Pappy's and it seems they didn't do this one yet. After that, I will show you the first episode of "Duke" Handy, just to whet your appetites. Tomorrow I'll upload another Mr. Midnight story and after that it's two weeks radio silence for me.

And now "Duke" Handy. This advertisement strip was drawn by Alex Kotzky in his best Caniff imitation style. More about this strip and it's connection to Kotzky's Apartment 3G later, when I will feature the whole run. The strip was done as a two tier and as a three tier, but the three tier was just a recut version of the two tier with no extra art.


Mr. Karswell said...

What a gloriously delirious Cole classic this is! "Ask your undertaker, copper!" ha ha, priceless. The mad search through the mansion with the ghost whispering into their ears and thus turning them against one another is brilliant. Nice electrifying climax too!

This was a great week of posts Ger, thanks for all your hard work and lovely scans! I'll be sure to add your link to one of my posts tomorrow so my readers don't miss this one! Looking forward to more of the Duke Handy stuff too!

FYI: I also posted an Angles O'Day story back in April called The Hand of the Devil that can be found here:

For your readers looking for more Cole horror they can hit my archive for the week of June 9th -12th starting here:

Dan Thompson said...

that "Duke Handy" is great...Alex Kotzky doing his best Caniff imitation nailed it with that comment...I don't know why, but I find this ad series fascinating. Actually, I know why, it's drawn perfectly in my favorite style.

Jack Ruttan said...

That crime/horror story was fun. So much economy of storytelling and character inside those tiny panels.