Friday, January 18, 2013

DC's Summer of 62 as Showcased in Brave and Bold #41 and #42: Here Come The Superheroes!

Have a look at the DC Comics house ads as featured in 1962's May and July issues of The Brave And The Bold, which reveal a company stepping into the superhero arena in a big way over the course of just two months!

Cave Carson, another of the DC non-super team creations is featured in BB #41 with some nice Toth pencils severely damaged by an inker who doesn't 'get' Alex's superb design sense. But it's the house ads we're talking about here, and they feature old guard hero Batman, DC's sci fi comics, and the other DC non-superhuman teams -- except for the last one, that is.

 Business as usual here: Robots, aliens and more aliens. It's interesting that DC had so many features with skilled, but normal people working as teams rather than as superheroes in the early 60s. Besides the Challengers of the Unknown and Blackhawk, they had Rip Hunter, The Sea Devils, Cave Carson and the fondly remembered but never reprinted original Suicide Squad.

And while the soon to be Marvel comics was unleashing the Fantastic Four and Hulk, DC set loose Bat-Baby! But, in the same month, they also unveiled their most modern and exciting title in a long while:

As with a lot of kids who grew up with comics in the early 60s, this first Showcase appearance of The Metal Men would be my choice for the best single issue of a comic published by DC at the time. If you haven't read it already, Volume One of Showcase Presents Metal Men is highly recommended.

Now for a look at the superhero onslaught represented in the house ads of BB #42, starring Hawkman:

 Not only is a superhero cover featured, but check out the inside front cover:

And being a Julie Schwartz edited issue, the two other color ads feature more superheroes from his stable:

 So it's superheroes all the way, at least until the inside back cover. It shows how diverse the DC line remained despite their increasing focus on men in tights.

And as much as I loved their superheroes, I'd still get the odd issue of Bob Hope, Jerry Lewis or Sugar and Spike when I had an extra dime or two.

And speaking of Cave Carson, which we haven't for a couple of paragraphs, I always suspected someone at DC saw the movie Unknown World before creating Cave and crew:

The comics images and clips are copyright by their respective rights holders. The Masked Mayhem logo and text are copyright 2013 Will Meugniot.

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