Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Crossovers...How Far?

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.   After the popular Hanna Barbera cartoons were placed into serious comic books and serious predicaments, (And I loved them) now DC is teaming up with the cartoon guys.

     Now Space Ghost and Green Lantern makes for a good idea, but Batman and Top Cat?  I have to pick this one up just to see what's going on!

     Take care and adopt a comic (one that makes sense please) book today!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Hornet, Where is Thy Sting?

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Today is another sad passing of an actor with a comic book crossover.

     At the age of 82, actor Van Williams passed away and we younger boomers and lover of comics remember him as Britt Reid aka The Green Hornet.  His comics were published in the 40s, with even Jack Kirby drawing a few issues.

     He's even had more recent comics published under NOW publishing and the Dynamite Logo.  But I remember the four issues published by Gold Key Comics back in the 60s.  All issues were drawn by a friend of mine, Dan Spiegle.

     So let's remember Van and his television Kato counterpart, Bruce Lee.  They're both up there above the clouds right now right now, getting their Black Beauty super car ready to track down crime.  May they always be successful!

     Take care and adopt a (Green Hornet) comic book today!

Monday, November 28, 2016

The Long Orson and Me

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I'm stepping aside from comic books (although he liked them and appeared in them) for a minute to tell all of you that I have been asked to perform the full almost 90 minute version of my "Evening with Orson Welles" stage play at Lake Erie College this Thursday, Friday and Saturday (Dec. 1st-3rd) all 3 nights start at 7 30.

     Join in on the last of the 75th anniversary celebrations of  the release of "Citizen Kane."  I will act out many of the films and stories from Orson's life using his direct quotes.  Come to C.K. Rickel Theatre, Royce hall for the fine and performing arts.

     Located at 391 West Washington Street, Painesville, Ohio.  440-375-7455 tickets are $10 at the door, LEC students, faculty and staff, free.

     Hope to see you one of those days, but don't worry, I won't try to sell you any least not before its time.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Cry Uncle

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Today is actor Robert Vaughn's birthday, or would have been had he not passed away last week.  Best known for "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." television show from the mid-60s.

     Of course I remember him from the comic books by the same name.  They were published by Gold Key Comics and featured photos on the covers from the show.  There were not very many of them, but most had decent artwork by either Alden McWilliams or Mike Sekowsky who also drew Justice League of America during the mid-60s.

     And now that I've got the superb actor on my mind, I'm going to pull a few issues out tonight of U.N.C.L.E. comics and read some.

     And in honor of Robert's portrayal of spy, Napoleon Solo, I'll give out a quiet plea of, "Open channel "D" please.

     Take care and adopt a (spy) comic book today!

Hijacking a Panel

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  A few weeks ago I went to the Akron Comic Con.  I sat in on a Bat Panel with guests I wanted to hear from.  All I heard was con organizers running around saying, "No moderator, no moderator."

     My friend nudged me and stated that I knew as much as anyone on Batman, and since 15 minutes had gone by with nothing going on, I smiled and shouted out, "Let's get this this show on the road."

     An hour later and everyone had a wonderful time and applauded my efforts in  running a panel on less than a seconds notice.

     I called it, "Attending a panel and a lecture broke out."

     My wife called it, "Hijacking a Panel."

     Take care and adopt (one reviewed by a panel) a comic today!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Wait

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Tomorrow is comic book day.  I've read everything, so I think companies need to put out more GOOD comics to keep me going from week to week.  I just cannot stand the wait any longer.  LOL.

     Take care and adopt a (good) comic book today!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Green Arrow

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Today I'm talking about bad-guy bashing bowman Green Arrow.

     Created by Mort Weisinger in the early 1940s, Green Arrow first appeared in More Fun comics #73.  But back then and for many ensuing years, he was nothing more than a bland "Batman with a Bow."

     But a quarter of a century later, this perennial back-up feature got a face lift from artist supreme, Neal Adams, streamlining Oliver Queen's former baggy costume and giving the bowman facial hair in Brave and Bold #86 from 1969.  A few years later, writer Denny O' Neil grafted a new liberal firebrand attitude onto the character and the new look was so popular that it was even mirrored in the toys of that era.

     Almost another 20 years later, writer/artist Mike Grell gave the Arrow a new hooded monk look in "The Longbow Hunters."  The mini-series was popular enough that Ollie finally got his own ongoing comic book.

     And now in this new century, the Arrow has finally received his own popular television series on the CW Network.  So we've now been informed on where Oliver Queen came from, but where is he going?  What is his future?  As straight as an arrow, follow his CW show every week and find out.

     Take care and adopt (one with an arrow in it) comic book today!  

Friday, October 21, 2016

Geek Expo, You be the Hero!

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  And all will be well tomorrow at the North East Ohio Geek Fest located at the Spire building located in Geneva off 90 and 528.

     Lots of Cosplay and items for sale.  My new book, "The N-Hanced" will debut as well as the actors who posed for the cover, they will be posing (with you) recreating the cover of the novel with superheroes and YOU!

     The Bystander Group LLC, will feature the book, the heroes, myself and David Russell who is the painter of our cover and is the featured artist of the convention.  We'll be there from 11am to 6pm.

     See you there.

     Take care and adopt a (cosplay) comic book today!

Capes and Hearts

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  In all of the comic books I've read over the years, I've always seen heroes who save the day in the "nick of time."  And the heroes have always been equipped to take on the job before them.

     A boulder about to fall on you, call Superman.  You need a super agile helper to get you out of the way from some danger, get hold of Spiderman.  In need of a detective to figure out your problem, get the best and call for Batman.  But you get my drift.  If you are in big trouble, call the big heroes.

     But what about the small problems, the small dangers, the small emergencies?  I mean if someone is crying, there's no need to call The Flash and if someone is sad, don't bother The Avengers.

     All you need is a neighbor or friend.  And to fix the problem you don't have to come from Krypton, or be bitten by a radioactive spider.  But you do need something that all of us regular folks have already, a power that we were all born with, the power to listen, to give a hug, to hold a care.

     So if you want to help and do something to help those in distress, you don't need a shield or a special car or a jet-pack.  You can put on a cape if you want, but don't forget the greatest weapon a hero can have, that you already have...a heart.

     Take care and adopt a (caring) comic book today!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Talking Comics

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I'm finally getting back in the groove of blogging regularly after being gone for several weeks in a row, but now I'm back and ready to once more talk comics.

     And literally, talking comics is what I have been doing.  I've been appearing all over northeast Ohio talking to groups, speaking at conventions 2 or 3 times a week for the last 5 months.

     And the best part of talking comics with people...just talking comics.  So many new people that I've met, friends that I've made and that is the best part of the comic world...we all love comics.

     And that's something worth talking about!

     Take care and adopt a (one that you can talk about) comic book today!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Clown Comics

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  You know, recently A lot has been made of the weird clown sightings that have scared children and adults.  Some cities have even outlawed these mirthful monsters.  And I certainly do not understand the urge to scare people.  But did you know that comic books have the same problems?

     Yes, scary clowns at the top of the comic book food chain would be The Joker.  Hanging around and bothering Gothamites and the Caped Crusader since Batman #1 (Spring, 1940), this Clown Prince of Crime is one big clown pain in the butt.

     There are others, but for the sake of this short and to the point blog, let's just say that just one other mirthful madcap encapsulates the strangeness of these Bozo wannabees...

     Marvel's Obnoxio the clown!

     Take care and remember to adopt a (funny) comic book today.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Tragedy of the Little Red-Haired Girl

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.  Just reported the other day was the passing of Donna Wold, the real life "little red-haired girl" (she was never given a name in the strip) that inspired Charles Schultz to create the fictional one from his classic "Peanuts" strip.  She was 91.

     Schulz used Wold as a character in the strip to represent the wistfulness that Charlie Brown had for a girl that he could have hoped to talk to some day, to date some day, but it was never to be.  Not in real life where Wold chose another to marry, beside Schulz, (they did date for awhile) nor in the strip, where Charlie always suffered from unrequited love.

     Now with some of the very inspirations gone from already long gone creators is this...

     Good Grief do I feel old.

Monday, July 18, 2016

San Diego Comic Con...Live!

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Now the big Comicon every year is out in California.  But if you cannot go, check out the Sy-Fy channel this week.  Starting Thursday, that channel will be giving us live broadcasts with events, panels, and many other things connected with the convention.

     So if you CANNOT television Thursday nite thru Saturday.  Live the experience of the great comic book convention through the magic of your t.v.

     Take care and adopt a comic book (one that has been through San Diego) today!

Friday, July 8, 2016

Imagine the Fantastic

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I was going through my stack of new comics that I purchased Wednesday, and I realized how lucky all of us are who collect these multi-hued wonders.

     Because in these brightly colored pamphlets, we all see different worlds, fantastic adventures, heroes of all sorts, all shapes, sizes and colors.

     In these light-weight books, we see different worlds, action at breakneck speeds and drama of the most subtle kind.  In effect we, life on both a small yet grand scale all at once.

     So everyone next week, go to your nearest comic shop and dive in head first and partake of the wonderful experience. 

     Imagine the fantastic!

     Let's comic book!


Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Lois Lane...Gone!

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Well, just a few days ago, actress Noel Neil passed away at the age of 95.  She played Lois Lane in the Superman serials of the late 40s and then returned to the role on television after Phyllis Kirk left the role on the small screen. 

     Noel's Lois, was more perky, inquisitive, just like the young reporter she was and was perfect for the role as it was envisioned at that point in history

     I met her several times and was pleased to find that at no matter what age she was at the time, she was very happy to meet the fans and it showed.

     Of course now I'll never be able to think of that old t.v. show, "The Adventures of Superman," without Jack Larson's comment to George Reeves' character, "Jeepers, Mister Kent."  Likewise I will always think of Noel's annoyed comment to Kent in every episode.

     "Oh, Clark!

     Take care and adopt a (Lois Lane) comic book today!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Comics, Talk and Signing

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Tomorrow, Saturday, July 2nd, I'll be at the Great Lakes Mall between Noon and 5pm.  I'll be signing copies of my newest sci-fi and adventure books from Bystander Group LLC (publishers)

     Come down and talk comics and movies and all things, pop culture.  I'll be there waiting for you.

     Take care and adopt a comic book (that you can talk about) today! 

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Meeting Comic Book People

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I just finished a nice day at the Lake Effect Con a week ago with my fellow Bystander members, artist David Russell and publisher, Tim Woodside.  And believe me it is a fun, joyous time to spend eight hours chatting with people that have shared likes and joys, so make sure that all of you attend at least one convention this summer and talk with the artistic guests and have a lot of fun.  I'm betting you will for sure.

     Take care and adopt a comic (one purchased at a convention) book today!

Friday, June 3, 2016

Same Convention, New Site

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Yes it is convention time and one of the best ones in Lake County at this point of the year is the Lake Effect Con NOW being held in the Holiday Inn on Reynolds road (rt. 306) in Mentor this Saturday, June 5th, 2016.  It used to be at the Atlas theatre if that jogs your mind, yes it is THAT great con.  It starts at 10 am and runs thru 5pm, $5 entrance fee at the door.  Google the con for a list of guests.  I know I'LL be there with artist David Russell and our new Bystander Adventure Series from Bystander Group LLC.

     And feel free to talk comics with me while you are there, because I've got lots of stories and I'll tell you about the new books I'm working on.

     Take care and adopt a comic book (from the convention) Saturday!

Monday, May 23, 2016

Memorial Service and...a Comic Book

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.  Over the weekend I had the memorial service for my late father, James. This is the man who taught me to read on comic books.  He gave me a stack of his old comics circa 1936-42 when I was a kid, and I still have them.  I had pictures of the two of us displayed around the church from various point of our lives as well as his super hero night-lite globe and his Cleveland Browns knick knacks.
     And needless to say, during the service, the subject of...Batman came up.

     Take care and adopt a (one that your Dad used to like) comic book today!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Not the First Marvel Civil War

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Of course with all of the Marvel "Civil War" talk lately, I think this is not the first time Marvel heroes went toe to toe.

     The Avengers went at it with Hulk in Avengers #3 and went at him again with the FF in Fantastic Four #25 and #26.  The Avengers and the X-Men duked it out in X-Men #9.  And none of these battles were very civil.  But you get my drift.  Marvel heroes have always gone at it for years.  Now the registration part was interesting but even that concept I believe was used before, possibly X-Men's "Days of Future Past," but I can't quite remember since I'm writing this at two am. 

     And that is a time when I'M NOT very civil.

     Take care and adopt a (very civil) comic book today!


Thursday, May 12, 2016

High Standards for Heroes

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I was looking through some old comics the other day and saw many of the super fellows flying high over the heads of regular people on the covers.  I thought to myself, how great it must be to be flying high in the air, to have all of those powers.

     But then I thought that there must be a certain accountability involved.  Because there are lots of heroes that fly and many that are very tall.  But as Stan Lee once said, "with great power, there must also come great responsibility.

     But we normal folks do all that we can to get through life and its problems also.  In our own way, we have it just as rough as the heroes, just without the super-villains.

     So heroes can always stand, fly, float and hover over us, but they must never...look down on us.

     Take care and adopt a (non judging) comic book today!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Free Comic Day May 7th. Check out the Mall

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Tomorrow, May 7th, 2016, I'll be at the Great lakes Mall right in front of Comics and Friends from Noon-5pm, selling our new book, "Expediters II."  Artist and friend, David Russell will be with me at the table, sketching and chatting with everyone who stops by.  Plus check out all of our other recent books on sale.  But CERTAINLY do not forget to pick up you FREE comics from Comics and Friends.

     Take care and adopt a (free) comic book today.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

History of Comics, Willoughby Library

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Tonight in the honor of the upcoming Free Comic Book Day around the country, I will be giving a power point presentation of the history of comic books, decade by decade, at the Willoughby Library tonite in downtown Willoughby.  The show starts at 7pm  Hope to see you there.

     I will also be appearing at Comics and Friends on Saturday, May 7th (Free Comic Day) with my artist and friend, David Russell.  Noon-5pm I'll be there, talking, signing autographs and selling me new book...Expediters II.

     Hope to see you there.  Take care and adopt a (free) comic book today.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Why Free Comic Day?

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.  Concerning the question I've posted in the title, I've just a few things to say.

1. Comics can help the young kids read and stretch their mental creative muscles.

2. It can help fathers and sons and daughters bond over cool characters.

3. You can pick up some advance preview material from DC and Marvel.

4. The comics are FREE for gosh sakes.

     I'll be appearing at Comics and Friends at the Great Lakes Mall for FCD from Noon to 6pm.

     Take care and adopt a (free) comic book today!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Bat V Superman...Novel Idea

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.  After having almost a month of health problems and figuring out my Dad's estate after his recent passing, (which explains my absence from this blog) I finally had time to see the Batman V Superman movie.

     And in the first half hour the film bored me, in the next thirty, I hated it.  But like all other Zack Snyder films (mostly Watchmen) they are quite condensed, and very much detail laden.  By the halfway point I loved this movie and considered it great.  And the Doomsday tack on part at the end worked because it was secretly part of the plot all (unlike the tack on Two-Face in the 2nd Chris Nolan Bat flic) along.

     It was a good film but I must say that it was more like a novel AS a film than a straight film and I would very much love to read the adaptation to see how the novelization reads, since this film views indeed like a novel reads.  And Affleck is the best Batman since Keaton's first outing.

     Take care and adopt a (thick, novel-like) comic book today!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Supreme Justice and Comics

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Today I've been reflecting on the President's choice for the Supreme Court last week.  As far as I'm concerned, approve the guy already.  I think he's perfect for the job, do you know why?  Because he paid for his college tuition with menial jobs and by selling his COMIC BOOK COLLECTION! 

     And if this man is willing to make that kind of sacrifice for the law, then he is the man for the job.

     Take care and adopt a comic (one with legal stuff in it) book today!

Monday, March 14, 2016

Batman v. Superman/Barnes & Noble

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.  Stop by Mentor Barnes & Noble this Saturday, March 19th 2016 to take part in the Batman/Superman trivia contest.  Starting at Noon and going most of the day, Myself and artist David Russell will be showing off our Superman/Batman collectible collections and signing free autographs of sketches of the two heroes.  The bookstore will also have free giveaways from DC Comics in conjunction with Warner Bros. new movie starting the following week. 

     Trivia events will be at 2pm and 7pm.  Stop by, get free stuff and talk comics with David and myself.

     Take care and adopt a (Batman or Superman) comic book today!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Batman vs. Superman

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Within a couple of weeks, a film containing a Batman/Superman slugfest is coming out nationwide.  And the gist of the film's animosity surrounding the two main character's goes back to the mid and late 80's.  Back then, as DC Comics was re-inventing themselves, the powers that be, figured that two so unlike characters would never be friends, hence, they MUST be enemies.

     But my generation comes from a time when the two of them were not only friends, but shared a book together, one called...World's Finest.  And finest it was, as Superman, Batman and Robin all shared an exciting book filled with aliens, super villains, sorcerers and what nots.

     But after around 30 years, tastes change, so DC made the former friends give one another the cold shoulder.  But it's been another 30 years since then, so I wish the pendulum would swing back the other way and get back on friendly terra firma.  But that's only my wish, my World's Finest wish.

     Take care and adopt a (friendly) comic today!

Friday, February 26, 2016

Sorting Out Comics and Life

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  Well, just a few days after the passing of my Dad (as well as the passing of my Uncle today) I'm trying to keep real busy. 

     So I'm sorting out all of my comics.  Boy do I have a lot of loose comics that need to be placed back in the correct box.  This may be fine, because I'll say aloud to myself as I sort... "Hmm, Dad bought me this one, Dad was with me when I bought this one."  You get the drift.

     I'm just suggesting that next time you go through your box of comics, bring a parent with you, the experience could be a bonding one, and who knows...they may like it!

     Take care and adopt a comic book (and then store it correctly) today!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Family and Comics

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I love the Fantastic Four comic book, they are fun, tough, they fight great villains and are among other

     Now in my family, my brother was a huge collector as was I.  My sister really didn't seem to care and my Mom hated them.  Luckily, my Dad absolutely LOVED comics and passed that passion along to me and many years down the road I've written millions of words about comics and still have a fair collection of them.

     But my Dad passed away a few days ago and I thank God that the passion was instilled in me over 50 years ago so that I might carry on the mission...of writing, talking about and enjoying comics.  Thanks Dad, I miss you and love what you did for me all those years ago.

     Take care and adopt a comic (with families in them) book today!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

My Dad's Gone, Pain & Comics Here

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  This is a blog that I never wished to write, but you see, my Dad and greatest friend died a few days ago.  We were so close that I often said that we were really just the same person with two different birthdays.  His connection to this blog you might ask?  He taught me to read on comics, I inherited his creative spark and without him, this blog and my writing career and love of comics and pop culture would have never taken off.

     I love him so much that I wish that I were with him right now, wherever that might be instead of here.  I know that sounds harsh and that these words puts me in a position of breaking both man and spiritual laws, but I'm so crushed I can feel nothing else right now.

     But the one thing that keeps me from doing something drastic is Dad had some lifelong friends that he introduced me to when I was young.  These friends of his feel just as helpless as I do right now and they need more help than I do.  So I can't join Dad currently.  Instead, I've got to stay behind as much as I loathe to, to care for his helpless friends, orphaned children really, and help them in any way I can.

     These friends, these surrogate children, are named Batman, Blackhawk, Daredevil, Black Hood and Captain America.  He left them in my care, these old, four-color brothers of mine, to take up his task of reading them, turning their pages, keeping them dry and so on, the same way he cared for them throughout his long life.

     So even though I want to, I won't be following Dad along his path anytime soon, instead, I'll stay behind to care for his old friends, wiping tears while keeping them safe and letting them know they are loved...the way he loved them, the way he loved me, the way I still and will always love him.

     Take care, please, and adopt a comic (any comic, I beg you) book today...and hug your parents!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Cold Comics

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.  With winter finally hitting us, I thought I'd talk about the cold and how it affects comics.  When I was very young, my Mother would not let me keep a lot of comics in the house, so out to the garage they went.  Now during the summer, I hid my books throughout the house and basement, but during the winter, I happily complied.  Why would I do that you might ask?  Because the cold kept them in beautiful shape.  Many of my better copies of comics are still in great shape due to the normally frigid Cleveland weather.

     I might have mentioned this tip before, but attics and damp basements are a danger to your precious paper darlings.  Of course they didn't have special acid-free bags and boards.  No, if it was up to me, I'd keep my comics in a slightly cooled fridge year round.  More on conditions of comics and weather, coming soon

     Take care and adopt a (cool) comic today!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Pain, Pain Pain

     Hi everyone, hope all is well.  With me it's been comics and pain.  At Christmas I had my 3rd heart operation, then came pneumonia, then I broke my pointing finger in two places.  Hard to type.  Hard to turn the page on a COMIC BOOK!

     Take care and adopt a comic book (that does not hurt you) today!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

A Galaxy Quest Loss

     Hello everyone, I hope all is well.  In the world of comic books, sometimes other genres like sci-fi crosses over.  I was at the store yesterday and ran across the Galaxy Quest comic series, based on the great movie from over a decade ago.  I was still pondering how to get all of the parts I was missing when I heard that Alan Rickman had passed away.  He was the alien like Mr. Spock type character from the film.

     I will miss his splendid voice in films and will be sadly reminded of his passing with the turning of every page that I turn once I get all of the parts to the comic series.

     Take care and adopt a (Galaxy Quest) comic book today!

Friday, January 8, 2016

Whitman Wonders

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  You know I'm still so weak from the heart operation and pneumonia that I can barely lift a stack of comics.  My solution to this problem...Big Little Books.

     Big Little books have been around since the 1930s, (and I have a few in my collection) but in the 60s, Whitman began putting out versions with superheroes such as Fantastic Four, Space Ghost, Aquaman, Batman and so on.  They also put out a larger size set of books that included Green Hornet and the Invaders (a television show that had comics published by Gold Key).

     So, I've been so weak in my recovery that I've been reading these Big Little Books, but I'm focusing on the "little" part to fool my weakened condition.

     Take care and adopt a (not so heavy or big) comic today!

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Supergirl Great, Gotham Tiring

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I've been watching Gotham from the beginning and Supergirl as well.  Guess what, I think I'm sticking with Supergirl.  There's some humor and lots of super hero action and it's fairly light in scope while still containing drama and suspense.  Meanwhile Gotham spends all of its time gouging people's eyes out.  Yuch!

     Take care and adopt a (non-eye gouging) comic book today!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Late New Year and Sickness

     Hello everyone, hope all is well.  I'm wishing all of you a belated Happy New year since I've been in Hospital getting another heart operation and then came the pneumonia.  GREAT!!!

     But at least I've been resting and reading...that's right---COMICS!

     Take care and adopt a (healthy) comic book today!