The Best Of The Rest! Web Of Horror, Atlas/Seaboard & Others

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Sabre

1. cover: Paul Gulacy (Oct. 1978) [Wraparound cover]

1) Slow Fade Of An Endangered Species [Don McGregor/Paul Gulacy & P. Craig Russell] 40p


Notes: Publisher & editor: Dean Mullaney. Eclipse’s premiere publication. A decent enough story, somewhat in the Killraven/War of The Worlds mode. {check out the Warren Interviews page for an interview with Don McGregor which also covers this story} The cover is colored in sepia. Between 1978 and 1983, Eclipse would publish a number of one-shot efforts and one continuing all-genre magazine in the B&W magazine field.

Night Music 1


1. cover & back cover: P. Craig Russell (Nov. 1979)

1) Introduction [Jim Steranko] 1p [text article]

2) Breakdown On The Starship Remembrance [P. Craig Russell] 23p

3) Preview of ‘Therimbula And The Sea,’ a work in progress [P. Craig Russell] 1p

4) La Sonnambula And The City Of Sleep: A Fragment Of A Dream [P. Craig Russell] 10p

5) About The Artist [P. Craig Russell] 1p [text article w/photo]

Notes: Publisher: Dean Mullaney. $4.95 for 40 pages. Russell’s front cover is a color panel from page 4 of ‘La Sonnambula’. This was an expensive book back in 1979 but it was certainly impressive with beautiful artwork by Russell. ‘La Sonnambula’ is a wordless strip. The preview fragment is of a story I do not believe was ever published. The book is dedicated to Dan Adkins & contains a panel from an Adkins’ story that appeared in Creepy #11 (Oct. 1966). Much of this material would be reprinted in color in Eclipse’s Night Music, Vol. 2, circa 1984.


Detectives, Inc: A Remembrance Of Threatening Green


1. cover: Marshall Rogers & Lynn Varley (May 1980)

1) A Remembrance Of Threatening Green [Don McGregor/Marshall Rogers] 46p



Eclipse


1. cover: Paul Gulacy (May 1981)

1) Editorial [Dean Mullaney/Don Maitz] 1p [text article]

2) Slab [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 19p

3) Amber III [Jim Starlin] 6p

4) Death [Howard Cruse] 3p

5) The Chimera [P. Craig Russell] 10p

6) Cartoon Man [Marc Hempel] 5p

7) Crystal Sett in Loose Hips Sink Ships! [Chris Browne/Trina Robbins] 1p

8) Mr. Tree: The Girl In The Red Wedding Dress [Max Allan Collins/Terry Beatty] 8p

9) Next Issue Ad [Terry Beatty] 1p [Ms. Tree is featured.]

Notes: Publisher & editor: Dean Mullaney. $2.95 for 64 pages. After several years of publishing a number of one-shot single artist books, Eclipse makes the plunge and begins an all new anthology. It’s a pretty good one too! Unlike most comic magazine anthologies, this one doesn’t focus on one genre and, in that respect, could be seen as a direct continuation of the Star*Reach/Imagine anthology comics of the 1970s. The Englehart/Rogers story started out as a Superman/Creeper issue of DC Presents but was pulled back & reworked by the two after editorial differences with DC. A plug on the last page asked readers to watch for the team’s upcoming ‘Sundancer’ but that strip either never appeared or changed its title when it did. There were three Amber stories by Starlin. ‘Amber I’ appeared in Epic Illustrated in 1985, although it had originally been done in 1979 for a never-published independent fanzine by Al Milgrom. ‘Amber II’ appeared in Heavy Metal in 1979. Russell’s ‘The Chimera’ is reproduced {rather poorly} from his pencils. To my knowledge, it’s never been inked. The “Loose Hips Sink Ships!’ story by Browne & Robbins was probably originally intended for Playboy, which had been running one pagers by Browne in their short-lived comic section. This was the debut of Collins & Beatty’s excellent private eye series, Ms. Tree. Best art is probably by Marshall Rogers, although the artwork overall is very good. Best story would be the beginning chapter of the Ms. Tree murder mystery, which sported an overall series title of ‘I, For An Eye’. The ads throughout the life time of this magazine focused on independent comics from various publishers and are a good indication {and record} of how fast the independent publishers’ movement of the early 1980s was both growing and changing comics in the process of that growth. The ads also had great art by the likes of Brian Bolland, Charles Vess, Paul Gulacy, Ken Steacy, and more.

2. cover: Michael Golden (July 1981)

1) Editorial [Dean Mullaney/P. Craig Russell] 1p [text article]

2) Rick Rabbit [Steve Leialoha] 8p

3) He Always Wanted To Write For Ernie Kovacs… [Joe Owens & Martin W. Herzog/Ken Steacy] 5p

4) I Am Coyote [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 11p

5) What’s The ‘Little Blond-Haired Guy’ Doing Here? [Don McGregor/Billy Graham] 3p

6) Cover poster pull-out [Michael Golden] 1p

7) Sax Rohmer’s Dope [Trina Robbins] 4p from the novel by Sax Rohmer

8) Role Model [Steve Gerber/Val Mayerik] 8p

9) Quick Trim [Howard Cruse] 2p

10) Crime In The City [Rick Geary] 1p

11) Ms. Tree: One Grave For My Tears [Max Allan Collins/Terry Beatty] 8p


Notes: ‘Coyote’ was the debut of a new Englehart/Rogers serial. ‘Rick Rabbit’ was originally intended for the never published 7th issue of Quack! and was probably done in 1977. Mayerik’s art for ‘Role Model’ is reproduced from his pencils and looks much better than the previous issue’s printing attempt with Russell’s pencils. A very good issue with fine stories & art from all participants.

3. cover: John Pound (Nov. 1981)

1) Editorial [Dean Mullaney/Lela Dowling] 1p [text article]

2) I Am Coyote, part 2 [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 11p

3) Vamp Dance [Kaz] 3p

4) Ragamuffins: Kindergarten Run [Don McGregor/Gene Colan] 10p

5) Homer’s Idyll: A Bag Full Of Dreams [Charles Vess] 4p

6) Large Cow Comix [Hunt Emerson] 2p

7) Dope, part 2: The Fatal Cigarette [Trina Robbins] 4p from the novel by Sax Rohmer

8) Role Model, part 2: Caring, Sharing And Helping Others [Steve Gerber/Val Mayerik] 7p

9) Because [George Pratt/Kent Williams] 1p

10) Ms. Tree: Death Is A Little Black Book [Max Allan Collins/Terry Beatty] 8p

Notes: Another solid issue with a fine cover by Pound and strong work from Rogers, Englehart, Robbins, Collins, Beatty & Mayerik, but the best story & art goes to the McGregor/Colan debut of Ragamuffins. Colan’s art is reproduced from his pencils and the repo job is none too good but his artwork still shines, while McGregor’s tale of boyhood discoveries rings true in every respect. Unlike the first episode, Val Mayerik’s artwork on ‘Role Model’ is a pen & ink job. Vess’ ‘Homer’s Idyll’ story had an earlier installment that appeared in Heavy Metal. The only story I didn’t like here was the rather pointless ‘Vamp Dance’ but that may just be a matter of opinion. The letters’ page debuts.
4. cover: Carl Potts (Jan. 1982)

1) Editorial [Dean Mullaney/Joe Desposito] 1p [text article]

2) I Am Coyote, part 3 [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 12p

3) Forgotten Adventures On The Kon-Tiki [Hunt Emerson] 4p

4) The Demon Chronicles [Alex Simmons/Jim Sherman] 12p

5) Dirty Pool [Larry Rippee] 2p

6) A Fistful Of Graveyard Dirt [Don McGregor/Billy Graham] 6p

7) Dope, part 3: A Star Is Born—And Falls [Trina Robbins] 5p from the novel by Sax Rohmer

8) A Victorian Murder [Rick Geary] 4p

9) Ms. Tree: If A Tree Falls… [Max Allan Collins/Terry Beatty] 8p

Notes: Good cover by Potts and good, solid stories. Don McGregor’s ‘A Fistful Of Graveyard Dirt’ is the best story here while the best art is from ‘Dirty Pool’ by Larry Rippee {who also provided the amusing script}. No weak spots at all here, although for some reason, Emerson’s 10 page ‘Kon-Tiki’ story was split in two for no apparent good reason. The back cover featured a full color ad of Steve Gerber’s Destroyer Duck Lawsuit Benefit Edition #1 with art by Jack Kirby.

5. cover: Michael Kaluta (Mar. 1982)

1) Editorial [Dean Mullaney/?] 1p [text article]

2) I Am Coyote, part 4 [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 11p

3) The Hitch-Hiker [Billy Graham] 6p

4) Forgotten Tales Of The Kon-Tiki, part 2 [Hunt Emerson] 6p

5) Among The Scarabaeidae [Michael Kaluta] 4p

6) Down The Drain [Eytan Wronker] 1p

7) Dope, part 4: Pipe Dreams [Trina Robbins] 6p from the novel by Sax Rohmer

8) Ragamuffins: Recess, Bondage And Nuns [Don McGregor/Gene Colan] 9p

9) Ms. Tree: The Last To Know [Max Allan Collins/Terry Beatty] 8p


Notes: Behind a beautiful Kaluta cover was yet another solid issue. The previously unpublished ‘Among The Scarabaeidae’ by Kaluta was done in 1970. Solid segments of ‘Coyote’, ‘Dope’ and ‘Ms. Tree’ appeared, while the excellent ending of Emerson’s ‘Kon-Tiki’ and another fine installment of ‘Ragamuffins’ were all most welcome. Colan’s pencils were presented with slightly better reproduction than the first installment.

6. cover: Paul Gulacy (July 1982)

1) Editorial: Two Girls For Every Boy [Dean Mullaney/Peter Kuper] 1p [text article]

2) Ms. Tree: Kiss Tomorrow Hello [Max Allan Collins/Terry Beatty] 16p

3) Alice Quinn [Harvey Pekar/Sue Cavey] 6p

4) A Lil’ Monster Making A Phone Call [Larry Rippee] 1p

5) Luke The Drifter [Lenny Kaye/Paul Gulacy] 2p [song lyrics]

6) Dope, part 5: Limehouse Blues [Trina Robbins] 6p from the novel by Sax Rohmer

7) A Walk Up Avenue U [Don McGregor/Tom Sutton] 6p

8) My Transformation [Rick Geary] 2p

9) I Am Coyote, part 5 [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 11p

Notes: Ms. Tree is cover featured and receives her big finale. An excellent mystery novelette. The letters’ page also included letters dealing with Steve Gerber & Jack Kirby’s Destroyer Duck. ‘Alice Quinn’ was Harvey Pekar’s first appearance in a mainstream or independent comic although he’d been publishing his own American Splendor as an underground comix for several years. Lenny Kaye, the lyric writer for ‘Luke The Drifter’ was a member of alt-rocker Patti Smith’s band and a friend of Dean Mullaney’s brother Jan. Best story & art go to the McGregor/Sutton story ‘A Walk Up Avenue U’ but it’s a close call. Lots of good stuff here.
7. cover: John Bolton (Nov. 1982)

1) Editorial [Dean Mullaney/Kent Williams] 1p [text article]

2) The Masked Man [B. C. Boyer] 10p

3) The Fate Of Charity Hope [Sean Carroll] 4p

4) Dope, part 6: To The Brink [Trina Robbins] 6p from the novel by Sax Rohmer

5) The Twin In The Doorway [Don McGregor/Tom Sutton] 10p

6) The Underground Lighthouse [Hunt Emerson] 11p

7) An Autobiography [Kevin C. Brown] 2p

8) I Am Coyote, part 6 [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 9p

Notes: Very nice cover by John Bolton. ‘I Am Coyote’ was supposed to have its finale here but the story actually wouldn’t end until the next issue. ‘An Autobiography’ follows the format of Robert Crumb’s classic ‘A Short History Of America’--this time featuring the history of a car & a movie theater over a period of years. ‘The Masked Man’, one of the better Spirit inspired series, debuts. B. C. Boyer’s at times awkward art was rather endearing and his storytelling skills were very good. Best story in this issue. Hunt Emerson’s amusing effort featured the best art.

8. cover: Marshall Rogers (Jan. 1983)

1) Editorial [Dean Mullaney/George Pratt] 1p [text article]

2) The Masked Man: Frankie [B. C. Boyer] 10p

3) Mr. Walk-Down-The-Street [Larry Rippee] 1p

4) There’s An Alligator In My Pool! [Jim Bourgeois] 9p

5) Ragamuffins: The Other Side Of The Street [Don McGregor/Gene Colan] 12p

6) Dope, part 7: Mollie Gets Amorous [Trina Robbins] 6p from the novel by Sax Rohmer

7) I Am Coyote, part 7 [Steve Englehart/Marshall Rogers] 11p

Notes: Final issue. One of the best {and largely overlooked} of the B&W magazines draws to a premature close as Mullaney announces plans to convert to an all-color comic line. Eclipse Monthly, a 32 page color anthology book, replaced Eclipse Magazine, with ‘The Masked Man’, ‘Dope’ and ‘Ragamuffins’ all continuing their serials there. Mullaney’s editorial thanking numerous staff members was an inside joke to make it sound like there was actually a staff putting out the magazine. Madelyn Feinberg was Dean & Jan’s mother, James Shannon & E. Lessly were two pseudonyms of Dean Mullaney’s (Shannon was Buster Keaton’s character in the silent film ‘Seven Chances’ and E. Lessly was Keaton’s cameraman), Alice B. Stockham was the 5th woman doctor in the US and a pseudonym of cat yronwode’s while Gail “Sailor” Duval was the name of the character played by Lauren Bacall in the Bogart-Bacall radio drama “Bold Venture”. Only the typesetter, Chuck Spanyay, was an actual living, breathing person. ‘I Am Coyote’ concluded its first adventure, with Johnny Carson appearing! Another excellent installment of ‘Ragamuffins’ appeared. The only sour note this issue was Bourgeois’s “Alligator’ story, which featured underground style art and a none too interesting storyline. Otherwise, a very good issue.




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