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Five For Friday #21—Not-Modern-At-All Superheroes
posted March 18, 2005

Recommend Five Superhero Comics, 1938-1964

imageFantastic Four, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby
"Kid Eternity," Hit Comics, Otto Binder and Sheldon Moldoff
"Starman," Adventure Comics, Jack Burnley
"Wildcat," Sensation Comics, Bill Finger and Irwin Hasen
Sub-Mariner, Bill Everett


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Milo George

"Midnight" in Smash Comics, Jack Cole
"Superman, Batman and Robin" in World's Finest, Edmond Hamilton and Dick Sprang
The "Monster Sociery of Evil" serial in Captain Marvel Adventures, Otto Binder and C.C. Beck
"Doom Patrol," Arnold Drake and Bruno Premiani


Evan Dorkin

Plastic Man
Captain Marvel and his extended Family
The Black Cat
The Doom Patrol
Ma Hunkel, The Red Tornado in Scribbly
The original Daredevil

That's 6. And no credits. So sue me.


Jim Kingman

Wonder Woman, "A Spy On Paradise Island," Wonder Woman #3, Feb./Mar., 1943, William Moulton Marston, Harry G. Peter. Christmas with the Amazons. Kooky enough to make me shake my head. So why am I smiling?
Plastic Man, "Sadly-Sadly," Plastic Man #26, November, 1949, Jack Cole. Fun and funny.
Batman and Robin, "The Case of the Honest Crook," Batman #5, Spring, 1941, Bill Finger, Bob Kane. Robin is almost killed, unleashing a savage Batman. And no one took comics seriously after reading this?
Green Lantern, "Fighters Never Quit," All-American Comics #61, October, 1944, Alfred Bester, Artist? First appearance and origin of Solomon Grundy. Most of today's writers can't touch its intensity and compactness.
Captain Marvel, "The Endless String," Captain Marvel Adventures #55, March 1, 1946, Otto Binder? C.C. Beck? Light, colorful, whimsical. A pleasure.

"Plastic Man," Police Comics and Plastic Man, Jack Cole
"Batman" in Detective Comics #27-37, Bill Finger and Bob Kane. Pre-Robin.
"Challengers of the Unknown," Showcase #6-7, 11-12 and Challengers of the Unknown #1-8, Jack Kirby, Wally Wood, Dave Wood, Ed Herron
"The Spectre," More Fun Comics, Jerry Siegel and Bernard Baily
"Justice Society of America," All-Star Comics, Gardner Fox and various artists


Chris Duffy

Midnight by Jack Cole or Paul Gustavson in Smash Comics
Robotman by Jimmy Thompson in Star Spangled Comics and Detective Comics
Marvel Family by Otto Binder, C.C. Beck and Pete Costanza
Blue Bolt by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby in Blue Bolt Comics
The Face by ??? in Big Shot Comics


Steve Block

Dan Dare, Frank Hampson et al
Tommy Walls, Frank Hampson et al
The Doom Patrol, Drake & Premiani
Spiderman, Lee & Ditko.
Legion Of Superheroes, can't offer credits as Archives
volume 1 never credited them and I appear to have lost the sticker you got with Volume 2. That's terrible really. leads me to believe E. Nelson Bridwell staretd the ball rolling on the writing, although I know Edmund Hamilton is in that span too. Maybe Siegel was first on art, although Forte was on them when they took over the book and Swan is the era's definitive LSH artist. Shooter's run is a little after the time frame your looking for.

That's all the ones I've read from that era, too, aside from The FF which you snaffled and The X-Men, which is always going to come last on my list.


Theo Moore Odell, Age 6 (as told to his dad, Cole Odell)

Aquaman, Ramona Fradon and various writers
Plastic Man, Jack Cole
Green Arrow, Jack Kirby and various writers
The Flash, John Broome and Carmine Infantino
Superman, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster


Russ Maheras

Amazing Spider-Man (Stan Lee and Steve Ditko)
Captain America (Joe Simon and Jack Kirby)
The original Captain Marvel (C.C. Beck)
Fantastic Four (Stan Lee and Jack Kirby)
Plastic Man (Jack Cole)


Alan David Doane

1. Wallace Wood's Daredevil
2. The Spirit in Outer Space by Jules Feiffer and Wallace Wood
3. Steve Ditko's Blue Beetle
4. Steve Ditko's Captain Atom
5. Carmine Infantino and John Broome's The Flash