Thursday, July 16
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Tag: Superman

Toon Time: Super Friends Title Card

Toon Time: Super Friends Title Card

TV & Radio
Here we have a hand-painted title card for what is likely the first of several Super Friends TV cartoons. I'm fairly certain this is from the initial one that aired from 1973 to 1974, and it features Batman, Robin, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and Superman. Click on the image for a larger version.
Sears Catalog Goodness #2: Fall 1958 Halloween Costumes

Sears Catalog Goodness #2: Fall 1958 Halloween Costumes

Ephemera
In Sears Catalog Goodness I pull one page from a vintage Sears catalog to highlight neat, interesting, or just plain funny images and products sold by one of America’s greatest retailers once upon a time. You knew I couldn't go the whole Halloween season without sharing some vintage costumes from Sears, right? Well I'm not about to disappoint you on that front, so here is a page from the Fall 1958 catalog featuring the biggest heroes and stars of the day -- Zorro, Superman, Lassie, Woody Woodpecker, Casper the Friendly Ghost, Bugs Bunny, and "Pop-Eye the Sailor Man." The name characters on this page are great, of course, but my eye is drawn toward the costume that probably dates this assortment more than any other -- Satellite Joe, the "man of tomorrow." If that doesn't screa...
Vintage Photo Wednesday, Vol. 41: Superman Balloon at the 1940 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Vintage Photo Wednesday, Vol. 41: Superman Balloon at the 1940 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Vintage Photo Wednesday
Last year I shared a cool vintage photograph of a Mickey Mouse balloon from the 1934 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, so this year I'm back with another fantastic floating icon. This shot from the 1940 Macy's parade marks the debut of the famous Superman balloon. His debut was given its own article in the November 22 edition of The New York Times, entitled "Superman Struts in Macy Parade -- His 23-Foot Chest and 8-Foot Smirk Delight the Throngs Lining Sidewalks." This is yet another example of something from pop culture achieving an enormous amount of popularity in a very short time. Consider that Superman had only just debuted in in April 1938 in Action Comics #1. So within just a few years, the Man of Steel had his own comic book, his own radio program (The Adventures of ...
It’s a Golden Age Superhero Halloween!

It’s a Golden Age Superhero Halloween!

Blogstuff
I think I like the idea of reading Golden Age superhero comics more than actually doing it. Compared to today's comic books, the stories and artwork often don't measure up. But man, I could look at the covers all day. So in the spirit of the season, here's a few Golden Age comic book covers with a Halloween theme. The Superman one is technically Silver Age, but I think it has the same lighthearted spirit as the other three so I included it. If straight-ahead horror comics from the Golden Age are more your thing, I've got a gallery of them too. I couldn't resist including this last one from Batman, even though it is firmly entrenched in the Silver Age and is of a much more serious tone. But how can you go wrong with a vintage Neal Adams cover?
A Gallery of World War II Superhero Comic Book Covers

A Gallery of World War II Superhero Comic Book Covers

Capsules, Ephemera
In modern times, comic book superheroes tend to view armed conflict with a healthy dose of skepticism regardless of which side they're on. But that wasn't the case during World War II, when costumed do-gooders from Superman all the way down to the lowliest nobody of a crime fighter eagerly signed up to wallop the Axis powers on behalf of Uncle Sam. And hey, if they had to deal in period racism to get the job done, who were we to question that? So just in time for Memorial Day, here's a gallery of vintage WWII-era Golden Age comic book covers showing our heroes fighting the Nazis and the Japanese on behalf of Uncle Sam. Many of these images were sourced from the excellent Digital Comic Museum -- check 'em out!  
Great Moments in Comic Book Advertising, Vol. 2: Captain Marvel for Mechanix Illustrated

Great Moments in Comic Book Advertising, Vol. 2: Captain Marvel for Mechanix Illustrated

Advertising
I have to say, as vintage examples of cynical marketing aimed at kids goes, this one is a doozy. It's an advertisement for Mechanix Illustrated from America's Greatest Comics #2 (Fawcett Publications, Feb/May 1942), and features none other than Captain Marvel himself. That's right young fellas, don't even think about reading Mechanix Illustrated if you're a crummy sissy! OK, so let me provide a little bit of historical context here. Mechanix Illustrated, in case you couldn't tell, was positioned as a competitor to established magazines like Popular Science and Popular Mechanics. It was published by Fawcett, which of course owned Captain Marvel. And lest you think being thought of as a sissy by Captain Marvel wasn't a big deal in 1942, keep in mind that throughout the '40s Captain...
Trailer Trash: Man of Steel Official Trailer #2

Trailer Trash: Man of Steel Official Trailer #2

Movies
So is it June 2013 yet? Because my Spidey Sense -- oops, wrong costume -- tells me that Man of Steel may actually redeem the Superman film franchise from the snoozefest that was Superman Returns. Check out the newest trailer: It looks like the origin story just got a little darker, and DC is taking the franchise in a very Dark Knight-esque direction. That's no surprise of course, but as long as the movie's good I don't mind. If you want to watch campy Superman there are always the great Christopher Reeve movies out there (which means stop after the second one). We don't see much of Henry Cavill in action here but he seems to be a good fit visually. The effects also look awesome, and best of all Kevin Costner isn't using a stupid accent. Oh, and did I mention General Zod? Beca...
Pop Culture Capsule — Superman through the Years

Pop Culture Capsule — Superman through the Years

Capsules, Featured Posts, History
Since his debut in 1938, Superman has become an American icon and has appeared in countless media adaptations. Well not countless, but a lot. More than I count. To show the evolution of Superman, here's a photo/image gallery representing how the Last Son of Krypton has appeared over the decades. Action Comics #1, June 1938 (art by Joe Shuster) Superman Fleischer Studios animated films (1941 - 1943) Superman, serial film starring Kirk Alyn (1948) Adventures of Superman, TV series starring George Reeves (1952 - 1958) Superman (Vol. 1) #99, August 1955 (art by Al Plastino) It's a Bird...It's a Plane...It's Superman, Broadway musical starring Bob Holiday (1966) Super Friends, animated TV series (1973) Superman, film starring Christopher Reeve (1978) Lois &a...
Vintage View-Master: Electra Woman and Dyna Girl, reel 1

Vintage View-Master: Electra Woman and Dyna Girl, reel 1

Ephemera, TV & Radio
Here's one of the more bizarre View-Master reel sets in my collection. It was issued to promote the short-lived live action series Electra Woman and Dyna Girl, which ran for just 16 episodes in 1976. It was one of the segments aired during the first season of The Krofft Supershow, which itself only lasted for two years. Electra Woman and Dyna Girl followed the adventures of two comely reporters for Newsmaker magazine -- Lori/Electra Woman (Deidre Hall) and Judy/Dyna Girl (Judy Strangis). Over the course of the series the pair battled an array of colorful villains like the Pharaoh, the Sorcerer, Glitter Rock, Ali Baba, Spider Lady, and the Empress of Evil. The segments seemed to be a none-too-subtle homage to the Batman TV show from the '60s, as you'll see in this clip of the opening the...