Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Collecting Classic Captain Marvel Comics

I love golden age Captain Marvel comics!  For me, they are a great way to relax and be entertained as well as inspired by the adventures of the world's mightiest mortal.  I own three golden age comics and a good number of the 1970's Shazam comics.  Purchasing these comics can be expensive and does require you do some homework before making a buying decision.  I'd like to share some thoughts and tips based on some of my lessons learned on how you can collect Captain Marvel comics!

I recommend you start by collecting those issues that mean a lot to you - comics with stories that you would want to read time and again.  That helps to narrow your search and ensure you buy something you won't regret later!  For example, one of my favorite Captain Marvel stories comes from Whiz Comics #93 when Cap becomes a hobo to reunite a family.  I can read that story over and over, so it was the very first Captain Marvel comic I looked for and purchased for my collection.


Next, you will want to start looking for a copy of the comic.  You can check your local comic shop, comic convention, on-line stores and eBay.  I've had good experiences on eBay and on-line comic shops.  The local comic book shops in my area are limited as far as golden age comics are concerned!

Once you've identified the comic issue you want to buy, start asking questions!  These are questions you might want to ask depending on how important they are to you.

  • What is the condition of the comic?  Watch out for torn pages, loose pages, rolled spine, writing, mold or mildew, etc.  If you have allergies, you may want to see if the comic comes from a smoke-free, pet free home.
  • What are the seller's ratings (if buying on-line)?  Are they dependable?  Do they provide pictures of the comic and welcome you to ask questions?  Are they providing a solid description of the comic?  
Something else to consider is comic book rating guides.  Different sellers can use different ratings, and they can be confusing!  For example, some comics can be rated high but still have some damage that you wouldn't want (missing pages, etc.).  Don't go by the ratings alone!  Ask questions and know the condition before you buy.  Again, make sure the comic is in a condition you are happy with.

Buying Cap's golden age comics is a lot of fun.  For me, I love holding a comic from the 40s or 50s and thinking about all the fans - young and old - that held and read that comic through the years.  But buying golden age comics does require some effort and patience to make sure you're getting a comic you really want and in a condition you are satisfied with.  I hope you've found this information helpful!!


Sunday, August 12, 2018

Comic of the Week - Whiz Comics #2



The Captain Marvel comic of the week is Whiz Comics #2!  This is the comic that launched the career of The World's Mightiest Mortal and gave us Billy Batson's background story and Captain Marvel's origin.  Whiz Comics #2 was published by Fawcett and went on sale December 1, 1939.* (DC made a great reprint of this comic which you can read about here.)

Whiz Comics #2 not only introduced readers to Captain Marvel, it also introduced them to new characters Ibis the Invincible, Golden Arrow, Lance O'Casey, Spy Smasher, Scoop Smith, and Dan Dare!

This comic featured the following stories:

Captain Marvel!



Ibis the Invincible

Golden Arrow

Spy Smasher

Scoop Smith

Lance O'Casey

Dan Dare


Think about it - what kid wouldn't love this comic?!?  It has a superhero, a mystical, magical Egyptian prince, a arrow-shooting hero, a spy, a ship's captain, a reporter and private detective!  Many of these heroes would also have their own comics, but for the most part they remained a part of Whiz Comics.

That's a brief look at Whiz Comics #2  - the origin of Captain Marvel!



*According to Mike's Amazing World of Comics

Update to my Captain Marvel Comic of the Week

One feature of my blog has been highlighting a Captain Marvel comic of the week from time to time.  The comic I featured was typically something I came across and found interesting and wanted to share it.  But after giving it some thought, I decided that beginning now I will start going systematically through Cap's comics and feature them in the order they were published.  For now I'll focus on Whiz Comics and Captain Marvel Adventures, and then later on go into Marvel Family, Mary Marvel and Captain Marvel Jr. comics.  Hope you like this little update to the comic of the week feature!


Monday, August 6, 2018

Captain Marvel Club Card Replica

I recently found a nice replica of one of the Captain Marvel Club cards.  It's printed on heavy cardboard and the colors are pretty nice!  The original card would have had a drawing of Billy Batson on it, and by lifting up a flap on the card, Billy would "transform" into Captain Marvel!  On the back of the card is the club's secret code!

Front of card


Back of card with club code

This was just one version of two club cards that I'm aware of, and this 'magic' version came out after the original card was produced.  (You can see an image of the original card here.)  This replica was far more affordable than an original one - I've seen them priced in the $100 plus range on various sites!  While I would prefer to have an original, it's not a bad edition to my Captain Marvel collection!




Sunday, July 8, 2018

Comic of the Week - Special Edition Comics #1


The Captain Marvel comic of the week is Special Edition Comics #1!  This was a one-shot comic published by Fawcett and went on sale June 14, 1940* (about six months after Cap premiered in Whiz Comics!).  

The cover featured Captain Marvel and announced it was 64 pages of new adventures for him.  In the lower right, it states "Featuring brand-new stories of Captain Marvel World's Mightiest Man."

One thing I noticed about Captain Marvel is that there's been a modification to his uniform.  Notice that he's not wearing the bib-front.  But also notice that he has a belt with a letter M buckle!



This comic featured the following Captain Marvel stories:

"The Menace of Doctor Allirog"



"The Haunted House"



"Gamblers of Death"


"Sivana the Weather Wizard"



A few other notes of interest about this comic are that in some stories Billy Batson wears a red sweater with the letter "B" on the front, and in one story Captain Marvel solves the mystery wearing track and field clothes - he even takes the criminals before the judge wearing them!  This is a great one-shot comic from the early days of Captain Marvel comics!


*According to Mike's Amazing World of Comics


Saturday, June 30, 2018

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Did You Know...



Did you know that in Whiz Comics #87 (published May 9, 1947) both the wizard Shazam and Captain Marvel had to end a quarrel among the gods?

It turns out that Mars, the god of war, had sneaked into Mount Olympia and was giving some of the gods (Zeus and Mercury) his nectar of evil!  This caused them to quarrel and fight among themselves.  Mars' malicious plot is uncovered and Shazam banishes him to the nether realms!








Thursday, May 10, 2018

Countdown to the Shazam! (Captain Marvel) Movie Premier

At this time, April 5, 2019 is the date for the premier of the Shazam! (Captain Marvel) movie!  How long do we have to wait?  You can find out by clicking on the countdown timer I created!!  Hope you find it helpful!!

Shazam! (Captain Marvel) Movie Premier Countdown Timer








Sunday, May 6, 2018

Comic of the Week - Captain Marvel Adventures #1



The Captain Marvel comic of the week is Captain Marvel Adventures #1!  This was Captain Marvel's stand-alone comic and went on sale January 17, 1941 (about a year after Cap premiered in Whiz Comics.).  Remember that in Whiz Comics, there is one Cap story followed by stories of other heroes like Ibis, Golden Arrow, etc.  But in the pages of Captain Marvel Adventures, all the stories feature Captain Marvel!

Captain Marvel Adventures #1 featured the following stories:

"Captain Marvel vs Z"


"Out West"

"The Monsters of Saturn"

"Captain Marvel Battles The Vampire"

It's interesting to note that Jack Kirby was the artist for each of these Captain Marvel Adventures!


Monday, April 30, 2018

Blog Cleanup and Maintenance!

It's been a while since I've done some cleaning up and maintenance on the blog, so I'm going to spend some time this week doing that!

One thing I've had to do in the past several weeks is delete comments that were submitted on various posts.  Most of the comments were spam, some were questionable, and some were legitimate.  I had a problem with one of my other blogs were someone's comments created some problems with how the blog operated, so to be safe I had to delete all the pending comments on this one.  If you left a comment and don't see it published, I hope you understand.  Please know I really appreciate everyone who takes the time to stop by and read my blog.  Hopefully I can get back to publishing comments soon!

Yours for old Shazam,

Jeff


Sunday, March 11, 2018

Introducing Joan Jameson



Joan Jameson was introduced to us in the pages of Captain Marvel Adventures #67 (October 4, 1946) in the story "Captain Marvel Gets a Secretary."  Joan Jameson became the secretary for both Billy Batson and Captain Marvel in this comic!

We learn that Joan graduated Business College and excitedly and determinedly goes out looking for work.  Joan's work ethic makes her determined to find a good job and work hard.  Since Captain Marvel is her hero, she decides to look for a job at WHIZ where both Cap and Billy Batson have an office.



Joan's job opportunity seems pretty slim when Billy advises her that he and Captain Marvel have no need for a secretary.  But Joan is undaunted and strikes a bargain with Billy - let her work as secretary for one day to prove herself!  Joan soon proves herself to both Billy and Captain Marvel who marvels at Joan's professional conduct and efficiency.


By the end of the story Captain Marvel tells Joan, "Believe it or not, you convinced both Billy and me that we need a secretary!  Report to work tomorrow morning and every morning after that!"  For Billy's part, he tells the readers, "Yes, folks!  Joan Jameson is our permanent secretary now!  Captain Marvel and I think she's swell!"


Not only did Joan become Billy and Captain Marvel's secretary, she also accidentally witnessed Billy's transformation into Captain Marvel!  She knows Billy's secret but she also kept his secret - not telling anyone!


Another interesting fact is that Joan was one of the characters that was caught up in Sivana's Suspendium trap that put Captain Marvel into suspended animation for over 20 years!  (You can read about that here!)  She went on to become a character in the 1970's Shazam! comic series.

I am really impressed with Joan Jameson's character as she is a great role model for both men and women.  She worked hard to put herself through college, she had the grit and determination to get a good job, and she impresses even a super hero with her hard work!  Though she's a minor character in Cap's comics, she has a ton of good character traits that make her a true role model!


Thursday, February 15, 2018

Strength and Hope

Yes, Captain Marvel is my hero.  One thing that I can always count on when I read one of his comic adventures is having the feeling that I want to be just like him.  No, not necessarily having super powers, but being a decent, stand-up human being - one that puts others before himself and stands up for what's right.  Captain Marvel does that to me.  With that in mind, I've decided to incorporate some inspirational and encouraging words on my Captain Marvel blogs from time to time.  These will be words and thoughts that embody the Captain Marvel spirit.

This post is my first one.  I wrote these words several years ago during a time of great loss for our family.  I wrote the words to myself as a reminder and now I share them with you and pray they are an encouragement and inspiration to you.

One thing that can never be taken away from you is hope. Hope - there is a chance. Hope - there is another way. Hope - keep fighting and keep punching and refuse to give up.

It doesn't matter what the bad news is or what are the odds. Those things have nothing to do with hope. The only time hope will be extinguished is when you decide to give it up.

Hope gives strength. Hope gives strength to face another day or face another minute. Hope gives strength to not give in to despair. Hope gives strength to fight another round. Hope gives strength.


Sunday, January 28, 2018

Comic of the Week - Captain Marvel, Jr #1


The Captain Marvel comic of the week is Captain Marvel, Jr #1!  I've typically featured only Captain Marvel's Whiz or Captain Marvel Adventures comics, so this time I wanted to do something different and feature the first issue of Captain Marvel, Jr's comic!

Captain Marvel, Jr #1 featured the following stories:

A re-telling of Captain Marvel, Jr's origin.



"Wings Over Dazaggar" features Captain Marvel, Jr going up against his old nemesis - Captain Nazi!



"The Shadow that Walked!"



"The Case of the Crippled Kidnappers!"



"The Cracked Safecracker!"



This comic first published on October 16, 1942.