Thursday, November 15, 2012


Quite a few things showed up at the comic book store last night that I was interested in. I got the big art book, James Bama: Personal Works, which has a ton of paintings by one of my favorite artists that haven't been seen by too many folks. Stuff he painted for himself. When you consider the amount of commercial work that Bama did, it's amazing that he still found the time or interest to paint for his own enjoyment, but this book shows that art for art's sake never stopped being a source of pleasure for him.
   Also picked up The Big Book Of Ghost stories, another in Otto Penzler's series of "Big" books for Vintage Crime. Cliff, Jim, and I were amazed that there were quite a few stories in the book that none of us had read, since between the three of us we've read mass quantities of horror fiction. There are some classics as well, but yeah, a bunch of new stuff for me to read. The selections cover over a hundred years so you get everything from Victorian chillers by Kipling to modern ghostly tales by Asimov and Joyce Carol Oats. Should be fun.
   And I got The Once and Future Tarzan, a Dark Horse comic book that collects the series of the same name which appeared in Dark Horse Comics Presents. This is a tale of the far future where the 300 year old immortal Lord Greystoke lives in a post-apocalyptic world. It has art by my favorite living Tarzan artist, Thomas Yeates. I've already read the series but it's nice to have it in one volume. I bought a copy for my mom too, who still enjoys a good Tarzan comic.
   Finally, I picked up the 12th volume of the Dark Horse reprints of Marvel Comics' Savage sword of Conan. This volume reprints SSoC issues 121 through 130. We've finally escaped the long wasteland of writer Michael Fleisher's stint on the book and volume 13 will bring us into Chuck Dixon's run, which I've blogged about before at length. The issues between Fleisher and Dixon were written by Don Krarr, Larry Yakata, and the pseudonymous Jim Owsley (now Christopher Priest).
   The focus on these stories is Conan as mercenary, a trend Dixon would continue, leaving Fleisher's emphasis on fantasy behind. The good thing about this is the reprints have finally arrived at issues I enjoyed reading. Though I like Michael Fleisher's work on Jonah Hex and The Spectre, his Conan stuff just left me cold and he was on both the color comic and the black and white Savage Sword for a loooong time.
   All in all, not a bad haul.

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