Unnecessary Farce, Act Two

     cast     

               Winter storm Uvula dumped a whopping three inches of snow in town. Some towns up north and to the south got 8-10 inches; enough for my boss to close the offices. It reminds me of my college days when youthful citizens of a certain megopolis in the northeast reaches of my state mocked local schools for closing when there were only a few inches of snow and ice.

                I could do a whole blog ranting about naming winter storms to give the drama queens that are weather forecasters better ratings.

                I could also do a whole blog ranting about northerners not realizing that school busses taking kids to school in the Ozark foothills have a little more to worry about than their fellow flatland metro bus drivers who might bump into another bus or a pole at 3 miles an hour … tumbling sideways into a creek bed comes to mind…

                But this gives me a chance to blog about the upcoming play I am performing in: “Unnecessary Farce”. It is put on by the Sparta Community Chorus and performance dates are February 27th, 28th, March 1st, 6th, 7th, & 8th.

              Last year I tried out for and was given a part in their 2014 Winter Play “Murder in the Magnolias”. I met a lot of new friends and finally performing a play we had to cancel in high school brought back a lot of memories and I blogged extensively about it then.

                This year it is wonderful to connect back with my old new friends and make new ones. It also helps this is a hilarious play – funnier than last year’s, I think.

                The Facebook page and website of the play itself provides some fun stuff – here are two posters of performances recently in Singapore and Iceland. I wonder if they did the play in English. I wonder how the actors handled the thick Scottish brogue of two of the characters.

Singapore

iceland  

              “Unnecessary Farce” has a great premise and I will try to tell you without any spoilers. There are a few fun twists and turns – all is not as it seems – and I won’t ruin it for you.

                Two cops, Billie and Eric, are given their first real assignment that doesn’t involve pushing pencils behind a desk. Karen, the city accountant, has found discrepancies in the city budget – someone is milking the city for millions of dollars. All evidence points to the mayor.

                Mayor Meekly is meeting Karen in a seedy motel room where Eric and Billie set up a sting. Karen’s job is to video-tape the Mayor confessing to embezzling the money. Easy, right?

                Nope, it seems the Mayor is a bit of a dope. Eric and Karen, while not incompetent, are very inexperienced. And Eric and Karen fall passionately in love with one another.

                The head of town hall security, Agent Frank, shows up in the midst of Karen’s interview with the mayor and stops it. To ensure the security of the motel room, he says. When the Mayor leaves, he warns Karen that the real reason he is there is to inform her that the Scottish Mafia, who REALLY runs the city, knows what she is doing and is sending a hit man to stop her.

                The hit man shows up. So does the Mayor’s wife, just as silly and clueless as her husband, looking for him (he tends to wander off, you see).

                Will the hit man take out Karen? Can the two young police officers fight off such a vicious killer? Will the mayor be exposed as the embezzler?

                It is a fun and wonderful script. With about ten days to go before the opening night, everyone is nervous – there are a lot of lines and a LOT of choreography with the motel doors. One person leaves just as another enters. Our lines depend on the verbal and physical cues of others. A few times my character doesn’t enter until I hear (or see if I peep out the slightly-opened bathroom door) others leave or hide. If I don’t hear/see the door shut, the other actors will have to wait until I appear.

                Fortunately we have a wonderful cast who have been in dozens of plays and musicals. They needn’t be nervous – we will all know our lines and cues and it will be rollicking fun.

                I’ve been performing in plays since before all but two of my cast members have been born, starting in 1979, but I am still the only “newbie” on the cast. This will only be my second time performing in play since 1982! But our director has picked a perfect cast! I was amazed at the first rehearsal I attended how the script flowed out of everyone so naturally. When you come see the play, compliment her on her perfect casting.

                Hopefully even that heavy-set fellow in the kilt…

 cast 2

 

 

 

Budgeting, avoiding debt and getting out of debt, Part 2

budget

Budgeting, avoiding debt and getting out of debt

Part 2

            On January 27, 2015 I was asked to speak to families by the BCMW Head Start program in Centralia about budgeting, avoiding debt and getting out of debt.

            I prepared a thirty-minute speech with handouts and other documents. Most of my speech was cobbled together from notes online, and I thought I would write it up as a blog to share with you.

            Note that these are lecture notes and not originally done to be read. It’s like reading a play – something I always complained about in school when studying Shakespeare, etc. It’s like trying to “listen” to Mozart or the Beatles by only looking at the sheet music. So it is a little disjointed, but I hope you enjoy it.

            Check the first part of my speech here.

***

            Now that you’ve found a small pool of “extra” savings, how can you use that to get out of debt?

            Make a conscious decision to stop borrowing money. Right now. If you want to get out of debt fast, you have to stop using debt to fund your everyday expenses and lifestyle. This means no more financing furniture, no more signing up for credit cards, no more test driving brand new cars that you don’t have the cash to pay for. This will help you focus solely on the debt that you currently do have so that you can develop a game plan to pay it off quickly.

            DON’T take out a big loan to pay off all the smaller ones; you can’t borrow your way out of debt. Especially if you are still used to using debt to finance your everyday expenses. In a few years, or even months, you’ll be back to several loans and credit cards AND the big loan that paid off your previous debt…

            Ask for a lower interest rate: Frankly I usually have doubts about this working, but I’ve had people tell me they have had some success. Grab a bill from any account charging you more than 15% interest. Dial the toll-free number on the bill and ask to have your rate reduced — say, to 10%. Tell them that you’d really like to stay with them as a customer, but you are facing financial difficulty and have received offers for much-lower-rate cards. Stand firm and remember that, to them, you are both a customer and a means of profit. You have nothing to lose – all they can say is “No.” Thank them and hang up. But if they say yes, you could save some money. And always, always ask a letter from them confirming the new rate.

            Should you switch to a low-interest or no-interest credit card? Well, why not? If you stick to the payment plan it will save you money in the long run. One saying is applying for lots of credit cards at one time hurts your credit. Odds are your credit is already hurting right now … so where’s the real harm? And all the new credit cards can say is no and you can cancel them before charging anything on them – but watch out for the transfer fees. Is it worth paying no interest when they add a thousand dollars to your bill?

            Is there any way to earn extra cash? Books and financial gurus tell us to “go get a second job”. Yeah, right. I earn more money, I lose my aid.  Or “start your own business”. Seriously? How can they say that and keep a straight face?

            But maybe the older children can help with part-time jobs. And they can help with expenses. They can start learning about income and not using debt to fund living expenses. A habit they’ll get into that will benefit them the rest of their lives!

            Can you sell things? Don’t think of ways to make some extra money as a waste of time. You might spend all day on Saturday sitting at your yard sale for $40.00. But it’s $40.00! What else would you be doing? Watching TV? The kids can help count money and make change – my gosh they might learn something!

            Take old toys to consignment shops, sell old clothes on those online or Facebook yard sales.

            Once you have found some extra cash, it’s time to organize your debt and start paying it off.

***

            Financial gurus use two approaches:

  1. List your debts smallest to largest regardless of the interest rate. This helps build momentum. When we paid off our first debt it’s encouraging and exciting! Even though we had higher interest debts, this gave us something that was very powerful: the belief that we could get out of debt quickly if we stuck to the plan. Then when that debt is paid off, roll that monthly payment into the next debt.

            Example: you’ve found a pool of $75.00 extra per month and pay that on a bill until that is paid down. Then you go to the next bill and pay that bill the extra $75.00 plus its minimum payment, let’s say $30.00, too. So you have $105.00 going to pay that bill. Once that is paid off in a few months to a year roll that $105.00 to the next bill and add its minimum payment – let’s say $40.00 per month. So you are making $145.00 per month on that third bill!

  1. List your debts starting with the highest interest rate first and end with the debt with the lowest interest rate. This will save the most money in interest over time.

            Regardless of which process you choose, the key is to stick with it.

            Throw that excess cash at your debt

            I mentioned this before … if extra money comes to you, take this cash and use it to tackle your debt. Some good examples would be a tax refund, selling a car, selling toys at consignment shops or online. The more cash you can put towards your debt, the faster it will disappear.

            Be aggressive in paying down debt, but don’t get so ambitious that you risk missing minimum payments on your mortgage, automobile, or any other secured credit account. (Secured means that if you miss enough payments, the bank can show up and take away your stuff.)

***

            Then there is bankruptcy, this is what I do. I am a bankruptcy attorney. In this debt pay-off plan I consider this the nuclear option. Boom!  I’ll explain why in a bit.

            There are two kinds of bankruptcy you can file – the Chapter 7 and the Chapter 13. Why they are called that is because the bankruptcy code is like any book – it’s divided into chapters and the chapters that apply to people at 7 and 13. Chapter 13 is a consolidation of all your debt – kind of like what we are talking about right now. The Chapter 7 eliminates or liquidates all debt.

            There’s a lot more to it than that, such as car loans and house loans, but that would take up another half hour.

            The trouble with filing bankruptcy is the same as getting a big loan to pay off your debt. You need to get in the habit of not financing your everyday expenses with credit. Bankruptcy will eliminate your credit cards and loans, but if you don’t learn to live and spend without them – you’ll be back to owing more credit cards and loans in a few years, or months!

            Remember that originally credit cards were a safe substitute for cash – usually in bigger cities or stores. I charge on my account and pay it off at the end of the week. In rural areas people charged until they had the cash available. It’s too wet to cultivate the beans, but after ten days of sunshine I can harvest the crop and pay store or bank debt.

            Debit cards are now the substitute for cash. I use a debit card instead of cash. It’s safer and most places take them now. Don’t use credit cards for food or clothes. When Wal-Mart announced in the mid-1990s they would start accepting credit cards, I knew the impact it would have on people dependent on credit cards.

***

            OK, so I’ve paid off all my debt, now what? Establish a starter Emergency Fund of $1000.

            You might be wondering, ‘Why is having an emergency fund important’? Well, if you don’t have any money in the bank and an emergency does happen, how are you going to pay for it? For most people, credit cards become the funding source for those emergencies. If you are trying to get out of debt then you need to put a buffer between you and debt; that is exactly what an emergency fund does.

            A fun way to save money is to add money into a jar or piggy bank at the rate of the same amount of dollars as the week of the year beginning January 1st (we’re nearly in February so you will have to catch up quick). $1.00 the first week, $2.00 the second week, etc. This might get tight by the time you get to week 30 or so… (this will be mid-July), but by then you’ve collected $465.00 – in ten weeks that will be $820.00 (mid September): there’s your Christmas spending money. If you can make it to Week 48 (just after Thanksgiving), that’s $1,176.00. That’s a nice way to save up for your emergency fund. By the way, if you want to catch up, the end of January totals $15.00.

***

            When you have a huge debt load you feel isolated and bummed out. But if there is one thing to remember is that you are not alone. And there are people you can turn to for help. There are lots of books and financial gurus out there. You can check out books and DVDs from the library or buy them cheaply on ebay.

            And by the way, check your local libraries or museums or conservatories for free activities for kids and families – game days, reading nights, movie nights, etc. Substitute that instead of paying for the family to see a movie.

            When it comes to getting out of debt one of my favorites is John Cummuta. His earlier tapes and DVDs talk about this system of paying off your debt slowly and I like what he says and his down-to-earth style. Nowadays he also talks about what to do with all that extra money: invest in this, invest in that, start your own business, etc.; but his method to climb out of debt is still good advise.

            But there are also so many scam artists and charlatans out there, so be careful. You know, “I can help you make a millions dollars. Just send one dollar to “How to Make a Millions Dollars”…” and their secret is to get one million people to send them a dollar…

            And don’t put up with smarmy condescending jerks. The type that says it’s not your fault and then spend twenty minutes telling you why it’s your fault.

            Debt doesn’t have to be forever. Develop your financial game plan and start your journey toward being debt-free.

***

            (The suggestions and ideas of this blog are cobbled together from various internet sites and blogs. Some ideas and suggestions are original; some taken from various “un-cited” sources. Copyrights, if any, are held by the proper holders.) 

Michael Curry

Budgeting, avoiding debt and getting out of debt, Part 1

budget

Budgeting, avoiding debt and getting out of debt

Part 1

            On January 27, 2015 I was asked to speak to families by the BCMW Head Start program in Centralia about budgeting, avoiding debt and getting out of debt.

            I prepared a thirty-minute speech with handouts and other documents. Most of my speech was cobbled together from notes online, and I thought I would write it up as a blog to share with you.

            Note that these are lecture notes and not originally done to be read. It’s like reading a play – something I always complained about in school when studying Shakespeare, etc. It’s like trying to “listen” to Mozart or the Beatles by only looking at the sheet music. So it is a little disjointed, but I hope you enjoy it.

***

            If you do not have debt, congratulations. There aren’t many people out there that can say that. Most of us have debt and that can cause stress & anxiety.

            If you’re afraid to open letters, answer the phone or open the door, but they are ignoring the problem – but it won’t go away.

            Being in debt can be a stressful experience. No matter what your circumstance is, if you signed for a loan, you are obligated to pay it back even if you have a life altering experience like losing a job, getting into an accident, or even if you have increased expenses due to having a child.

            Money is the No. 1 cause of relationship breakdown.

            Ignoring it may also make you dread what tomorrow might bring. And it’s all because of money worries.

            Facing up to the problem can be a frightening thought, but it is the first step towards doing something about it.

***

            To avoid debt or to get out of the debt trap you are in is to know your income and expenses.  What you have coming in and going out…

            Few of us were taught the basics of money management.  Drawing up a budget is a mystery to many. Yet it has an impact on our day-to-day living.

            Look at your income; I made an income sheet that details your gross, your deductions and then you final net income – your take-home pay.

 Gross Income                                             $

Overtime (average):                                $

Total:                                                             $_____________

 DEDUCTIONS:

Taxes

            Federal                                              $

            State                                                   $

            Social Security                               $

            Medicare                                           $

            Other (FICA, etc.)                         $

 Insurance

            Health                                                $

            Life                                                      $

            Vision                                                 $

            Dental                                                $

            Disability                                          $

            Other                                                  $

 RETIREMENT                                            $

 UNIFORMS/SHOES/EQUIPMENT    $

 OTHER                                                          $

  

NET INCOME:                                             $

 Determine your monthly income:

            Paid weekly*?                                                         x 4 =

            Paid every other week*?                                     x 2 =

            Paid two times per month?                               x 2 =

            Paid monthly?                                                        x 1 =

 

*(actually, weekly is 4.33 and bi-weekly is 2.167, but this will give you a cushion)

***

            Know what your deductions are. Is this insurance? Is this a voluntary charity? It’s important to know where your paycheck is going.

            Is there a way you can adjust this?

            Can you adjust your withholding? Do you need that big tax refund or can you lower your withholdings to make more money during the year. You may get thousands of dollars in February but are eating Ramen noodles by November, and borrowing for Christmas and paying for it with those thousands of dollars in February – it’s a vicious circle of debt…

            You can even spread out your earned income credit through the year. This can be hundreds of extra dollars per month.

***

Then look to see where what you are spending. I’ve also included an expense sheet we use at our office. You can find lots of these online or in self-help books at the library you can copy for your own use.

EXPENSE
AVERAGE MONTHLY COST
RENT OR HOME MORTGAGE $
UTILITIES  
Electricity $
Heating Fuel; Gas or Propane $
Water and Sewer $

Telephone

$
Cell Phones $
Cable $
Satellite $
Trash $
HOME MAINTENANCE (repairs, lawn mowing, painting, etc.) $
FOOD $
NON-FOOD GROCERY ITEMS (laundry soap, diapers, toiletries, etc.) $
CLOTHING/SHOES (yearly average ¸ by 12) $

LAUNDRY / DRY CLEANING

$
MEDICAL AND DENTAL EXPENSE (do NOT include insurance premiums) $
TRANSPORTATION – include gas, oil, repairs ( do NOT include car payment or insurance) $
INSURANCE (do NOT include any payroll deductions)  

Homeowner’s /Renter’s (if not escrowed)

$
Life $

Health (Major medical, dental, vision, etc.)

$
Auto $
Other $
TAXES – do NOT include any payroll deductions or any that are included with your mortgage payment  $
INSTALLMENT PAYMENTS – only those you  intend to keep  
Automobile payment $
Automobile payment $
Other $
Other
$
ALIMONY, MAINTENANCE AND SUPPORT PAID TO OTHERS (do NOT list if this is a payroll deduction)  $
CHILD SUPPORT (do NOT list if this is a payroll deduction) $

MISCELLANEOUS

 

Tobacco

$
Postage $
Haircuts/Beauty Shop $
Pets $
School Supplies/Lunches/Expenses $
Charitable contributions $
Other __________________________ $

             Be realistic! This will help you see where your spending goes.

            Check the income minus the expenses – where are you at? Do you need to trim some expenses?

            Go over each line item on your budget and ask yourself, ‘how can I make this number smaller?’ It may involve cancelling services that you rarely use like a gym or swimming pool membership, Netflix subscription (although that is sometimes cheaper than cable), etc. It might even involve reducing the amount of times that you eat out at restaurants each month.  Maybe make it once per month – makes it more special.

            Stop buying non-essentials. Buying lunch every day? Coffee? Think how much you spend on high-end coffee per cup. $7.00 for a mocha froth? One of those a day for month equals an average car payment. A car payment … a cup of coffee. Get it?

            Use coupons or buy generic (although it is usually cheaper just to buy generic green beans rather than name brand even with coupons).

            If you decide you’d like to keep getting that big tax refund instead of spreading it out through the year: think hard about what you want to use it for. Don’t blow it on a vacation.  Remember the cute phrase some years ago – “Staycation?” Go to Springfield if you like history, camp out at Giant City or Rend Lake, St. Louis Zoo is still free, etc.

            Movies? Get them from the library. Games? Rent them, too. Cable? Can you watch shows you like online or though Hulu or Netflix (but watch out your not paying extra for the internet streaming. Netflix may be $7.00 per month, but if you go over your internet limit that will cost tons… see? You have to watch for those little things)? Cell phone? Get prepaid – you can reward yourself with a smartphone after a debt is paid off.

            And feel free to reward yourself when you hit a milestone and pay off a debt. Go to that movie, eat out someplace nice.

            Before buying an expensive item, count how many hours you will have to work to pay for it or how many months’ income it is. Rule of thumb: if you can’t afford it, you can’t have it.

            Other ways to shave off a few bucks from your expenses are old tropes or old ideas, but they happen to be true and happen to work: Your car’s most economic speed is likely to be between 50 and 55 mph.   When you buy a car, get one that is two years old – its price will have dropped by 40-50 per cent – and keep it three years.

            Never go shopping when you are hungry – and, if possible, don’t take the children. My secretary told me her cousin plans their meals for the week and writes it down in a notebook and takes it shopping – cuts down on the impulse buying and buying things you don’t need or impulse items.

            The amount that you slash depends upon your commitment level to getting out of debt.  The more committed you are, the easier it will be for you to give up some of the unnecessary amenities in life.  You might not even need to sacrifice much if you can find these items or services for less.

            But you will probably have to make changes in your life to climb out the hole. Think about how long did it take you to get here? This won’t happen overnight, or in a month or a year! It takes perseverance, patience, and dedication; it takes time and effort.

            From here you can now make a plan – by looking at the kind of debt you have – secured (fixed payment) and unsecured.

***

            End Part 1 …

            Fear not, Part 2 of this speech will be posted on my blog right away … if there’s no hyperlink at the end of this blog, you can click here.

            (The suggestions and ideas of this blog are cobbled together from various internet sites and blogs. Some ideas and suggestions are original; some taken from various “un-cited” sources. Copyrights, if any, are held by the proper holders.) 

Michael Curry

The Warlord: DC Comics Adventure Line’s Most Successful Failure

Enter the Lost World of … THE WARLORD!

    SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

            The one true success of DC’s Adventure Line was The Warlord.  His comic lasted until issue #133 in 1988 – despite a hiatus between issue #2 (April 1976) and #3 (November 1976) of nine months. The character appeared throughout the DC universe – in Crisis, Aquaman, Green Arrow, his own revived series, and in DC’s current mega-event “Convergence”.

            Then again, you could argue Warlord was DC’s Adventure Line’s biggest failure! It was the last of the seven comics of the line to appear – and that was in First Issue Special. First Issue Special replaced Showcase as DC’s anthology series for new or revived series. Issues featured Metamorpho and the Creeper, the Green Team and a revival of the New Gods (the only other feature from First Issue Special to get its own magazine). Warlord as its own magazine did not appear until February of 1976 (remember the cover date is about four months ahead of the publication date – it was published around November of 1975). It only lasted two issues.

            It did not appear on the stands again until the next summer – the month after the last issue of the only other Adventure Line alum – Claw – was published. It is likely Warlord took Claw’s place on the roster.

            Regardless, from May 1975 until December 1988 fans of the non-imprint enjoyed the best of high adventure!

            For the purists, July 1975 was the only time a fan of the Line could purchase all seven titles – it was the only month all seven titles were new on the stands (these had October and November cover dates).

            Why was Warlord such a late entry? It was published too late to have the Adventure Line ad in it. Why did it appear first in a “try-out” comic instead of its own feature like Kong or Stalker? Were the powers at DC afraid Warlord might not be a success? When I meet the creator again I may ask him…

            Warlord was Mike Grell’s baby – he wrote the series through #79 and drew the book until issue #53. Since its original run the title has been revived three times; once as a miniseries and twice as a continuing series – other than the original run the fourth series was the longest and lasted only 16 issues. Even so, these “failed” revivals lasted more issues than most of the other Adventure Line comics!

            I promise not to review all 133 issues, just the first ten (eleven if you count First Issue Special…)! It will give you a good taste of the series.

            In fact, issue #50 of The Warlord had a series synopsis of the prior issues in its letter column. As I’ve written here before, since someone has already done the work for me… Ross Andru was the editor and Karen Berger was the editorial  coordinator for #50 – the actual writer of these synopses is unknown.

***

            Unless otherwise notes, all issues were written and illustrated by Mike Grell and edited by Joe Orlando.

First Issue Special #8, “This Savage World”, November 1977, Travis Morgan crashes in Skartaris and rescues the princess Tara from the evil Deimos. I got Iron Mike to sign my copy (on the bottom of the page along the dinosaur’s tail…).

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

#1. “This Savage World”, February 1976, En route to Shamballah, Travis and Tara are captured by slavers. Travis helps free Tara, but is tied and left for dead.

#2. “Arena of Death”, April 1976, Escaping, Travis is captured and made a galley slave. After a sea battle he and fellow slave Machiste are made gladiators. Travis leads the gladiators in revolt when he learns that Tara has been captured by Deimos.

            The story does not end in a cliffhanger per se, as had the previous issue, but it had an open ending. Yet “The End” was prominently written on the final page. Did Messers. Grell and Orlando know this was the last issue? Did they know it would come back in a few months? I don’t have the issue so I cannot read the letter column to find out! I DO have the Showcase collection of its first few years, but those (unfortunately) do not contain ads or letter columns. Anybody out there have the issue? What does the letter column say?

#3. “War Gods of Skartaris”, November 1976, On their quest for Tara, Travis and Machiste battle the lizardmen and discover Travis’ wrecked plane. This was the first issue of the comic I owned. I made sure to pick up the series for many years afterward. I left it about the same time as Grell…

#4. “Duel of the Titans”, January 1977, Warlord’s band attack Deimos’ stronghold, but he uses the lost science of Atlantis to hold them back. Travis faces Deimos in a sword fight and kills him, freeing Tara.

#5. “The Secret of Skartaris”, March 1977, Jack C Harris took over as editor. On their way to Shamballah, Travis and Tara discover some ruins where they learn that the “magic” in Skartaris is really lost Atlantean science. An old Atlantean tramway accidentally returns him to the surface world.

#6. “Home is a Four-Letter Word”, May 1977, In Peru, Travis meets Mariah Romanov and an international party  of archeologists. After helping them defeat a demon, he and Mariah return to Skartaris, pursued by a CIA man who believes Travis a traitor.

#7. “The Iron Devil”, July 1977, Warlord and Mariah meet Machiste again and Travis is forced to sever his friend’s hand, freeing him from a cursed battleaxe.

#8. “The City in the Sky”, September 1977, Denny O’Neil takes over as editor. Our trio encounter and defeat a man-eating cyborg on a floating city manned by robots.

#9. “Lair of the Snowbeast”, November 1977, Lost in the snowy wastes, Warlord rescues Marian and Machiste from a warrior tribe with the aid of a mysterious snow beast.

#10. “Tower of Fear”, January 1978, Larry Hama takes over as editor. Our trio rescues Ashiya, and then aids her in obtaining a mysterious Mask of Life with which she later secretly revives the slain Deimos.

***

            The art and stories were excellent throughout. Criticisms that it contains warmed-over tropes of a Hollow Earth and a Land That Time Forgot miss the point. Grell’s sheer joy in the stories and characters shine through. He shows a fully-realized fantasy realm here – something missing in, say, the last issues of Kong the Untamed.

            It was a thorough tale of a realized world that unfolded slowly like a novel. It was wonderfully done. And his women were gorgeous!

***

            Warlord’s success is evident in his appearances outside the comics realm – he had his own action figure line through Remco,

 warlord 1

he appeared in the Justice League Unlimited cartoon,

 Warlord 2

and (mordant bleu) even in cosplay!

 warlord cosplay

            The comic previewed two other successful sword and sorcery DC comics: Arak Son of Thunder and Arion Lord of Atlantis. Two other back-up features – Adventure Line alum Claw (which concluded the story line of his cancelled series) and Dragonsword – were wonderful additions. Warlord was DC’s most successful sword-and-sorcery comic during its run, so it served as the touchstone and host for DC’s other attempts at the genre.

***

            One huge success out of seven comics. Not very good for a line of comics. But this “line” or (imprint as we’d call it nowadays) only existed in one full-page house advertisement, and every issue was great fun. And most of them have aged well – there were no real stinkers in the batch.

            I loved reading them then, I love reading them now. I enjoy the comics and they entertain me. I finish each issue with a smile. That’s pretty rare for a comic nowadays.

            Thanks for joining me in this look at some of DC’s more obscure run of comics!

Original Material Copyright 2015 Michael Curry