Constantine returns!! (to CW Seed)

Excellent news:

Read my original review of the Constantine.

Read the original article reprinted below: http://comicbook.com/2017/01/08/constantine-picked-up-by-the-cw/

The CW has just announced it has picked up Constantine as an animated series for CW Seed during its Television Critics Association panel.

The show will feature Matt Ryan, who starred as the title character in the fan favorite but short-lived NBC show.

Fans can expect the episodes to be 10 minute in length similar to the Vixen series that ran on CW Seed. Right now, episode count is expected to be either five or six. The show, like Vixen, will exist in the Arrow-verse which consists of Arrow, Flash, Legends Of Tomorrow & Supergirl.

While fans were expecting another live-action cameo from the character, they will be more than pleased with this. Back at New York Comic Con, Ryan told our own Russ Burlingame that while he was at the time doing the voice for Constantine in Justice League Dark, he’s learned “not to rule anything out.” He said that in terms of an Arrow return, he’s open to it because: “I love the character.”

Both Constantine and Arrow, like all of DC Comics-inspired TV series, are produced by Warner Bros. TV.

 

Article written by James Viscardi- 01/08/2017.

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Malfeasance Here! A new short story!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M4L0BXS

A new short story just in time for Halloween!

Mealfeasance Here

What stalks this town?

Judge Lamentations Dewe was a Royal Witch Hunter duly appointed by His Majesty. His brief was to judge and, if necessary, execute the laws against witchcraft, cannibalism, sorcery and other unholy mannerisms used as tools of the devil at the turn in 17th century England..
But when he arrives in Bradford-on-Tyne, he finds a town haunted by a force that might mean the village’s doom … as well as his own!

An Unexpected (#174) Bicentennial Banner Blog!

DC SALUTES THE BICENTENNIAL

#28

The Unexpected #174

The title is prefaced with “Have You the Nerve to Face …”

Unexpected_174

Published bi-monthly, thirty cents, August

Cover artist: Luis Dominguez

Editor: Murray Boltinoff, Asst. Ed: Jack C. Harris

 

            Tales of the Unexpected was a science fiction anthology debuting in March of 1956 and lasting until issue #222 (May 1982). It changed its title to The Unexpected as of issue #104 in January 1968 and slowly changed formats from science fiction to horror. Online comic shops and guide books refer to this series as “Unexpected, The (1968)”. It became a Dollar Comic with issue #189 (February 1979) and merged with The Witching Hour and House of Secrets until issue #195 (February 1980) before returning to its standard format. The Witching Hour/House of Secrets merger was abandoned as of issue #206 (January 1981). Most of these last issues featured the adventures of Johnny Peril, detective of the occult.

2914904-johnny_peril_01

Before that, the only lasting feature of note was in the mid-1960s with Tales of the Green Glob.

green glob

            I’ll bet you weren’t expecting that…

***

“Gauntlet of Fear”, George Kashdan (w), Don Perlin (a)

            Dr. John Terril, world-renowned psychiatrist, is hired to analyze the paranoid president of a foreign republic. He is informed by Scorbo, the president’s lackey and an obvious germophobe that there really IS a plot to kill the president (it is not said what his position is or relation to the president)! If Terril can withstand the Gauntlet of Fear, he can infiltrate the organization led by the Great Bajir. He is thrown into an underwater cave and attacked by a giant squid and piranhas. He panics, faints and wakes up in a cell. Scorbo is really the Great Bajir and he is brainwashing Terril into one of his thralls to kill the president!

            The brainwashing continues: bats, spikes and skulls haunt Terril. Even the roaches in the cell panic him. But he has an idea. He starts crawling in his cell like a baby. Bajir enters his cell, thinking his plan worked. Terril tosses handfuls of roaches onto Bajir, panicking HIM! The thralls see their master in panic and snap back to their old selves and hurl Bajir from the window of his castle.

***

“Sands of Time”, writer unknown, Rich Buckler (a).  A man sentenced to be executed at dawn escapes. But while escaping he suffers a severe bullet wound. He breaks into a cabin to hide out the day. He shoots a clock, “You won’t be able to tell me the time anymore!” Collapsing from the pain and too weak to move, he then shoots a giant hour glass. “You won’t be able to tell me the time, either.” The sand slowly falls onto his face. By dawn, the sand suffocates him. He died at dawn anyway…

***

“The Long Arms of Death”, Weshley Marsh (Murray Boltinoff himself) ( w ), Fred Carillo (a)

            Gerald is the new English secretary to millionaire Raj Simha of an unnamed Indo-Asian country. Gerald is warned to stay away from the Raj’s daughter Kaleli. But Gerald delivers flowers and breakfast in bed to Kaleli, walks with her in the garden and falls in love.

            Simha refuses to allow Gerald to marry and forbids any further contact.

            Gerald steals money and gems from Simha’s vault to raise enough money for two tickets back to England. Simha catches Gerald and is killed. Simha’s guards attack Gerald but are pulled back by many arms. It is Kaleli – she is the ten-armed goddess of death – Kali! She hugs Gerald with all her arms, crushing him. She tells the guards to call the police and report two dead bodies…

 

 

Unexpected Mail: the letter column does not necessarily comment on previous issues, but instead, like Ghosts, readers submit brief tales that fit the genre of the comic. Damian Brokaw of Denver, CO tells us of pygmy chimpanzees – the possible missing link! Janet Fadel of Hollywood, CA notes that issue #172 features an exorcism as well as an article about the upcoming film “Exorcist 2” and discusses the film, Robert W. Chan of Edmonton, Canada writes about a 1969 case in Louisiana when water turned blood red.  Ronald Vias of Dover, NJ discusses an Allied WWII plan to plant incendiary devises on nocturnal animals and bats and sic them on Nazi strongholds.  Other articles discuss upcoming movies about the Loch Ness Monster and “Dr. Black and Mr. Hyde”.

***

Join me next time for DC’s Bicentennial issue #29: Detective Comics #461

 

Original Material copyright 2015 Michael Curry

Images used are copyright their respective holders and reproduced here under the “Fair Use” doctrine of 17 USC 106 & 106a for the purposes of criticism and comment.

 

 

Weird War Tales #47: DC’s Weird Bicentennial Salute!

DC SALUTES THE BICENTENNIAL

#14

Weird War Tales #47

WWT47

Published bi-monthly, thirty cents, August

Cover artist: Joe Kubert

Editor: Joe Orlando

WWT logo

          The Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups of comic books. “You got your horror comic in my war book!” “You’ve for your war book in my horror comic!” I loved this comic book, just LOVED it! It combined the two genres at which DC excelled!

            Weird War Tales debuted in September 1971 and lasted 124 issues until June of 1983. It was an anthology of supernatural stories set during a war. Any war. Vikings, Nazi’s, Yanks & Rebels and post-apocalyptic tales were represented.

            Although not a “personality” such as Cain, Abel or Destiny, the comic was “hosted” by death – a skeleton dressed in a uniform appropriate for the story.

            By the 1980s, regular features or “stars” were introduced – alternating between GI Robot, the Creature Commandos and the War that Time Forgot (dinosaurs) – sometimes alternating between features, sometimes teaming with each other. By that time, though, it had lost some of its horror pedigree in favor of more quasi-superheroics.

***

Bloodbath of the Toy Soldiers”, George Kashdan ( w ), Rubeny (a)

            In a post-apocalyptic world, despotic General Arax’s son Zeron plays with toy soldiers, exactly matching both sides’ moves in the next day’s battle. Arax’s aides, secretly loyal to the opposing force’s democratic leaders, change Zeron’s next battle plans, leading to a huge defeat.

            In a fit of pique, Arax destroys the toy soldiers. When Arax finds Zeron playing with one last toy soldier the boy kept hidden, the general, Arax throws it in the fire.

            Arax melts along with the toy replica.

***

            “The Day After Doomsday”, Steve Skeates ( w ), Paul Kruchner and Tex Blasdell (a)

            The sole survivor of the Great Atomic War hears a cry for help in the rubble. He digs and digs and finds a tape recorder accidentally turned on in the shifting debris replaying a radio soap opera, “Help! Help! Unhand me you brute!” In frustration, he bashes the tape recorder against a wall, causing the fragile masonry to give way and crush him.

This two-page tale is reprinted in the trade paperback “Showcase Presents: the Great Disaster featuring the Atomic Knights”.

 

showcase

 

***

The Warrior”, Jack Oleck ( w ), Ricardo Villamonte (a)

            Hulgar, the elderly Viking, duels Godfred to prove he still is a warrior. Eric, son of their leader Ottar, begs for mercy for Hulgar. Ottar grants it.

           During his first raid, Eric panics and is branded a coward. Holgar gives Eric the Shield of Thor that will make him invincible! With the shield, Eric defeats Godfred to earn his place in the next raid. Eric fights bravely against the British, but is killed.

 

WWT Viking 2 WWT viking

 

             Holgar mourns and begins forging another ordinary “Shield of Thor” in case anther youngster needs to find his courage from within…

 

APO Weird War Tales, letter column for issue #44:

            Linus Sabalys, Lavel PQ, Canada; positive comments on some stories, negative for others.

            Mark Schmieder, Concord, MA; the editor points out that Mark has the opposite view as Linus Sabalys on every story.

            John Elliott, New York, NY, positive, but requests novel-length tales instead of serializing stories over multiple issues.

            The column has a plus for Star Spangled War Stories #200 starring the Unknown Soldier and Enemy Ace.  ), but with no mention of any Bicentennial connection (see my previous blog about the missed opportunity to hype a 200th issue during the Bicentennial)

 ***

            Join me next time for DC’s Bicentennial issue #15: Four Star Spectacular #3.

 

Original Material copyright 2015 Michael Curry

Images used are copyright their respective holders and reproduced here under the “Fair Use” doctrine of 17 USC 106 & 106a for the purposes of criticism and comment.

House of Mystery #243 – DC’s Bicentennial issue #10

Do You Dare Read …

hom iconic 

DC SALUTES THE BICENTENNIAL

#10

House of Mystery #243

 HOM 243

Published monthly, thirty cents, August

Cover artist: Ricardo Villagran

Editor: Joe Orlando

            House of Mystery was the most successful of the many excellent horror anthologies DC released in its catalogue. The first issue was published in December 1951 and lasted 321 issues until (appropriately) October 1983.  There have been various revivals of the title since with mixed success.

            Because of the Comics Code, HoM changed formats in the mid-1950s to more science fiction/suspense stories.  It soon became a home to superheroes – Martian Manhunter and Dial H for Hero mainly. By July 1968, the Code weakened its grip allowing DC to hire Joe Orlando to bring the magazine back to horror stories with issue 174 (a reprint issue – new stories resumed with #175). #175 introduced the House’s caretaker, Cain, whose own “adventures” occasionally book-ended the issues. He would introduce most stories and provide a comment in the final panel.

 

 cain

***

            “Brother Bear”, Bob Haney ( w ), Franc C Reyes (a); Zebulon Hunt heads to the electric chair, having been found guilty and convicted for murder.

            In his resort in the far north, he used his airplane to hunt down and chase polar bears. He would land after the bears were tired out to shoot them for trophies. His manservant, the Inuit named Umiak, protested. This got him a smack from Hunt for his trouble…

            Hunt later killed a bear Umiak was himself hunting … although it looked more like the manservant and the beast were communicating with each other … somehow…

            Hunt finally found the huge bear rumored to be in the area – the biggest on record! He chased, it, shot it, decapitated it and took the head to be stuffed as a trophy. When the taxidermists opened the crate they found the head … of Umiak!

***

            “Things Like That Don’t Happen”, Sheldon Meyer     ( w ), Jess Jodloman (a)

            Sid and Millie Barnes were found dead on the beach.

            Flashback to Sid finding Millie on the boardwalk after hours in front of her favorite attraction – the fortune-telling machine containing the wooden mannequin of a Gypsy King. Sid begs her for $2000.00 – the last of her inheritance for yet another “investment” scheme.  After an argument she relents and gives him the money.

            The Gypsy King dummy falls over and Millie sets it upright again. A fortune card pops out of the machine: “24 Black Gets It All Back”.

            Millie discovers Sid’s “investment” was a roulette table! Sid is already down to the last $50.00 of the $2,000.00 as Millie swoops the money away and puts it on 24. A winner! She lets it ride. Another winner! She wins back her $2,000.00 and leaves. Sid follows.

            They argue on the beach. Sid knocks Millie down, killing her accidentally. Since no one would believe it was an accident, he buries her on the beach. A third party sneaks behind Sid and kills him! The police find tracks in the sand leading to and from the boardwalk and the fortune telling machine. The Gypsy King’s shoes are filled with sand…

 

 

Cain’s Mailroom. Managing Editor Paul Levitz answers letters as Cain on issue #239.  Linas Sabalys of Laval, PQ, Canada had both positive and negative comments, Arthur Grance of Staten Island, NY (positive), Sam MCHendley of Berkeley, CA requested Cain no longer host Plop as it is beneath him…

 

Next: DC’s Bicentennial Banner #11 – Batman #277!

 

***

 

Original Material copyright 2015 Michael Curry

 

Images used are copyright their respective holders and reproduced here under the “Fair Use” doctrine of 17 USC 106 & 106a for the purposes of criticism and comment.

Ghosts #48

DC SALUTES THE BICENTENNIAL

 #2

Ghosts #48

ghosts 47

Published bi-monthly, thirty cents, August

Editor: Murray Boltinoff

            Only the most ardent Marvel zombie would refuse to admit that of all the possible comic book genres published by both DC and Marvel, DC at least led in the horror division. Marvel published many a horror title, but with a few exceptions, they featured reprints from the 1950s and early 1960s. Most comics of their line rarely lasted over a year.

            DC’s horror titles featured new stories with rare exceptions. Ghosts differed even from the DC fare in two ways: until its last few issues it did not have a “host” introducing the stories or otherwise having a framing segment to introduce and finish a tale (other than text boxes on the first and last panels) and until issue #75 (April 1979), it claimed its stories were true!

            Ghosts was published from September-October 1971 until issue #112 (May 1982). (Boy is my spell-checker going berserk over the first two words of that last sentence…).

            Neither the Grand Comics Database nor the DC Comics Database state who did the cover or wrote any of the stories…

 ***

Showdown with a Specter”, Terry Hensen (a)

            In 1968 Villem Kruger and his family visit his grandfather’s diamond mine abandoned decades before. When Villem moves away stones blocking the mine – he releases the ghost of a worker killed in the mine. The ghost vows to destroy the descendant of the evil Kruger. Villem’s son Jon offers to take the place of his father for the ghost’s revenge.

            The ghost explains he cannot take Jon’s life as he was adopted and not a descendant of Grandfather Piet Kruger . As the father of an adopted child I am rather irked by this…

            The ghost decides since Villem adopted a child and raised him with so much love that the child was willing to sacrifice himself for his father, Villem does not have the evil that was in his grandfather and spares the family. As the father of an adopted child the ghost redeemed himself from his narrow-minded statement from the paragraph before…

 ***

The Phantom Head”, Buddy Gernale (a)

            July 1505: Michelangelo is haunted by a floating head – every painting and sculpture he tries to complete has the head of the ghost. If he does not complete the portrait of Cesara Borgia by the end of the week, Borgia will likely take Michelangelo’s head! Even the pope cannot help!

            The ghost stops visiting Michelangelo after his disappointing visit to the pope and all is well.

            The painting of the floating head is found 288 years later and identified as the head of King Louis XVI, who was decapitated during the Revolution!

 ***

The Girl Who Inherited a Ghost”, Gene Ureta (a)

            In France in April 1957, the mother of painter Gaston Poulard is angry at him for marrying Californian Becky. Rightly so – Becky is a gold digger who is after the mother’s fortune! Becky stands by during the mother’s fatal heart attack; holding the mother’s heart medicine. The mother’s ghost haunts Becky – throwing plates at her and chasing her through the house!

            Mrs. Poulard sends a letter to a ghost hunter, Henry Thorson-Jones (they don’t call him a ghost hunter per se, but you know …) to rid the house of the intruder. The ghost tricks the hunter into pushing Becky down the staircase, killing her. Thorson-Jones discovers the letter sent by Mrs. Poulard was NOT his wife, but his mother – written and mailed after her death. The intruder written about in the letter … was Becky!

 

Text feature: The Jigsaw Ghosts. Written (presumably) by Murray Boltinoff.

            Guests at a resort in northern Britain in 1904 see the top half of a woman floating through their room. The servants see the bottom half of the woman walking through their quarters. It seems a prior owner chopped his wife in half, and …

            In 1923, a visiting minister wakes to find a disembodied girl’s hand tugging on his. Later he discovers the prior owner chopped off his daughter’s hand and hid her body in the wall of that room…

            New owners of a Providence, Rhode Island home in 1960 heard footsteps in a sealed-off section of their home. Opening the unused room revealed fresh footprints leading to a chest. Inside the chest were the prior owner’s last will and testament and a pair of boots – whose footprints fit exactly with the fresh prints on the floor …

            This text feature was in the place of a letter column.

 

 Original Material copyright 2015 Michael Curry

             Images used are copyright their respective holders and and reproduced here under the “fair Use” doctrine of 17 USC 106 & 106a for the purposes of criticism and comment.

 

 

A National Adoption Month (dark) Spotlight: The Son of Sam

November is National Adoption Month! Throughout the month I’ll feature famous folk who have been adopted!

 Sometimes the Spotlight shines darkly…

 072306sam

Culled mostly from Wikipedia:

 David Richard Berkowitz (born Richard David Falco, June 1, 1953), also known as the Son of Sam and the .44 Caliber Killer, is an American serial killer convicted of a series of shooting attacks that began in the summer of 1976. With a .44 caliber Bulldog revolver, he killed six victims and wounded seven others by July 1977. As the toll mounted, Berkowitz eluded a massive police manhunt while leaving brazen letters which promised further murders. Highly publicized in the press, he terrorized New York City and achieved worldwide notoriety.

After his arrest by New York City police in August 1977, Berkowitz was indicted for eight shooting incidents. He confessed to all of them and claimed a demon that possessed his neighbor’s dog had commanded him to kill. In the course of the police investigation, he was also implicated in many unsolved arsons in the city.

David Berkowitz was born Richard David Falco on June 1, 1953, in Brooklyn, New York. His mother, Betty Broder, grew up in an impoverished Jewish family and later married Tony Falco, an Italian-American Catholic. The couple ran a fish market together. They separated before Berkowitz’s birth: Falco left for another woman, and Broder later had an affair with a married real estate agent, Joseph Kleinman. When she became pregnant, Kleinman threatened to abandon her if she kept the baby, so she put the child up for adoption and listed Falco as the father.  Within a few days of his birth, the infant boy was adopted by Pearl and Nathan Berkowitz of the Bronx. The Jewish-American couple were hardware store retailers of modest means, and childless in middle age. They reversed the order of the boy’s first and middle names and gave him their own surname, raising young David Richard Berkowitz as their only son.

 

Be sure to visit Abby’s Road on Facebook for more Spotlights!

 cover

“Abby’s Road, the Long and Winding Road to Adoption and how Facebook, Aquaman and Theodore Roosevelt Helped” leads a couple through their days of infertility treatments and adoption. It is told with gentle (and sometimes not-so-gentle) humor from the perspective of a nerdy father and his loving and understanding wife.

Join Mike and Esther as they go through IUIs and IFVs, as they search for an adoption agency, are selected by a birth mother, prepare their house, prepare their family, prepare themselves and wait for their daughter to be born a thousand miles from home.

 

Winner, Honorable Mention, 2014, Great Midwest Book Festival


Abby’s Road is available at Amazon here: 
http://www.amazon.com/Abbys-Road-Long-Winding-Adoption/product-reviews/0692221530/ref=cm_cr_pr_top_recent?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=0&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending


at Barnes and Noble here: 
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/abbys-road-the-long-and-winding-road-to-adoption-and-how-facebook-aquaman-and-theodore-roosevelt-helped-michael-curry/1119971924?ean=9780692221532


and at Smashwords here:
 https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/457270

 

Copyright 2014 Michael Curry