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I was rechecking Dell's Alvinfor Don Segall's stories when I found Jack Mendelsohn's style on #5--unexpectedly, as the Who's Who does not mention that as one of his strips. Since I'd been looking through Standards' funny animal titles just before that, I soon recognized refries from Standard as well as Quality. Does anyone recognize the plots of the two stories for which I didn't find earlier versions?


It looks like Segall returns after this one Mendelsohn issue, but other hands have taken over the writing by the end of the run of new stories in 1967.

Alvin
(* = single page)

O-D/62 #1  A Trip to Chinatown * w: Don Segall
Alvin the Scientist w: Segall
Alvin's Pet w: Segall
A Day in the Country w: Segall
Let's Paint a House w: Segall
Flying Studio w: Segall
David's Birthday Present * w: Segall
Car Trouble * w: Segall
J-M/63 #2  Do-It-Yourself Disaster * w: Segall
A Day at the Farm w: Segall
Alvin and the Burglars w: Segall
Alvin in Orbit w: Segall
Team Spirit w: Segall
Alvin's Interview w: Segall
Wrong Number * w: Segall
A-J/     #3  Bubble Up * w: Segall
Among the Canned Goods w: Segall
Alvin's Paper Route w: Segall
A Day at the Zoo... w: Segall
The Motor Scooter w: Segall
E-fishin'-cy w: Segall
Chicken for Dinner * w: Segall
J-S/     #4  Spoiled Brat * w: Segall
Roughing It w: Segall
Subway Sidney w: Segall
Sweet Kids w: Segall
Culture Caper w: Segall
Tree House w: Segall
O-D/     #5  Share and Share a Bike * w: Jack Mendelsohn
    from "3 of a Kind"
      Buddy Bear in GOOFY 44 (Jul/51)
Water on the Brain w: Mendelsohn
    from "Water, Water Everywhere"
      Percy Pig in HAPPY 41 (Feb/51)
    via "Water on the Brain"
      BUSTER BEAR 5 (Aug/54)
Snow Fun w: Mendelsohn
    from 1st Prince Pinky and Pudd story
       in MARMADUKE MOUSE 35 (Feb/53)
Auto Mission w: Mendelsohn
Rink Jinx w: Mendelsohn

Little Angela in Alvin

O-D/63 #5  No Space for Rant w: Mendelsohn

I didn't find an earlier version of this particular story, the first in the backup series, but Mendelsohn wrote for Standard's Little Angel--what's the difference in a single letter?
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This is Jim Wilcox--most of whose work was on Dick Cole and Young King Cole for Novelty--on a non-comics piece of work, an ad for Grosset & Dunlap's Rick Brant Electronic Adventure series. This was run on the back of number 4, 100 Fathoms Below, and probably on others like the Hardy Boys series. Rick Brant was by "John Blaine"--Hal Goodwin with, on the first three (the ones mentioned in the ad) Peter J. Dawkins.

The thing that led me to Wilcox--and once you compare this to his comics work, it's obviously his art--is the sound effect "Soc!" In story after story the two Cole series contain ones like "Poc," "Thoc," Thuc," and "Whac"--do you see a pattern? This tier is from an early Dick Cole, in Blue Bolt vol 4 #9 (Apr/44).

In the letter column in Blue Bolt vol 9 #1 (Aug/48) the editors say that Wilcox "has been doing some of the writing and artwork on (Dick Cole) for five years." As the story in that issue is drawn by Alden McWilliams and it still contains a "Soc," I would say the writer has continued on the feature--whether that's necessarily Wilcox is the question.
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Mickey Klar Marks donated her papers to the University of Southern Mississippi, and an inventory is online. These are not records like William Woolfolk's notebook, but rather copies--I suppose carbons--of her scripts, with a notation on each as to the publisher who bought it.

For comic books Marks wrote mostly fiction text pieces, but she did write a few comics stories. The Zany Giraffe series in Novelty's, later Premium's, Frisky Fables is hers. Although the installments were published without titles, these are her working ones. The only byline on each was "art by Jim Adams."

The story hook in each episode is that Zany is the only one who can solve a problem for the forest creatures but since giraffes have no vocal cords, it takes some effort to get his idea across.

Zany Giraffe's strip appeared on-and-off. I believe these are all of the strip's original appearances. There are a handful of scripts in the USM collection that seem to have gone unpublished: Zany Earns a Badge; Zany Giraffe, American; A New Twist; and Zany Takes a Stand. I can't reconcile any with the story below with my descriptions in brackets. However, the collection of papers may not not complete; there are some bylined text pieces of hers published whose typescripts are not at USM (at least under the published titles).

Zany Giraffe in Frisky Fables
written by Mickey Klar Marks

Win/46 v1 #3  Zany Engineers a Rescue
Apr/     v2 #1  Zany Solves a Mystery
July/     v2 #4  Zany Furthers Education
Sept/     v2 #6  Zany Almost Talks
Oct/     v2 #7  Zany and the Tigers
Nov/     v2 #8  Zany Starts a Trading Post
Feb/47 v2 #11  Zany Debunks a Ghost
Apr/     v3 #1  Zany Sticks His Neck Out
May/     v3 #2  The Taffy Pull
Aug/     v3 #5  [making Spots the Cat see spots]
Oct/     v3 #7  Zany Giraffe Becomes Mayor
Dec/     v3 #9  Zany Helps Heat a House
Feb-Mar/49 v4 #7  Zany Stars in a New Role
Aug-Sept/     v5 #3  Zany Turns Nautical
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Who Created the Comic Books? by Martin Ohearn - 2M ago

The signature "Roppe" on the cover of Charlton's Davy Crockett #1 in 1955 is a portmanteau name like "Brangelina." In this case it's Mike Roy and Mike Peppe. The fact that they did the issue's first story (unsigned) gives more pages of art to corroborate the ID.

Roy and Peppe were doing a knock-off here of Fess Parker's Davy Crockett from "Disneyland"; a decade later they were drawing Parker as another frontiersman, as in the story tier above, from Gold Key's Daniel Boone6 (Aug/66).

I assume this first issue is assembled out of inventory bought from one of those companies getting out of comics in the mid-Fifties, but I have no idea which. There are a Red Roan text story and Big Bow and Little Arrow humor piece from Fawcett, but Charlton mixed those into everything.

Roy and Peppe art on
Charlton's Davy Crockett


Aug/55 [cover]
Indian Attack
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Jack Oleck did all of one Western story for DC that I can think of, and it was a weird Western. EC had long given up on Westerns by the time he worked for them, and so far I haven't run across any such stories by him at Atlas.

As he was writing weird, crime, and romance for Prize, he did have two distinct blocks of issues on their Prize Western--and almost all on series. In fact, he wrote all of the Preacher and Jeff Baker stories and created the Drifter as well, although I don't think he wrote all of that series' stories.


Oleck's style is most distinctive when he philosophizes in captions in addition to the standard description, as in the first one in the story proper of "Lynch Law." He uses "In the end, __" and "Almost, __" often. To corroborate myself on some of these stories I did look further into his exclamations and sound effects.

Prize Comics Western

Written by Jack Oleck

Jul-Aug/50 82  The Preacher
Death Draws a Circle [NON-FICTION]
Sep-Oct/     83  The Danger Trail [PREACHER]
Nov-Dec/     84  Lynch Law [PREACHER]
Jan-Feb/51  85  Dead Man's Gold [PREACHER]
Mar-Apr/      86  War Party [JEFF BAKER]
    
Range War [PREACHER]
May-Jun/      87  Vengeance Trail [JEFF BAKER]
    
The Preacher Goes Home
Jul-Aug/      88  Ambush! [JEFF BAKER]
    
Double Trouble [PREACHER]
Sep-Oct/      89  Trouble in Lost Valley [JEFF BAKER]
    
Death on the River [PREACHER]
Nov-Dec/     90  Six Gun Law [PREACHER]
Mar-Apr/52  92  Buffalo Stampede [JEFF BAKER]
Nov-Dec/55  114  American Eagle Meets the Maverick
  
The Drifter
American Eagle Discovers a Secret Weapon
Jan-Feb/56    115  Bad Medicine [AMERICAN EAGLE]
  
The Drifter Uncovers the Brand of the Outlaw
American Eagle Arranges a Duel
Sep-Oct/       118  Liberty Belle [AMERICAN EAGLE]
Nov-Dec/      119  American Eagle Battles a Fanged Fury
  
The Drifter Stirs Up a Hornet's Nest of Lies, Loot and Lead
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This is one of the features Joe Gill wrote at Timely/Atlas after the Human Torch revival. The only story in Spy Thillersthat I can't make out as his is the backup in #4, which is actually a war story--it may have been brought over from one of the battle mags.

"This is" in captions is one of  the clues to Joe Gill--here you see it in "The Double Identities" and "Oil!" In the same tier in the latter you see it in the past tense too, as you're more likely to see it in Gill's Charlton scripts.

Rick Davis in Spy Thrillers—Written by Joe Gill

Nov/54 #1  The Double Identities
The Purple Pyramid
The Eyes of Death [MISC SPY]
The Ticking Death
Jan/55 #2  The Whirl of Death
The Unseen Killers
Incident [MISC SPY]
The Telltale Machines
Mar/     #3  Safari of Death
The Moon Rocket
Oil! [MISC SPY]
The Hatchet Man
May/     #4  The China Doll
The Tiger's Claws
The Deadly Dutch Plates
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This penciler did only one comic for Dell: the Movie Classic The Music Man (January 1963). His style is rather overwhelmed under the inking, so IDing him calls for the thought experiment of unseeing the inks. It might be easier to imagine someone else's inks here. Try John Forte's; he inked Curt Swan to good effect on a number of Superman family stories at DC.


And, yes, on pretty much every other John Forte penciling job that I can think of he inked himself. But here we are. I don't know if this is a tag team of a couple of inkers or just one getting more rushed as the pages pile up, but by the later pages the inking doesn't look much like it does on these two. Those later pages in particular make me think of Frank McLaughlin as a possible suspect.
And the writer is unknown. It may just be because I'm so familiar with the movie of The Music Man, but this strikes me as the one Movie Classic that uses just as much as possible from the movie script verbatim (apart from necessarily condensing and bridging). The other Dell movie adaptations of the period, by Ken Fitch, Don Segall, and yet more unknowns, take a freer hand with the source material.
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I've posted some of Jack Mendelsohn's Tippy Teen scripts at Tower recycled from his own Candy ones at Quality. A closer look at his Felix the Cat work at Dell showed me some of those were recycled from Quality—not only Candy but the funny animals. Then I saw that he redid some Felixes for Tippy and her friend Go-Go. (Let me repeat that, from the style, he scripted all these stories—he didn't plagiarize anyone else's.)

A Venn diagram would overlap with one story used at all three publishers:


Jack Mendelsohn Felix the Cat
scripts reworked from his Quality ones


Apr-June/63 Frozen Assets
    from "Asleep in the Deep-Freeze"
     CANDY 44 (Nov/53)
July-Sep/     The Vicious Cycle

    from "Nervous Repair Service"

      BUSTER BEAR 6 (Oct/55)

Tale of a Fish

    from "Fish Story"

      MARMADUKE MOUSE 48 (Sep/54)

A Sample Assignment

    from "Buster Gets the Goods"

      BUSTER BEAR 6 (Oct/55)

reworked from Felix in Tippy Teen

Apr/67 12  Beaux & Arrows

    from "Beaux and Arrows"

      FELIX 2 (Jan-Mar/63)
Oct/     16  Foul Weather Friends

    from "Fair Weather Enemies"

      FELIX 3 (Apr-June/63)

in Go-Go and Animal

Dec/ 67 The Ice-Cream Man Cometh
    from "Asleep in the Deep-Freeze"
      CANDY 44 (Nov/53)

    via "Frozen Assets"

      FELIX 3 (Apr-June/63)
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On most other features that the Who's Who lists Phil Evans as writing at Western/Dell, his scripts appear much more frequently than on Gene Autry--to the point that sheer guesswork as to his scripts on the Grand Comics Database gives a correct credit a number of times. On Autry's long-running book, though, there are just a handful of Evans credits. Likewise he wrote only one story for the TV title The Flying A's Range Rider--fitting in here inasmuch the Flying A is Gene Autry's production company, named for his ranch.

This partial page from "Gene Autry and the Ghost Prison" sets off Evans alarm twice: his putting a comma after "Haw" and "Huh" instead of an exclamation point. "Wal," of course, is more likely to take a comma to begin with, and you will find it in Autry scripts by other hands.

Written by Phil Evans:
Gene Autry


Sep/50 43  GA and Owlhoots of Deadwood Mesa
Nov/     45  GA and the Ghost Prison
Dec/52  70  GA and the Combination
Mar/53  73  The Wrong Hireling
Apr/      74  Treetop Trickery
Murder Map
May/54  87  GA and the Haunted Spiderweb

Misc. Western Gene Autryback-up


Mar/53  73  Ghost Town Girl

Range Riderin Four Color


Apr/52  404  RR and the Monster of the Desert
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Jon D'Agostino signed the covers of Charlton's Archie type, Freddy, and you can follow his style into the stories themselves--most of them, but not all. This tier is from the last story in Freddy 46 (Dec/64): "Bargain Buck Daze." D'Agostino's art is reminiscent of early Stan Goldberg.


This page is from that issue's first story, "The Winner." First compare the flagmen in the two stories, but the policeman's straight-at-the-camera pose in both of his panels is the obvious giveaway for Charles Nicholas' pencils under D'Agostino's inks.


I haven't the full Freddy collection, but I think other issues bear a look too for some penciling help.

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