Remember - most of these images are merely thumbnails...don't forget to CLICK on 'em to see things the way they really are!


Wednesday, June 4, 2014


I am

and it is time for another 

Today's story comes from Charlton's UNUSUAL TALES #17, 1959.

When I first read this short comic story I was taken aback a bit by it's oddness, then by the strange content and imagery in the final panels, and then, finally, by it's bizarre claim that the story is true!

Well, of course I had to look into that claim deeper. 
What I found?
I will share that after the story...
the weird story of




I forgot to mention,
 the comic scans were cleaned up and
 augmented for your pleasure, courtesy of
-Digitally Restored Comics-

-click to enlarge-



Soooo, this can't be real, right?

Well, don't ask me.

Instead, why don't you ask Kurwenal?
Kurwenal, the "Talking Dog"

First of all, yes, it's true, apparently there were some real dogs that were allegedly trained to communicate. They didn't communicate vocally, so the comics word balloons are slightly misleading. They communicated (allegedly) by spelling out words through barking or tapping their feet in an alpha-numeric code. For example, the word cab, C-A-B, would be (as "spoken" by Kurwenal) bark bark bark - bark- bark bark! Get it? Sure you do!

You can read for yourself some of the weird claims about these weird dogs by clicking on these weird links! 

I did some more research and discovered there was so much more that this incredible and weird doggie said during it's life, and below I have recreated some of these astonishing and weird utterances!

(comic panels reproduced here in glorious APOCO-Vision!)

Simply amazing, isn't it?

The things that pass through a dog's mind!
That's just plain WEIRD!


Now, you think about it for a minute...

If you can think of something for Kurwenal to say, 
let me know in a comment below!

...and in the meantime,
click on the link here
to see a cool Walt Kelly POGO post over at 



Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Russ Heath's 1st Comic Book Art - "HAMMERHEAD HAWLEY"!

Welcome, comic fan!
I am

Russ Heath is certainly one of the most well respected and talented artists ever to draw comics.
Even the greatest artists have to start somewhere, and today we will look at the first comic book art ever created by Russ Heath!

The year is 1942, and Russ heath is only 16 years old, still in high school!
He manages to get a freelance job working for Holyoke Comics, drawing a character called "Hammerhead" Hawley.  The feature appeared in CAPTAIN AERO COMICS #8, 9, 10,11, 13, and 14 between 1942 and 1944.  According to and wikipedia sometimes Heath would be inking over the pencils of artist Charles Quinlan, but at least 2 or 3 times Heath did the art chores entirely by himself. Those are the stories we will look at here today, from issues #8, 13, and 14. The artwork in the other "Hammerhead" Hawley stories is likely Heath on inks, and does not quite match up to these Heath solo ventures, especially the last two stories which are clearly signed by Heath.

The art in these stories give a glimpse of the future greatness that is to come. 
Heath went into the Air Force at the end of high school and in 1947 began his career in earnest at Atlas/Marvel Comics, and would later become one of DC Comics highest esteemed war comics artists. 

(Warning! These comics present racial stereotypes that may now be considered "politically incorrect")



-click to enlarge-


The above story marked the initial appearance of "Hammerhead" Hawley, and according to wikipedia and the GCD (which may or may not be accurate) was entirely by Heath. There does appear to be the initials R.H. on the last page, and we can presume that Heath did ink the story at the very least. If not entirely representing the familiar Heath art style, there are certainly elements to suggest that his hand, however young and inexperienced, was involved.

The following two stories mark the final two appearances of "Hammerhead", and seem to be clearly identified on the splash page(s) as being illustrated by Heath alone. This same conclusion can also be drawn by the trained artistic eye, as the familiar Heath style is becoming more strongly evident. These last two stories do show a definite improvement in the young artists abilities beyond those shown the first story.




What do you think?

Pretty darned good for a kid still in High School, huh?

If you'd like to see one of Russ Heath's most lavishly illustrated comic stories, 
click here or on the image below.

This beautifully and realistically rendered tale from BLAZING COMBAT is being represented at