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Alter Ego #167 January 2021 (magazine review).

January 1, 2021 | By | Reply More

The latest issue of ‘Alter Ego’ is dedicated to Syd Shores (1913-1973). You might have known Shores as an inker in the 1960s at Marvel but back in the 1940s when they were called Timely, he was penciller on ‘Captain America’, westerns where he drew horses well and war comicbooks. Richard Arndt interviews his daughter, Nancy Shores Karlebach, his colleague Allen Bellman (who died in 2020) about him. I do agree with them that it was a shame that he wasn’t given more pencilling assignments in the 1960s, more so when you see his work on ‘Red Wolf’ and shown here.

From Arndt’s interview with Michael J. Vassallo aka ‘Doc V’, it seems Shores got a rep for ‘muddy’ inking although that appears to be from the printing process than the actual work using an ink stick watered down. By the way, there’s a superb picture of Red Wolf on a galloping horse by Shores at the end showing how good an artist he was.

Alex Jay has a look at the work of Chinese-American comicbook artist Chu Hing (1897-1967), principally known for working on westerns and the Green Turtle. I have to confess I’ve never come across him before but like other ethnic groupings, very few got into the industry in that period.

In the ‘Mr. Monster’ section, we have the second section of Sam Moskowitz’ article about Mort Weisinger. Hardly the nicest person in the world and lived up to his nasty reputation but added to much to the Superman mythology in the 1950s-60s that it would make you wonder had he stayed as an author what we would have instead.

The fourteenth part of comicbook writer John Broome’s biography gives his reactions to the various cars he owned, not all flattering.

There is only one remembrance, this one for Allen Bellman (1924-2020), who died shortly after his interview about Syd Shores. As Michael J. Vassallo recounts, Bellman was the last connection to Timely’s super-heroes. An era now gone but not forgotten.

For the Fawcett connection, Shaun Clancy interviews Harvey Janes, an editor mostly for their motor magazines but regularly connected at the office to the comics section. His father, J. George Janes, was a cover artist. Something of particular interest is a photo of comics production assistant Bruce Nichols and surprised no one has spotted he’s a ringer for Captain Marvel, Jr., especially the Mac Raboy portrait.

Lots to read and think about. If you have an interest in the Golden Age of American comicbook and seeking more knowledge or just to fill gaps, make sure you pick up an issue.

GF Willmetts

December 2020

(pub: TwoMorrows Publishing. 82 page illustrated magazine. Price: $ 9.95 (US). ISSN: 1932-6890. Direct from them, you can get it for $ 9.95 (US))

check out websites: www.TwoMorrows.com and https://twomorrows.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=98_55&products_id=1553

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Category: Magazines, Superheroes

About the Author ()

Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 21 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

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