Alter Ego #57 March 2006 (magazine review).

Now, here’s an unusual departure in the ‘Alter Ego’ series: a special issue devoted to indexing every ‘Timely/Marvel Super-Hero Tale’ from 1939 to 1957. Michelle Nolan, curiously referred to as Mike on the cover (a detail not explained), first undertook this project in the 1960s.

This updated edition offers an improved, corrected copy, supplemented with page samples from both the original period and their subsequent appearances in ‘The Invaders.’ Although Nolan admitted she couldn’t obtain all the issues even back then, she has at least seen all of them and documented their story titles. Identifying all the creative individuals involved would have been an insurmountable task.

As much as I enjoy compiling lists, I must confess that the data itself is somewhat bland. However, I do appreciate the importance of maintaining a public record for research purposes. The information accompanying the illustrations is far more captivating. Jim Amash’s interview with artist Gene Colan focuses on the start of his career in the late 1940s at Timely Comics, where Syd Shores served as his primary mentor. A review of his early art samples doesn’t fully capture how much more adept he became later, especially when given greater freedom in his panel design.

The issue also features a segment from ‘Fawcett Collectors Of America,’ which runs a list—this time focusing on the Jack Binder Shop (1940-43)—that supplied Fawcett with material during the wartime years.

Although this special edition contains less text than usual, the quality of the art more than compensates for it.

GF Willmetts

August 2023

(pub: TwoMorrows Publishing. 82 page illustrated magazine. Price: varies. ISSN: 1932-6890. Direct from them, you can get it digitally for $ 4.99 (US))

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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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