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I'm the co-host of THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO with Dana & Carl (Sunday nights, 9 to Midnight Eastern, www.westcottradio.org).  As a freelance writer, I contributed to Goldmine magazine from 1986-2006, wrote liner notes for Rhino Records' compilation CD Poptopia!  Power Pop Classics Of The '90s, and for releases by The Flashcubes, The Finkers, Screen Test, 1.4.5., and Jack "Penetrator" Lipton.  I contributed to the books Bubblegum Music Is The Naked Truth, Shake Some Action, Lost In The Grooves, and MusicHound Rock, and to DISCoveries, Amazing Heroes, The Comics Buyer's Guide, Yeah Yeah Yeah, Comics Collector, The Buffalo News, and The Syracuse New Times.  I also wrote the liner notes for the four THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO compilation CDs, because, well, who could stop me?  My standing offer to write liner notes for a Bay City Rollers compilation has remained criminally ignored.  Still intend to write and sell a Batman story someday.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Captain Marvel (M.F. Enterprises) # 2



Welcome back for another heapin' helping of 1966's "all-new" Captain Marvel! As noted in our previous trip to Splitsville, M. F. Enterprises' Captain Marvel was designed as a quickie cash-in on the sudden popularity of superheroes following the success of the Batman TV series. It was created by Carl Burgos, who also created the original Human Torch for Marvel Comics # 1 in 1939, and it had nothing other than its name in common with the beloved original Captain Marvel of the '40s and early '50s.

In introducing last week's presentation of Captain Marvel # 1, I asked if this was one the worst superhero comics series of all time. Writer Arn McConnell disagreed with that notion, and said, "No, the worst would be boring. This character was NEVER boring!" Point taken, Arn! Arn also corrected my mangling of publisher Myron Fass' name as "Flass," and added:

"Myron Fass was an amazing character, and someone needs to do a book on him. His gore magazines have been amply covered, but I especially recall with great joy his Official UFO magazine in the late 1970s, when it was essentially a humor magazine in disguise, publishing articles about how Hasidic Jews in Brooklyn were secretly aliens and polyester was an alien plot. It often featured himself and his son in photo pictorials that were practically fumetti."

Captain Marvel # 2 continues the previous issue's trend of picking up old comics names and re-using 'em with neither apology nor payment. Where the first issue gave us the off-brand Cap himself and a villain named Plastic Man, this issue adds a bad guy named Dr. Fate, no relation to the mystic-powered 1940s DC superhero of the same name. Plus, you've got Atom-Jaw (basically the '40s villain Iron Jaw, who battled Crime Buster in the pages of Boy Comics), and evil generic versions of Plastic Man (Elasticman) and Doll Man (Tinyman). Original? Holy heck no, Batman! But Arn's right: it ain't boring, either.

M. F. Enterprises' Captain Marvel is likely an orphaned property, but we'll presume it's copyright the respective owner, and presented here as fair use. SPLIT! It's M.F. Enterprises' Captain Marvel # 2.

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