Monday, April 23, 2012
Collecting comics is a hobby full of small regrets. With all the comics available over the decades why buy this one and not that one? Why did this one comic get traded or sold and this other get retained?
One of the tiny regrets I have is not getting more of the vivid digest which were available during the late 70's and 80's. I have many, but some still eluded me for whatever reason, and I never bought them with much focus or vigor.
One of the digests which stood out in this regard is Shocking Tales Digest #1 from Harvey Comics. This digest has an outstandingly lurid cover, featuring a fabulous yellow head surrounded by bizarre elements from myriad stories contained within.
The stories are from the 1950's Harvey series Alarming Tales, Witches Tales, Race for the Moon, Black Cat Mysteries, and Man in Black. They feature excellent artwork by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby, Howard Nostrand, Bob Powell and others. Some of the S&K stories offer up glimpses of ideas which will be developed further in some of the King's later DC work specifically Jimmy Olsen and Kamandi.
This is a sweet little collection, tiny but packed. I found this copy hidden at Half-Price Books (my new favorite store) in a box of Underground Comics tucked away under a counter where kids couldn't get them. I'm not sure what this was doing amongst them, but I got a somewhat worn copy for a few bucks and feel fortunate to add it to the collection at long last. That's one less regret.