Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Monsters Of War!


I stumbled across a very handsome trade collecting up all of the appearances of the exceedingly Bronze Age run of the Creature Commandos. For a short time, in an never-ending attempt to claw their back to the top, DC decided that all their comics needed an ongoing series, including their anthology ghost books. So in Ghosts we got "Dr.Thirteen Ghost Breaker", in House of Mystery we got "I, Vampire", and in Weird War Tales we got several with "The War the Time Forgot" and "G.I.Robot" alternating with the "Creature Commandos".

The Creature Commandos were comprised of Lt. Matthew Shrieve who was regular human soldier, Warren Griffith, a psychological lycanthrope who was transformed into a for-real furry werewolf, Sgt. Vincent Velcro, a prisoner who was chemically transformed into a vampire, the ironically named Pvt. Elliot "Lucky" Taylor who became a patchwork man or "Frankenstein Creature", and later Dr. Myrra Rhodes, a snake-headed gorgon. These doppleganger monsters were part of "Project M" which sought to bring the ultimate terror weapon to the battlefield.

Joe Kubert
The Creature Commandos debuted in the ninety-third issue of the run with a story by J.M. DeMatteis and some trim artwork by Pat Broderick and John Celardo. The idea of versions of the classic monsters fighting in WWII on the side of the Allies is supremely goofy and supremely attractive at the same time.

Ross Andru and Romeo Tanghal
They returned four issues later with Fred Carrillo taking on the art chores. Carrillo would become the main artist most identified with the series though he had lots of help.

Joe Kubert
But in issue one hundred the art on the feature which crossed over with "The War that Time Forgot", we have Bob Hall and Jerry Ordway handling things with a Mike Barr script.

Rich Buckler and Dick Giordano
Jim Aparo
 DeMatteis and Carrillo return for the next few issues.

Joe Staton and Bruce Patterson
Then Hall and Celardo return for a one-shot in the one hundred and eighth issue.

Rich Buckler and Frank Giacoia
Rich Buckler and Romeo Tanghal
Ross Andru and Frank Giacoia
Ross Andru and Romeo Tanghal
The next  four issues were written by DC veteran Robert Kanigher with the under-appreciated Dan Spiegle stepping for some very tasty artwork. The stories introduce a new member to the Commandos.

Ross Andru and Mike DeCarlo
Carrillo joins up with Kanigher in the hundred and fourteenth issue and this creative team finishes the run.

Gil Kane
Gil Kane
Rich Buckler and Romeo Tanghal
Gil Kane
Ross Andru and Mike DeCarlo
Trevor Von Eden
 As can be readily seen, the covers for this run were done by a veritable who's who of DC talent.

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2 comments:

  1. This is great news. I thought for sure I'd have to track all these back issue down one at a time. Really glad they collected them.

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    Replies
    1. This is a nicely priced and perfectly sized volume. I had forgotten that Dan Spiegle did so much artwork, which is a real treat.

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