Weird Comics History Podcast

Weird Comics History Podcast

Episode 25 (January 16, 2018)

The Life and Times of Will Eisner

Artist, Educator, Businessman... Icon!

For this installment of Weird Comics History, we discuss the life and times of one of comics' most enduring personalities, Will Eisner!  We explore everything from his childhood, to the foundation of the Eisner-Iger Studios, and even throughout his military service... learning that no matter what the scenario, Eisner and art went hand in hand.

Episode 24 (November 28, 2017)

The Fifth Week

Where is my Pet-er Park-er
Where is my Justice Leeeeague

Where is my Un-canny X-Men

Where have all the cah-mics gooone?

Well, gentle listener... if you have a calendar handy, you'll know that we're currently in the final week of a month that has FIVE Wednesdays!  That puts us in the sticky-wicket known as a "fifth week".  Not much on the racks this week unless you've got your eye on an overpriced (and likely underwhelming) Annual... or perhaps you're one of the "lucky ones", and your favorite titles are running late and are scheduled this week!  Either way, if you're a fan of the "big two", it's slim pickins on the "New Release Wall".

During this re-purposed episode we'll tell you all about why such a phenomenon exists, and chat about all the ways in which the big two tried to do damage control over through the years... and have a heckuva good time doing it!  Join us, won't you?

Episode 23 (September 12, 2017)

Alan Moore's Twilight of the Superheroes Pitch

The Weird Comics Historians sift through the reject pile and discuss Alan Moore's 1987 DC Comics pitch, Twilight of the Superheroes.  Join us as we break down Mr. Moore's take on a possible future for the DC Universe.  If you can imagine it, we're going to be discussing the year... 2000!

We will set the stage for the world of Twilight (it's like you're there!), discuss the entire story and also share Alan Moore's demandments for the perfect comics crossover event!  If you listen closely, you might even learn how to defeat Captain Marvel!

It's a great time as always, so give it a listen... and we swear, this is not an episode about John Constantine!

Wanna read the actual Twilight of the Superheroes pitch?

Episode 22 (August 8, 2017)

The DC Comics Multiverse (pre-Crisis)
To coincide with the Cosmic Treadmill's (ongoing) 50th Podiversary Crisis on Infinite Earths extravaganza, we have decided to dive a bit deeper and discuss the DC Comics (pre-Crisis) Multiverse... like, all of it!  We will discuss the "main Earths" most fans already know about, while also covering the nearly one-hundred that were added after the fact in Crisis on Infinite Earths: The Absolute Edition (2005).
Don't worry about commiting the name of that book to memory, you're likely to hear it a time or two during the show!

Prepare to learn about the skatey-eight hundred times Superman and Lois Lane got married and had children... marvel at the thought of Superman and Batman acting as villains while Lex Luthor plays the hero.  Just Imagine a world where all coffee is decafinated and Superboy wears red instead of blue... okay, we made that last one up.  Listen as we spoil more formerly "imaginary stories" than you can shake a chunk of Red-K at... and much, much more!

Episode 21 (June 6, 2017)

DC Comics' Millennium (1988)
NO MAN ESCAPES THE COSMIC TREADMILL! In this meticulous episode, we pore over DC Comics' 1988 event Millennium, orchestrated by Steve Englehart and Joe Staton--and including the 29 tie-in issues supplementing this bizarre story! After a look at the conditions that (arguably) necessitated this crossover, we break down all 37 issues of Millennium. Complete with backgrounds on the pertinent characters and some personal musings on the event, this is sure to be the most comprehensive coverage of DC Comics' Millennium anywhere on the internet!

Episode 20 (February 19, 2017)

DC Comics' Zero Hour (1994)
This week, we broadcast live from the Vanishing Point and talk all about the 1994 DC Comics event, Zero Hour! We detail the conditions that created the need to streamline DC's temporal continuity, and then describe every issue of the Zero Hour event--including every single tie-in issue! After a break, we Linear Men discuss each issue of the Zero Month that followed the Crisis in Time that changed some DC Comics superheroes...FOREVER! Or at least until Infinite Crisis. It's an oversized doozy of an episode, so strap into your Time Bubble and enjoy the ride!

Episode 19 (February 5, 2017)

Comic Book Advertisements
In this episode,  we will teach you how to kill a man with one touch, become the life of any party, and pull six cars for one mile using only your neck! We'll go over some seminal comic book ads and detail the lives of novelty purveyor S.S. Adams and bodybuilder Charles Atlas. Then, a brief discussion about comic book advertising, and why we don't really see it anymore! Have some scissors ready to clip those mail-in coupons!

Episode 18 (January 8, 2017)

The Strange Story of the Sentry
This week, Chris takes Reggie back to Marvel Comics' 21st Century renaissance to look at a "lost" character: the Sentry! A Superman-esque caped hero designed by Golden Age stalwart Artie Rosen in 1961, but unpublished and quietly shelved. After Rosen's passing, character designs were discovered, and it was up to Paul Jenkins and Jae Lee to bring the Sentry--Marvel's first superhero--into the light of day! They examine the Marvel Knights miniseries and discuss future adaptations of the character. Then, Chris and Reggie discuss some sales figures and whether or not the series was successful. Plus: a special secret surprise! Enjoy!
Supplemental Materials:
               Download - At a Glance

Episode 17 (December 25, 2016)

The Lives and Times of Jack Kirby and Joe Simon
We talk about the lives and careers of two of comics' greatest luminaries: Joe Simon and Jack "the King" Kirby! They discuss Jack and Joe's respective childhoods right up to the moment they meet, and continue along their whirlwind and somewhat unorthodox paths through comics' Golden Age. Then you'll learn about Kirby's ascendancy to rewrite the way comics were told while Simon quit comics...sort of. They also detail the late lives of the legendary Captain America creators, including the legal battle with Marvel fought by Jack Kirby's estate that was settled very recently! You'll definitely want to learn about these creative powerhouses that changed the comics industry--several times over!

Episode 16 (December 11, 2016)

Underground Comix, Part Four
After far too long, we finally conclude our history of Underground Comix, by now arguably not underground at all! We talk about the histories of Marvel's Epic imprint and DC's Vertigo imprint, and then go on to talk about the final frontier of underground comics today: the internet. We also describe minicomics and ashcans, give a nod to Steve Ditko, and talk about dirty comic books from the back of the shop! It's sure to be a mixed bag of leftover information that didn't quite fit anywhere else in the series. Enjoy!

Episode 15 (November 27, 2016)

Piranha/Paradox Press
Another dive into the archives... during this episode we discuss one of DC Comics' forays into diversifying their offerings.  This is a two-parter we've stitched together.  Topics covered include Mark Nevelow's late-80's brainchild, Piranha Press... which morphed into the less-edgy/more-boutique Paradox Press which limped its way into the 21st century.

Episode 14 (November 13, 2016)

Underground Comix, Part Three
We take you through the post-Underground years of Underground Comix, when things got even weirder! We follow the trajectories of Aline Kominsky-Crumb and Harvey Pekar, with some brief detours for Peter Bagge, Wendy and Richard Pini, and others! After some philosophizing about what "Underground Comix" means, our weird historians dive into some seminal black & white comic books, including a particular one about anthropomorphic turtles that changed the comics industry forever. All this...and David Letterman?

Episode 13 (October 23, 2016)

Underground Comix, Part Two
This week we fire up our lava lamps and visit the 1960s and 70s in part two of a history of Underground Comix! This biography-heavy episode details the careers and impact of such Comix luminaries as Robert Crumb, art spiegelman, and Trina Robbins--and many more! We also trace the rise and fall of the scene and talk about a particular Underground Comic that was published by Marvel! Join us as we journey to a work of plasticine porters and looking-glass ties--and really weird comic books! 

Episode 12 (October 9. 2016)

Underground Comix, Part One
This week we eschew proper spelling and dive into the underground.  We cover some early underground publications which (whether they meant to or not) laid the groundwork for the revolutionary comix movement of the late 1960's, including works by Harvey Kurtzman, Wally Wood, and even Superman co-creator, Joe Shuster.

Episode 11 (September 25, 2016)

Creator Biography: Arnold Drake
This week Reggie and I delve into the weirdest thing of all... our own archives!  Who is Arnold Drake? was a three-part piece that ran as segments on the Weird Science DC Comics podcast.  Now, it's a done-in-one!  Check out our chat on this underrated and wildly prolific creator.

Episode 10 (September 18, 2016)

Marvel's U-Decide Stunt (2002)
This week we get really weird when Reggie and I discuss the stunt that launched... some really questionable Marvel titles.  Listen in awe while we chat about such amazing books as Ultimate Adventures and Marville.  Gotta mention Captain Marvel too... but that was actually a good book.

Episode 9 (September 11, 2016)

Marvel Super Hero Secret Wars
This week we jump into the comics event that launched a million comics events!  Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars changed the industry for better and/or worse, and we discuss the antecedents, the story itself, and the ramifications (both fiction and non-fiction).

Episode 8 (September 4, 2016)

The History of Charlton Comics: Part Two
This week we close out our retelling of Charlton Comics' history.  We discuss new editorial and creative blood in George Wildman and Nicola Cuti and several last ditch efforts at turning around the sadly sinking ship.

Episode 7 (August 21, 2016)

The History of Charlton Comics: Part One
From its salacious start in a New England jail cell during the 1940's through its rise to semi-relevance through the 1960's, this week we discuss Charlton Comics.

Episode 6 (August 14, 2016)

Creator Biography: John Byrne
This week Reggie and I take you on a guided tour of the career of one of comics' most prolific creators, John Byrne.  You'll hear all about his time(s) at Marvel and DC, as well as much of his "indie" work.  Now, you can't discuss JB without covering some of his more controversial quotes... so we've got a smattering of them too!

Episode 5 (August 7, 2016)

The Comics Code Authority: Part Five
This week we wrap up our five-part look at the Comics Code.  We revisit some old friends, and talk about what's become of comics since.  We close out by sharing our own opinions on contemporary comics "censorship".

Episode 4 (July 31, 2016)

The Comics Code Authority: Part Four
Everything you wanted to know about the Comics Code itself, but never cared enough to ask.  Reggie and I break it all down for you and share situations where the CCA and the industry played that game of gave-and-take.

Episode 3 (July 24 , 2016)

The Comics Code Authority, Part Three
Reggie and I give a detailed breakdown on the Kefauver Hearings on Juvenile Delinquency of 1954 that changed comics forever.

Episode 2 (July 17, 2016)

The Comics Code Authority, Part Two
Reggie and I discuss some early anti-comics crusaders and go deep on Frederic Wertham's Seduction of the Innocent

Episode 1 (July 10, 2016)

The Comics Code Authority, Part One
Reggie and I discuss comic books during World War II, and talk up some of Frederic Wertham's good points.

Episode... the Fifth (May 15, 2016)

Julius Schwartz and DC Comics' Silver-Age
The first Weird Comics History two-parter fills out our "Old Home Week" (so, technically this is the fifth... and sixth one) as we discuss Julius Schwartz and the Silver-Age of DC Comics.

Episode... the Fourth (May 8, 2016)

Jason Todd 1-900 Number
Old-Home Week continues as we briefly... ever so briefly, discuss how 50 cents could have either saved... or killed Batman's second sidekick!  We also reminisce about 1-900 numbers, so there's that.

Episode... the Third (May 1, 2016)

DC Comics British Invasion
As part of Weird Comics History's "Old Home Week" join us as we discuss the British Invasion of DC Comics during the 1980's.  We discuss some of the heavy-hitters to venture across the pond to produce some incredible work for old DC.
We also both totally forget that Grant Morrison is Scottish.  Whoops!  Mea Culpa... or would that be Wea Culpa?

Episode... the Second (April 24, 2016)

Marvel Buys DC Comics?!
Join us for some Weird Comics Prehistory... that is to say, a very early (and relatively short) installment of Weird Comics History!  This time around we discuss that strange time in which Marvel came thiiiiiiiiiiis close to licensing DC's characters!
How can that be?  Well, hit that Play button and find out!

Episode... the First (April 17, 2016)

The DC Explosion!
Behold, the first ever episode of Weird Comics History... from back when it was a 15 minute-ish segment on the Weird Science DC Comics Podcast.  Listen as Reggie guides podcasting neophyte Chris through his "first time out".
This inaugural auditory jem, we discuss the events leading up to... and falling out of the DC Explosion!
Marvel at the clunky stammering, behold me in all my mic-less glory!  Hey, at least it's just 15 minutes!

"Real" Comics History (in order of re-upload)

Episode 7 (May 7, 2017)
The Year in Comics 1962

Episode 6 (April 2, 2017)
The Year in Comics 1954

Episode 5 (February 12, 2017)
The Year in Comics 1968

Episode 4 (January 15, 2017)
The Year in Comics 1995

Episode 3 (February 26, 2017)
The Year in Comics 2011

Episode 2 (November 27, 2016)
The Year in Comics 1992

Episode 1 (December 18, 2016)
The Year in Comics 1985

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