Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Sword of Sorcery #1: "The Price of Pain Ease"

Download Sword of Sorcery #1

Sword of Sorcery was a sword-and-sorcery comic book featuring Fafhrd the Barbarian and the Gray Mouser, heroes and rogues created by Fritz Leiber. Published bi-monthly by DC Comics, it ran for five issues in 1973, with a cover price of 20¢.

#1: March-April 1973
untitled story — "adapted from Fritz Leiber's story, 'The Price of Pain Ease'" (1970 Swords Against Death, coll.)

* Writer: Denny O'Neil
* Pencils: Howard Chaykin
* Inks: Neal Adams
* Cover: Howard Chaykin (pencils) and Michael Wm. Kaluta (inks)

Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser are two seminal sword-and-sorcery heroes created by Fritz Leiber (1910–1992) and loosely modelled upon himself and his friend Harry Otto Fischer (1910-1986). They are the protagonists of what are probably Leiber's best-known stories.

The stories have been collected in the Swords series:

1. Swords and Deviltry (collection 1970)
1. "Induction" (vignette 1970, first publication)
2. The Snow Women (novella 1970 Fantastic)
3. "The Unholy Grail" (novelette 1962 Fantastic)
4. Ill Met in Lankhmar (novella 1970 F&SF)—telling how Fafhrd and the Mouser met, this story won both a Nebula award and a Hugo award

Download Swords and Deviltry by Fritz Leiber in PDF format

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Mighty Thor #181: "One God Must Fall!"

Download The Mighty Thor #181

Eventually the birthplace of one of Marvel's enduring superheroes, Journey into Mystery was initially one of the many horror comics crowding the newsstands in the early 1950s. Each issue was an anthology of weird tales and the early covers, many of them by Bill Everett, were rich with walking skeletons, walking corpses, and brutal monsters. In 1955, after the Comics Code Authority was set up, the covers and contents became much tamer. Among the artists contributing to Journey were, besides Everett, Joe Maneely, Russ Heath, Steve Ditko, Jerry Robinson, George Tuska, and Bernard Krigstein.

Things changed with #83 vol. 1 (August 1961), when Stan Lee and Jack Kirby introduced Thor. The helmeted hero was seen on the cover using his hammer against green monsters while a blurb proclaimed, "The Most Exciting Super-Hero of All Time!" From that moment on the Mighty Thor was the leading man in Journey into Mystery. With #126 (March 1966) the comic book changed its name to Thor, continuing as such until #502 (September 1996). The Journey into Mystery title returned until #125 (February 1966). A new Thor title began the following month.

This is the second and last issue of Thor drawn by Neal Adams, but if you'd like to read issue #180 then please click here.


Script: Stan Lee
Pencils: Neal Adams
Inks:Joe Sinnott

  • in Essential Thor (Marvel, 2001 series) #4 [black & white]
  • in Marvel Visionaries: Stan Lee (Marvel, 2005 series) #[nn]
  • in Marvel Masterworks: The Mighty Thor (Marvel, 2003 series) #9 (2010)
  • in Thor le fils d'Odin (Artima, 1979 series) #10
  • in Marvel Deluxe : Stan Lee (Panini, 2007 series) #1

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