Following on from my last post featuring some of my favourite Marvel comic book covers from 1973, I thought I would show some of DC's best. While Marvel may have been causing a major stir in the UK at this time with their expanding weekly UK comic line and their innovative monthly US titles, DC were also producing some great comics and covers including the above issue of Superman number 263 by the legendary Neal Adams. Below are a selection of some of the other great DC comics I picked up in 1973:
"Secret Origins" Issue 5 (Cover by Nick Cardy) - At this time DC were producing quite a few top quality all reprint comics including "Wanted", Black Magic" , "Strange Adventures", and "Challengers of the Unknown". This issue of "Secret Origins" reprinting the Spectres (rather dark for the time) origin by Bernard Baily is a stonewall classic wrapped up in one of Cardy's best ever covers.
"Justice League of America" issue 108 (cover by Nick Cardy). Following on from JLA issue 100
(and 101-102) which featured the Seven Soldiers of Victory and the JSA, Len Wein, Dick Dillin, and Dick Giordano treat us here to another tale (starting in issue 107 - which I have never read) featuring more old school heroes. This time we are introduced to the heroes of Earth X (the old Quality comics characters) most of whom were new to me at this time.
"Swamp Thing" issue 8 (cover by Bernie Wrightson) - This was my first "Swamp Thing" comic. I can still recall seeing this issue in my local newsagent and the excitement of reading this tale by Len Wein’s beautifully illustrated by Bernie Wrightson. Wonderful stuff!
"Superboy starring the Legion of Super-Heroes" issue 200. (Cover by Nick Cardy ) - I loved the Legion of Super-Heroes at this time and this issue by Cary Bates and Dave Cockrum featuring the wedding of Bouncing Boy and Duo Damsel was a bronze age classic featuring cameos by what seemed like 100s of characters.
"Brave and the Bold" issue 109 (Cover by Jim Aparo) - Brave and the Bold was another of my favourite titles. As good as the stories were, I mostly looked forward to seeing Jim Aparo's version of various DC characters each month. Here he draws Jack Kirby's "Demon" character with aplomb.
"Phantom Stranger" issue 26 (cover by Mike Kaluta). I didn't actually buy this copy in 1973 but my pal gave me his copy to read so it (kinda) counts.
Plop! issue 2 (Cover by Basil Wolverton) - One of DC's most underrated books. As a 13 year old I found this genuinely fun (maybe not funny) featuring some wonderful cartooning by the likes of Steve Ditko, Alex Toth, Sergio Aragones and Wally Wood.
"Strange Adventures" issue 241 (cover by Nick Cardy); By this time Strange Adventures was all reprint but as Adam Strange was new to me I had to buy this issue when I saw it. The Stories by Gardner Fox and Carmine infantino were interesting, but it was Nick Cardy's cover that really sold this comic to me.
Superboy issues 195 (Cover by Nick Cardy) -I have rambled on about this comic before, not for the main Superboy tale but for the back up story "The One Shot Hero"
by Cary Bates and Dave Cockrum / Murphy Anderson.
Detective Comics issues 435 (cover by Dick Giordano and Gaspar Saladino). This was another comic where the back up tale "Jason Bard" by Frank Robbins stuck in my memory more than the main story. At the time I found Robbins art crude but intriguing. Today I find Robbins art full of action and a total joy.
"Sword of Sorcery" issue 2 (cover by Howard Chaykin and Bernie Wrghtson). As far as I am aware this was DC's first real attempt and a sword and sorcery comic and whilst it wasn't up to the standards of Marvels "Conan" it had its merits. Sadly, the title only lasted 5 issues.
"Superman" issue 265 (Cover by Nick Cardy).
"Challengers of the Unknown" issue 79 (Cover by Joe Kubert) - This was another of DC's all reprint titles reprinting Jack Kirby's classic Challengers tales.