The primary reason for the creation of EsquireComics.com was to feed
my own insatiable appetite for the love of collecting comic books.
Alas, even my lawyer's salary simply was not enough to sustain the
purchases I truly wanted to make time and time again. So I made the
tough decision to sell most of my collection in order to still enjoy
Notwithstanding my decision, I have not given up collecting
altogether. Instead, I decided to focus on some very specific themes or
titles, and I am happy to present them to you for your viewing pleasure.
None of these specific books are for sale as they are part of my personal collection, so please do not inquire about them.
However, I am ALWAYS looking to buy or trade for copies of books that I am missing from these special collections.
I prefer high-grade copies, but depending on the rarity of the book,
I am certainly amenable to considering any offer. Please e-mail or
telephone me if you have something you believe I would be interested in.
Anti-Nazi/Anti-Communism/Cold War Comics
I still remember those early days in the 1970s when at elementary
school we practiced "duck and cover" under our desks just like the
turtle from those old Army cartoons recommended. As an "historian" by
university education, I spent the 1980s studying the Cold War tension
between the East and West. In law school I witnessed what so many never
thought we would see, the actual end of the Cold War.
In the aftermath of World War II, as the United States shifted from
combating National Socialism to Communism, so too did the stories
within the comics. With the Soviet Union gaining atomic weapons by
1949, the theme of nuclear warfare and Cold War propaganda dominated
the early 1950s. And the theme, though muted at times, did not end
until the very collapse of the Soviet Union.
Comic books do more than just tell stories. They reflect an opening
into a window of time of a society that previously existed. And these
books in particular are a part of our history.
In my day job as an attorney, I routinely
represent spies. Good ones that is. Dedicated men and women who work
for the U.S. Government in both overt and covert positions with such
agencies as the Central Intelligence Agency, Defense Intelligence
Agency and the National Security Agency. Many of my clients epitomize
the legendary and fictional James Bond. Thus, it is fitting that I
collect comic titles and stories that exemplify their work. Of course, as an attorney I also cannot resist simply collecting the various examples and roles that lawyers have played throughout the years.
This title, of course, was originally called "New Fun Comics" when
it debuted as D.C. Comics' first comic book in 1935. After six issues,
the title was changed to More Fun Comics and it ran another eleven
years until issue #127 hit the stands in November 1947.
"New Fun: The Big Comic Magazine" was the brainchild of Major
Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson, the founder of D.C. Comics. Measuring 10" x
15", it was indeed big! Although the interior stories were printed in
black and white, the Major included all new stories and content, unlike
those of his early competitors. The first issue contained stories
ranging from spies to science fiction. The sixth issue welcomed the
significant debut of the dynamic duo of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster,
who would become legends in the comic industry.
The seventh issue not only saw a title change, but also a reduction
in size to the standard format. One of the early "superheros" was "Dr.
Occult, the Ghost Detective," a mortal who battled the uncanny and
eventually developed superhuman strength and the ability to fly. Sound
familiar? Of course, Dr. Occult was the prototype for the
then-unpublished Superman, a Siegel/Shuster character who was being
rejected by publishers everywhere until Action #1 debuted in 1938.
The most significant change for More Fun Comics came with issue #52
(2/40) with the origin/1st appearance of The Spectre, an omnipotent
being who fought crime through the transcended spirit of a murdered
policeman. Though The Spectre only lasted five years until issue #101,
the covers featuring him are some of the most sought after Golden Age
More Fun Comics witnessed a host of impressive firsts welcoming into existence
Dr. Fate (#56), Johnny Quick (#71), Aquaman (#73) and Superboy (#101). Eight
books from this title are listed in Overstreet's Top 100 Golden Age Books (though
technically several are actually from the Platinum Age). Many of the early
books are virtually impossible to find in high grade, and even the low grade
copies are scarce.
Comics are not just for entertainment, they can be used to promote products, espouse idealogical rhetoric or persuade citizens which politician they should vote for in the next election. I have amassed a sampling of interesting and often rare promotional comics.