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Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Four Color Commentary Paid a HUGE Compliment

If you can believe it, this site has been nominated for the category of "Best Culture Blog" in the Okie Blog Awards of 2007. And, get this, since bloggers are prohibited from nominating their own blogs, I'm free of suspicion!

Seriously, though, what a wonderfully unexpected honor! Seeing as how I believe I post WAY too seldom, it's nice to know people are enjoying the site. And, since I'm not delusional enough to expect to win (I've seen the competition, folks.), I'm going to indulge myself now:

*Sniff* There are...just...SO many people I'd like to thank! Michael Vance, for supplying so much material to Four Color Commentary, *Sniffle-SNORT*, my wife, who puts up with my sometimes-late-night and last-minute blogging, especially posts that could have been done hours before but weren't because I was reading comics, playing video games or wrestling with our kids, *Sob*, but, I would especially like to thank the wonderful, exclusive community of comic-geeks, of which I am a proud member! All you guys (and you half-dozen girls) keep reading the blog on the computer in your mom's basement, and I PROMISE you, I'll keep posting! *S-N-O-R-G!!* You like me! You REALLY LIKE me!!

And, thanks again to my mystery nominator. (Sounds kind of like "Terminator.")

Comics Legend Mac Raboy

(Originally posted on the Starland site in 1998.)

Emanuel Mac Raboy came early to the party and left much too soon. He also left much to admire.

Raboy was around twenty-seven years old, and much older than the industry he influenced, when Mac joined the Chesler Shop in the early 1940s. He not only worked on the assembly-line of artists and writers churning out work for contracting publishers, he also co-managed the staff with artist Bernard Baily.

His amazing career in comic books only lasted five years before Raboy left for more lucrative work on comic strips.

His best known characters were the superheroes "Green Lama" and "Capt. Marvel, Jr." His best remembered character remains Capt. Marvel, Jr., an adolescent spin-off of the wildly successful "Big Red Cheese", Capt. Marvel.

In a field then dominated by the "big foot" style of animated cartoons, Mac choose a realistic, dynamic style of art that quickly brought his work peer attention and widespread imitation. His art featured a thin, scratchy line, minimal backgrounds and accurate anatomy.

Capt. Marvel Jr. was meant to be a clone, but Raboy's style quickly distanced him from his superhero big "brother". Lanky, graceful and powerful, the super teenager lived more realistic adventures in a more realistic world. Junior even seemed out of place when guest starring in Capt. Marvel's world of talking tigers, intelligent worms and mad scientists.

Raboy's comic book work includes: Green Lama (Prize, 1940); Mr. Scarlet, Ibis, Dr, Voodoo, Zoro/the Mystery Man, Bulletman, Capt. Marvel Jr. (Fawcett, 1941- '43); Tuk/Cave-Boy (Marvel, 1941); Green Lama (Spark (1944-'46); Kid Eternity (Quality, 1944-'45); Dynamic Man, Yankee Boy (Dynamic, 1944-'45) and Captain Truth (Baily, 1945).

Raboy also worked on the comic strip Flash Gordon (daily 1948-'51, Sunday 1948-'67).

Mac Raboy's work is highly recommended.

Some older titles are expensive and difficult to locate. Price guides or comics dealers help. Comics shops, conventions, mail order companies and trade journals are best sources. Prices vary; shop around for the best values.

-- Michael Vance