Wednesday, October 22, 2014

10/23/2014 - The Strange Case of the Missing Ghost Rider

There appears to be a real ghost in the machine. By a machine, I mean this very computer I'm writing on right now. I wrote an article about the great western comic book hero, the Ghost Rider, finishing it last night. Today, I go to get it, and I can't find the text.

Yes, I will have the Ghost Rider, one of the most popular characters published by Magazine Enterprises in the 40s - the 50s.  Lots of the Ghost Rider...

Artist Dick Ayes was a co-creator of the series and his artwork, with weirdness in an old West, is gorgeous. Frank Frazetta also contributed, but only rarely.

Years later, when Stan Lee bought the character for Marvel Comics, he had Ayers already doing work for him.

Meanwhile, I'll find that darned article, by hook or by crook, and when I do, I'll alert you to it.

For now, here is the Ghost Rider. Check out many more of these comics on the free public domain comic book site, Comic Books Plus ( As usual, click on the images to see legible versions. Let me know what you think of them.

Oh, and this Saturday will see the entire 5th issue of Creepsville posted for Halloween, with a story titled "Halloweenland."

Saturday, October 18, 2014

10/19/2014 - This Week's Creepsville Plus a Creepsville Preview or 2

This week I wind up the "Robot Monster" story from the first issue of my Creepsville comic book series. Even as that finishes, up rise not one, but two Creepsville stories.

The first of these two is the second story from the first issue, titled "Invasion of the Martian-Men," which is a takeoff on one of my favorite AIP monster movies: Invasion of the Saucer-Men." This story was important, as it allowed retailers to see if we could do a comic series like this. The response was very positive, when we previewed it at the San Diego Comic Con Trade Show, just prior to the Comic Book Convention everyone knows about these days.

The second item is the cover to the 5th issue of the series, which also happens to be a Halloween issue. I'll give you the details on both of these next week, when I post the entire 5th issue for the holiday.

In addition, the weekday uploads will be monster packed. Among the Things you can expect to see posted here will be the original Ghost Rider western-horror series, cartoons by Addams Family creator Charles Addams, horror comics from the 40s and 50s, loads of movie posters, movie stills, and editorial stuff that will convince all of you that I am indeed mad.

Oh, and after Halloween, I won't be stopping the crazy stuff. I'm having so much fun that the madness continues.

Oh, and the plan is for the book of Creepsville Collected to come out in the spring. I'll keep you all informed.

Click on the images below to see the larger legible versions. As for me, I must go. I have to chase the pets here with my trusty axe. Just think of the exercise I'll get.


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

10/16/2014 - More of Dick Briefer's Frankenstein

Last week I posted three comic stories of Dick Briefer's Frankenstein series of books. The response was pretty positive, so I thought I would post a couple more stories before I bring up a number of other unusual items that feel and look Halloweenish.

First of all, I decide to post the second story from Frankenstein Comics, published by Prize Comics. I really enjoy Briefer's gorgeous macabre style. It brings to mind the wonderful morbid humor of Charles Addams (I will be posting some of those great pieces as well).

Click on the images below to see the larger legible versions of the old comic pages they were printed on.

In the 1950s, a horror boom hits the world of comics (as well as TV). The comics boom was inspired by what are the greatest horror comics ever created: Tales From the Crypt, The Vault of Horror and The Haunt of Fear, all published by EC Comics. Some of the greatest artists who ever worked in the medium did incredible work at the company, including Harvey Kurtzman, Jack Davis, Wally Wood and many more.

Meanwhile, Universal Pictures released a package of horror films to television which they titled Shock! Shock had the classic Universal monsters, and the release and first showing of each of each (usually on late night weekend slots) were said to be hugely popular.

As luck would have it, Dick Briefer just happened to be drawing his Frankenstein comic. Given the climate, a decision was made to take the monster away from his humor mode and back into horror. This time, Briefer's monster was drawn in a tight style reminiscent of EC's Johnny Craig. The creature couldn't talk, which made him a very testy beast.

I've decided to post the first story from Frankenstein #18, in which the monster was back... though Briefer added some pathos to the stories, feeling sorry for the creature. This latest take on the monster was also very Karloffian in looks and character.

Like before, click on the images below to see larger ones.

I find it interesting that all 3 versions of Briefer's Frankenstein are uniquely, artistically different and easily identified by eye at a glance. It served to show his talents as an artist and explains why, for example, he was one of Will Eisner's favorite artists ever.

All these comics are believed to be in the public domain. You can read them all now online at Comic Books Plus (, which is where I got them.

Besides my weekly Creepsville postings, I have loads more fun and oddball stuff to show you. Coming soon: The first and greatest Ghost Rider!

The Laughing Reindeer, Creepsville, Agents of Peril, Monster Patrol, their logos, all related characters, artwork, and text are (c) & TM Franklin J Kurtz. All rights reserved. All other materials are (c) and/or TM the individual creators, unless they are in the public domain.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

10/12/2014: This Week's Creepsville Page

Welcome back for another page from the first story of the first issue of Creepsville. If you're a newbie here, each week I will be posting pages from my Creepsville comic book series, while I continue working on my major goal right now: The Creepsville Collected book.

At this point, I'm still inking a couple of stories that were only partially inked years ago, including the 6th issue, a Christmas story. A s for the status of this project, all I can say is that I'm working on all that and will definitely let you know when the book is available.

Also, I seem to be doing something right here... What I mean by that is that the stats for this blog's readership are growing quickly. I truly appreciate your time, looking in on what I'm up to. Even after the book is published, I have a lot of plans for this page, with all-new comic stories, including new Creepsville adventures.

I should also note that I will continue posting more material than usual due to this being October, with Halloween looming on the horizon. Check in during the weekdays and you may find some additional surprises posted.

Having said all that, click on the image below to see the larger legible picture. While you do that, I'm finally going up to the attic and bring down Halloween decorations... if that full-size Dracula figure we got this year lets me. Ulp!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

10/09/2014 - Dick Briefer's Frankenstein

With this being the Halloween season, I thought I would sneak in the blog some interesting material perfect for my favorite holiday. Let's start with Dick Briefer's Frankenstein.

Some time back I had posted an article of what was the first horror comics series with an ongoing main character. It was Frankenstein done by artist/writer Dick Briefer. For Halloween, I'm going to show you two stories from the pages of Prize Comics, specifically the first story culled from Prize Comics #7, the infamous story in which the rather pathetic super-heroes of Prize Comics come together to take on the monster (from Prize Comics #24) and, in a big switch, from Frankenstein Comics #1, a new origin of the monster in Briefer's great humor style.

Let me know what you think. I will also be posting some of the material from the return of the character to straight horror, which started in Frankenstein Comics #18. Dick Briefer's Frankenstein are believed to be in the public domain. You can read or even download almost all of them by going to the Comic Books Plus website (

As usual, click on the image to see a larger version. There are even smaller versions of the pages that you can use to read these stories in order.