Sunday, August 21, 2011


Today I received another batch of Rocket's Blast Comicollector, the comics fanzine/adzine that had been such a vital part of my movement into fandom in the 1960s. I now have #s 43-61 (the entire run to which I originally subscribed) with the exception of #54, a Wally Wood-cover issue that can only be found for an exorbitant price on eBay. While the collector part of me would like to have it to complete the run, the practical part of me said that there's no way I need to spend $60 on a little bit of nostalgia.

It's fascinating to go through these adzines again--not only because I get to remember the excitement I felt when I looked at these ads originally, but also because every article in each of these issues is virtually burned into my mind. I must have read and re-read each RBCC a dozen times while waiting for the next issue to arrive. There are great articles in here chronicling the early development of fandom and the growth of comics as a major part of popular culture; among those whose work is represented in here are Mike Kaluta, Bernie Wrightson, Jim Jones, Roy Thomas, Jerry Bails, Vaughn Bode, Jim Starlin... the list goes on and on, and it's fascinating to see these major talents represented so early in their careers.

The ads are always intriguing, of course; every page is a wistful look at what I should have bought, had I been able to afford it.

(Since I don't have #54, I'm presenting the other Wally Wood cover, the one he did for RBCC #56, depicting Daredevil tossing Dynamo off a skyscraper under construction. Alas, it turned out to be an all too accurate metaphor for the fate of Tower Comics in the towering shadow of Marvel a few years later...)

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