Alter Ego #123

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ALTER EGO #123 (84 pages with FULL COLOR, $8.95) has a special focus on DENNY O'NEIL's Silver Age career through the mid-1970s, from Marvel (Dr. Strange, S.H.I.E.L.D.) to Charlton (Wander, "Children of Doom") to DC (Green Lantern/Green Arrow, Batman, The Shadow, Wonder Woman, Superman, JLA)—as aided and abetted by the likes of ADAMS, KALUTA, SEKOWSKY, LEE, GIORDANO, THOMAS, SCHWARTZ, APARO, BOYETTE, DILLIN, SWAN, DITKO, et al. Plus, beginning—the serialization of AMY KISTE NYBERG's groundbreaking book on four-color censorship, Seal of Approval: The History of the Comics Code! Not to mention FCA (Fawcett Collectors of America), MICHAEL T. GILBERT in Mr. Monster’s Comic Crypt, BILL SCHELLY on fandom history, and other wonders! Edited by ROY THOMAS.

Text of Alter Ego #123

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  • Alter EgoTM is published 8 times a year by TwoMorrows, 10407 Bedfordtown Drive, Raleigh, NC 27614, USA. Phone: (919) 449-0344. Roy Thomas, Editor. John Morrow, Publisher. Alter Ego Editorial Offices: 32 Bluebird Trail, St. Matthews, SC 29135, USA. Fax: (803) 826-6501; e-mail: Send subscription funds to TwoMorrows, NOT to the editorial offices. Eight-issue subscriptions: $60 US, $85 Canada, $107 elsewhere. All characters are their respective companies. All material their creators unless otherwise noted. All editorial matter Roy Thomas. Alter Ego is a TM of Roy & Dann Thomas. FCA is a TM of P.C. Hamerlinck. Printed in China. ISSN: 1932-6890


    Vol. 3, No. 123 / March 2014

    EditorRoy Thomas

    Associate EditorsBill SchellyJim Amash

    Design & LayoutChristopher Day

    Consulting EditorJohn Morrow

    FCA EditorP.C. Hamerlinck

    Comic Crypt EditorMichael T. Gilbert

    Editorial Honor RollJerry G. Bails (founder)Ronn Foss, Biljo WhiteMike Friedrich

    ProofreadersRob SmentekWilliam J. Dowlding

    Cover ArtistsNeal Adams, Pat Boyette, Michael W. Kaluta, & Mike Sekowsky

    Cover ColoristTom Ziuko

    With Special Thanks to:

    ContentsWriter/Editorial: The Missouri Breaks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2I Feel Like My Career Has Gone Full Circle . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3

    Dennis ONeil talks to Richard J. Arndt about his first decade in comics as a writer & editor.

    Seal Of Approval: The History Of The Comics Code . . . . . . 53Beginning our lushly illustrated serialization of the 1998 book by Amy Kiste Nyberg.

    Mr. Monsters Comic Crypt: Now Thats A Fan! (Part 2) . . . 59More nutty fansboth inside & outside comicsstudied & prodded by Michael J. Gilbert.

    Tributes To Lee Ames & George Gladir . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66re: [correspondence, comments, & corrections] . . . . . . . . . 68FCA (Fawcett Collectors Of America] #182 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73

    An Otto Binder special hosted by P.C. Hamerlinck and featuring Brian Cremins.

    On Our Cover: Its not that writer and editor Dennis ONeil didnt turn out a lot of quality work thatwasnt done in collaboration with artist Neal Adams but when we began to ponder which heroesto feature on this issues cover, the first three who came to mind were, of course, Batman, GreenLantern, and Green Arrowand we tossed in Black Canary for good measure, all drawn by Neal.Add to the mix a Mike Sekowsky Wonder Woman, a Michael W. Kaluta Shadow, and a panelfrom the Charlton classic Children of Doom by Pat Boyette, and all we needed as the icing on thecake was a good photo or drawing of this issues interview subject. And no photo could possibly be asiconic for Dennys first ten years in comics as the portrait Neal Adams (him again!) drew in 1971 onthe occasion of ONeil and himself winning ACBA Awards for their groundbreaking GreenLantern/Green Arrow comic. Thanks to layout supervisor Chris Day for putting it all together![The Shadow TM Conde Nast; other art elements DC Comics.]

    Above: In the final Doctor Strange episode drawn and plotted by Steve Ditkoin Strange Tales#146 (July 1966)near-neophyte scripter Denny ONeil got the opportunity to give a moniker to amysterious and beautiful woman whod been involved in Docs other-dimensional adventures off andon for the past year or more, but whom neither Steve nor scripter/editor Stan Lee ever got around togiving a name! Denny chose Clea, the title character in one of the celebrated Alexandria Quartet of novels written by Lawrence Durrell. Shes more than made a name for herself in the years since![ Marvel Characters, Inc.]

    Kris AdamsNeal AdamsHeidi AmashPedro AngostoRichard J. ArndtDavid BachmanRodrigo BaezaBob BaileyRobert BarrettAlberto BecattiniRod BeckWilliam BigginsJerry K. BoydBernie BubnisNick CaputoDewey CassellChet CoxBrian CreminsDillin FamilyJeff DreischerJoey EacobacciMark EvanierShane FoleyStephan FriedtJanet GilbertGlenn ----Jennifer GoStan GoldbergKeith HammondR.C. HarveyMel HigginsChuck Hines(website)

    Allan HoltzSean HoweBob HughesM. Thomas IngeWill JarvisJoyce KaffelJim KealyRichard Kyle

    Batton LashMark LewisJim LudwigDoug MartinKim MetzgerBrian K. MorrisMark MullerKen NadleAmy Kiste NybergDennis & MarifranONeil

    Jake OsterDenis ParryBarry PearlJennifer PedersonGary PerlmanJay PiscopoRobert PolicastroDave ReederJenny ReibenspiesTrina RobbinsAl RodriguezSteven RoweRandy SargentPat SekowskyRandy ScottMitchell SenftVijah ShahDavid SiegelNeal SlowickJeff TaylorDann ThomasMark TrostJim Vadeboncoeur, Jr.Michael VanceDr. Michael J.Vassallo

    Lynn WalkerMike ZeckEddy Zeno

    This issue is dedicated to the memory ofLee Ames & George Gladir

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  • NTERVIEWERS INTRODUCTION: Denny ONeil began his career in comics in 1965 as a scripter for Marvel Comics. However, he was soon doing most of his early work for Charlton,under the name Sergius OShaugnessy. In 1968 Charlton editor Dick Giordano moved to DC

    Comics, taking with him a number of writers and artists, including ONeil, who soon found himselfwriting the likes of Beware The Creeper, Wonder Woman, Justice League of America, and, by1969, Batman stories with artist Neal Adams. Their five-year collaboration on Batman andDetective Comics (with Adams spelled by artists such as Irv Novick and Bob Brown) and theirsimultaneous run on Green Lantern/Green Arrow were revolutionary in terms of how all threecharacters were perceived. ONeil also revamped Superman for the 1970s, reducing his powers andmaking him more human. Following these ventures, he worked as an editor/writer at various times forboth DC and Marvel, scripting dozens of both companies most important characters and contributingsuch landmarks as the 1970s adaptations of The Shadow with artist Michael Kaluta and Supermanvs. Muhammad Ali, again with Neal Adams. ONeil was the editor of Daredevil during FrankMillers tenure on the character. In addition to his comics work, ONeil scripted several episodes of thehighly acclaimed Batman: The Animated Series on TV and has written a number of novels,including one about Richard Dragon, a martial arts master, which also appeared as a comic novel atDC. This interview took place by phone during July of 2011.

    I Feel Like My CareerHas Gone Full Circle

    Award-Winning Writer & Editor DENNIS ONEIL On His First Decade In Comics

    Interview Conducted by Richard J. Arndt Transcribed by Brian K. Morris



    Dennys Ditko DazeDenny ONeil in 1969 (top of page), and with his charming wife Marifran (right) in a photo taken specifically for the interview at 4:36 p.m. on Aug. 13, 2013.Thanks, guys! On p. 24 of this interview, Denny opines as how Its been my fate to rain on Steve Ditkos parade time and again. As Exhibits 1-3 of same,

    below we present the splash pages from three stories scripted by ONeil (twice as Sergius OShaugnessy) and drawn by Ditko (two of which the artist alsoplotted) at the three color comic book companies for which Denny worked during his first decade in the field: Doctor Strange for Marvels Strange Tales #145

    (June 1966) the middle splash of a three-part tale illustrated by a trio of artists for Charltons Space Adventures #2 (July 1968) and DCs Beware TheCreeper #3 (Sept.-Oct. 1968). Thanks for the scans to Barry Pearl and Jim Ludwig. [Dr. Strange page Marvel Characters, Inc.; Space Adventures #2 page

    the respective copyright holders; Beware The Creeper page DC Comics.]

  • I Did A Couple of [Newspaper] Stories On[Comics Big Resurgence]

    RICHARD ARNDT: Can you tell us about your early life?

    DENNIS ONEIL: I feel like my career has gone full circle. My firstentry into the comics field came with Alter Ego back in the 1960s,and now here I am 50 years later talking with one of Roysreporters. About three years ago he and I went to a convention inCape Girardeau, Missouri, and I had the weird experience of beinginterviewed by the paper I worked for when Roy re-introduced meto comics.

    RA: What [news]paper was that?

    ONEIL: It was, and still is, called the Southeast Missourian. It was aconservative paper when I worked for it and is, I think, today, veryconservative. But thats okay. I didnt see the article, if any, thatthey wrote. They also interviewed Roy and Gary Friedrich. Wewere the big cheeses that weekend.

    But, getting back to your question, I grew up in North St. Louis,a blue-collar neighborhood. I went to a military high school,[laughs] which has been the bane of my life. People who now knowme cant believe that I ever went to a military high school. Im notsure that