Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The Classics - Weird Worlds #3

It occurs to me from time to time that if I really wanted to build big traffic numbers here at Chuck's Comic of the Day, I'd do regular posts about the sexiest women in comics, or do a "Babe of the week" feature or something along those lines. (Which is really not such a bad idea, now that I think of it...)

After all, sex sells - and I see the proof of that every time I check the reader numbers for this site.

The single entry that gets the most readers on this site is the review of DC's Weird Worlds #1, which featured two of Edgar Rice Burrough's most famous heroes (next to Tarzan, of course): John Carter of Mars and David Innes in Pellucidar.

To be honest, I'm not sure why that post gets big numbers - perhaps it's the ERB connection, or the mention of John Carter (who's starring in an upcoming movie).

But I suspect it has more to do with the mention of Dejah Thoris, one of the sexiest women to appear in comics up to that point, thanks in no small part to the incredible art by Murphy Anderson.

I even included an interior panel of art showing off the Princess of Mars, and pointed out that she didn't have a belly button - after all, she was hatched from an egg.

For whatever reason, that review was hugely popular, so I thought, "I should review the second issue of this comic." I looked it over, and there were only a couple of tiny drawings of Dejah.

The third issue would be my last chance, because it was Anderson's last issue as artist - thankfully, as you can see here, he doesn't disappoint, although Dejah seems to have sudden gained a belly button and her outfit is slightly more modest (which looks like a late addition by the editors at DC).

What about the comic, you ask? Well, the Marv Wolfman-written story continues the adventures of John Carter as he becomes friends with the four-armed green giant, Tars Tarkas.

They fight their way through the Barsoom (Martian) equivalent of the underworld, only to land in even more trouble.

The second half of the comic features some surprisingly horrible scenes, as David Innes learns more about the horrible masters of Pellucidar, which is the prehistoric world at the center of the Earth.

It's a great story by Len Wein and great art by the criminally-underrated Alan Weiss.

In other words, it's another terrific issue (cover dated December 1972 - January 1973) loaded with the usual break-neck action and adventure - and a dash of sex.

Now I can't wait to see if this post gets numbers like before. If so, I might have to make this a regular feature.

Grade: A-


Anonymous said...

I loved the ERB explosion at DC during this time, courtesy of Joe
Kubert and Co. Tarzan, Korak, John Carter, Carson Napier, David Innes, etc.... what a great period for heroic adventure!
And yet, it seemed as if the readers preferred their heroes super-powered, (Conan the barbarous exception) and Weird Worlds was not a commercial success.
But while it lasted, what a beautiful comic mag it was!

Sam Kujava

Chuck said...

Sam, I agree - it was a great time for ERB's works, thanks mostly to Kubert's efforts. You had Tarzan, Korak, Weird Worlds and assorted backup tales and reprints of Manning's comic strips - good stuff!