Wednesday, May 3, 2017


The Rawhide Kid is my favorite western comics character and one of my favorite comics characters period.  Something about the short of stature - but big on courage, honor and fighting skills - Johnny Clay speaks to me.  After rereading the Kid’s earliest adventures when Marvel reprinted them in a pair of Marvel Masterworks and an Essential Rawhide Kid volume, I wanted to reacquire every Rawhide Kid comic, reread them and write about them in this bloggy thing of mine. We’re currently in the extended twilight of the title. We’ve seen the last new Rawhide Kid story that will appear in the title, which is now a bimonthly reprint. This is the 109th installment in my “Rawhide Kid Wednesday” series.

The Rawhide Kid #122 [September 1974] had a new cover penciled by Larry Lieber with inks by Vince Colletta. The action-packed scene is one of Colletta’s better pairings with Lieber.

Both of the interior stories are reprinted from Rawhide Kid #43 [December 1964]. “Where the Outlaws Ride!” (16 pages) is credited to Stan Lee and Larry Lieber. The uncredited inker was the veteran Paul Reinman. This story was 18 pages in its original appearance, something we’ll be discussing in a bit. The cover to issue #43 was by Jack Kirby and Chic Stone:
The second non-series story was “Brass Buttons!” (4 pages) by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby with uncredited inks by George Roussos. I wrote about these stories in a “Rawhide Kid Wednesday” installment that was posted on November 14, 2012. You can read it here.

Marvel was now including a little original appearance information when it reprinted stories in its western, horror and other comics. Looking back to those days, I wonder if there was a legal rationale for the accreditation. However, I can’t recall an instance when a Marvel reprint book ever included the information that a reprinted story had been “abridged” to fit the available page count.

As I’ve mentioned before, cutting pages out of these stories was as thankless and depressing a job as could be found in the otherwise exciting Marvel Bullpen. When I got stuck with the job, I tried to remove entire pages as much as possible to make things easier for the production department. That’s what was done with “Where the Outlaws Ride!”

Sidebar. Since someone will ask, I have no memory of having worked on this issue. I might have - I did many editorial jobs for Marvel on books and magazines that were not among my usual assignments - but, if I did, I don’t remember doing so. End of sidebar.

To make “Where the Outlaws Ride!” - originally 18 pages - fit into 16 pages, two entire story pages were cut. These were pages 11 and 12 of the original story. The only editorial change made to page 13 of the original was to rewrite slightly the first speech balloon. And, just because I finally figured out how to crop interior comics pages on my scanner, here are pages 10-13 of this original story.

The only other editorial material in the issue was a Marvel Bullpen Bulletins page. Stan Lee’s Soapbox had some interesting news this time around. Stan talked about Marvel teaming with the Children’s Television Workshop, a partnership that saw Spider-Man appearing on The Electric Company and Marvel publishing a new Spider-Man title expressly designed for young readers. That title, called Spidey in the Soapbox, would be released as Spidey Super Stories.

Stan also talked about “Comics: Birth of an American Art Form,” a documentary produced by Bowling Green University’s Department of Popular Culture. It featured Stan in “discussion and seminar” with the theme being “comics as a legitimate intellectual activity.” I never saw the documentary when it aired on Ohio’s WBGU-TV or other stations. I wonder if it’s ever turned up online.

In other items:

The Planet of the Apes magazine would make its debut on June 25th. Gerry Conway and Doug Moench were listed as writers of the first new POTA story with Doug soloing on the first chapter of a comics adaptation of the first POTA movie. By the second issue, Doug was writing both the new story and the adaptation.

The next plug was for The Savage Sword of Conan #1, spinning off from Savage Tales. The new magazine would feature Conan stories by Roy Thomas, some adapted from Robert E. Howard tales, with artwork by John Buscema, Barry Smith, Esteban Maroto and others.

The penultimate item announced the full-color Giant-Size Conan #1 by Thomas, Gil Kane and Tom Sutton...and Giant-Size Master of Kung Fu #1 by Moench and Paul Gulacy.

The final item? Yet another song-and-dance about the much-loathed Marvel Value Stamps. The item said that the ultimate Marvel Value Stamp would be appearing in some Marvel mag this very month. That would have been Stamp #100 featuring...


Three different issues had this stamp: Amazing Spider-Man #145 [June 1975], Fantastic Four #154 [January 1975] and Sub-Mariner #72 [September 1974]. The stamp art came from the cover of Fantastic Four #49. 
This Marvel Bullpen Bulletins page also had a 2.5-inch 4-inch house ad for Planet of the Apes.
That’s all for this week’s installment of “Rawhide Kid Wednesday.” I’ll be back tomorrow with more stuff.

© 2017 Tony Isabella

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