Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Crossover Cover: The Haunting of Thallus

In the first part of this storyline from Marvel Comics' first Star Trek series, written by Marv Wolfman, a number of monsters attack the starship Enterprise, including what appears to be Dracula. Spock cites legends that in the 20th Century, vampire slayer Quincey Harker destroyed Dracula. The monsters are eventually revealed in the second part, written by Mike W. Barr, to have been created with a Klingon “thought-enhancer” device. Spock's reference to Dracula's death at Quincey Harker's hands bolsters the inclusion of Wolfman's series Tomb of Dracula in the CU.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Crossover Covers: Inspector Wilkins

This series of novels is an affectionate pastiche of 1930s locked room mystery novels, with Inspector Wilkins repeatedly having to investigate murders at the home of the unlucky Earl of Burford. All three novels have references to detective fiction of that era, which treat the characters mentioned as real people. In The Affair of the Bloodstained Egg Cosy (published in 1975), Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot is referred to by Wilkins. The Affair of the Mutilated Mink (1983) has several references: Dorothy L. Sayers' Lord Peter Wimsey; Michael Innes' Sir John Appleby (along with Richard Eliot's book The Spider Bites Back from the Appleby novel Stop Press); Ngaio Marsh's Inspector Roderick Alleyn; Agatha Christie's Ariadne Oliver (from the Hercule Poirot books, as well as the non-series novel The Pale Horse) and her book Death of a Debutante (mentioned in Mrs. McGinty's Dead); and The Screaming Bone by Annette de la Tour, the pen name of Mr. Judd in Edmund Crispin's Gervase Fen novel Buried for Pleasure. The third and final Wilkins novel, The Case of the 39 Cufflinks, refers to Lord Peter Wimsey once again, along with his manservant Bunter.

Crossover Cover: War Machine

In this issue of Iron Man, Tony Stark tricks the attacking ninjas known as the Masters of Silence into entering his simulation room, which he proceeds to plunge into darkness. One of the Masters counsels his teammates, “Remember the words of Master Zatoichi—‘A warrior’s eyes are the least of his senses.’” Zatoichi is the blind masseur and swordsman played by Shintarō Katsu in a long-running series of Japanese films. Since Zatoichi is in the CU through references in stories by Matthew Baugh and Rick Lai, this reference further confirms Iron Man's presence. Although this story was published in 1992, I have placed it in 1982 to accommodate a more realistic timeline for Iron Man's exploits.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Crossover of the Week

July 1944-January 1945
            Five airplanes, including one piloted by Group Captain Victor Carroon, trail UFOs that have appeared above London. One saucer is followed by a plane flown by Flight Lieutenant Tug Carrington. In Mission Control, Captain Boothroyd and Air Commodore Lord George Beltham give orders to the pilots. Professor Bernard Quatermass dismisses Beltham’s claim that one of his fellow investigators is an enemy agent. Harry Dickson breaks up the argument. Dickson’s protégé is a sergeant seconded from the Marine Police, Stanley Bulman, who mentions his nephew George.
            Short story by Nigel Malcolm in Tales of the Shadowmen Volume 9: La Vie en Noir, Jean-Marc and Randy Lofficier, eds., Black Coat Press, 2012; reprinted in French in Les Compagnons de l’Ombre (Tome 13), Jean-Marc and Randy Lofficier, eds., Rivière Blanche, 2014. Professor Bernard Quatermass is the protagonist of several British television serials and films, including The Quatermass Experiment, which also features Victor Carroon. Tug Carrington is an ally of aviator James “Biggles” Bigglesworth in novels by W.E. Johns. Captain Boothroyd is the future Major Boothroyd, service armorer for the British Secret Service in the James Bond novels. Lord George Beltham is a later holder of the title once belonging to Lord Edward Beltham in Marcel Allain and Pierre Souvestre’s Fantômas novels. Harry Dickson, “the American Sherlock Holmes,” appears in pulp stories by Jean Ray and others. Stanley Bulman is the uncle of Detective Sergeant George Bulman, who appears in the TV series The XYY Man, Strangers, and Bulman.

Crossover Covers: A Case of Blind Fear

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Crossover Cover: The New Adventures of Thunder Jim Wade Volume Two

Pro Se Press has just released this novella by my buddy Frank Schildiner, who has stated on Facebook that the Hyperborea in question is Robert E. Howard's version. Frank also did a story for The New Adventures of Thunder Jim Wade Volume One that had strong Cthulhu Mythos ties, as well as a reference to another pulp hero, Richard Knight. I look forward to buying a copy of Volume Two at Pulpfest/FarmerCon, and having Frank sign it. :)

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Crossover Covers: Doc Savage: Doom Dynasty

In this two-issue miniseries, Doc Savage battled Dr. Nikola, a villain created by Guy Boothby. There was also a reference to Johnny Littlejohn being at "that weird university in Massachusetts," a reference to Farmer's theory that Johnny taught at Miskatonic University, from H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Crossover Covers: The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Nights

In this mini-series by Michael Uslan and Keith Burns, the Shadow and his agents join forces with the Green Hornet and Kato in Spring 1939 to rescue President Roosevelt from the clutches of Shiwan Khan. Roosevelt was given a silver bullet as a child by Britt Reid's great-uncle John, a Texas Ranger (aka the Lone Ranger.) The Shadow has an office in a building that also contains offices for the Hidalgo Trading Company (from the Doc Savage novels), Timely Comics Group (the company later known as Marvel Comics), Nick Carter P.I., Benson Industries and Justice, Inc. (from the Avenger pulps), and Supersnipe Ltd. (from Supersnipe Comics, a comic book published by Street & Smith.) In Ron Fortier and Jeff Butler's comic book Sting of the Green Hornet, which takes place in 1942, the Hornet meets F.D.R. and an unnamed Shadow for what is clearly the first time. This, combined with the death of the Shadow's agent Cliff Marsland, places this story in an AU.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Crossover of the Week

Spring 1892
            Dr. John Watson and his wife Mary travel to America to visit Mary’s recently discovered relatives. The New York Comet prints a misleading story about Watson’s visit. Watson and Mary meet Theodore “T.R.” Roosevelt and his friend Robert Van Loan. The Blackhawk Insurance Company is mentioned. Discussing the exaggerations found in dime novels, Watson says, “The fictional accounts of the very real Sexton Blake suffer from similar ‘enhancement.’” Buffalo Bill Cody refers to the New York Clarion and its new owner, Franklin Havens. T.R. tells Watson that they must pass through the Bar 20 ranch to get to Mary’s cousin’s ranch. Watson and T.R. drive off some highwaymen with the help of the gunslinger Deadwood Dick. Soon after, they meet Mr. Stanley, editor of the South Dakota Clarion, who once used the name Deadwood Dick himself, with the original’s permission. Watson recalls the supposedly deceased Sherlock Holmes’ lecture to Professor Higgins’ Linguistics class. Watson later meets Commander Renwick of the Royal Navy and Lieutenant Hurricane of the Royal Marines.
            Novel by Erwin K. Roberts, Airship 27, 2012. The New York Comet newspaper will later employ Rex Parker, aka the Masked Detective, a pulp hero created by Norman Daniels. Robert Van Loan is the father of Richard Curtis Van Loan, aka the title character of the pulp magazine The Phantom Detective. Franklin Havens’ son Frank will later become the owner of the New York Clarion himself, and his daughter Muriel will become Richard Curtis Van Loan’s girlfriend. The Blackhawk Insurance Company is from the television series The Man from Blackhawk. Sexton Blake is one of the most famous British story paper detectives. The Bar 20 Ranch is from Clarence E. Mulford’s Hopalong Cassidy novels. Deadwood Dick appeared in dime novel stories by Edward L. Wheeler. Mr. Dick Stanley is from the 1940 serial Deadwood Dick. Professor Henry Higgins is from George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion, the basis for the musical My Fair Lady. Commander Renwick is probably a relative of John “Renny” Renwick, one of Doc Savage’s aides. Lieutenant Hurricane is an ancestor of Captain Hercules Hurricane, a superhumanly strong Royal Marine active during World War II, who appeared in the British comic Valiant from 1972 to 1976.