How (and why) did Batman gain, and subsequently lose, the yellow oval part of his chest logo? A big blot of mustard that finally washed out?
— Todd ([email protected])

Back in 1964 when Julie Schwartz took over as editor of BATMAN and DETECTIVE COMICS, he wanted to give the character a “New Look.” Story-wise, he got rid of all the aliens and other science fiction elements of the series and concentrated on Batman as the World’s Greatest Detective. And to distinguish his version of the Dark Knight from the previous incarnation, he had the artists add the yellow oval to the logo.
The best explanation for the burst of yellow on an otherwise dark costume was that it was a target to get criminals with guns to shoot at, rather than at, say, his head. Since Batman’s costume was made of a Kevlar-type material, this was a practical idea.
The oval went away again after the most recent series of Batman movies, with the Dark Knight’s costume changing to more closely match the film version.

*****
What is the deal regarding once a storyline is finished on a given character that the Hard Cover or Trade paperback is released shortly thereafter? It seemed, in the past, that it took some time before the compilation book would come out to be purchased.
— Jorge ([email protected])

It all comes down to the reason publishers are in business to begin with –money. As sales of individual issues continue to slide, they have discovered that there is an audience for books that collect an entire story. Further, these volumes get into bookstores, where few regular comic books are now sold.
The real question is how many stories that could be told in a single issue get stretched out over a number of months simply to make them long enough for a collected edition.

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What is the editorial hierarchy like at DC?
— Rick ([email protected])

Each book has its own editor and assistant editor, who are responsible for getting the individual issues done. Above them are the Group Editors, whose job, in addition to producing books of their own, is to smack editors who are not doing their jobs. Above them are Mike Carlin (for the Superhero group) and Karen Berger (for Vertigo), whose job is to oversee their lines of books. On the side is Terri Cunningham’s Editorial Administration group; they handle schedules, contracts, and all the paperwork stuff the editors don’t know how to do. Above them all is Paul Levitz, the President and Publisher, who runs the show. [At least, this is the way I think it currently stands.]

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Why is the Editor-In-Chief such a high profile job in some comics companies and not in others? What responsibilities does the e-i-c have? Who is he/she ultimately responsible to?
— Mike Cruz ([email protected])

The role and responsibilities vary from company to company. In theory, the e-i-c would be responsible for all editorial content and direction of all of the company’s publications. Until she retired from DC earlier this year, Jenette Kahn held the title of President and Editor-in-Chief. [I don’t know that she ever had more than a passing interest in any of the individual titles.] With her departure, it appears that DC no longer has an e-i-c.

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How come only a small amount of DC characters have their creators’ name(s) listed, like Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman? What about the creators of all the other characters?
— Judah Warshaw ([email protected])

It all comes down to the agreement between DC and the creators. If they contain specific wording that recognition of the creator(s) must be included, as with Siegel and Shuster, Bob Kane, etc., the names appear everywhere. Other agreements specify the names be included in specific usage, such as a film or TV series. Others make no mention of creator credits.

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Does DC farm out its design work or does it do it in house? Specifically book design, logo work etc.
[email protected]

DC has an in-house Design Department that is responsible for that work, but when I was Production Director, they did farm out some of it. Whether they still do is something you could probably find out by contacting Richard Bruning, who is in charge of that area.


THE WHERE ARE THEY NOW DEPARTMENT:
This is a “whatever happened to” question. In the 80’s, there was an artist by the name of Steve Lightle who did some amazing work in the LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES. What has he done since and where is he now?

Oh, and where do you post the winners to the trivia questions?
[email protected]

Believe it or not, you can find an interview with Steve right here at SBC — http://www.silverbulletcomicbooks.com/features/96537240023309.htm

The answers and winners of my daily Anything Goes Trivia quiz are posted periodically on the General Message Board at www.wfcomics.com.

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What happened to the excellent artist Gly Dillon? And is he related to Steve Dillon? Thanks
[email protected]

…What’s Michael “Chasing Hairy” Fleischer up to these days? (Though his Spectre stories were mucho controversial at the time, they seem tame compared to the socio-pathetic superheroes of today.) His Jonah Hex was hot stuff!
— Richard Pachter

Sorry, but my search for any references to either of them has come up empty. Anyone out there have current info?

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I saw that question about Cary Bates and remembered the run he had on Captain Atom and was wondering whatever happened to Patrick Broderick?
— Cliff Coffey ([email protected])

Assuming it’s the same Pat Broderick (and evidence would seem to indicate it), he’s doing work as a graphic designer. Check out http://www.rotodesign.com/

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I’m looking for a Ross Andru biography and checklist. Where do I can find some?
[email protected]

You can find some info about Ross and his work at http://www.lambiek.net/andru_ross.htm and also at http://www.scifidimensions.com/Aug01/rossandru.htm.

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What happened to Cool Beans World.com
— Tony ([email protected])

According to the CEO of Cool Beans World, the site is no more.


FEEDBACK DEPARTMENT:
In last week’s column, you say: “Contrary to popular myth, Marvel does not own a trademark on the letter ‘X.’ I suspect that somewhere in the movie, someone is shown reading a Marvel comic book or there is one lying in the background.”

The issue was indeed over the “X” trademark. Whether or not Marvel started it I don’t recall, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t about the comics themselves, but rather, the field of battle in which the “X” marks would possibly duke it out: licensed logo-wear.
[email protected]

*****
Ace the Bat-hound was, as I recall, not Batman or Bruce Wayne’s dog. He was a lost dog that helped the Dynamic Duo out until he was reunited with his real family (although I think he had at least a second story he appeared in.)

Also: Since the Legion of Super-Heroes was rebooted following Zero Hour, Triplicate Girl has still been a member (and again has three bodies), but is now known as Triad.
[email protected]

Ace appeared in a number of stories. In his debut, he was owned by someone else, but he became Bruce’s pet in his second appearance.

*****
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If you’ll remember, both Maximum Press and Realm Press did several BATTLESTAR GALACTICA mini-series in the mid-late 90’s. Maximum was also supposed to do a Steve Austin/Jamie Sommers revival called “Bionix,” but based on the short preview in the “Asylum” anthology, it was probably better that it never came out. As far as current 70s revivals, people seem to forget that BATTLE OF THE PLANETS was not an 80s property, but first aired in America in 1978-79.
— Howard Margolin (Doctor [email protected])

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DEPARTMENT OF MORE Q & A:
What was the word that Apache Chief used in order to grown or be smaller?
[email protected]

“Enuch-chuck”

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What are the chances of a BLADE TPB now that Marvel has announced that the title is to end with #6?
[email protected]

Probably not very good.

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Do you know which MARVEL MASTERWORKS will be printed or be reprinted in the future?
[email protected]

Beyond the list that I ran here a few months ago, I have no new information.

*****
Who wrote GREEN LANTERN #100, silver age?
— Maureen ([email protected])
The complete credits for that issue are Denny O’Neil (script), Alex Saviuk (pencils), Vince Colletta (inks), Anthony Tollin (color), Ben Oda (lettering).
*****
I have a question concerning one of the Hostess Cupcake adverts that appeared in many of the old DC comics. In the Wonder Woman Hostess Cupcake Adventure “The Maltese Cupcake,” what the hell was going on?
— James Harvey ([email protected])

I suspect that whoever wrote it, most likely E. Nelson Bridwell, was trying to do a take-off on “The Maltese Falcon.” Unfortunately, the gag got lost in the incredibly wordy page. By the way, you can view that ad at http://www.seanbaby.com/hostess/wonwom6.htm. All the other Hostess ads featuring DC and Marvel characters are posted at that site, along with an interview with one of the writers of some of them.


That will do it for this week. Join me again next week for more Q&A. Meantime, try to answer MY questions at the daily Anything Goes Trivia at www.wfcomics.com/trivia.

 


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Copyright ? 2000 to 2003 by Bob Rozakis. All Rights Reserved.


 

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