Monday, October 22, 2007

Top 5 Fantastic War Comics

Earlier I posted on how sad it was the modern comic book industry has failed to stand up to the task of supporting our war effort against the terrorists, as they have in years past in our struggle against Nazis and communists. This wasn't always the case, as can be seen in these 5 classic war comics:

  1. Sgt. Rock-The "Rock" of Easy Company first appeared in the famed war book GI Combat in 1959 as created by the legendary Bob Kanigher, and soon became a fan favorite. He got his own comic in 1977, but not before introducing us to such memorable characters as Bulldozer, Little Sure Shot, Jackie Johnson and Wildman. Rock was a tough as nails combat leader who led his platoon through World War 2 in numerous battles, often charging against Nazi tanks armed with only a rifle and hand grenades!
  2. The Haunted Tank-Also a staple in GI Combat, created by Kanigher, and a very unique comic at that! The story concerns a certain Lieutenant Jeb Stuart whose Stuart tank is haunted by his Confederate namesake. General Stuart often gave Jeb advice in the form of parables. Jeb is also the only one in the tank who can see or hear the general, making for some interesting dialogue from the crew, who often question their commander's sanity. First appearance was in May 1961.
  3. The Unknown Soldier-More war with a horror twist created and drawn by the great Joe Kubert. First appearance was in 1970 and concerned a WW 2 soldier horribly disfigured in combat. He becomes an intelligence officer and a master of disguise, but is often seen with his head in mummy-like bandages. Occasionally he removed the wrappings to the horror of his Axis antagonists.
  4. Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos-Stan Lee, ably assisted by artist jack Kirby introduced us to the cigar chomping Nick Fury in May 1963. The stories originally centered on Fury and his elite commando's WW 2 adventures, but soon they were fighting the Cold War. In 1965, Fury became a James Bond type spy leading the super-secret organization known as S.H.I.E.L.D.
  5. Blackhawk-How cool was this! Created by the Spirit's Will Eisner, among others, the story centered on an elite team of international pilots who banded together to fight the Nazis. The main character and leader of the same name was an American of Polish extraction. Other team members included Andre, Olaf, Stanislaus, and Chop-Chop.First appeared in 1941 in Military Comics. The best part of Blackhawk were the cool planes, which after the war went from propellers to jets!
Other notables include the Losers, the Invaders, Boy Commandos, Enemy Ace, among many others. As a genre, the war comic mostly disappeared by the 1980's, but some are cropping up in reprint collections, and are also traded constantly on auction sites like eBay.

Scan is from the author's collection.