the issue Archives

THE ISSUE: Mad Anthony Wayne and Batman
"General James Gordon" was a pseudonym for regular Frank Tousey, Publisher author Ralph Morton.  It should be noted that this tale is a reissue of an 1881 version and that it continued to be kept in print via various means until around the World War I era and perhaps a bit beyond. The Issue is a regular[...]
THE ISSUE: The Socialist Fan of 1914
Jumping Jerry the Gamecock appears to be participating in what can only be described as some sort of human equivalent of cockfighting.  The interior story is every bit its equal and is a brutal tale of both actual cockfighting and vigilante justice.  This particular copy once belonged to a foundational Socialist Party figure. The Issue is a[...]
THE ISSUE: Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Takes on Periodicals vs Books
Nick Carter Stories #1 September 14, 1912 from Street & Smith is the first issue of a 160 issue series (1912-1915), which was a reboot of Nick Carter Weekly (1896-1912) — itself an 819 issue series.  The character had previously been featured on the black and white-covered Nick Carter Library (282 issues 1891-1896) after having[...]
THE ISSUE: Grizzly Adams and the California Bear Flag
Barnum for a period around that time, having previously established himself in California.  As announced in May 1960 in newspapers around the country, Grizzly Adams wrote exclusively for The New York Weekly that year, in "A series of his most thrilling adventures and hair-breadth escapes during his pursuit of the savage grizzlies and other wild[...]
The First Manned Space Mission on America's Newsstands
In 1869, the Newark Daily and Weekly Journal of New Jersey had serialized From the Earth to the Moon in 17 parts.  From the Earth to the Moon and Round the Moon were quickly collected into one volume shortly after the publication of the latter, and are today largely remembered as one work called From[...]
THE ISSUE: The First Crossover Reboot Event on American Newsstands
Happy Days #1, Oct 20, 1894 is the first issue of a 1563 issue weekly series running from 1894-1924.  Happy Days is an illustrated fiction story paper rather than a comic book, but it's still something we're very familiar with in the modern day.  It's a publisher's attempt to satisfy retailer demand and the changing[...]
THE ISSUE: Enter Sandman
Edison, and Edison has a flight suit that looks a bit like Iron Man — an issue for another day. The Issue is a regular column about vintage comics and other vintage periodicals from throughout world history.  The idea behind The Issue is simple:  for each post, I'll choose something from my collection and talk about what's going on[...]
Did L. Frank Baum's Wizard of Oz borrow Toto from Another Story?
Frank Baum wrote The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.  This story cuts across all sorts of history that interests me, and I have to say that when I started looking into this matter shortly after I acquired the issue, I began to wonder whether the accepted versions of the history behind Wizard of Oz are impossibly[...]
THE ISSUE: Democracy Dies in Darkness, 1786
It reads as an earlier version of the more recent "Democracy Dies in Darkness." The Massachusetts Gazette, May 1, 1786. The Issue is a regular column about vintage comics and other vintage periodicals from throughout world history.  The idea behind The Issue is simple:  for each post, I'll choose something from my collection and talk about what's going on in[...]
THE ISSUE: Legacy of the Lost World
The story behind the inspiration for this issue has a fascinating connection to both The Lost World and Game of Thrones. The Issue is a regular column about vintage comics and other vintage periodicals from throughout world history.  The idea behind The Issue is simple:  for each post, I'll choose something from my collection and talk about what's going[...]
THE ISSUE: The Tangled Political Spider Web of Charles G. Bush
In the subsequent two years, the techniques and artistry of the form in color on newsprint had steadily improved ahead of their early color star turn in 1895 with Richard Felton Outcault's Hogan's Alley beginning in 1895. The Issue is a regular column about vintage comics and other vintage periodicals from throughout world history.  The idea behind The[...]
Boys of New York #749, December 21, 1889, published by Frank Tousey.
A recent installment of The Issue featured The Daily Graphic No 283 January 31, 1874, and referenced an 1889 article that discussed story paper circulation in that era.  A "story paper" is simply an illustrated weekly periodical that features fiction, in what we think of as a newspaper format.  The serials featured in story papers[...]
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The Issue is a regular column about vintage comics and other vintage periodicals from throughout world history.  The idea behind The Issue is simple:  for each post, I'll choose something from my collection and talk about what's going on in it, and discuss the publishers and creators behind it.  And essentially I'm just going to[...]
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Many other well-known dime novel series titles were likewise based on Alger story titles — Work and Win, Do and Dare, Fame and Fortune (notably, a Frank Tousey nickel weekly which was eventually acquired by Street and Smith, becoming a pulp title that debuted their original version of The Shadow). The Issue is a regular column[...]
THE ISSUE: Fredric Wertham's Hero and the Third Republic
Welcome back to a post-revolutionary edition of The Issue.  At issue today is Le Grelot No 208 from April 4, 1875, with cover art by Alfred Le Petit.  This one caught my eye for further study due to its usage of the now-familiar "flip cover" technique, complete with flipped logos and cover dress.   What could[...]