Now that it’s finished, I can show you one of the two items I teased back in December. It’s a pin-up of the old Nedor Comics hero Doc Strange, as he might have appeared on the cover of an issue of Thrilling Comics in 1965, had Nedor still been publishing at that point.
If you’re not familiar with the company, Nedor published (under several names) during the golden age. They actually had a fairly sizable group of heroes, including Doc Strange. Nedor ceased publishing comics at the end of the golden age. Since then, many people have taken a shot at doing something with their old characters. AC Comics has made use of them over the years, and so did Alan Moore and Peter Hogan more recently in the Tom Strong spinoff miniseries, Terra Obscura.
Doc was a scientist/adventurer who invented a serum he named Alosun, distilled from “sun atoms.” This serum gave him superhuman strength, flight and invulnerability when he used it.
Enough of the history lesson. So why did I do this pin-up/cover? Easy; because I was asked. The one and only Will Meugniot is currently doing a new creator-owned series (in the back of AC Comics’ FemForce) that picks up the threads of the Nedor books with the descendants of some of the characters. It’s called “Agents of N.E.D.O.R.,” and is intended as a period piece taking place in 1965. Will invited several artists to contribute pin-ups of the original Nedor characters, and I was very flattered to be asked if I’d like to do so too.
As is typical for me, instead of making things simple on myself, I had to make a whole cover out of it. Since Will’s story takes place in 1965, I thought this should be a cover for Thrilling Comics (which starred Doc) also from ’65, as if Nedor had kept on publishing all that time. I even did some math to work out the issue number. How’s that for obsessive?
Doc Strange most often went on his adventures accompanied by his young sidekick Mike (who wore an identical outfit, only with the addition of a green cape for some reason). I thought it would be more fun though to show Doc with his girlfriend, Virginia Thompson, as she would also sometimes take part in his adventures. Of course, I updated her look here for the times.
This will appear in b/w line art form in FemForce #159, since the book has b/w interiors. But for my blog here, I wanted to go full color. Because it’s how I saw this in my head from the start. I get asked to do a b/w pin-up and I envision something in color; go figure!
Thanks, Will. This was a lot of fun!
Thanks again for the hard work, Mark! If any of your readers would like a look at N.E.D.O.R. Agents, Comicscontinuum ran a nice preview of them here: http://www.comicscontinuum.com/stories/1111/05/acfirsts.htm
You’re very welcome, Will! I had a lot of fun doing this.
I assume that Doc was the first member of the Strange family (which also includes distant relatives Adam and Stephen) to appear in comics.
I’d bet if E. Nelson Bridwell were still around, he’d have some idea of how the Strange family were all connected, regardless of publisher.
Of course, every family’s gotta have its bad apple too: Dr. Hugo Strange, from the Batman books. He might even be the first member of the Strange family to show up in comics, come to think of it.