Eruditorum Press

Some sort of samizdat wind effect

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Elizabeth Sandifer

Elizabeth Sandifer created Eruditorum Press. She’s not really sure why she did that, and she apologizes for the inconvenience. She currently writes Last War in Albion, a history of the magical war between Alan Moore and Grant Morrison. She used to write TARDIS Eruditorum, a history of Britain told through the lens of a ropey sci-fi series. She also wrote Neoreaction a Basilisk, writes comics these days, and has ADHD so will probably just randomly write some other shit sooner or later.Support Elizabeth on Patreon.

18 Comments

  1. Theonlyspiral
    February 20, 2015 @ 8:20 am

    The wait for this felt particularly long for some reason.

    Reply

  2. Elizabeth Sandifer
    February 20, 2015 @ 8:22 am

    As in, the wait caused by me forgetting to queue it last night and having to do it when I woke up?

    Reply

  3. Alan
    February 20, 2015 @ 8:55 am

    Seriously, has there ever been a mainstream iteration of Superman who was remotely as interesting as his most prominent copy-cats? Shazam. Miracleman. Hyperion from the 80's Squadron Supreme mini-series by Mark Gruenwald or the remake by J. Michael Straczinski. Even the Plutonian from Irredeemable. Even Apollo from The Authority at least had the cachet of being "Gay Superman who was gay married to Gay Batman."

    Reply

  4. Daru
    February 20, 2015 @ 8:47 pm

    I am so glad to have caught up in real-time with the Last War. I spent the last week binge reading all of the previous posts that I'd missed (which was quite an experience), so I could feel more involved in the overall narrative. Just gotta say that I'm loving it Phil, what brilliant work!

    Great to see you reaching Marvelman, as I knew next to nothing about his convoluted origin. I picked up reprints in the mid 80's (?) after a comic book friend who was part of a small RPG group I was in (there was a trio of us) raved about it.

    Interesting looking at Figure 646 above, as the mysterious man has shades of V for me, and he even has a train and a subway too.

    Reply

  5. Anton B
    February 21, 2015 @ 12:06 am

    Seven feet tall and blue…' An image arguably recycled as Doctor Manhattan when Moore gets to Watchmen. My favourite elements of Moore's Marvelman backstory was the whole back engineered alien tech, the Qys, Firedrake, the Warpsmiths etc. Moore left the details tantalizingly sketchy, perhaps with a view to utilising them later, which made them all the more intriguing.

    @Daru
    Interesting looking at Figure 646 above, as the mysterious man has shades of V for me, and he even has a train and a subway too.
    I thought the same thing. I'm not too familiar with the Shazam legacy. I wonder if anyone ever brought that character back or offered an explanation of who he was. He's clearly a version of the anonymous trenchcoat and fedora character trope epitomized by Ditko's The Question, Mr A etc. and later, of course to find an iteration in Moore's Rorschach. The train tunnel gate to another reality also reminds me of Dane's initiation by Tom a Bedlam in Morrison's The Invisibles

    Reply

  6. Kit
    February 21, 2015 @ 12:47 am

    Seriously, has there ever been a mainstream iteration of Superman who was remotely as interesting as his most prominent copy-cats?

    The fizzing bundle of neuroses and lying that was Weisinger's? The inherent loneliness of Siegel's iterations of Superboy? (nb: Siegel writing under Weisinger on the adult version clashes fascinatingly.) The remarkable inner poise of Quitely & Morrison's?

    Reply

  7. Neo Tuxedo
    February 21, 2015 @ 4:14 am

    the Warpsmiths etc.

    The Warpsmiths actually had their own feature in Warrior; whether or not it counts as a Marvelman spinoff, I don't know.

    I wonder if anyone ever brought that character back or offered an explanation of who he was.

    Jerry Ordway, in his The Power of Shazam! graphic novel, identifies him as the ghost of Billy Batson's father, solidified by the wizard's power.

    Reply

  8. Neo Tuxedo
    February 21, 2015 @ 5:18 am

    This comment has been removed by the author.

    Reply

  9. Neo Tuxedo
    February 21, 2015 @ 5:21 am

    (Reposted with the full highlighting and an added footnote.)

    Two small corrections:

    In Moore’s conception, Gargunza was a Brazillian scientist

    He may have ended up in Brazil*, but he was actually from Mexico. Veracruz, to be specific.

    In 1961, he terminates the experiment, detonating a nuclear weapon in their immediate proximity to kill them.

    It was 1963, and it was the RAF, speaking in the clipped and measured phrases of Sir Dennis Archer, who took the decision to shut down Project Zarathustra.

    * As I recall Andy #6's account, his pelvis ended up in Ecuador or Peru, but there's a lot of room for drift when somebody throws you at a planet.

    Reply

  10. Anton B
    February 21, 2015 @ 12:16 pm

    I still have all my copies of Warrior. I loved that Warpsmith feature but it had little exposition to explain them.Which is just how I like it.

    Reply

  11. Daru
    February 21, 2015 @ 9:03 pm

    @ Anton "I thought the same thing. I'm not too familiar with the Shazam legacy. I wonder if anyone ever brought that character back or offered an explanation of who he was."

    Yes, I've never read anything of the Shazam period myself. I find it interesting as Phil says above that the Mystery man completely vanishes from the plot. There are certainly resonances of The Question, The Shadow and yeah Rorschach too. Nice link with the Invisibles and Morrison too – I still have to catch up on reading all of that. I wonder if we'll be seeing a further exploration of other versions (apart from V & Night Raven) of the mysterious trench-coated figure here by Phil?

    Reply

  12. elvwood
    February 22, 2015 @ 6:33 am

    If you want to check out the originals, they're available free from the Digital Comics Museum – the Whiz comics issues are at this link here.

    Reply

  13. Daru
    February 22, 2015 @ 8:26 am

    Brill, thanks for that elvwood – I certainly will check them out. Just looking at the pic above I see some loose connection with the quality of Lloyd's lines/textures. Thanks.

    Reply

  14. encyclops
    February 23, 2015 @ 10:03 am

    Figure 646 is ridiculously gorgeous. It's all beautiful, but that train!

    Reply

  15. encyclops
    February 23, 2015 @ 10:05 am

    the ghost of Billy Batson's father, solidified by the wizard's power.

    This would be one of those instances where the conventional wisdom is actually correct: this solution to the mystery is much less interesting than leaving it alone.

    Reply

  16. Daru
    February 23, 2015 @ 10:11 am

    It is wildly lovely isn't it? A really beautiful page, great colours and textures. And yeah what a train!

    Reply

  17. BerserkRL
    March 1, 2015 @ 2:10 pm

    The story behind "Whiz Comics #2" is that the first issue featured a different title ("Flash" in some markets, "Thrill" in others) plus a different name for the hero ("Captain Thunder"), but all had to be changed for IP reasons. This was sort of an omen of the future of the character, whose history would be entangled in IP disputes from then on: DC vs. Fawcett, Marvelman vs. Miracleman, Shazam vs. Mar-vell, etc.

    Incidentally, IIRC Capt. Marvel had the ability to fly when Superman was still merely leaping tall buildings with a single bound — thus weakening DC's case for Captain Marvel's being a mere .

    Also, a year after Capt. Marvel appeared, DC premiered a character, Johnny Thunder, who was essentially a copy of all those aspects of Capt. Marvel that weren't copied from Superman: young hero using magic word to summon magic lightning. (I suspect Johnny Thunder may also have borrowed from L. Frank Baum's Master Key.)

    Reply

  18. BerserkRL
    March 1, 2015 @ 2:12 pm

    Not sure what happened to the end of that sentence. Should be "thus weakening DC's case for Captain Marvel's being a mere copy of Superman."

    Reply

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