Tuesday, September 25, 2012


Marmaduke Mouse #29 [March 1952] hit the newsstands in the month of
my birth, which, as we all know by now, was December 1951.  To the
best of my recollection, I’ve never read a Marmaduke Mouse story.

Most of what I know about Marmaduke comes from Don Markstein’s
Toonopedia. The character first appeared in Hit Comics #35 [Spring
1944], but, after several appearance there, he got his own title which
ran 65 issues from Spring 1946 to December 1956.

Marmaduke was created, written and drawn by cartoonist Ernie Hart.
He was an odd jobs kinda guy in the service of King Louie, a lion,
but, near the end of his career, Marmaduke’s stories were domestic
humor stories. 

The Who’s Who of American Comic Books 1928-1999 has Hart working on
the feature for only the first few years of Marmaduke Mouse’s run.
The website lists Jack Mendelson as a writer for the feature from
1947 through 1956.  Hal Cooper and Al Grenet were Marmaduke Mouse
cover artists during the same period, but there is no listing for
interior artists.  As always, I would appreciate anything else my
bloggy thing readers can tell me about this character and whoever
wrote and drew his adventures.

Keep watching this space for more vintage comic-book covers from my
birth month.


I’m only making two convention appearance this year and the first
of them is this weekend. 

Wizard World Ohio Comic-Con is at the Greater Columbus Convention
Center, 400 North High Street in Columbus.  Show hours are 5pm to
9pm on Friday, 10am to 7pm on Saturday and 10am to 5pm on Sunday.
I’m one of over 150 guests and will have a table in Artists Alley.

I won’t be selling anything at my table, but I will be doing three
other things:

1. Signing Isabella-written books and comics.  I’m not so keen on
signing other items because, in many cases, I haven’t been paid for
these items (action figures, etc.) or not paid the full amount that
is owed to me.  But I don’t want to be a complete dick about it so
I’ll try to flexible, especially if you make a donation to the
Hero Initiative. They do good work.

2. Meeting with any legitimate artist, editor, or publisher wanting
to work with me.  I’m open to a wide range of possibilities, which
would include partnering with any of the above to bring some of my
own projects to the readers.  I’m not even against doing work-for-
hire writing if the conditions are acceptable.

3. Accepting review copies of comics, books, movies, or anything I
can review here.  I don’t normally make guarantees on whether I’ll
review something or not, but, because of my long association with
this convention, I will guarantee to review at least 31 items that
I receive at the con...averaging one a day for each day in October.
I live on the edge, baby!

I’m looking forward to attending the show and hope to see a bunch
of my bloggy thing readers there.


My final garage sale of 2012 was another success.  Friday was the
best single day of any of the sales while Saturday was the worst.
I attribute the latter to the chilly weather and rain forecast at
the start of the day, as well as my failure to consider the impact
of college football.  By 11:30 am, the garage was devoid of buyers
and there were only a few later arrivals.  It’s a learning process.
Next year, weather permitting, I hope to start the sales earlier in
the year and end them in early September.

Comic books priced at five for a dollar and trade paperbacks priced
at $2 a pop continued to be my best sellers.  But I also sold quite
a few Black Lightning issues from the 1970s at $10 for the premiere
issue and $5 for the others...and several copies of the Dare-Devil
one-shot I did with Eddy Newell in 2000.  Clearly my customers want
more vintage Isabella-written comics and I hope to have those for
them in next year’s sales.

I had two different Superman posters from 1987 on sale at $20 each
and sold about a dozen of those.  One was a 74 by 26-inch poster,
a dramatic shot of Superman on a yellow background; the other was
the two-sided Superman/Clark Kent in Cleveland poster that was made
for 1988's International Superman Exposition.  Both posters will be
available for mail order in October.

At a time when I’m not getting many writing gigs, especially good-
paying writing gigs, the money from these garage sales has been a
God(zilla)send.  Just as pleasing to me was watching the faces of
my excited customers as they found great comics at bargain prices.
That’s why I turn down offers from comics dealers who want to buy,
for example, every Marvel/DC trade I have.  While those dealers are
and always have been welcome to come to the garage sales and buy as
much as they want, my favorite customers are the fans and readers.
With the garage sales finished for the year, my next project is to
get my stock out of the garage and back into storage.  Which will
involve rearranging my Fortress of Solitude to allow better, safer
access to the boxes.  At the moment, I can best describe the boxes
in the Fortress as...Comic Book Jenga.  It made Sainted Wife Barb
very nervous on our last visit there.

One last note for today...

My online Vast Accumulation of Stuff sales will return sometime in
early October.  I’ll be offering lots of great stuff at very good
prices.  Maybe not garage sale prices, but very good nonetheless.
I hope my bloggy thing readers will support these online sales as
enthusiastically as my local customers supported my garage sales.
It’s what Godzilla would do.

I’ll be back tomorrow with more stuff.

© 2012 Tony Isabella

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