Amazing World of Superman - 1973

This was produced in conjunction with the construction of a proposed Superman theme park in the real-life city of Metropolis, IL, where they have a yearly "Superman Day." The park never got off the ground, but the city still celebrates its fictional namesake's favorite son.

This is a really fun, all-over-the-place book. It reprints several Superman stories, like "Superman Land", "The Origin of Superman", and selected scenes from "Superman's Mission for President Kennedy".

It also has "How To Draw Superman", a Superman family portrait, "How a Comic Magazine is Created", selected strips from the Superman newspaper strip, a Rogues Gallery, "The Secrets of Superman's Fortress", an article on the Superman broadway show "It's a Bird, It's a Plane, It's Superman!", "Superman Salutes NASA", Important Dates in Superman's Life (missing is: June, 1945--Siegel and Shuster Get Screwed Out of Millions), "The Superboy Legend", and a photo gallery from the TV show and movie serials! Whew!

Plus, a full-color pull-out poster "Map of Krypton." Just what every kid wants!

68 jam-packed pages.

This is a photo of Joe Shuster "enjoying" a pile of Superman comics, including this tabloid which he has in his hands.

I had never seen this picture before until Mark Evanier posted it on his blog, newsfromme.com, in a post about the recent court ruling involving the "rights" to Superman.

He also points out the cruel irony of this picture--nowhere inside this giant book all about the history of Superman does it mention Siegel and Shuster. Gadzooks.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Christmas Issue - 1972

The unofficial beginning of the DC treasuries! According to the Overstreet Price Guide, this is considered as the first issue of Limited Collector's Edition.

Published in Xmas of 1972, this is listed in the indicia simply as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Christmas Issue. There is no number anywhere on the book, so let's assume Overstreet is right and go from there.

This issue is the usual assortment of Rudolph stories, plus games and puzzles. On the cover this says "new", so could this be all-new material? If so, DC, as we will see, decided to make the treasuries a place for reprints starting with the very next issue.

84 pages.

New! Courtesy Treasury Hunter Thelma Averhals comes the front and back cover to the French edition of this inaugural effort in DC's treasury line, printed in 1974. She mentions: "A peculiarity is that pages 11-14 and 23-26 are twice inserted, but then pages 15-22 are missing! I presume assembly error."

Limited Collectors' Edition C21 - 1973

Published in the summer of 1973, this is the official beginning of the treasuries. Why does this series start with issue C-21? Who the Shazam knows?

DC had high hopes for Shazam!/Captain Marvel when they brought the property out in his own comic around this time. The book faded after a year or two, but obviously the Captain was a fairly big success as a treasury comic, as we'll see.

Stories include "Sivana's Time Trap", "The Training of Mary Marvel" (!), "Trouble in Troll Land", "Mr.Tawny's Personality Peril", "The Marvel Family Battles the Primate Plot", "The Missing Red Suit", plus pin-ups, how to draw pages, and activity pages. Sensational art by Pete Costanza, Kurt Schaffenberger, CC Beck, and Mac Raboy.

Reprinted from Captain Marvel Adventures #s 19, 68, 115, 121, Captain Marvel Jr. #11, and The Marvel Family #85.

84 pages.

Bonus! I happened to come across this Direct Currents blurb(below left) in an old issue of The Phantom Stranger. I hope to find more as I dig through more musty old DC back issues!

Each of the stories features a new logo that boldly states "The Original Captain Marvel." Take that, Marvel! Sit on the Rock of Eternity and spin, you Kree loser!
Click the images to see the original DC ad for this book, a foreign EBAL ad, plus other treasury ads!

Limited Collectors' Edition C22 - 1973

What a gorgeous cover!

Yes, before Superman, before Batman--Tarzan gets his own treasury comic! It was a different world, then.

This reprints the multi-part origin story of Tarzan reprinted from the DC book that had started just a few years earlier. Beautiful art by the one the only Joe Kubert.

Also features some puzzles, games, and a "how to draw" Tarzan segment. (Wait--if he can teach you to draw this way, why the hell did I go to his school?)

A really nice comic.

84 pages.

Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!

New! Inside TwoMorrows' Comic Book Artist (issue #20) I found a scan of Joe Kubert's original rough for this cover. Click the graphic to check it out!

Limited Collectors' Edition C23 - 1973

Do you dare enter...the House of Mystery? Yes!!

A great collection of Cain's favorite tales: "The House of Gargoyles"(art by Jack Sparling), "The Egyptian Cat" (art by Bernie Wrightson), "The Widow's Walk" (art by Neal Adams and Joe Orlando), "His Name is Kane" (art by Gil Kane and Wally Wood), "The Devil's Doorway (art by the incomparable Alex Toth), "The Poster Plague!" (art by Sergio Aragones, and was the inspiration for the Plop! comic), "Nightmare" (art by Neal Adams), plus humor material by Sergio. What a book!

Also has a gorgeous pin-up of Cain by Bernie Wrightson, games and puzzles, all under a cover by Nick Cardy.

A $1.00 never bought anyone more!

84 pages.

Bonus! I found this photo of Sergio Aragones clutching a copy of the House of Mystery Limited Collectors' Edition in Back Issue! #21, in an article on Plop! Pictured with him is the article's author, Dewey Cassell.

Limited Collectors' Edition C24 - 1973

Yep, Rudolph sure was popular--he earned a second treasury comic, while Superman or Batman have yet to get one. Who's their agent?

Like the first Rudolph book (above), it says "new" on the cover. Since DC's original Rudolph book ran for, like, a decade, you'd think these would have to be reprints. Did DC have lots of Rudolph inventory lying around? Hmm.

Anyway, this is more Xmas fun! Ho ho ho!

84 pages.

Click the images to see the original DC ad for this book, a foreign EBAL ad, plus other treasury ads!

Limited Collectors' Edition C25 - 1974

Finally, the Dark Knight Detective earns a treasury edition! Great, striking cover by Neal Adams.

Stories include "The Case of the Joker's Crim Circus", "The Case Batman Failed to Solve", "The Mayors of Yonville", "Hate of the Hooded Hangman", "Hot Time in Gotham Town Tonight", and "Ghost of the Killer Skies" (Batman Meets Enemy Ace!--sort of).

Art by a great assortment of Batman artists, like Jerry Robinson, Dick Sprang, Carmine Infantino, Irv Novick, and Neal Adams! Features some pin-ups, a photo feature on the Batman TV show, some mazes, and a how-to-draw sequence by Infantino. Cool.

This appeared in the great book Batman: Cover to Cover, as an example of the one of the greatest Batman covers ever. I agree.

84 pages.

Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!

Limited Collectors' Edition C27 - 1974

Before I say anything else about this, let me just talk about the cover--this thing is simply beautiful. So elegant and simple, and solidly illustrated and designed, and the colors just jump off the page. Not sure who did it--CC Beck? Kurt Schaffenberger? In any case, it's fantastic.

More light-hearted Marvel Family fun: "Sivana's Voodoo Curse", "The Man with 100 Heads", "Mr.Tawny's Diet Dangers", "The Fantastic Freezing Furies", "The Mistake of Father Time", "Mary Marvel and the Black Magician", "Uncle Marvel's Rival", and "The Trio of Terror." Art by CC Beck, Kurt Schaffenberger, Mac Raboy, and Pete Costanza.

Also features some pin-ups (including a gorgeous one of Mary Marvel by what looks like Mac Raboy), some games and puzzles, and a photo feature of the 1941 movie serial.

Shazam!

84 pages.

Rollover the cover image to see this book's back cover!

New! Click here to download the treasury-sized table-top diorama from this issue's back cover!
Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!

Limited Collectors' Edition C29 - 1974

Another great Tarzan cover, courtesy Joe Kubert!

This book reprints another multi-part story, "The Return of Tarzan." It also contains a pin-up, a how-to-draw Tarzan's animals page, puzzles, and a "Was Tarzan Real?" text piece.

I don't think Tarzan was ever done better by comics than these DC/Kubert issues. They must have been fairly popular since this is Tarzan's second treasury in about a year and a half. (cue Tarzan yell)

84 pages.

Limited Collectors' Edition C31 - 1974

What a beautiful cover! It rightfully appears in the new book Superman Cover to Cover as an example one of the finest Superman comic covers.

Superman finally earns a treasury comic, after being in danger of losing out to another Rudolph issue.

Stories include "War in Europe", "Insurance Death Racket" (didn't have an exclamation point in the title, but should have), "The Men Who had to Guard Superman", "Lois Lane's Secret Helper", "The Case of the Lethal Letters", plus "The Origin of Superman." Art by a host of classic Superman artists like Joe Shuster, Wayne Boring, Kurt Schaffenberger, Murphy Anderson, and Ross Andru.

It also has a four-page "tour" of the concept for the Superman Theme Park by Neal Adams (completely preposterous, but the Hall of Villains is super-cool), plus a photo feature on the Adventures of Superman TV series.

84 pages.

This from Treasury Hunter Graeme Burk: "The cover was by pulp artist H.J. Ward (who did stuff like Spicy Detective). It was a commission that adorned the wall of the National Periodical Publications (DC) offices for decades beginning in the '40s. You have to give the people at DC credit. 'What do we put on the cover of this Superman treasury?' 'Hey, why not that picture of Superman from the lobby...'"
Bonus! Below left is the line-art version of the cover as it appeared in The Amazing World of DC Comics #1 when the book was first released.
Rollover the cover image to see this book's back cover!
Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!
New! Click here to download the treasury-sized table-top diorama from this issue's back cover!

Limited Collectors' Edition C32 - 1974

I've always felt that Ghosts, as a title, played second-fiddle to House of Mystery--HOM got better artists and more unique stories.

While the Nick Cardy cover is a classic, the stories inside are not quite as exciting: "A Specter Poured the Potion", "Death's Bridegroom", "The Horrors of Witchcraft", "The Dark Goddess of Doom", "Death, the Pale Horseman", "The Spectral Horseman" (hmm, maybe those two could team-up), "The Crimson Claw", "The Fanged Spectres of Kinshoro", "Death Awaits Me", "Ghost Cargo From the Sky", and "Death is My Mother" (?).

The best of the bunch is Bridegroom, that has art by Jim Aparo. I thought Aparo always did horror very well (hell, he did everything very well), and I'd love to see more of them reprinted nowadays. Other art by John Calnan, Artie Saaf, Tony DeZuniga, ER Cruz, and Ernie Chua.

Boo!

84 pages.

Limited Collectors' Edition C33 - 1974

More Rudolph! Two novel-length stories, games, puzzles, plus Santa and Rudolph hand-puppets! What more do you kids want for a dollar?!?

84 pages.

From The Amazing World of DC Comics #2 came this blurb, promoting those month's treasury-sized releases, Ghosts and Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer!

Limited Collectors' Edition C34 - 1974

Merry Christmas from everyone at DC Comics!

A nice collection of Xmas-themed stories:"Silent Night, Deadly Night" (Batman), "Billy Batson's Xmas" (The Big Red Cheese), "The $500,000 Doll Caper" (Angel and the Ape), the classic "A Swingin' Christmas Carol" (Teen Titans), "Christmastown U.S.A" (Superman), a one-page "Write Your Own Dialogue" humor page by Sheldon Mayer, make your own superhero Xmas cards, and a 1975 pin-up/wall calendar, festooned with classic DC character art! Wow! Plus--the odd "Super Villains Speak Out on Christmas."

I'm going to wait until the 1975 calendar is useable again. Couple more years...

Art by Irv Novick, CC Beck, Bob Oksner and Wally Wood, Nick Cardy (cover also), and... well, I don't know who drew the Superman story. Anybody out there who has this book want to hazard a guess?

84 pages.

Limited Collectors' Edition C35 - 1975

What great cover! This jumped out at me way back when. I loved the Shazam! TV show, and seeing he live-action Captain on a comic cover was just so cool.

Anyway, this is more Marvel fun: "The Robot Hunt", "The Plot Against the Universe", "The Marvelium Trap", "The Marvel Family Curse", "Captain Marvel Battles the World", tghe usual puzzles, games, and how-to-draw pages, plus a photo feature on the show.

Awesome.

The LCEs went from 84 pages to 68 starting with this issue.

Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!
At left is the line-art version of the cover as it appeared in The Amazing World of DC Comics #3 when the book was first released.
Learn about this issue's memorable cover from Captain Marvel himself, Jackson Bostwick, in an interview with the man in Back Issue! #30!

Limited Collectors' Edition C36 - 1975

One of the more unusual DC comics of the time--an all-new adaptation of some stories from the Bible (how DC got the rights I'll never know).

Featuring an awesome cover by Joe Kubert and inside art bvy Nestor Redondo, this was planned as just the first volume of a series. Yet, no others ever appeared. Maybe sales were what they normally would be for an educational comic--i.e., bottom of the barrel (Educational Comics didn't become Entertaining Comics for nothing).

Stories covered were Noah's Ark, Adam & Eve, Cain & Abel (no, not the House of Mystery guys), Creation, Tower of Babel, and Sodom & Gomorrah.

68 pages.

Update! Below left are some blurbs about this book, courtesy of DC's in-house fanzine, Amazing World of DC Comics. As you can see, DC had really high hopes for these adaptations as a series, and it's a shame they didn't get to continue. After all, this is The Most Beautiful Comic Magazine Ever Produced.

Update 2! By the way--I just noticed how the third The Bible blurb mentions the book is "making news programs all across the country." News programs? Ooh, what do you think the chances are some of those clips are on YouTube?

Rollover the cover image to see this book's back cover!

Courtesy of Treasury Hunter David Reynolds: "It was Sheldon Mayer, creator of Sugar & Spike, who had the idea for the Bible edition, and it was due to his failing health that another book was never done."

And this from an interview by Anthony Tollin with Shelly Mayer: "(I) completed an assignment to convert Genesis into a 64 page comic book. I rough-sketched that script rather than typed it because I needed the advice of several theologians, and it was easier for them to look at pictures than to wade thru scene descriptions."

Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!
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Update 3! Courtesy Treasury Hunter Rich Stiteler come pics of the original mailer DC used when sending copies of The Bible to kids who purchased it directly from them. Amazing that something like this is still around!
Bible Mailer
Bible Mailer

 

Limited Collectors' Edition C37 - 1975

One of my all-time favorite treauries--a great collection of Batman stories: "The Cross Country Crimes", "The Blackbird of Banditry", "The Origin of the Scarecrow", "The Lady Rogues", plus a really-cool sequence of the Batman newspaper strip featuring a different Two-Face. (The strip is in all-color, and was a Sunday-only storyline)

The Cross Country story features one my all-time favorite, goofiest moments in any Batman comic. Let's set the scene: the Joker is, of course, committing a series of daring robberies. After being one-step behind the Clown Prince of Crime repeatedly, Batman thinks up a clever plan, by luring the Joker into a trap. The Joker shows up, but as you can see, Batman was way ahead of him.

I guess it never occured to Bats that, of course, he didn't need to be so clever--he could have used any name! This is the Joker we're talking about here! This guy kills five Arkham guards before Regis & Kelly Live! Don't get cute, Bruce! Sheesh.

The book also features a map of the Batcave, and a photo feature on some of the villains from the TV show. Great fun.

One last thing--no one admires the work of Jim Aparo more than me, but...man, is Batman's right leg funky looking. Took me years to notice that. Even so, this appeared in the great book Batman: Cover to Cover, as a representative of the one of the greatest Batman covers ever.

68 pages.

Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!

Limited Collectors' Edition C38 - 1975

What a classic cover by Curt Swan and Bob Oksner. Real un-ironic, straightforward superhero fun. It rightfully appears in the new book Superman Cover to Cover as an example one of the finest Superman comic covers.

Stories include: "Autograph, Please", "The Juvenile Delinquents from Space", "Zigi and Zagi's Trap for Superman", "The Mxyztplk-Susie Alliance", and "Superman's Day of Doom." All the stories revolve (mostly) Superman dealing with kids of different ages. Also has a photo feature "Superman's Young Friends on Film", with clips from the TV show.

Also has a pin-up by Neal Adams, which was used lots of times after that as classic Superman stock art.

68 pages.

Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!

Limited Collectors' Edition C39 - 1975

Another fun cover, courtesy Dick Girodano. I know I'm biased on this, but...why isn't Aquaman on here?

Features origin stories of some the big DC villains: "The Man Behind the Red Hood" (Joker), "How Luthor Met Superboy", (Luthor), "The Coldest Man on Earth" (Dick Cheney), "The Origin of Sivana",and "The Origin of the Terra Man". Interesting how the cover sorta promises the origins of Sinestro and the Cheetah, yet they lose out to...Terra-Man? As lame-o as this guy is, the story is drawn by the solid team of Dick Dillin and Neal Adams!

Also features pin-ups of the villains introducing each story, plus text pieces on the origins of Cheetah, Sinestro (oh, here they are!), Shadow Thief, and Chronos.

Ok, again...why isn't Aquman in here anywhere???

68 pages.

Bonus! Courtesy Treasury Hunter Alex Johnson comes a scan of the original art to the centerfold supervillain pin-up from this book by Carmine Infantino and Dick Giordano.

It's part of the collection of comic art fan Lee Laska(check out his CAF page here), and he states:"The strathmore is 23 by 16.5. Sivana is a stat, I guess he was forgotten when the rogues gallery was being initially put together." Good to know!

As always, thanks Alex!

Click the images to see the original DC ad for this book, a foreign EBAL ad, plus other treasury ads!

Limited Collectors' Edition C40 - 1975

Another one of my all-time favorites! Though I have to wonder--why did DC license Dick Tracy just this one time? Why didn't he team-up with Batman or something? (Bats:"Gee, your arch-enemies tend to die at the end of each case! Good thinking, Dick!")

This book presents a long run of Tracy Sunday strips where he takes on his most famous foe, Flattop. This was such a cool book, and as a kid I was enthralled by the different style of storytelling Chester Gould employed.

Also features a important dates in Dick Tracy History page, a text feature on Gould, and a Crimestoppers Textbook. Cool! I wish DC had done more of these.

68 pages.

Rollover the image to see this book's back cover!

See also: Dick Tracy: The Art of Chester Gould

In the Clash's video for their song "Rock the Casbah", Joe Strummer can be seen reading this comic while sitting poolside. The video was shot in 1980 or so, meaning this book was five years old at the time, so clearly it wasn't just a random comic book thrown in. Were the Clash big Dick Tracy fans? Inquring minds want to know!
Click the image to see the original DC ad for this book plus other treasury ads!
From The Amazing World of DC Comics #5 came this blurb, promoting the upcoming Dick Tracy treasury comic.

I found this quick little Q&A buried inside an Ask The Answer Man column from the late 1970s.

Good to know I wasn't the only kid out there to really wanted to see another Dick Tracy tabloid...sadly, it never was never to be!

 
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