|STARS AND STRIPES FOREVER
By Ed Sanchez
Debuting in October, 1941, Star Spangled Comics became one of DC's longest running titles. The book's main character, The Star Spangled Kid, was known and loved by readers as the young patriotic hero who fought for the American way. The covers maintain the nationalistic spirit that we've recently seen rekindled in the United States, and hence, Metropolis proudly presents this relatively scarce title as a centerpiece article.
Star Spangled comics ran for 130 issues, and then changed to a new format in 1952. Retitled as Star Spangled War Stories, the series continued for 200 more issues until 1977. As far as large DC runs go, Star Spangled Comics is filled with firsts. Issue 69 features the 1st appearance and origin of Tomahawk, who continued on in the series and had his own successful title lasting 140 issues. In issue 65, Robin begins appearing on the covers with numerous Batman appearances strewn throughout the run. Batman appeared on the covers and in the stories of every issue between 88 and 94.
The Star Spangled War Stories title had the first DC gray-tone cover with issue 45, and also featured many Sgt. Rock prototypes. The title is most famous for dinosaur covers that began in issue 90, and the beginning of the "War That Time Forgot" series in that same issue.
Star Spangled Comics featured artists from Jack Kirby to Frank Frazetta. Joe Simon worked with Kirby after leaving Timely, and started with issue 7, featuring the origin and 1st appearance of the Guardian and the Newsboy Legion. Throughout the pages of these books, readers will find artwork from the likes of Dick Sprang, Fred Ray and Hal Sherman.
The issues with Robin after number 68 tend to be scarcer and highly collectible, as are the first twenty issues, and the last few before the title changed.
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STAR SPANGLED COMICS
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