Friday, December 17, 2010

Go Home and Polish Your Buttons Friday!

Hey, hey!  Check out this extra-special ish!:

Why is extry-special, you ask?  Is it because it has the first appearance of the Man-Wolf.  PFFFFFFT... you WISH!

All of us hardcore nerdlingers will immediately recognize that cover.  Yup, it's the very same issue that was repurposed on a Power Records release!

I'm sorry, that probably isn't making sense to some of you.  Okay, here's the deal:

There used to be (and to some limited degree, still is) a company called Peter Pan records, that began out of a plastics manufacturing company.  It's a long story.  Anyway, fast forward to 1972 or therebouts, and you have Power Records, which made LP's and 45's of popular tv and comic book properties.  These things were like old-time radio serials.  The 45's generally came with an accompanying comic book, while the LP's generally just had a five-panel strip that would give you sort of a visual image of the story that you were hearing (hey, they had to compete with tv, even back then).

These things were about as exciting as a radio serial, which is to say, not much to a more sophisticated audience, but most of us geeks loved these things as children.

And this particular issue of Amazing Spider-Man and the one that follows it were cut-and-pasted into a script for a Power Records release.  I remember when my mom brought it into my room.  No particular reason.  It wasn't a holiday, other than Mom Just Brought Me Something Awesome Day!

Now that I've had a chance to look at these old comics, it is hilarious how disjointed it is as a stand-alone item.  By this time, Norman Osborn had murdered Gwen Stacy, Norman himself had died, Harry Osborn had gone through his drug-experimentation phase, and J.Jonah Jameson had hired Luke Cage to attack Spider-Man, whom he blamed for Norman Osborn's death.  You'd think they would have cut out any references to any of that stuff.

Well, they didn't.  There are references to dang near all of it, and I had no idea what they were talking about most of the time.  What?  Who did Spider-Man supposedly kill?  A guy?  Who was Gwen?  But I got to hear Spider-Man, and I suppose that's what really mattered.  The same thing happened when I read/heard the Captain America one - who was the madman that had taken his place in the 1950's that they were talking about?  And why does the Falcon sound exactly like Joe Robertson from the Spider-Man record?  Eh, who cared?

There were a bunch of Power Records project, where "The Action Comes Alive as You Read!"(tm! - their tm, not mine).  Give a listen, if you like, to this particular issue.  The page has a bad habit of playing all three sound clips at the same time, so pause the other two.  We'll keep our eyes peeled for other Power Record swipes as we go through our happy journey.  That Captain America one wouldn't be hard to find, either, but I don't like Captain America so I doubt I'll find it.

Hey!  It's time for Fun with Out of Context Dialogue(tm!):

Okay, I have a question:

Doesn't Spider-Man just adjust the spray of the webbing by twisting the nozzle on the web-shooter?  How "complicated" an adjustment is that?

I could be wrong, as I'm not the biggest Spider-Man devotee.  Feel free to enlighten me (as if I could stop you...)

See you Monday!


googum said...

I had the LP, so it was, um, like twenty-some years before I got to read that actual issue. (And, I think it was a Marvel Tales, with pages out of order...) Still love it.

Britt Reid said...

The Power Records stuff was a big part of my geekhood...I mean childhood.
Some of it was VERY confusing, like why, on the Star Trek albums, Uhura was a blonde white woman and Sulu was a black guy! (Of course, I know now it was a licensing issue, but back then...)
I was also collecting old radio shows on lp as well as the Spider-Man Rockomic and the Leo the Lion albums featuring NEW tales of Flash Gordon (Buster Crabbe, no less), the Shadow (in STEREO!), and the Green Hornet!

Fans today don't realize how difficult it was to find media based on comics.
We had no YouTube, Google, or even cable tv!
So ANYTHING you found in record shops, head shops (oooh...blacklite posters!), or even the first comics shops were TREASURES!

Britt Reid said...

"Doesn't Spider-Man just adjust the spray of the webbing by twisting the nozzle on the web-shooter? How "complicated" an adjustment is that?"

IIRC, it was how he tapped the control in his palm with that funky two-middle finger pose Ditko used for both Spidey and Doc Strange (and drove me nuts when I tried to imitate it).
There are two buttons, like a computer mouse on the palm pad.
With several combinations available, he could do a web, a rope, long burst, or short burst.
Having to adjust the nozzle (and having to use the opposite hand to do so) in the heat of battle could've been fatal!

Adam Barnett said...

That makes even LESS sense, Brit! So what was he doing that was so complicated???

MarvelX42 said...

I think that what Britt is saying is that "complicated" is relative. That it was to complicated to do later when his life may have depended on the setting being the way he needed it to be.

Feel free to correct me if I am wrong Britt.

Britt Reid said...

"That makes even LESS sense, Brit!"

Not really.
Anyone who uses a mouse (especially a two or three-button one) or a game console controller, develops a "feel" for what button combo does what, and uses it instinctively.
I do so for Quark and PhotoShop (the programs I use most), gamers do it for Halo and other games.

"So what was he doing that was so complicated???"
I have no idea, as I don't have that issue!

Mikkus said...

Hi Adam. I was recently referred to your fantastic blog by a friend of mine and have just finished going through all your posts from start to finish. I laughed so hard I think I need brain surgery! I just felt the inexorable need thank you and all your regular commenters (you guys are great!) for bringing hearty guffaws and wonderful insight into the world. I know now the joys of wondrous things like Random Ray Usage!tm, "Sockamagee!", the occasional bitch-slap and countless more! Have to go as I'm typing this at the Gotham Museum and don't have the energy to continue....

Adam Barnett said...

Welcome to the Fun House, Mikkus! Thanks for joining us!~

Justin Garrett Blum said...

One of the best Fun With Out of Context Dialogues ever. I even told it to my wife, when she asked why I was laughing.