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Issue 56: World of Krypton (w/Paul Kupperberg)

Paul: [00:00:00] I killed Aquababy I killed vigilante, I killed Archie. I'm a serial killer.

Mike: Hello. Welcome to Tencent Takes. The podcast will be root for loot in the long boxes, one issue at a time. My name is Mike Thompson, and I am joined by my co-host, the Fumigator of the funny papers herself, Jessica Frazier.

Jessika: I don't know if I should be impressed by that name or deeply offended that you called me a fumigate of any kind.

Mike: We have done over, I think we've done almost 70 episodes now. We always come up with different nicknames for each other. So I'm pretty happy that we haven't repeated any, to be honest.

Jessika: Yeah, I mean, honestly, you're much better at them than I am. Usually I'm like, oh shit, I forgot to do that. Let me try to come up with something stupid on the fly, and it like only [00:01:00] pans out like half the time. 50% ratio

Mike: I like them. The Magic of editing can never tell

The purpose of this podcast is to study comic books in ways that are both fun and informative. We like to look at their coolest, weirdest, and silliest moments, as well as examine how they're woven into the larger fabric of pop culture and history.

If you're enjoying the show so far and you want to help us grow, it's always a huge help. If you can rate and or review us on Apple Podcasts, because that really helps with discoverability. And today we are looking at the world of Krypton, a classic Superman comic that also has the distinction of being the first comic book mini-series.

And we're extra excited because we actually have the man who wrote the world of Krypton Paul Copper.

Paul: Hello.

Mike: Hello.

Paul: Nice to still be here.

Mike: Yeah, welcome back to the show and thank you so much for taking the time to be here. would you mind taking a minute to introduce yourself to

our listeners?

Paul: Yeah, I'm Paul Kupperberg. I've written and edited comic books for DC and Archie and Bongo and others. And I've [00:02:00] worked on characters ranging from you know, Arian Lord of Atlantis to z. Get it A to Z,

and I've also killed you know, many characters.

I killed Aquababy. I killed vigilante, I killed Archie. I'm a serial killer. You can use that in the introduction.

Mike: Oh my god. Comic book Serial

Paul: Yeah.

Mike: That's amazing.

Paul: And that's me

Jessika: Well, welcome. We are super, super happy to have


Paul: Thank you.

Mike: Alright. So before we actually start talking about the world of Krypton, what is one cool thing that you have read or watched lately? And Paul, as our guest, you have the honor of going first.

Paul: Well, if it's a Comics related I'm currently reading the Charlton Companion by John Cook which is published by tomorrow's books.

Mike: Oh.

Paul: Charlton Comics was you know, they're, they're near and dear to my heart. I read them as a kid. They were Comics publisher from the mid forties to about 1985 or six.

They were the strangest [00:03:00] publisher in the business. They operated out of Derby, Connecticut. They had their own plant where you, you started at one end of the plant with the editors and usually writer Joe Gill, who was on staff, who would just pound out pages by the, you know, by the ream.

And you'd get to the other end. You, you'd move through the production department, through the printers, do the binder. You know, there was color separators there. And then they would put 'em on a truck, their own trucks and send them out to be distributed. The very odd company started by two guys who met in jail in in the thirties.

They were. Yeah. Yeah. The one guy, John San Angelo was a publisher of music lyrics magazines, and he was publishing them without securing copyrights permission,

and they used to put you in jail for that. So he did time for that. He met this lawyer in prison and they teamed up and when they got out, they started a publishing business.

He started doing legitimate music lyrics, magazines including [00:04:00] Hit Parader, which was, you know, lasted through, you know, my lifetime back before the internet. You couldn't look up lyrics. And by the way, when you look up lyrics on the internet, they're always wrong. What the hell is with that?

Jessika: Yeah.

Paul: there were magazines that would just publish music lyrics and eventually they branched out and they would do interviews and articles and things like that.

But anyway, they had this printing press on the premises and just to keep it busy in 1945, you know, Comics were the trend. So they started publishing comic books. They didn't care what they published, they just wanted those presses to be spinning. And you know, they would paid the lowest wages in Comics.

When I started, I sold my first stories to them in 1975. It was five bucks a page for script. I think artists were getting like $35 a page for finished art. But you know, Steve did go work for them because they left them alone. You know, Steve could do whatever the hell he wanted.

And you know, nobody said boo. They just handed him a check. . So they had a lot of great artists. You know, Tom Sutton was, was a regular pat Boyette[00:05:00] you know, a whole bunch of guys and then there were also a lot of guys who couldn't get work elsewhere who, you know, would work for those rates.

And then there were newbies like me, you know, when I started, my first story was drawn by Mike Zeck who was himself just starting. And John Burn started there, Joe Satan started there. You know, lots of people. So anyway, fascinating company. Fascinating story in history and a really, you know, comprehensive Jesus.

I've been involved with a documentary about the company for a while that's trying to, you know, get funding to finish their post production work. But you know, this is just like a deep, deep, deep dive in into the company and it's fascinating.

Mike: That's so cool. Is the documentary on Kickstarter or are they trying to do it

Paul: Yeah. Privately it's shot. I mean, you know it started they saw me doing a Charlton panel at terrific con here in Connecticut years ago. And they, you know, they actually came into the panel to just sit down because they were, you know, their feet hurt from walking around the convention.

[00:06:00] And they came back to me the next day and said, you know, we've been thinking about, cuz I had Denny O'Neill and Jose Luis Garcia Lopez on, and, you know, who, also worked for them and anyway, they decided that it's fascinating. They were filmmakers, they were looking for a subject and they decided to make the film based on that panel of ours.

So you know, I've been involved from the start and they talked to everybody who was still around. They got a lot of these guys before they passed too. They got Denny. They got Joe Sin. You know, so lots of great people. So hopefully one day somebody will find the money and they'll be able to finish it up.

Mike: Fingers crossed. All right, Jessica, you're up.

Jessika: So I watched the first few episodes of the anime series Death Note, and I really like it so far. I have not seen the film that was adapted into, I think it was a film or was it a series? I'm unsure. There was, they did a recent adaptation, but I'm

watching the actual anime.

Mike: they made a movie on Netflix. I know. That was like

[00:07:00] very, it was very not well received, like in large part because they like, I think they really whitewashed a lot of the

Jessika: Yeah.

Mike: whatever.

Jessika: Yeah, so actually, I didn't watch that, but I saw it on the actual anime, saw it on Netflix, and I was like, yeah, no. Let's check out the original media here. I really like it so far. I really like the concept. Of the Shinigami being around and able to create some havoc without really being able to create too much havoc.

They're pretty limited. The concept of the notebook is also really interesting. The ability to kill people without touching them, without being in the same place or time. And then there's the moral dilemma around using it and whether it's right to use it at all, even if it's coming from a noble place.

So I'm about three episodes in, I'll be watching more of it to find out what is going to happen in the search for the person who's been killing people. They've figured out that there's some sort of a, a pattern and this kid's just a high schooler. So

Mike: Yeah.

Jessika: [00:08:00] interesting.

Mike: Yeah. I've heard nothing but good things about the an.

Jessika: Yeah, it's been good. Well, Mike, what about you?

Mike: I came across the first volume of the EC archives. Weird Science on Hoopla. Which collects several issues of the original series from the 1950s. So it's just, it's a big anthology of Silver Age sci-fi comic stories. The art's been remastered too, so the colors really pop.

And there's also a Forward by George Lucas talking about the influence that Comics, especially EC Comics had on him when he was growing up in Modesto. But the book is full of these really fun stories that are often kind of morality plays. Unrestrained amoral science going awry. And the best part is every story ends with some kind of twist, which, like, I read these as a kid and I love them.

And so it, it's felt very nostalgic to read these stories while we've been enduring a bunch of rainstorms outside, like, you know, just curling up under a blanket with the dogs and, [00:09:00] and comic on my iPad. It's great.

Jessika: Yeah. That's cool.

Mike: So is everyone ready to talk about World of Krypton?

Jessika: yeah.

Mike: Alright.

Paul: row, let's.

Mike: Okay, so before we actually start talking about the series, Paul, how did you get started at DC Comics and like how did you get involved with this project?

Paul: Well, I started DC Comics. I was, you know, just a young pup of a writer. I was broken, like I say, in early 75 at Charlton, and I did a bunch of stories for them. And in the meantime, you know, I knew a lot of people in DC had been hanging around the place since I was a kid as a fan.

Paul Levitz and I used to publish a fanzine starting in 1971 called et Cetera, which later became the comic reader. And we developed into the big news fanzine of the time. You know, we were, back in those days we were selling 3,500 copies or something you know, physical, physical copies that we produced on a typewriter, [00:10:00] you know, in Paul's basement.

you know, so Paul got a job. He was hired by Joe Orlando first to write letter columns and then to be Joe's assistant when his regular assistant Mike Fleischer was, went on vacation. Paul took the, the summer job as assistant, and, and Fleischer never came back. And Paul never left.

And you know, eventually became publisher and president of the company and, and always holds it over me. He's such a, anyway. Anyway, at some point, at that time, Paul was on staff and he was an assistant editor and that was right around the time, this was 19 70, 75, when they were starting up the dollar Comics.

I don't remember.

Mike: Yeah, we talked about all that on our episode about the DC Superstar special actually.

Jessika: Yeah.

Paul: So yeah, so there was the Superman family and House of Mystery and GI Combat went to dollar comic format. and I got a call from Paul Denny O'Neill was the story editor of Superman family. I think Joe Orlando was the editor. It was wacky. They had story editors for a while. It got a little strange.[00:11:00]

But anyway, Paul said, Denny needs a world of Krypton story. So I came up with something and pitched it, and Denny bought it. And it was a 10 page story that ran in the first Superman Family Dollar comic issue. I don't remember the number, but Marshall Rogers was a youngster who drew that story.

And yeah, and after that, I just started, you know, Paul gave me some house of Mystery had these introductory pages. There would be five pages of intro spread throughout the issue, three pages up front, one in the middle, and one at the end. And it'd kind of be, you know, kind of tie the the issue together.

So Paul threw me some of those. He threw me letter columns to write, and gradually I started picking up stuff from Jack Harris and you know other editors and you know, pretty soon they couldn't get rid of me.

Mike: That's great. Yeah. So we read the World of Krypton collection via Hoopla, and the intro to the book is written by you and , I loved your first point about how there have been several [00:12:00] versions of Krypton and that you always have to ask people, which Krypton when they start to ask you about the planet.

And I thought that was a really interesting point because it's, it's kind of like Superman himself that, you know, people identify with certain versions of the character as their Superman. And so I was wondering which versions of Superman and Krypton are yours? Like which ones did you feel like you were channeling when you wrote this series?

Paul: Well, I grew up with the the Weisinger era stuff, the, the Mort Weisinger books from the fifties and sixties. And once Mort was given free reign in the fifties, late fifties it's when he started coming up with all these elements for Superman. You know, Superman used to be the sole surviving son, and then, well, except for the 6 million people in this bottle city here.

And except for this little girl who survived on another city that survived the explosion of crypto Supergirl on in Argo City and this and that. And he did Superman's return to Krypton, which is a classic 1950s you know, book length novel that had super. , [00:13:00] you know, traveling back in time and visiting with his parents before he was born.

You know, so there was this whole very rich world that Weisinger was creating. And you know, I was the right age. I was born in 1955. So I'm reading comic books, you know, I start looking at Comics around 19 59, 60 and reading them a year or two later. And, you know, this stuff is, you know, ridiculous enough that it's, you know, it's just the sweet spot for my age group.

You know, Weisinger approached Superman, like, you know, the character, it was like a 10 year old's fantasy and he also had Superman act like a 10. , you know, all the stories were about him pulling tricks on Lois and Lana Lang and trying to fool the, you know, they're trying to find his secret identity.

And it's

just kinda like, you know, and if I, if I had superpowers Yeah. I'd play tricks on my mom and, and you know, and mess

Mike: Like

Paul: heads.

Mike: Do you remember the old website called Super Dickery and it was the, [00:14:00] the core premise was Super Superman's a dick, and it was just covers of Superman

Paul: yes.

Mike: his friends.

Paul: wasn't a dick. Superman was a 10 year old, and 10 year olds are dicks.

Mike: Yep. Yep. All 10 year olds are

dicks, but not all dicks are 10 year

Paul: that's right. That's right.

Jessika: That is true.

Paul: yeah, no, it's true. It, you know, it's funny how it shaped my way of thinking that as I got older, I went, holy crap. You know, what would , you know, how, how could that be, you know, , even the stuff Stan was doing at Marvel, it's like, Friendship is based on punching each other even in the Marvel universe.

You know, it's like the thing and the human torture best pals and they're always like, you know, and by the way, turn off the flame in the house, Johnny. Okay? You know? And, and why isn't the ff all dead from asbestos from cancer? Because all those early issues, you know, there was uh, you know, I'm sitting on the asbestos sofa remade for off your [00:15:00] flame for Christ's sake.

You're wasting energy. Close the refrigerator door. Damn it. I'm old. I wanted to rent.

Mike: Oh no, it's great. I love it so much.

Paul: But you know that stuff as a kid, you look at like, you know, oh, the thing. Can't just walk through a door. He smashes his way through the doorway and you look at that stuff and you go, well, You know, that's what you do and you, and you don't realize how ridiculous and overblown it is, and I think it's very harmful.

Look what it did to me.

Mike: Yeah.

Jessika: Oh no. You may even become a, a Comics creator

Paul: Please,

Jessika: know,

Paul: please. I wouldn't wish you, I wouldn't wish it on an

Mike: Oh man. Yeah. Watch out kids. You might grow up to be like


Paul: Poor balance.

Mike: so. in that intro, you actually noted that there were legal, you know, in quotes, entanglements over the screenplay by Mario Puzo, which, I'm sorry. Also, I did not realize that the man responsible for the Godfather gave us Superman, the [00:16:00] movie.

Paul: Yeah. Well, he gave us his name on the movie. The script was rewritten by various and sundry people, including the Newman's Tom Manko worked on the screenplay. A lot of people worked on that script. Puzo, you know, Puzo surprisingly, who had worked for Goodwin at timely. He worked on the magazine side, on the men's magazines.

Yeah, yeah, no, Puja was a, was an old time hack.

You know, , he earned his stripes, you know. But he was suing them because of what they did to the script.

Mike: Ah,

Paul: so you DC couldn't do anything that was direct adaptation or based on the movie itself, other than I think one Superman, the movie book they did, which wasn't any kind of fictionalization, but, you know, just photos and, and you know, stills and articles about it.

But So they couldn't do anything there. And Puzo had been contracted to write the novelizations of the first two movies, but he never did. So there were these two novels, [00:17:00] these novels that Elliot, Megan wrote

Mike: Right.

Paul: and Miracle Monday,


Mike: I have last son of Krypton. I found that at a thrift store recently.

Paul: do read it, it's a great book.

Elliot did a really great job on those books. He's, he's a really good writer. He also did a later novelization of the Kingdom Come which is really, really

Mike: Yeah. Yeah. That's, I just had to look up the photo cuz it's sitting in the other room. But it's yeah, it is Superman. The original, the exciting, original story of Superman, last son of Krypton by Elliot Megan. And as a special bonus there is a 16 page album of photographs from Superman, the movie,

Paul: And that's as close as they could get. Which is fine. I mean, you know, frankly, a novelization of, you know, let's face it, a kind of silly movie. I mean, I love the movie, but you know, when you take it apart, it's, you know, it's very much of its time. And I'd much rather have what Elliot did then, then the novelization of that.

And if people are looking for it Elliot republished the books and [00:18:00] they're available on Amazon

Mike: Oh, great.

Paul: Reasonable Price.

Mike: Yeah, no, I have a, an immense soft spot for the Superman movies. The Sarah had not seen them, and so you know, one of our early dates was we went into San Francisco to the Alamo Draft House and they had a screening of the original Superman movie.

And I love that movie so much.

It's so goofy and weird. And Gene Hackman was so perfect, and Christopher Reeve was so perfect at, you know, Margo Kidder was wonderful as Lois Lane, like they're all great. But anyway.

Paul: I was on staff at DC doing the public relations job at the time, when they were filming the movie. And so I got to see a lot of, you know, stills and a lot of the background stuff as it was going on. And when it finally debuted, I saw the first showing the first day at the Esquire Theater in Chicago where I was living by then.

And just, I remember it vividly. It's one of the few movies that I could like, you know, tell you the experience. I love

the movie,

Mike: [00:19:00] cool. Yeah, it's silly. Yeah. I mean, like that's a lot of

Jessika: Yeah. Yeah,


Paul: sure, sure, And this stuff was silly. And again, you know, remember the audience was you know, was with 13 year olds. You know, the, when I was growing up, they, I was supposed to stop by, you know, by my Bar mitzvah. I should have been done. But, you know, I'm one of those, you know, I was one of those freaky kids who kept going, but the Comics were still, you know, 1968, they were still being, you know, DC especially Marvel took a stab at being a little bit more, you know, adult, but let's say read, go back and read the stuff, missed it.

But you know, it still wasn't meant for anybody above the age of 12.

Mike: Mm-hmm. .Yeah. Well, so the fabulous world of Krypton was like a regular backup feature in Superman, Comics from the early 1970s on. And then there was an article in the April, 2014 issue of back issue that says the stories that the world of Krypton mini-series [00:20:00] were originally based on. Those were originally scheduled to be published in Showcase 1 0 4 to 1 0 6. They were supposed to tie in with the premiere of Superman, the movie in 1978, but then they got delayed when the movie's release date got pushed back. And then it sounds like everything kind of got thrown out the window into heavy traffic when Showcase was canceled as part of the DC implosion, which again, we talked about in episode 48, focusing on DC Superstar Holiday special.

And then after that, the stories got revised and then publishes their own series,

Paul: Yeah, they were. Well you know, I think I was handed the assignment cuz I was kind of the resident Krypton writer at the time. I was writing a feature in Superman family called Night Wing in Flame Bird.

Mike: Right.

Paul: which was Kandorian superheroes which ran about a year. And so, you know, I guess I was like the krypton writer.

So I got the gig to do the the show again. It was just another three issue arc of showcase. It wasn't, you know, that big a deal. And you know, I worked with Nelson Bridwell who is another one of those, is a [00:21:00] figure from the time that, you know, most people don't know about, but deserves a lot more credit than he's ever gotten.

He was a strange little man who was encyclopedic knowledge about DC Comics also about Shakespeare, the Bible history, name it, he was some, he was just a, a savant. He just knew this stuff. And but he was kind of sickly and, you know, personally, A little strange and off-putting to some you know, he is sweet man.

But, you know, he was the guy who programmed all those DC 80 page Giants you know, in the late sixties and the hundred page super spectaculars. And, you know, he was the guy who knew you know, he later he was a writer on Shazam, the Captain Marvel stuff for Don Newton.

And it's still considered one of the best runs of the revived character. Cuz you know, Nelson was also encyclopedic and his knowledge of Captain Marvel in all things connected. So but anyway, Nelson you know, he knew this stuff, and Seeker. He had been Mort Weiser's assistant editor for years.

You know, Mor had kicked him around [00:22:00] for a long time before he went to work for Julie Schwartz, and then Julie kicked him around. But so, you know, he had every incident in the history of J's life. You know, he knew it. He kind of, you know, he is like, here's your shot list, you know, here's, here's boom, here's here's the high points to hit.

And you know, so it was an easy book to write because, you know, I had all this stuff kind of, you know, handed to me

Mike: That's cool. Well, okay, let's let's talk about the issues. So the first issue is written By you, Paul Coberg penciled by Howard Shaken. Inked by Murphy Anderson. Colored by Adrian Roy, lettered by Ben ota, and edited by e Nelson Bridwell.

So Superman in quotes, listens to the memory tape of his father J that he found on the moon. This tape seems to be a combination of like a journal and visual memory. And through this we learn the story of Joel from his point of view, it shows us how he grew up to be one of the predominant scientists on Krypton.

We meet various characters from the Superman mythology, including Joel's [00:23:00] evil cousin, crewel

Paul: Yes,

Mike: chef's.

Jessika: that was in

my notes.

Paul: right. You know, you name the kid Crewel, you're asking for trouble.

Mike: I know. It's

Jessika: you are

Mike: It's great. It's why we don't name children Adolf

Paul: That's right. Hey, good

and, a great mustache style.

Mike: I know, right? The chaplain gone. Oh man. So We then see him fall in love with his future wife, Laura Lava. When he meets Laura, they're working at a research facility and she is , a trainee astronaut. After he figures out an anti-gravity system, JLL designs an unmanned anti-graft spaceship.

Laura stows away on it because she doesn't wanna miss the opportunity to get in space. Since Kryp Space program is going so slowly, it'll be years before she has another chance. And the ship malfunctions and crashes on Krypton s Moon, WEG, Thor and so jal sts away on another unmanned spaceship. And by the way, whoever is handling security at these launch sites needs to be fired.

Jessika: Yeah,

Mike: he heads [00:24:00] to Weg Thor to rescue her. And then later on, j proposes a new prison system that will place prisoners in suspended animation above the planet while they're reformed via hypno training. And Laura proposes to j r l after the Science Council approves of this plan. They go to the match comp, which is like a predictive computer that has to approve of a match before the wedding can happen.

A ship with a prisoner is sent into space, but it crashes, and the prisoner revealed that he gained superpowers. But Jerrell figures out that these powers were created with anti grab devices and he captures the criminal while uncovering a conspiracy. Meanwhile, AER Mo, I'm not quite sure if I'm pronouncing it right, but we'll go with it, is sent by the match comp to inform Laura that her marriage to Jerrell wasn't approved.

Mat Comp announces that Aer Moo is actually the perfect match for Laura, and then when Jre investigates what's going on, it turns out that match comp fell in love with Laura. And Aer Moo was an Android who [00:25:00] collapsed when the match comp committed suicide rather than be reprogrammed

and lose.

Paul: Go ahead.

Mike: Yeah. And

Jessika: de Burac at its finest.

Mike: God.

Paul: There we go.

Mike: Yeah, it didn't wanna lose the ability to love, which I thought was

Paul: Um,

Mike: it's kind of tragic, but it's also very


Jessika: really tragic.


Paul: thing is tragic. Listen,

Mike: Yeah. And then I know, well, we, we end with Jelle and Laura's wedding, and we see that Superman actually attended the wedding in person, and then we're told we'll learn how that happened in the next issue. right. So Jessica, what happens in issue two?

Jessika: Oh my goodness. That was literally one

Paul: Oh my god. You know what? Today that would be two years of continuity.

Mike: right?

Jessika: right?

Paul: Man. You got

a bank, your buck back then, what was it? 25 cents?

What was the cover

Jessika: oh my

goodness. And they were, yeah, no, and they weren't even 30 pages. I think they were like 22

[00:26:00] pages,

Paul: 24 pages. Yeah. Oh, and by the way, on the art I should measure the the, the book. The book was laid out by my brother.

Mike: Oh wow,

Jessika: Oh,

Mike: so Cool.

Jessika: that's very neat.

Mike: The family that makes Comics together

Jessika: Yeah, right,

Paul: didn't happen much. Now, what was it? It was 40 cents. Okay. 40 cent

Jessika: 40 cents. Nice.

Mike: a bargain.

Jessika: Well just wait for this one cuz this issue is also

a doozy.

Paul: I don't know if I could take it, but Go ahead.

Jessika: I So this issue is called, this Planet is Doomed, and of course was written by our friend here, Paul Berg, art by Howard Chakin and Murphy Anderson. Lettering by Shelly Leman. Colors by Jerry Erpi e Nelson Bridwell was editing. We are back at it with Superman, watching more of his father's thought diaries.

[00:27:00] Jal's father invites both himself and Laura out to see him in the Antarctic city. But his dad immediately pulls him aside alone upon arriving, needing assistance, and starts telling him about an extinct people. The cruel. But suddenly they're attacked by an iceberg and his father is injured by the attack, very severely injured.

He's placed in a pod to rest. He's brought back to Dr. Gaff, where Laura and Callel a version of Superman who had gone to the past were both there as we're told in an editor's note. And I did like that Reconning that we were talking about of, we had talked about some of your influences, Paul, of Superman having gone back in time in the older Comics and having done a little bit of interacting.

And so I thought this was a nice little nod to that

Paul: Well, there is nothing in there. These stories are all pulled from, you know, from the cannon for [00:28:00] the most part.

Jessika: that's cool. That's really neat. Jal's diary notes that Superman cares almost as if this were his own father, which is very funny. Through some discovery, Jelle finds out that his father had discovered unstable elements in the core of the planet. And upon further investigation, JLL found that the whole planet had mirrored years before a planet wide catastrophe that effectively would end the planet.

Everyone is pretty much on board with the plan to try to save the planet based on the specs, but Zelle Joelle's younger brother seems a little salty about all of it, and this disagreement causes a rift between the political factions on the planet with them all disagreeing on how to move forward. Joel suggesting to leave the planet that will soon be destroyed.

The others are accusing him of fear-mongering to cause them to pour money into space travel. So even though he didn't have the approval, [00:29:00] Of everyone. He secretly starts planning an escape. So his father on his deathbed tells him that they found a ship that the crow left and that that could be the planet salvation. Meanwhile, Jor and Kal go out to try to get ship and fuel to try to get everybody off the planet. And Kelle brings this one-of-a-kind robot that he's super excited about, all of which are swooped up along with the entire city of candor by brainiac. So Jelle gets a message that Kelle has been swooped up as well.

And Laura reveals that she is gasp pregnant. So time jumped to the baby being born and they name him Kal. Very cute. Now Joel is still looking for a habitable planet, but so far he is only run into a little thing called the Phantom Zone. And then develops the phantom ray as a way to exile [00:30:00] criminals and hopefully get more people on his side politically so he could convince folks on the whole space arc situation, but he gets terribly embarrassed on live tv.

His phantom ray is looked at as dangerous and he definitely didn't gain any political traction, but that is until his luck turns around when the person who embarrassed him was arrested. Jal gets elected for the position he wants and when one of his staff ends up finding the crawl ship, it looks like they may have a brighter future ahead through leaving the planet. At the end we see a computer reconstruction of events showing us that former chief rocket scientist Jax, has gone rogue with plans to make nukes and rule Krypton J and team take the ship out for a spin into the atmosphere to test its abilities, and Jax sends a rocket out hitting them and the ship lands and blows up a village Ster was sentenced to go into the phantom zone, but despite that [00:31:00] justice being served, JLL still feels the misery of the situation as he feels just as hopeless because of the loss of the ship that was supposed to save them all.

Mike: Man, .

Paul: That

Jessika: It was a lot,

Paul: really was man.

Jessika: man, and I, we always like strip these things down to try to give a

nice cohesive, but if I didn't tell you one of these things, none of the rest of it would've made any

Paul: No, and you know, flipping through it and looking at the amount of copy on the page on the pages, it's yeah. . Yeah. Well, you know, we got paid by the word, so we would just

Mike: good. All right, so that brings us to issue three, which again, written by Paul Coberg, penciled by Howard Shaken, inked by Frank Ki. Colored by Jerry Serrp, lettered by , Shelly Leman, and edited by e Nelson Bridwell. So this issue opens with JLL sending Jack to the Phantom Zone before arguing with the Science Council [00:32:00] about how Krypton is, you know, doomed and nobody else will listen to him.

So he starts working in secret to try and save Krypton while prosecuting and exile in criminals to the Phantom Zone. While also serving on the Science Council, he starts conducting secret rocket experiments, which includes sending Superman's puppy crypto out in a test rocket before it got knocked off course by Meteor and eventually lands on earth to have adventures with Superboy.

He manages to get a crawl spaceship engine and cannibalize the parts, and then also contracts Scarlet Fever from the jungle that he was in when he did so. And the Phantom Zone criminals, psychically managed to control him into almost releasing them with a projector before Laura stops him and nurses him back to Health.

Grell manages to send the Phantom Zone projector into space. Helps Largan, aka mon L get off Krypton and head towards Earth, or he can get arrested by the council after he crashed lands on Krypton. And then we get to see Baby Callel sent off in a rocket by his parents, even though the [00:33:00] ship's big enough for the baby.

And his mom, LA refuses to leave her husband behind. And the series ends with this one final scene of the rocket crashing, the Kents finding the baby. And we close on Superman saying that even though the Kents are the parents who raised him, he will never forget Joel, Laura, or the world of Krypton.

Jessika: Man feels very much like a uh, Titanic door situation, doesn't it?

Paul: man. Woof

Mike: Okay. Yeah. So,

Paul: This is why I don't go back and reread a lot of this stuff.

Mike: hey man, it.

Paul: I was young, I was a kid. How did I know about Krypton? Come on.

Mike: Well, you know, it's funny you say that because like I go back and read old articles that I wrote and, and I inwardly cringe and I'm like, I don't know. It was good enough that they paid me, so I'll, I'll take it.

Paul: Oh, yeah. Listen, I, I, I don't apologize. I should, but I don't apologize for anything I wrote you [00:34:00] know, I recognize that you know, I, I grew up wanting to write Comics in the worst way,

and for many years I did. So um, you know, but it takes a while. It, it takes you, like I said, like Howard and I talked about , in the book

Mike: Yeah,

Paul: it takes 10 years to learn your shit

Mike: I like, I actually have notes about that conversation with Howard and we'll talk about that later on,

but but I'm curious, what was everyone's favorite element of Krypton in this mini series?

Jessika: Well, I'll go first. I really liked the idea of being able to re con, like I had mentioned before, some of the more interesting aspects of Superman lore, like the discovery of the Phantom Zone and how Kelle got his name. And just to be able to look back and say, how would that have come about in K L's world as it first happened?

And I like that both Jor and Laura get to be characters in their own way. The fact that Laura was training to be an astronaut And Jelle was clearly a genius in his own right with some nice [00:35:00] touches, like him discovering the secret to anti-gravity. So as a writer, I can only imagine that it must have been really neat to be given the opportunity to kind of write in some of those backstory details.

Paul: It was, I mean, you know, it was a case of stuffing 50 pounds into a 20 pound sack. You know Nelson was obsessive about these things. I later did secrets of the Legion of Superheroes mini-series, another three issue minis that Nelson plotted. And it was the same thing. It was just, you know it, it, you just need every panel.

You can jam into a page to get it all in there. It's , you know, it wasn't about style or presentation. It was about information , you know, so he wanted it, he, he crammed it all in there.

Mike: So what is your favorite element of Krypton? I'm curious.

Paul: I always loved the thought Beast

Mike: Mm.

Paul: I always loved this animal that, you know, could look at you and you could see reflected in this little TV screen in his head, you know, what he's thinking,

Mike: Yeah.

Paul: is usually eating you. But [00:36:00] yeah, I love that, that, that wacky stuff. You know, there was a waterfall of fire and there was the crystals forest and, and you know, there was all kinds of just, you know, it was just wacky, kind.

Fantasy elements that weisinger threw into it you know, throughout those fifties and sixties stories. And it just, again, didn't have to make sense. It just had to make as 10 year old readers go, cool, you know, or whatever they said in 1962, probably gci I don't know.

I don't remember lingo from them. But you know, so all that stuff is just, it's goofy, you know? And I'm struck by listening to it about what a fascistic planet Krypton was and, and you know, pretty much what a fascist jelle was.

Mike: Yeah.

Paul: man,

Mike: Yeah. And I mean, I'm kind of right there with you. Like my favorite thing about it is how it feels like this classic science fiction story that's, you know, focused more on the dream of a sci-fi in quotes, utopia, as you noted. It's, you know, it's got the fascist elements, but I love all the [00:37:00] strange fun details.

Like the fact that they built a spaceship outta gold because gold was so common. It was actually the cheapest

thing to build it out


Paul: right. Yeah.

Mike: you know? And it, it,

Paul: what the hell?

Mike: yeah, exactly. And it doesn't matter cuz like, it's just, you know, the weight's gonna be negated. Or like how particularly adept students would go into like, kind of like the AP courses, but it was, I guess,

directly, like injecting information into their rna, which I was like, all right, cool.

Like all of this felt like, like stuff you would see in articles that were written in popular Science that like were speculative from like the 1950s and sixties.

Paul: Sure. Well, you know Mort Weisinger came out of the science fiction world. He started out as a science fiction fan. He and Julie Schwartz were friends They met in, in the in the early 1930s, and they both lived in the Bronx and, and were science fiction fans and met through a science fiction club and did Fanzines back then and started a, they were both literary agents, the science fiction writers throughout the 1930s and into the forties before Mort went to become an editor for the science fiction magazines.

And in [00:38:00] 44, Julie was hired by DC but before then, you know, that was his world. He was, you know, he sold great Bradbury's first stories to the magazines. So you know, so that was the world they came from, and Julia, who I knew very well you know, he never lost his love for that stuff. And, he had these reference books in his office that were, you know, back then in the eighties that were 40 year old science textbooks, you know, high school science textbooks or you know, on the environment or on animal, whatever it was.

and he would like pluck 'em off the shelf and flip through 'em for ideas, you know, or, or for text pages or whatever. So that was very much in his thought, you know, that was very much in, in, in the type of Comics that these guys did. You know, you could see like the best Comics that Julie Schwartz ever edited where science fiction stuff, you know, strange adventures and mystery and space, that that was his true, you know, that was his true love.

Mike: Yeah. So like is there a Krypton story that you never got a chance to write but you [00:39:00] wish you could have?

Paul: I guess, I, I always kinda wanted to do like the last day of Krypton, but not through any familiar eyes, you know, through another character. There's someone who, I don't even know, but just someone who has a different stake. I mean, everybody had the same stake in, in that moment, but you know, who came at it from a different point of view?

We always saw, you know, like, here's what j and Lara saw when it was happening. Here's what Superman saw when it was happening. You know, I'd, I'd like to have gone at it from somebody else's point of view. Who could go you son of a bitches. You're the ones who made it happen. You know, you're,

Jessika: Yeah.

Mike: hell out of that

Paul: yeah.

Jessika: Oh,


Paul: I'm, I've got the got about 20,000 words of a novel that's, you know, essentially a Superman pastiche that plays with the origin in that way, you know, so but we'll see if I can find the time or the energy to finish it. But

Mike: Well, if you do, please come back on the

Paul: oh,

Jessika: Please let

us know because, [00:40:00] and I would

love to read it,

Paul: Let's, let's see if it gets done. But yeah, you know, the whole thing about the presentation of Superman and the way we feel about him and see him, you know, he is a very powerful character and always has been, you know, I think he's, you know, I can set him the er character of comic books.

Everything is, even though the tropes came that based around him came from other places, you know, the costume and the tights and the this and the Cape and he himself, the presentation of Superman is the basis of all superheroes going forward. Even Batman, you know, who one would think maybe owed more to the Phantom or something.

But, you know years ago John Burn and I we were talking about it and we were actually bitching and moaning about what the current crew was doing to our Superman. Cuz you know, we both had. John did several years on Superman, as did I, and we both had strong feelings for the character, and we're ranting, you know, like, oh, those kids today, they're really, and I had to stop at one point and go, you know what, you know, like our Superman, [00:41:00] the real Superman that we're, that we're complaining of the one we grew up on, that's not the real Superman.

The only real Superman that was ever done was done by Siegel and Schuster.

The second anybody else started working on that, on that character, he changed. It doesn't matter if it's the artist or the writer, it became a different character. And every person who's had a hand on the character has left their imprint on it.

So by the time John and I, you know, I'm doing Superman in 1980, whatever, one or two or three, and John does it in 86, It's been through , 40 years of other people layering their stuff on top of it. And you know, you read one of my Superman stories and you read a Siegel and Schuster Superman story and they're vaguely related, but you know, that ain't mine is not the real Superman, theirs

Mike: Yeah.

Jessika: Yeah. It's almost like playing

Mike: yeah,

Paul: Exactly


Mike: Well, and it's also a little bit like the [00:42:00] ship Atheist where it's like, if you replace all these parts, like is it still the same

ship? You know but yeah, it's I like that. That's really cool. So, Obviously the world of Krypton wound up being a hit and kicking off a new era for Comics, where miniseries played a major role because DC's next miniseries was the 1980s, the untold legend of the Batman, which was one of the first Comics I ever read.

my grandma bought it for me when I was visiting her in Texas at the supermarket. It was like this little kind of like, digest sized black and white comic.

Paul: Oh, that was the Charlize, paperback reprint. Yeah.

Mike: yeah, I mean, you know, and this was like 19 86, 7,

Paul: Something




Mike: Yeah.



Paul: did the World of Krypton as a paperback.

Mike: yeah, I, I found that out when I was researching this.

That's super cool. Like, and there were also like audio cassette narrated Comics as well. They would come with like an audio cassette that you could play.


Paul: but.

Mike: I do too. I wanna track it down, but it's expensive . And then after that, there were three more limited series. There was another Krypton book called the Krypton Chronicles.

There [00:43:00] was the Secrets of the Legion of Superheroes book that you mentioned earlier, and then there was tales of the Greenland core. And then with mini-series Proving Successful, DC began trying out longer limited series, which they dubbed Maxi series. The first limited series to run for 12 issues was Camelot 3000, which we actually talked about a bit in last year's pride episode that focused on queer kissing and Comics because that features the first lesbian kiss in Comics.

And then, and then from there, things really took off. We saw major event Comics take hold in similar maxi formats. And that led to multi title crossovers. And , all of these storytelling formats are major parts of the industry now.

So like, I gotta ask, what's it like knowing that something you wrote wound up having such traumatic and long-lasting ripple effects for the industry?

Paul: Well, I mean, you know, it's gratifying. It's cool that, you know, I was able to, you know, leave a little mark there. But you know, , I'm kind of, of the belief that if it hadn't been me, it would've been somebody else, you know, like this thing was happening. [00:44:00] Because while you're talking about the rise of all these, you know, events and interconnected.

You're neglecting to mention that was happening as the comic shop market was growing and we were losing. So the market was changing. It wasn't that you know, that was the reason for the chains. That was why we could do mini-series. That was why, you know, put out a three issue series of irregular, I mean, DC did a lot of 'em in the seventies, but that was mostly canceling shit real quick.

You know, it wasn't like it was intended, you know, press was not intended to be a two issue mini-series. It was just canceled.

Mike: Yeah

Paul: so

Mike: we have talked about press many


Paul: could you not

Mike: I love press so much.

Paul: So, you know, all this. And they, they did great. You know, they did the secret six talking about e Nelson Bridgewell. You know, he, he did that. That was, that only lasted six issues. They, they had a moment there in 68 where they were trying things, you know. And most of 'em obviously didn't work.

You know, you had [00:45:00] the maniacs and you had inferior five and you had weird, weird books. But, you know, that was when Carmine became editorial director and, you know, the superhero stuff was floundering and Carmine was just like, let's throw it at the wall and see what sticks.

So that's how you wind up with Bat Lash, you know? But yeah, it was the comic market that enabled all that stuff, you know if you put a three issue thing on a new stand only book, you know, distributors would go, you know, they didn't want number ones really to begin with.

They wanted tried and true. You know, back in the early sixties there was a whole slew of DC number ones that didn't have a number one on the cover cuz it was a detriment. Justice League of America, green Lantern. A couple other books didn't have a number one on the cover because, Readers, you know, that's why Flash when it was revived, was revived with the old numbering, started with 105 because a kid will see that on the news hand, got 105 issues.

This must be great. You know, this has lasted

Mike: that's so [00:46:00] fascinating, especially with, you know, the speculator markets that have gone on since the eighties and nineties and how it's all about first appearances and new number ones. And things like that. It's really interesting to think about how that consumer mindset has changed.

Paul: well. You know, it became it. I don't know how it happened. You know, I remember you know when I had to pass up the opportunity buying a Superman number one for a hundred dollars because who had a hundred bucks? You know?

Mike: I think the owner of Mile High Comics occasionally talks about how he basically,

Paul: sure.

Mike: he spent, he spent every, yeah, he sent something on I can't remember how much he spent, but it was an action Comics number one.

And It

was like

Paul: or something like that.

Mike: yeah, but this was, you know, and this was back in the seventies when that was an unfathomable amount of money and, you know, and then action Comics, that has since gone on to set like the record for a comic book

Paul: Sure. But I remember when the record was, you know, $2,000 and that made the newspapers you know, I probably saw the article clip somewhere. But it, [00:47:00] it, it just, you know, it became a whole different thing when, when there became money in it, you know? A hundred bucks wasn't, you know, a hundred dollars for action.

Comics number one, again, you know, 1971, a hundred

dollars is a lot of money, certainly for a 16 year old. But you know, I don't think it compares to the 3.7 million or whatever you'd have to pay for it today.

Mike: No,

Paul: that's action one,

Mike: I, yeah, it's like, I mean, I spend more money than I should on comic books, especially old comic books, but there's a certain limit. I've yet to spend two grand on Comics. So

Paul: I've never spent more than $10 on a comic book

Mike: Hmm,

Paul: That was, I paid that for showcase number four,

Mike: nice. So yeah, so this book was written in 1979, which was right in the middle of the Bronze Age, which was from 1970 to 80. And that feels like a pretty appropriate thing because you have a new book out, direct conversations, talks with fellow DC Comics, bronze age creators,

and [00:48:00] you very graciously sent us a PDF of the book to check out.

I loved reading these stories that you traded with all these other creators. There were several that I enjoyed, but one of my favorites was during your interview with Howard Shaken the artist for the world of Krypton where he revealed Carmine Infantino hated him because he was so tight with Kane and it was, it was so

cool to learn that kind of gossipy behind the scene stuff.

Like I lived for that. And I was

wondering what was the most

Paul: Yeah,

Mike: when you were talking to all of these Bronze Age creators?

Paul: it was something from everybody for the most part.

, I love, like Michael Lin talking about how when Bronze Age stuff, when he was talking about how the first Batman movie where like his job was to keep Tim Burton away from the silly shit in the, in the old Batman Comics

cuz you know, he said, I had just seen PeeWee's big adventure.

and, and you


I can't imagine what he would've done with the 1950s Jack's shift stuff if he had read that.

So, you [00:49:00] know, he kept them

pointed at Neil Adams and Marshall Rogers


stuff like that.

But I think my favorite stuff was actually my talk with Paul with Levitz. You know, I've known Paul since where? 15? 15? No, since we're 13, 14 years old, from middle. and you know, I was there while he was going through his, you know, his career. But he didn't talk about it a lot because it was his business.

And, you know, he's, he's a he's, he's, he's a mention he doesn't talk outta school. but here he is talking about, and he starts going into you know, here he is, this kid coming in, taking over the business side of things from Saul Harrison and all these guys who had been running the company and he's talking about, you know, how they ran the place and, you know, just, it was just fascinating to me that it had been so, you know, he is like, he said, these, these guys, like, they didn't look at the Comics as Comics.

They could have been doing, you know, they could have been in the shirt business and they didn't care what color shirts they're. . You know, whereas when he [00:50:00] came in and was looking at things like royalty and stuff, you have to know which color shirts are selling so you can pay the appropriate people. But anyway, it was just, you know, him dealing with these names, these Warner's executives that I'd seen around the place, but never really had much contact with.

Just to hear those stories about, you know about him and, and Carmen and Saul Harrison, you know Saul Harrison had been in Comics forever. Sal Harrison, who was president of the company had been yeah, had literally worked on famous Funnies number one. You know, who had had, you know, we, we used to joke that, that Saul stapled action, Comics number one, you know and, and Jack Adler, his production manager had been there almost as long.

But Saul was running the place. He wasn't a businessman. He was, he was an artist. And he and Carmine had taken over as editorial director. And Carmine was a great artist, but not a manager, and certainly not a businessman. You know, Carmine was a bit of a dick. And you know, and he could be, you know, he was just very [00:51:00] strong-willed.

And he said at one point Paul says, and you know, Sal Jeanette's coming in, and, but they still need Sal to stay because Jeanette has no experience in comic. So he, they need him there, but he doesn't want, you know, he's not gonna split credit with it was this whole thing. You read the book, and Paul says, Saul, you know, I guess he felt he'd been working for that idiot all these years, so he wanted a blah, blah, blah.

And it was like, so like, you're calling Carmine an idiot. This is . You know, this is great. You know, I, I, I love Carmine, but what a pain in the ass, you know, But But yeah, I, I, that, that stuff, the, the stuff Paul talked about, just the business side of things it, you know, him bringing it really into the 20th century, bring the business side into the 20th century you know, I'd never heard, he'd never talked about that stuff before.

It, it was fascinating to me that every single conversation I went into did not go the way I thought it would.

I had, [00:52:00] you know like for the first bunch of guys I had, you know, questions and, and timelines and all this stuff, and it was just like, you know, after about 15 minutes, it's just like, you know how it goes, it doesn't matter.

We're just talking here. So, you know, it, it was everyone was revel,


Mike: that's great. Okay, so where can people buy your book?

Paul: Wherever finer books are sold, if they happen to be on or they come to my website, paul Where they can order direct conversations or any of my books directly from me. I will sign and personalize and ship them out

with my own two hands.

Mike: Awesome. We will include links to that in the show notes. is everybody ready to discuss brain wrinkles?

Paul: has been wrinkled for years.


Mike: Awesome.

Mike: We are now at Brain Wrinkles, which is the part of the show where we talk about one thing, Comics or Comics adjacent that has been stuck in our head lately. [00:53:00] So, or Jessica,

Paul: Well, I've kind of been thinking about that dreamy James Gun.

Mike: Mm.

Paul: And Peter Saffron, who, who I don't know but his name sounds delicious. They both took over as head of Warner Studios you know, mainly to direct the superhero DC stuff.

Mike: Mm-hmm.

Paul: And Mr. Gunn has been very generous in his acknowledgement of my influence on things like the Suicide Squad movie and, and the Peacemaker TV show.

And we've, you know, we've chatted, we've traded quips across Twitter, and I have pushed the series. I created a checkmate at him any number of times because just imagine, I don't know if you're familiar with this series.

Mike: I am, I haven't read it all, but

Paul: yeah. So uh, you know, like it would make ,a kickass you know, show set in the dcu.

Certainly. So I've, you know, and since his take on the on the movies and stuff is kind of in the Amanda Waller universe and Amanda Waller was the queen of Checkmate. You know, so yeah, I'm thinking of James Gunn. [00:54:00]

Mike: Yeah, I'm very curious to see where things go from now, because I haven't really enjoyed much of the d c eu except for the stuff that he's had his fingers on, so, yeah. All right. Jessica, how about you?

Jessika: Well, mine is actually about the M C U,

so that's fun. In the sense that I think I'm starting to feel a max saturation with superhero movies right now. I'm starting to feel it. There have been so many M C U films that have dropped recently. It's once again feeling like it's too much to keep up with sometimes, like, don't get me wrong, and sorry Paul.

I know from reading your book that you're on the other side of this fence, but I'm a Marvel girl. However, it sometimes feels like fans have to do a lot of work and spend a lot of time keeping up with the M C U and all of its glory. Like the movies are great when I do get to them, and I've heard others voice kind of similar opinions recently, so this isn't a hundred percent an [00:55:00] original thought, but I definitely agree with the sentiment that fans seem to be needing some space or respite or a breather from the overall or, I don't know, maybe that's just me,

Paul: I don't know. You're also not obligated to see every single movie.

Mike: Yeah,

Jessika: It's hard though cuz they do try to loop all of the, you know, it feels like you are missing a piece of it sometimes if you don't see that last film, there's a chunk, you


necessarily catch

Paul: The fight, the

Jessika: I like it.

I like it.

Mike: Yeah, no, it gets tiring,

Paul: It does.

Mike: keep up with all of it.

Paul: It really does. I mean, I catch 'em when I can. You know, my girlfriend has no particular, she's out of town now for a couple of weeks. She goes, you can watch all the musicals and superheroes you want. Now it's like, well, I'll watch the musicals, but, eh, superheroes not so much.

But yeah, I, I can take or leave a lot of them. You know, , we are living in a world where you know, where 99% of the people say I'm a big comic book fan, mean they watch the movies and they've never [00:56:00] read a comic book.

Mike: Yeah.

Jessika: right?

Paul: you know, I've kind of learned to separate my mind, the comic books from the movies because you know, fortunately, no matter how much they fuck up the movie,

the comic book still exists.

Jessika: Yeah.

exactly. Yep.

Mike: Yeah.

Jessika: Well, Mike,

what about yourself?

Mike: so mine is that we just had a new comic store open in the same spot where Brian's Comics in Petaluma was the grand opening was yesterday. It was a ton of fun. Sarah and I took the kids. The store is named Ivy's Hideout. It's got this really cool Poison Ivy theme. I shared a video on our TikTok page for that.

It's not a new comic shop, so you can't set up a pull list, but it's got a ton of old toys, Comics and other cool stuff in there. No dollar bins yet, but you know, they've got a bunch of inexpensive back issues. And I found some cool stuff in there. But when I was chatting with one of the shop owners, they made a comment about how Brian probably got burnout dealing with Diamond comic distributors, and that was not [00:57:00] really surprising.

It seems like a lot of the regular comic shops in the Bay Area are making posts on their pages about how diamond shipments are late or damaged, and they're asking customers to be patient. And during the pandemic, lockdowns DC and Marvel and I D W all partnered with other distributors. So I'm wondering how much longer Diamond is gonna be in business if other publications start ditching them too, and going with other groups.

And based on all the headaches that diamonds seems to be causing shops and comic bands, maybe it isn't a bad thing,

Paul: I don't know. I mean, you know, , the business is changing once again. Again, in the Paul Levis interview, he talks about, you know, where I mentioned how back in the early seventies, a lot of guys came in the business thinking Comics would be dead in three or four years. And they were just gonna write out the wave and then go off and have careers.

in Other arts. And you know, and Paul goes on to say he makes the argument that he thinks in fact, that the comic book business of the 1960s and early seventies did die. And that gone through several iterations [00:58:00] of, you know, the business. We went from the new stand model to the comic shop model.

Comics went from being an impulse item available everywhere to being you know, , a destination item. The pricing, the this to that, the aim of the audience, you know, according to, you know, his way of thinking. And, And I kind of agree with it. The business has died several times. And, and so the death of Diamond and I know people have problems with it, and, you know, I have had problems just in principle.

I mean, you know I, I've known Steve Jeffy forever. You know, he is a sweet guy. He takes my calls when, whenever I've called him. You know, it may that it's just time. You know, we've gone on to the bookstore market, which is the prime source now. And you know, maybe the, the time of


is is running out.

Mike: Yeah. Well, Paul, thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us today. This was really, really delightful. Like, and, and it was just

so cool that

Paul: Yes.

Mike: are .

anytime you wanna come back on the show, we would love to

Paul: what are

you doing tomorrow?[00:59:00]

Mike: But, we will be back in two weeks with another deep dive. Before then we'll have another dollar been discovery, and until then, we will see you in the stacks.

Jessika: Thanks for listening to Tencent Takes. Accessibility is important to us, so text transcriptions of each of our published episodes can

be found on our website.

Mike: This episode was hosted by Jessika Frazier, Mike Thompson and Paul Kupperberg written by Mike Thompson and edited by Jessika Frazier. Our intro theme was written and performed by Jared Emerson Johnson of Bay Area Sound. Our credits and transition music is Pursuit of Life by Evan McDonald and was purchased with a standard license from Premium Beat.

Our banner graphics were designed by Sarah Frank, who you can

Jessika: If you'd like to get in touch with us, ask us questions, or tell us about how we got something wrong, please head over to Tencent or shoot an email to Tencent takes You can also find us on Twitter for [01:00:00] now the official podcast account is Tencenttakes Jessika is Jessikawitha and Jessika's spelled with a K, and Mike is Vansau v A N S A U.

You can also find us on Instagram, Facebook, Mastodon, and Hive. A full list of our socials will be listed in these show notes.

Paul: You can find me on Facebook and Twitter. And I also have my website is

Mike: we will include all of those links in the show notes if you would like to support us. Be sure to download, rate and review wherever you listen

Jessika: Stay safe out there.

Mike: and support your local comic shop. It's all right. I know that secretly you were just having such a miserable time that you just cowed yourself right out of the podcast in

Jessika: right?

Paul: didn't wanna say, but No, no. Really. Like how bad could it be? I get to talk about me.


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