Monday, July 23, 2012

Master Comics #115 (May 1950, Freshman freddy & Tom Mix)

Freshman Freddy "The Old Apple Tree"

This simple four page campus tale is so much better then the previous story. Freshman Freddy is likable and even when he is outfoxed by Ace he ends up on top at the end of the story--gaining the reward money and the girl. The most interesting thing here is seeing the journeyman art of Frank Bolle. Bolle would go on in the 1960s to draw such features as Dr Solar for Gold Key, various strips for Boy's Life magazine and the syndicated strip the Heart of Juliet Jones.

Tom Mix "Terror at the Gold Mine!"

For a seven-pager this story deftly combines two plot lines--one the gold mine discovery and the other about Laird Rigney searching for his father's murderer. It is interesting that while Tom Mix is the hero at the end of the story he has to be rescued by Laird Rigney. Perhaps the lack of a secret identity helped Tom Mix in this instance. The artwork (by  Carl Pfuefer and John Jordan) is made up of mostly medium shots. Perhaps the only obvious artistic misstep happens on page 3, panel 3 where the artist hasTom Mix exiting the panel to the left. If the penciler had flopped the panel Mix would then lead the reader's eye to the next panel instead of the previous page.

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