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Thursday, February 4, 2016

War Comics Key Issues Part 7

Well, folks, looks like we are mostly hitting up Sgt Rock keys in Part 7 here. Not saying there won't be other titles, but Part 7 of this war comics key issues series are mostly Sgt. Rock key issues.

On top of that, it seems like the only ones worth discussing are the DC war comics of the era. Sure, there are other publishers that published war comics at the time, but there's very little information on them out there. 

Not like there's all that much information on Sgt. Rock and Easy Company either, but I'm basically doing whatever and whenever I can. So, this Part 6 link here will bring ya back if need be. If you're good to roll out, hope someone enjoys this.

1st all Sgt. Rock issue

This here issue sees the 1st all-Sgt. Rock issue in comics. The character and his men would end up getting their own headlining titled series, but that would come much later.

There are three Sgt. Rock stories in this issue, however. Our Army at War #91 is one of the more valuable Sgt. Rock keys and has the cover date of February, 1960.

1st appearance of Zack Nolan

Zach Taylor Nolan is one of the earliest recurring and specific members of Easy Company that was introduced. He is the units original bazooka man, and does show up in quite a bit of Sgt. Rock's war stories during the Silver Age.

He was replaced after he lost his arm in combat by the duo Long Round and Short Round. 1st appearance of Zack Taylor Nolan, and Our Army at War #93 has the cover date of April, 1960.

1st War That Time Forgot

For some reason, this issue here is still viewed as a war comic, although the military does go up against dinosaurs. Also, for some reason, this issue here is pretty valuable and sought out as well.

Actually, it's the 2nd most valuable comic in the titled series according to Overstreet, even beating the 1st appearance of Mlle Marie. That's a head scratcher there, but I guess we've always been fascinated of what it would be like if man went up against dinosaurs.

After all, look at the Jurassic Park movies. Same basic story each time round and they still make tons of money. 

Anyways, the War that Time Forgot stories would end up becoming the main feature of this title for a while. The 2nd story is in issue #92 and has the 2nd dinosaur cover of the titled series.

1st War that Time Forget story, and Star-Spangled War Stories #90 has the cover date of May, 1960.

1st appearance of Bulldozer

Filling or fleshing out more characters in Easy Company is the 1st appearance of Bulldozer, but there is debate about whether or not this is Horace Canfield. Some sources say that there was another character named Sergeant Nichols who first had the Bulldozer name.

It might just be an artist's mistake, but Nichols was seen with three chevrons on his helmet. In his 1st appearance, Bulldozer Nichols had an intense jealousy of Sgt. Rock. After he was saved by Sgt. Rock in the same issue, he agreed that the Rock had what it takes to lead Easy Company.

As fans know, the character of Bulldozer is the 2nd in command of Easy. He is a corporal as well and respected Sgt. Rock.

Not too sure whether or not this is indeed Horace Canfield, as some sources say his real name is Horace Canfield and others say Horace Canfield Nichols. I think a real fan might know the real answer, but I sure don't.

So far everyone lists this as the 1st appearance of Bulldozer, and I believe the character once led the Suicide Squad but not sure whether that was an imposter or not. 

This is definitely one of the more valuable war comics key issues out there and not an easy find as well. June, 1960 is the cover date of Our Army at War #95.

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1st appearance of Buster

Buster was a short-lived Easy Company member. This character would die in the same issue as Ice Cream Soldier in issue #107 of the titled series.

However, Ice Cream Soldier does come back in later issues. In later reprints of the story contained in this issue, the name of Ice Cream Soldier is changed to Young Willy.

So, Ice Cream Soldier really doesn't die in Our Army at War #107, but they did put the ka-bosh on the character of Buster. He has no further appearances after #107.

Sometimes they just don't come back in the world of comics, and people did actually die in the Sgt. Rock stories. Our Army at War #101 has the cover date of December, 1960.

1st appearance of Johnny Cloud

Johnny Cloud, the Navajo Ace, was a pretty popular comic character in the war genre. A fighter pilot for the U.S. Army Air Force, he fought the Nazis in World War II in his early adventures.

One of the panels in his story is the source material for one of Roy Lichtenstein's famous paintings, but that isn't where the fame should end for this character. Later Johnny Cloud would be part of the group known as the Losers as well.

Yes, that comic group called the Losers that was made into a movie, the one that stars Zoey Saldana and Chris Evans. However, that movie was adapted from the Vertigo imprint of the team and not the original Losers that would appear 9 years after this issue here, so Johnny Cloud wasn't featured in the flick.

Well, at least the character got to appear on the cover of his 1st appearance issue. All-American Men of War #82 has the cover date of December, 1960.

1st appearance of Junior

I'm not going to note this as the possible 1st appearance of Horace Canfield as Bulldozer, because I simply don't know if that's true or not. There are some sources out there that state Nichols and Canfield aren't the same character and some that do.

Not a huge fan to be honest, so I really don't know either way. I apologize for that and just thought I'd bring it to your attention just in case.

However, Overstreet does note Our Army at War #105 has the 1st appearance of Junior, who lied about his age to enlist. Junior's real name is William West, but I'm not entirely sure just how prominent a member of Easy Company Junior is or how often he appears.

He is noted by sources online to be a core member of Easy Company. Our Army at War #105 has the cover date April, 1961.

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Definitely some heavy hitter, key war comics in this Part 7 here. 1st appearance of Johnny Cloud is definitely one as is the 1st appearance of Bulldozer in the world of Sgt. Rock.

Eventually, DC would tie many of these war comic characters together, especially ones that debuted in the Silver Age. I'm not sure whether the Time that War Forgot was ever tied into Sgt. Rock or Gunner and Sarge or The Losers, but that story feature is a pretty popular and valuable one.

Part 8 will have more war comic key issues for ya. Click the PART 8 link below and thanks for reading.

1 comment:

  1. Hey,

    for all you war comics lovin' people out there, uncle Rebo has another one for you:
    WEIRD WAR TALES 64 - first Frank Miller art for DC. Nice!

    Max Rebo