Sunday, April 19, 2009

Retro-View: Spooky Spooktown #59 (Harvey Comics)

I’ve just got to tell you that it’s a sad fact to me that the Harvey Comics family of titles aren’t still available on the stands (and in the shops) with regularly released new material. When I was younger, even though I loved the comic books that Marvel Comics and DC Comics published, the Harvey Comics stuff was always a big draw for me.

Richie Rich, Casper, Hot Stuff, Wendy, Audrey, Little Dot, Spooky, Sad Sack and the rest were tons & tons of fun for kids of all ages. The stories were simple, straight forward and had loads of laughs; and the artwork on all of the Harvey features was absolutely topnotch. Please lament along with me as you sit down and enjoy this "Retro-View" of Harvey Comics Spooky Spooktown #59 from October 1975.

Spooky (the tuff little ghost) stars in "Spooky’s Family Tree" in which the "doiby-wearing" ghost becomes jealous when his girl, Pearl ("Poil") spends time with the erstwhile Lord Shreekly J. Scarington, the 5th aboard his yacht, The Flying Dutchman II. Spooky invisibly flies aboard to scare the daylights out of them, but instead earns an invitation to a posh party in Spookhampton from the purportedly rich Shreekly. Encouraged by Pearl, to investigate his own family tree, Spooky discovers that his Pop, Grandpa & Great-Grandpa were all conniving crooks and thieves in their day.

After a one-page Spooky short, and a full-page Hostess Fruit Pie ad (disguised as a Sad Sack short), we are treated to Part Two of the story in "The Great Jewel Robbery" in which Spooky and Pearl attend the party only to have poor Spooky set up as the fall guy for the "bogus" Lord Shreekly and his cronies, as they loot the other guests. Accused of the thefts and thrown into the dungeon, Spooky is shocked to discover his own Pop, Grandpa & Great-Grandpa are in cahoots with Shreekly, who is revealed as his cousin, Swifty Fantom! Needless to say, Spooky escapes, frees the real Lord Shreekly and turns the tables on his rotten family to save the day. Tuff little ghost indeed!

This issue also features The Ghostly Trio in "The Boo Inspector" (guest starring Casper) and Nightmare the Galloping Ghost in "Horse Force", plus a two-page Spooky text story (w/illustrations) for a neat and totally fun comic reading experience.

My brother David still picks up lots of this kind of stuff, and we’ve noticed that the Harvey Comics routinely fetch high prices on eBay, and deservedly so, because they just don’t make them like this anymore. Treat yourself to some of these gems and smile. Seek them out! You’ll be glad that you did.


Andy 7 said...

Now that Dark Horse and Leslie Cabarga are releasing the Harvey Archives series it would be great to have a Spooky Anthology.

Sam G said...

I have fond memories of heading on down to the Circle K and picking up issues of Richie Rich and Casper along with Supes and Batman. Good times...but sadly gone.