Monday, August 8, 2011

BULL'S-EYE BILL "Trouble's 'a Coming!"

Anthology comics used to cover multiple genres... you can see from the series titles on this cover from 1940, they ranged from Western to superhero to aviator to secret agent!
Yet, for the first issue of this comic book, the Western feature was the one given the coveted cover spot!
So let's take a look...
(Note: there are a couple of ethnic stereotypes common to the period and genre. May be NSFW.)
You'll discover if Trent stayed hogtied in the near-future.
Bull's Eye Bill only appeared twice more on the cover, in a group shot with the other strips' characters saluting Uncle Sam (he's 2nd from right)...
Though he wouldn't make the cover again until 1947, Bull's-Eye Bill appeared regularly in the back of the book for 59 consecutive issues, then on an irregular basis until his last Target Comics appearance in #100.
Dick Cole Comics ran a couple of unpublished stories, then filled out their back pages with several reprints of early Target Comics tales.
After that, Bull's-Eye Bill rode off into the sunset.

Though the signature on the cover is "Blake" and the title pages lists "Everett Blake" as the author, the actual creator-writer-artist of the strip was Bill Everett, one of the more prolific creators of the Golden Age of Comics. ("Blake" was his middle name.)
Many of his strips and characters are still being published in new stories today, including Amazing-Man, HydroMan, Skyrocket Steele, and The Fin.  
His two best-known characters are Prince Namor: the Sub-Mariner, and (with Stan Lee & Jack Kirby) Daredevil: the Man Without Fear!

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