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Shazam!, The - Archives, VOL 04 [Hardcover]

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Book Description

Aug. 4 2004 DC Archive Editions
A stunning new hardcover archive collecting the classic CAPTAIN MARVEL ADVENTURES #4 and #5, MASTER COMICS #21 and #22, WHIZ #25 and AMERICA'S GREATEST COMICS #2! THE SHAZAM! ARCHIVES VOLUME 4 follows the development of the legend of Captain Marvel and

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 196 pages
  • Publisher: DC Comics; 4 edition (Aug. 4 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401201601
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401201609
  • Product Dimensions: 26.2 x 17.2 x 1.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 599 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,122,902 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Booklist

Of the dozens of costumed imitations that sprang up after Superman's debut in 1938, the most eminent was Captain Marvel. Declining sales and a long-running lawsuit filed by Superman's deep-pocketed publisher led to the Captain Marvel comic book's discontinuation in 1953, but the character is fondly remembered, as is the magic word Shazam that transformed teenaged reporter Billy Batson into the World's Mightiest Mortal. Captain Marvel's success was due not to his similarities with Superman but to his differences. Unlike the Man of Steel's square-jawed earnestness, Captain Marvel had the personality of an adolescent in a grown-up body, and his adventures' cartoonlike visual style complemented their whimsical humor. The stories lavishly reprinted here come from early in the character's career (1941-42) and include the introduction of his young protege, Captain Marvel Jr. The best of this batch showcase the artwork of Captain Marvel's originator, C. C. Beck, whose simple, assured cartooning surpasses the crude attempts at realism by the other featured artists. These delightful, if naive, strips epitomize the golden age of superhero comics. Gordon Flagg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.5 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars too short; but good reprints from the early golden age of heroes. April 20 2012
By Michael Dobey - Published on Amazon.com
This is a well remastered edition of the early captain marvel adventures, as well as the classic three part crossover of bulletman, capt marvel and the creation of capt marvel jr. Those three issues are outstanding. Mac Raboy has artwork in those issues. The stories otherwise are standard early 1940's stuff. Standard , nedor, fox and marvel had similiar stuff and they are of their era and aimed at kids. At least Captain Marvel and Bulletman are battling the Nazis in some stories. Including the fierce classic villian Capt Nazi. It drives me crazy to read wartime d.c. tales and rarely do they ever battle the axis!!! I was shocked by the fact that many stories did not have c.c. beck on them. He was doing most of the whiz comics stories and then a art studio would do captain marvel adventures. Still the let a bullpen do the art is never a good idea. A single artist should do each story and that's better comic book storytelling for sure. I do agree that other than the three part crossover tale , the stories here are generally weaker than what came later but as I have read many golden age stories of this era I wasn't even expecting much more than what you get here. So I don't understand the two star review , would the guy rather they skip the early stuff? Just because it's not as good as what came later???. OH well, at least this isn't printed on cheap crappy paper like todays D.C. archives are. They are badly done for sure. They should have added a few more comic book reprints here to get the length of the book over 200 pages though.
11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For Completists Only June 18 2008
By Eric Hildebrand - Published on Amazon.com
This volume continues with DC comics reprinting the mostly mundane and erratic early adventures of Capt. Marvel, with one notable exception: the Mac Raboy-drawn origin of Capt. Marvel Junior, which is a little better than the other stories so far reprinted in the Shazam Archives. This anthology only gets into the year 1942, and it is clear that Capt. Marvel had not yet found his stride by this time (in 1943, the great 20-something chapter Mr. Mind serial began, and this might be considered to be the beginning point of Cap's true greatness, which lasted until DC comics sued him out of existence in 1953...).

In fact, the amazing thing is just how bad most of the early Capt. Marvel stories are. With a few notable exceptions, they appear to be slapped together by a sweatshop of artists, Timely-style, with the story plotted out panel by panel. This is true not just of this volume, but also 1-3 of the Shazam Archives as well. For a lifelong fan of the original Fawcett material that DC used to reprint in the monthly Shazam magazine and those great tabloid size editions, it was truly shocking for me to see how pointless most of the stories are. I mean, most of these stories are bad even by golden age comic book standards, far worse than Superman, Batman or Justice Society stories of the same period. And I am a die-hard Capt. Marvel fan, not some modern era fanboy.

This stuff in this book makes the contemporary Timely material seem like Alan Moore and Brian Bolland. Clearly, when Otto Binder came on board, Cap really must have just come together for the 1st time. I recommend this book only for completists; the rest of us should save our money. Message to DC comics: you ought to be doing some TPB format anthologies of the good Fawcett material, people would scoop it up fast as you could print it.
5.0 out of 5 stars Shazam March 12 2014
By carole mele - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Captain Marvel back in all his glory, from a death brought upon him by greed in the comic book world of the 1950's that took him from the youth of that decade unable to fight the lawsuits that sent him into limbo
8 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars be aware Feb. 6 2008
By Dr R. J. Lofaro - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I was and am a fan of the Big Red Cheese...I should have realized that when DC put out the Shazam Archives (remember why "Capain Marvel" is a no-no?... except for some inane 1970's alien) that the Archives would not be all Capain Marvel...this one had 2 Bulletman stories (altho the Raboy art was great) as well as cross-overs involving Captain Marvel, Jr.
There were Captain Marvel stories, which varied in quality and artist. Next time, just pick 10/12 Captain Marvel stories, showing a progression from the very early Cap to the middle years...and, then, another volume, showing Cap from the middle years to the early 50's when Fawcett caved in to DC.
These would sell...and, if you want an all Marvel Family or an all Cap, Jr. or an all Mary Marvel Archives,do them.

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