(I)Gold Key Series?
'For Those Who came in Late',... The Phantom originated as Newspaper strips and typical of comic strips, they were published in black and white Dailies, and color Sundays.
There were several attempts at bringing out comic book version of these strips. Most of them were reprints. with exception of some adaptations.
In 1962,KK publications decided to bring out comic book versions of this famous strip. It began under the label Gold Key. The stories in these series were neither new stories, nor reprints of the already published strips. But were completely re-scripted and re-drawn versions of selected Dailies and Sundays. The artwork for these were done more liesurly and hence more detailed and colorful. But one cannot really judge whether they are actually better than the original. There certainly is a charm to the originals as they appeared in the strips day after day.
Bill Lignante did the art work inside and George Wilson painted the covers for this series. One can tell that they were talented artists.
So, what we have in this book, are collections of the very early exclusively 'comic book' format of The Phantom.
(II) Book quality
This collection is a nice hardbound edition, with dust jacket.The stories are printed on nice thick high quality paper. The print quality itself is not extraordinary, but pretty good. the glossy paper coming in the way of enjoying the fine art work. But probably the original books were the only sources, and so this can be summed up as a good quality photocopy at the best. Still 5 stars? absolutely. I think this book has more value than just the production quality.
(III) What does it contain
This particular collection contains the books #1 through #8 from the Gold Key series. These are replicas of the orginal books, including the colorful covers of each of the book.
The stories in these books are adaptations from the Dailies and Sundays from the late fifties and were originally drawn by the talented Wilson McCoy.
#1 Nov 1962
The Game (Original details: Daily #52: Ragon's Game)
#2 Feb 1963
The Rattle (Sunday #46: The Rattle)
The Test (Sunday #42: The Horned Star Demons)
#3 May 1963
The Diamond Cup (Sunday #39: Alexander's Cup)
The Crybaby (Daily #71: The Crybaby)
#4 Aug 1963
Ooogooru (Daily #75: Oogooru and the Witchmen)
The Goggle-Eye Pirates (Sunday #56 : The Goggle-Eye Pirates)
#5 Nov 1963
The Swamp Rats (Daily #74: The Swamp Rats)
The Phantom's Boyhood (Sunday #53: The Childhood of the Phantom)
#6 Feb 1964
The Lady From Nowhere (Daily #49, The Lady From Nowhere)
The Phantom's Boyhood: Diana (Sunday #53: The Childhood of the Phantom)
#7 May 1964
The Super Apes ( Daily #51, The Super Apes)
The Phantom's Boyhood: School (Sunday #53: The Childhood of the Phantom)
#8 Aug 1964
The Belt (Sunday #37, The Belt)
This is certainly a collectors item for Phantom fans, since this series collects the beginnings of interesting adaptation in the comic book format.