Saturday 20 June 2015

Two of a Kind - Death Dives Deep

A title links the items in this post.

D.C. Thomson's Commando issue 75 from 1963 features a dramatic fight between two figures in submarine escape gear. I'm assuming the chap on the right is the hero and he appears to be wearing a D.S.E.A. (Davis Submarine Escape Apparatus).

This cover appears to have been the inspiration for a more recent issue of Commando which I'm including as a bonus.

In 1954, Standard Comics had issue 15 of Adventures into Darkness ready to publish but, fearing the attention of the newly-formed Comics Code authority, they suddenly cancelled their entire line of horror titles. One of the stories was Gene Fawcett's Death Dives Deep and it remained unpublished until 1985 when it appeared in 3-D in Eclipse Comics' Three-Dimensional Seduction of the Innocent! (Seduction of the Innocent was the book by Dr Frederic Wertham that led to the crackdown on horror comics and the formation of the CCA). These scans are from the original artwork.

Gene Fawcette (d1988) began his career with the Eisner/Iger studio. He worked for the likes of Fiction House, Better Publications, Avon Comics, Atlas (Marvel) and Ziff-Davis. In addition to horror and westerns, he worked on characters as diverse as Captain Wings, Princess Pantha and Dennis the Menace! He worked for magazines such as Famous Fantastic Mysteries and Amazing Stories and in 1961 began drawing the Sunday page of the educational strip Our New Age by the wonderfully named Dr. Athelstan Spilhaus. He later took over the daily strip until it finished in 1975. In the late '70s he provided covers for various comics from Western Publishing (Gold Key).

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