« Somehow, this thing had caught the spark of life! And, anything that lives will fight to stay alive… even if it’s just a Rag-a Bone and a Hank of Hair! »
Ah, Brother Power, the Geek. A notorious flop for DC in 1968… or was it? At the time, it took several months for a book’s initial sales reports to make their way back to the publisher. Axing a title after two measly issues is quite a preemptive and premature strike against it. I suspect a case of toxic in-house politics. From the onset, editorial cold feet had the suits meddling with the project: the character of the animated rag doll was to be called The Freak, which was nixed in favour of the less druggy but more chicken-head-bite-y The Geek.
Ahem. Anyway, BPTG was the brainchild of Joe Simon, presumably expanding on his and partner Jack Kirby‘s far darker A Rag-A Bone and a Hank of Hair (Black Magic no. 13, i.e. vol. 2 No.7, June 1952), illustrated by Mort Meskin (likely inked by George Roussos).
This lovely panorama is from Brother Power The Geek no. 1 (Sept.-Oct. 1968, DC). Written, laid out and inked by Joe Simon, finished pencils by Al Bare.
Say, have I seen Brother Power’s fellow detainees somewhere? Why, yes, of course! It’s Tentacle Master Wally Wood‘s Dorothy, Stanley and Doris, introduced to the world by Topps‘ Ugly Stickers back in 1965! Designed by Wood, they were painted by the masterful Norman Saunders.
Brother Power the Geek, despite its commercial failure and infamy, offered a good-natured, unpretentious romp, even if didn’t quite show us « The Real-Life Scene of the Dangers of Hippie-Land! » You can’t always get what you want.
Brother Power was brought back under DC’s Vertigo imprint in 1993, but as with the revival of its fellow Joe Simon creation, Prez, it received a « groovy » and « ironic » hipster treatment. Bah.