Tuesday, March 24, 2015


DC Comics' Showcase #73 presented us with Steve Ditko's instant classic - The Creeper! He went on to a six issue series and a back-up feature in three other comic book series.

Jack Ryder is a hard-hitting commentator for Gotham City's WHAM-TV. Secretly though, he is The Creeper, a garish avenger, with laughter that cuts like shards of glass into the hearts of evil men. Powerful beyond measure, the acrobatic Creeper becomes a terrifying force of justice to combat troublemakers, tormentors and terrorists of our world.

Original art for the splash page for Showcase #73!
Detective Comics #443 reprinted the origin of the Creeper from Showcase #73!

Showcase #73  Beware The Creeper Wanted by the Police Wanted by the Underworld The Creeper #100,000 Dead!
"The Coming of the Creeper!!"
Professor Yatz is kidnapped by "Reds". Jack Ryder, mouthy TV host, is fired, then hired as a security investigator. He buys odds and ends for a bizarre costume for Devlin's society ball. He's stabbed and thrown in Yatz. Yatz hides his inventions: a molecular transmitter goes in the wound, and a healing serum in his veins. But Yatz is shot. The new "Creeper" goes wild on the villains - and accidentally, cops - laughing like a maniac to scare them. He exposes Devlin, then learns the moleculizer has healed inside. The Creeper will be back.
Plot by Steve Ditko.
Written by Don Segall.
Reprinted in Detective Comics #443. By the way, this 100 page issue included a Manhunter story by Archie Goodwin & Walt Simonson, along side with the Batman and a great Alex Toth, Golden Age Green Lantern story!

Beware the Creeper #1  Where Lurks the Menace?
"Where Lurks the Menace?" 
The Creeper versus The Terror.
Plot by Steve Ditko.
Series written by Denny O'Neil (aka Sergius O'Shaugnessy in issues #1-#3)Feature continues from Showcase #73.

Beware the Creeper #2  The Many Faces of Proteus!
"The Creeper A Special Report"
The Creeper encounters Proteus.

Beware the Creeper #3  The Isle of Fear
"The Isle of Fear"
A lost civilization on a remote island with medieval characters.

Beware the Creeper #4  Which Face Hides my Enemy?
"Which Face Hides my Enemy?"
Return of a disguised Proteus.

Beware the Creeper #5  Look at Me Creeper! Look at the True Face of Proteus...And Then Die!!
"The Color of Rain is Death"
Dramatic cliffhanger with Proteus. 
Inks by Mike Peppe.

Beware the Creeper #6  The Creeper has Fought his Final Battle! Don't Miss...A Time To Die!

"A Time to Die"
Cover art by Gil Kane, pencils by Steve Ditko & Jack Sparling, inks by Mike Peppe.

This version of the Creeper continues as a feature in 1st Issue Special #7, World's Finest Comics #249-255 & Cancelled Comic Cavalcade #2

Text page from 1st Issue Special #7!

1st issue Special #7  The Sensational Return of the Macabre Manhunter!
"Menace of the Human Firefly!"
Revival of The Creeper, as he takes on former Batman villain Firefly
Written by Michael Fleisher.
Inks on the cover by Al Milgrom & on the story by Mike Royer.
Includes cameos of Batman villains the Scarecrow & Two-Face

The Creeper was collected in a nice hardcover edition. The cover was an alternate version of the cover for Beware The Creeper #1, with the figure of Menace and cover copy removed. It contains reprints from Showcase #73, Beware the Creeper #1-6, 1st Issue Special #7, World's Finest Comics #249-255 (written & drawn by Ditko) and Cancelled Comic Cavalcade #2 (was to be published as Showcase #106, written & drawn, along with the cover, by Ditko.)

Fantastic, you have to get this! All that as well as a brief biographical article about writer/artist Steve Ditko.

I loved these Silver Age characters Ditko created, Blue Beetle, Question, Captain Atom & Hawk and the Dove. Fantastic comic books all! He was truly a master!

Live Large My Friends!

Thank You!

Some Ditko work on The Demon!
Ditko work from San Diego Comic Con!

1 comment:

  1. The Creeper is a character that has been debased out of Ditko's hands. Those early issues and the Worlds Finest stories were fun. Wish this series had lasted. Great costume design as we expect from Ditko.