“I couldn’t help it. I happen to have been born to do it.

I am sure that I would have been a rotten failure doing anything else.”

~ Ends Of The Earth ~

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Comical Visions ~ Andrews of Asia. 1944

As a high profile public figure during the 1920's through 1940's  Roy Chapman Andrews was the subject of newspaper cartoons, illustrated biographies, and treatments in comic book format.  I recently discovered that Andrews had been rendered into cartoon form within the pages of "It Really Happened", Popular Heroes of Past and Present, published by Wm. H. Wise & Co.  Copyright Best Syndicated Features, Inc.  1944.  Volume 1, Number 3.

With a cover drawn by the illustrious Alex Schomburg, RCA shares the issue with Carlson's Raiders, Maid of the Margiris, Theodoric the Great, Rescue at Truk, General Antoine Henri Jomini, Second Lieutenant Ernest Childers, and Cabeza de Vaca.

Apart from Schomburg's action-packed cover illustration, the interior artists are not identified, and perhaps it is just as well - the art work is dreadful, as is the accuracy of the story telling.  If the other stories are told with as many factual errors as the Andrews adventure, then a generation of youth grew up with the wrong information, terribly, terribly wrong.

This comic may have done more to perpetuate the image that Andrews shot his way across the Gobi of China and Mongolia, than Andrews did in his own writings.  Still,  I hope you can ignore the outrageous stereotypes, incorrect animals and vehicles, and enjoy a good old fashioned comic from the Golden Age.

With apologies to my Mongolian Colleagues in Ulaanbaatar.

Click each image to see near full size.

Click each to see near full size.

Click image to see near full size.