April 30, 2013

SPIES ESCAPE NETFLIX

Spy Vibers who use Netflix to stream classic movies from the MGM, Warner Brothers, and Universal catalogs have tonight only to screen titles before they migrate over to Warner Archive Instant. The deal includes James Bond films Dr. No (1962) and Goldfinger (1964), Deighton's Billion Dollar Brain (Michael Cain/1967), and Richard Lester's surreal classics, The Bed-Sitting Room (Peter Cook/1969) and How I Won the War (John Lennon/1967).  In a case of poor timing, Netflix is also testing a new web interface for member queues. Spy Vibers might have difficulty accessing the company website tonight, but I believe streaming content will function normally. Enjoy your last night with agents 007 and Harry Palmer on Netflix!


Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Mid-Century Modern in PeanutsRalph Byrd Dick Tracy, Spy Soundtracks, The Saint, Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 28, 2013

THE SPY VIBE

What is the Spy Vibe? Take the secret passageway to our Pinterest archive and join the party. You'll find mod spies with jetpacks and supermodel sidekicks, groovy pads, evil lairs, gadgets, MOMA furniture, and classic mystery/adventure conventions updated for the space age. Just push the bookcase and enter through here.


Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Mid-Century Modern in PeanutsRalph Byrd Dick Tracy, Spy Soundtracks, The Saint, Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 27, 2013

PULPFEST 2013

Whispers heard in dark corners and decoded on the internet warn us of a special gathering this summer! People from all over the globe will converge in Ohio for a thrilling weekend to celebrate the adventures of uncanny heroes & mysterious villains with names like The Spider, The Phantom Detective, Doc Savage, and Fu Manchu. If this rogue's gallery is unfamiliar, rest assured that their tales are linked by imagination and adventure to old favorites like Dr. No and agent 007. Pulpfest is an annual convention dedicated to vintage popular fiction, and like familiar comic conventions, the event will feature panels and presentations by artists and writers working on publications, movie screenings, readings, auctions, and a dealer room packed with ultra-rare pulp novels, big little books, cliffhanger serials, original art, new releases, men's adventure magazines, old-time radio shows, first editions, and paperbacks. The schedule for Pulpfest 2013 has just been announced (see below for highlights). Pulpfest will be held in Columbus Ohio from July 25th-28th. Join us there!


Some highlights scheduled for Pulpfest 2013. See the official website for more details here.

*The Pulp Descendants of Fu Manchu- Rick Lai discusses the influence of sax 
  Rohmer's devil doctor on the pulps.
*Hollywood and the Hero PulpsBlood 'n' Thunder editor Ed Hulse looks at The 
  Spider's Web (1938), followed by a screening of all chapters over two days.
*Doc Savage and the Pulp Heroes of 1933- A panelist of pulp scholars and 
  writers look at eighty years of the "Great Pulp Heroes." 
*Daily readings by writers publishing pulp continuation stories for characters 
  like The Phantom, The Avenger, Fu Manchu, Green Hornet, Honey West, and 
  many more!
*Fu Manchu and the Yellow Peril Pulps- A panelist of pulp scholars and writers 
  discuss Sax Rohmer's infamous creation and the character's influence on pop 
  culture.

Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Mid-Century Modern in PeanutsRalph Byrd Dick Tracy, Spy Soundtracks, The Saint, Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 24, 2013

MID-CENTURY MODERN SCHULZ

As a cartoon art teacher I always include a brief history of comic strips and comic books in my classes. Students are often amazed to see original sunday pages from the early days because newspapers printed the strips so large. Even if they don't know the comics, it's impressive to see an entire newspaper page devoted to the likes of like Dick Tracy, Flash Gordon, and Buck Rogers. To them, the art seems more akin to comic books than the strips they knew growing up. I ask them why, and with a little prodding, they start to notice the details in the backgrounds, the figures, and in the shading. What lovely cross-hatching! Around the mid-century, editors wanted to increase readership by offering more strips without necessarily devoting more pages to the funnies. The solution was to shrink down the size of the art and put more titles on each page. Deprived of the full space, all that cross-hatching and careful detail blocked up and became obsolete. The design approach had to change to express not only the size limitations of printing, but to catch up with the sensibilities of the post-war. After all, this was not the era of pre-war parlors weighted down by heavy furniture and ornate decor. There was a new generation who ushered in aesthetics based on clean minimal forms and what Hefner called the personal utopia. Along with innovators in architecture and design, comic creators also needed to reflect this shift to survive (and fit) on the page. Two groundbreaking strips began in 1950 that were perfectly tailored for modern demands: Beetle Bailey by Mort Walker (my book about Mort Walker on Amazon here) and Peanuts by Charles Schulz. Between May 4th and October 27th 2013, The Charles Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa will be running a special exhibit called Mid-Century Modern.


In the museum's brochure, Trope Group owner Christina Pratt points out that Schulz's panels offer us a window into his home. In one cartoon printed for the show, she points out that we can see Bonet's BKF Chair (1938) and the famous Molded Plywood/Low Side Chair by Eames (1946). Pratt writes that the exhibit will feature other Herman Miller licensed designs by Charles and Ray Eames, Isamu Noguchi, George Nelson, and others. I think visitors will see not only a time-capsule of Mid-Century Modern design, but also how Schulz (and Walker) created comics in the same wave of simple and playful lines. Don't miss it! On a side note, I will be the artist-in-residence at the Charles Schulz Museum in June. You can see a photo of my boyhood dream coming true- to sit at Schulz's drawing table- here


Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about spy soundtracks, The Saint, Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.


Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 22, 2013

RALPH BYRD IS DICK TRACY

Calling Dick Tracy fans. Spy Vibe salutes actor Ralph Byrd. Born on this day in 1909, Byrd is best remembered for playing detective Dick Tracy in four Republic cliffhanger serials, two feature films, and the Dick Tracy TV show in the early 1950s. Byrd got his start in a number of thrillers in the mid-1930s, including Chinatown Squad (1935) and The Adventures of Rex and Rinty (1935). The first Tracy serial was produced in 1937. Mining cartoonist Chester Gould's developing "rogue's gallery" of fiendish villains and gadgets, the cliffhanger used memorable conventions like a deformed mystery baddie and a sic-fi style flying wing (a proto-stealth bomber). Byrd returned to the role to fight spies and saboteurs in Dick Tracy Returns (1938), an evil scientist back from the dead in Dick Tracy's G-Men (1939), and organized crime in Dick Tracy vs. Crime Inc. (1941). Feature films followed with Dick Tracy's Dilemma (1947) and the fun vehicle for co-star Boris Karloff, Dick Tracy Meets Gruesome (1947). 


Although there were Tracy features without Byrd, he was a public favorite and seemed to embody the character for the screen. Ralph Byrd returned to play the famous detective on TV in 48 episodes from 1950-1952. He passed away from a heart attack at the age of 43 in 1952. Chester Gould's comic strip was an intoxicating cocktail of hard-boiled narrative and gritty violence wrapped in a stylish cartoon package. Ralph Byrd helped to bring that recipe to motion pictures and television for almost twenty years and he is fondly remembered. Stay tuned for more Dick Tracy on Spy Vibe soon.


Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about spy soundtracks, The Saint, Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 21, 2013

SPY VIBE SUNDAY

Spend Sunday with stylish detectives and fiendish villains over at Spy Vibe's Pinterest page. You'll find image archives devoted to classic Mystery/Adventure, Comic Thrills, Dick Tracy, The Phantom, Cliffhanger Serials, Spy Vibe Style, Ian Fleming, Fantomas, and more!


Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), PG Tips Brooke Bond, 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, Syd Cain's comic strip, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 18, 2013

RECORD STORE DAY: SPY SOUNDTRACKS

Deal Alert: Some of your favorite music from cult spy TV shows of the 1960s is making a rare comeback this weekend! The classic album featuring music from The Girl From U.N.C.L.E. has been re-pressed as a limited release for Record Store Day. Spy Vibers should check in with their local dealers about claiming a copy. Record Store Day is this Saturday, April 20th. RSD releases are available only as in-store purchases and cannot be ordered via on-line venders like Amazon. Spy Vibers in the UK will also have a chance to pick up Themes For Action, a compilation of music from The Prisoner, The Saint, Danger Man, and Man in a Suitcase. This is a cute 10" record and serves as an appetizer for Network's upcoming fall releases of many spy soundtracks on mono vinyl! US shops can sometimes get the UK releases after RSD, so check with your local dealer about Themes For Action. And for classic TV fans, there is also a 7" single edition featuring themes from Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Munsters. Record Store Day info here.



Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), PG Tips Brooke Bond, 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, Syd Cain's comic strip, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 16, 2013

THE SAINT: NEW COMIC

The adventures of that modern-day Robin Hood, The Saint, have returned as a new comic book from Moonstone. Issue 0 is currently in shops and I picked up a copy (cover A) to preview. The graphics and choice of color impressed me right away. There is a vintage vibe to the palette and drawings that give the book a timeless quality. I prefer my retro heroes in period pieces, so the choice to set the story in 1942 was encouraging. The writers do not reveal much in this preview issue, but the adventure begins when The Saint meets a mysterious zombie-like burn victim on a Texas highway. I can't wait to find out what happens next! The Saint is one of many classic characters being adapted by Moonstone. Others in the publisher's stable include Honey West, Bulldog Drummond, Sherlock Holmes, Lone Ranger, Zorro, Kolchak, Captain Midnight, Doc Savage, The Phantom, The Phantom Detective, Mr. Moto, The Spider, Green Hornet, and Mandrake. The Saint 0 covers A and B below.


From Moonstone: "The first new SAINT comic book in America in over 60 years! Soon to be a major television show! The Robin Hood of modern crime returns! He robs from the evil and heartless rich, and gives to the wronged and deserving poor--in the process, keeping a percentage for his own expenses. He doesn't work for the law, the government, or anyone else. He is a lone wolf…an adventurer, a detective, a rogue, but always…a gentleman! In “The Sizzling Saboteur” - The Saint travels to Texas in pursuit of a man who has been sabotaging weapons factories, but when his quarry turns up burned to crisp, he has to contend with both the local police, a trio of mysterious men behind the sabotage, and a beautiful Russian. This issue is a preview of the upcoming graphic novel, and it will be the only time this story will be seen in color, so get it while it’s hot!" Story by Leslie Charteris and Mel Odom. Art by Eduardo Barreto. 16 pages, color.


Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalogdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), PG Tips Brooke Bond, 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, Syd Cain's comic strip, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 15, 2013

NEW IAN FLEMING CATALOG

Jon Gilbert, editor of Ian Fleming: The Bibliography, announced over the weekend that he has released a new catalog of rare Ian Fleming publications through Adrian Harrington LtdSee Spy Vibe's post hereGilbert's Bibliography came out last fall to high acclaim and has quickly become the premiere reference book to Fleming's work. Ian Fleming. A Catalog is a descriptive resource of rare and unusual material that Gilbert has uncovered over the years as the Ian Fleming archivist for Adrian Harrington. This edition will be a nice companion to the Bibliography, and a much-needed update from Iain Campbell's catalog from the 1980s.


Chapters in the new catalog include: Fleming's James Bond novels, short stories, omnibus editions and collected works, The Diamond Smugglers, Thrilling Cities, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, miscellaneous Ian Fleming works, biographies and reference books, Bond source books and background material, and a selected bibliography. The book is 80 pages, with illustrations in color and black and white. Spy Vibers can send inquiries to rare@harringtonbooks.co.uk. Spy Vibe's interview with Jon Gilbert here. More Catalog images below.


Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carrdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Op Art, Thomas Allen pulp art, The Shadow, Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), PG Tips Brooke Bond, 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, Syd Cain's comic strip, and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here.

Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!

April 14, 2013

JAMES SECRETAN AGENT 007

Ian Fleming's niece, Kate Grimond, made portions of Fleming's early draft of Casino Royale public in a press release today. Among the various details that were changed during revisions, it was revealed that Fleming's first stab at a name for his secret agent was James Secretan. Hopefully Fleming's drafts will become more widely available. More details at The Independent. Casino Royale turned 60 on April 13th and was celebrated with special events at the University of Illinois. The title of the new James Bond continuation novel by William Boyd (Any Human Heart) will be announced on Monday, April 15th. 

THOMAS ALLEN: PULP ARTIST

Michigan artist Thomas Allen has been doing really interesting work with book sculpture and paper cut-outs. Spy Vibers may have seen his images on the covers of best-selling novels and in the pages of national magazines. Allen published a collection of Pulp Fiction pieces called Uncovered back in 2007, which was designed by Chip Kidd as a board book for Aperture. Chip Kidd: "He photographs books, but does so in a way that’s never been done before- by selectively cutting out the figures on their covers and interior pages with surgical precision and setting them up in compositions, bringing them into the third dimension. It’s as if the characters have suddenly woken up, that what’s happening to them is so intense and vivid it can’t be contained."



Thomas Allen, who just turned 50, is currently working on a new project around old family photographs. The photographer has kept up an interesting blog over the years, where he shares his process and news of his many publications. There is even a cool a segment about a workshop he led on how to make and photograph book sculptures. The Pulp Fiction material from 2007-2009 will be of most interest to Spy Vibers, but I suggest you spend some time looking through his posts. You will find a treasure trove of ingenious creations that will pull you into many different literary worlds. Highly recommended!



Ian Fleming on Spy Vibe: recent posts include Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward,Whispering Jack SmithHawaiian GuitarJoe Fingers Carrdiscovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book coversIan Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address, and our Ian Fleming image archive link here.

Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Operation Kid Brother (MST3K), PG Tips Brooke Bond, 1960s espionage writers, my review of SKYFALL, 007 at the Intnl Spy Museum, Johnny Sokko and His Flying Robot, and more. 


Want to support Spy Vibe? Please make a small donation with our secure Paypal tip-jar link at the top left of the main page. Nothing is too small to help cover the increasing bills for the domain, web-forwarding and other costs to maintain the site. Thank you!
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