Tag Archives: Captain Marvel Jr

Elvis and Comic Books

 Elvis Reading Archie Comic Book

This is an altered Al Wertheimer photo showing Elvis traveling by train to Memphis on July 4, 1956. He is reading Betty and Veronica and Jughead comic books, which have been colorized. I found the picture on the website Dial B for Blog, the self proclaimed World’s Greatest Comic Blogazine. The site once did a four-part series on the connection between Elvis and Captain Marvel Jr., and I condensed it for an ElvisBlog article back in 2005.

 

Jughead's Folly 1957

As much as Elvis liked the Archie series comic books, it seems the feeling was mutual. This is a 1957 issue where Jughead imitates Elvis and sings “All Shook Down.” Jughead’s Folly is believed by experts to contain the very first reference to Elvis Presley in a comic book. For that reason, a very good quality copy of it sold for $460 at a 2005 auction.

 

Elvis on Archie and Me Cover

This Archie and Me issue has a drawing of Elvis on the cover. This artwork is much better than the one of Fats Domino’s face. It looks like the artist didn’t know who Fats was and painted Big Joe Turner instead. This comic book was part of a lot of 41 that sold at auction in 2008, so its value can’t be reported here.

 

Life With Archie

This time it’s Archie, not Jughead, with the guitar on the cover. Jughead doesn’t seem to be too happy about it. I guess he liked being the one making like Elvis. This Life with Archie cover showed up on Google, and the year wasn’t noted. But, it’s original price was just ten cents, same as the first one above that came out in 1957.

 

Elvis on Spoof Comic

Marvell Comics also put Elvis on the cover of a comic book. Actually, this issue of Spoof featured a galaxy of rock stars. Starting from bottom left above the railing, you can recognize the Jackson 5 (isn’t little baby Michael cute?). Above them are the Osmonds. Moving right we see John Lennon administering the oath of office to David Cassidy. To the right of John is Yoko Ono, then George, Paul, and Ringo. Next is Mick Jagger and another member of the Rolling Stones. Finally, we get to Elvis (did he ever really say “Far out?”). I guess the guy in the fluffy
shirt is David Bowie. This 1973 issue sold for $60 in 2007.

 

Elvis on I Love You Comic Book

I don’t know if Charlton Comics are still around, but they put out this      I Love You issue in 1966 with a drawing of Elvis on the cover. Too bad we can’t see what the “Here Comes Elvis” story is all about. This comic sold for $1,300 in 2011.

 

Elvis on Young Lovers Comics

This is a little different. Instead of a drawing of Elvis on the cover, here we get an actual photograph. The price is ten cents, so it probably came out around 1957.

 

Elvis-Looking Ren and Stimpy Comic

We’ll finish up with other Elvis-related comic books I found on the internet. This one is a kind of interesting variation on the Elvis stamp. Check out what’s in Ren/Elvis’ hand. It’s not a mic, it’s a hotdog.

 

Starman

I don’t know anything about Starman. If he’s a good guy, then the guy in the Elvis jumpsuit must be the villain.

 

King Comics

Is this Elvis-looking dude a villain?  Or maybe all those zombies are the bad guys and King is just a scary-looking good guy.

 

Trencher Comics

There’s no doubt that Trencher is the bad guy here. What’s up with Elvis’ hair? And what’s that sticking out of his mouth?

 

Elvis on Crossfire Rainbow Comic

We’ll end with a comic book cover that portrays Elvis as he really looked. Crossfire and Rainbow are the two characters at the bottom. The title of the story inside is “This Isn’t Elvis.” If not, he still had two fine side-kicks. Wish I could read the story.

 

© 2014 Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister All Rights Reserved www.ElvisBlog.net

 

ElvisBlog Thumbnail Icon

Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.

Elvis, Captain Marvel Jr and the TCB Lightning Bolt

Just about every Elvis fan know the story behind the letters TCB on his jewelry.  Of course, it stands for Taking Care of Business, which was kind of a slogan for Elvis.

TCB Ring and Pendant

 

However, do you know the origin of the lightning bolt in Elvis’ TCB jewelry?

And on the wall decorations in the basement game room at Graceland.

Wall Decorations in Graceland TV Room

And on the tail of his Lisa Marie Airplane.

Lightning Bolt on Tail of Lisa Marie Airplane

I have numerous reference books that say it was inspired by the lightning bolt worn on the chest of Captain Marvel Jr., Elvis’ favorite comic book hero.

Young Captain Marvel Jr.

Even more significantly, these sources say that super-hero Captain Marvel Jr. influenced a great deal of Elvis’ life and appearance.

One web site asserts that Elvis read Captain Marvel Jr. Comics from September 1949 to January 1953 while living at the Lauderdale Court.  In fact, the Presley’s apartment has been preserved as a historic site, and a copy of Captain Marvel Jr. #51 sits on a desk in Elvis’ old room.

Captain Marvel Jr. Comic Book on Elvis’ Nightstand

 

In her book “Elvis Presley: The Man, The Life, The Legend,” author Pamela Clarke Keough states, “Elvis used comics as an escape… Around the age of 12, Elvis discovered Captain Marvel Jr. and quickly became almost obsessed with him.”

Patriotic Captain Marvel

Billy Smith, Elvis’ cousin and longtime friend, said that Elvis especially admired the dual image of Captain Marvel Jr. and his alter ego — an everyday guy, poor teenager Freddy Freeman.  But, when he said the magic words, Freddie Freeman turned into super crime-fighter Captain Marvel Jr.

The comic book website Dial B for Blog sums it up nicely:  “This is why Elvis idolized Cap Jr. – because the Freddy Freeman/Captain Marvel Jr. character was a perfect mirror image of the once and future Elvis.  Freddy represented Elvis as he was, and Captain Marvel Jr. represented Elvis as he wished to be.”

Captain Marvel Jr. and Freddie Freeman

Pictures of Captain Marvel Jr. in the early fifties do indeed show a hairstyle ultimately affected by Elvis — long, glistening, black, with unruly locks hanging down over his forehead.  Also, there is a distinct similarity between Captain Marvel Jr.’s outfit and the seventies Elvis.  The argument certainly can be made that Elvis copied his one-piece jumpsuit, wide belt, boots, and most of all, the cape from his boyhood hero.

Finally, young Freddy Freeman was often seen wearing white scarves, and we all know how Elvis would go through dozens of them at every concert.

There does not seem to be any connection between Captain Marvel Jr. and Elvis in the use of the Taking Care of Business motto or the letters TCB.  That appears to be a unique personal creation by Elvis.

©  2012     Philip R Arnold, Original Elvis Blogmeister     All Rights Reserved
Elvis, Elvis Presley, and Graceland are registered trademarks of Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc.