Wow, my first post on my first blog. I know, I know, do we really need another blogger prattling on about comic books? Probably not. But who cares! Comic books are awesome! Also, for someone as computer illiterate as I am, I felt it was a challenge, a fear of technology that needed to be overcome just in order to function in this age of social media. Now I know how my mother felt when I tried to teach her how to use the VHS player. I have also been experimenting with Twitter and you can find me there from time to time at @MentorsCamper. There you can find my random thoughts about comics and retweets of comic book and Doctor Who related news that I find particularly interesting. However, the main reason for starting this blog is that I love comic books. I love comic conventions. I love movies (especially those of the “classic“ variety). I love books. Above all, I love talking and writing about them. And I love meeting people who share that joy.
My introduction to comics started when my dad brought home a brown paper sack full of comic books that he purchased from a garage sale. Most of them were DC’s with a smattering of Dell and Charlton (the wall paper on the blog is taken from a Ditko drawn Charlton back up story called “Killjoy”). But it wasn’t the various Flash, Green Lanterns and Sgt Rocks that caught my eye. It was Amazing Spider-Man 115. This is the comic book most responsible for getting me started on my journey into the wonderful world of sequential art and collecting. I became a huge fan of Marvel and Spider-Man as a result. It changed everything.
For those not familiar with the show, Shazam was the magical word that caused a bolt of lightening to strike a young Billy Batson, transforming him into the worlds mightiest mortal Captain Marvel. Mentor was Billy’s friend, an elderly gentleman sporting a white moustache and a safari jacket, enjoyed classical music and occasionally dabbled in archery. Billy and Mentor traveled the country in Mentor’s Winnebago, helping kids deal with such things as peer pressure and car thieves. Mentor was, well, a Mentor to Billy. And when Captain Marvel needed back up, Mentor was there with his trusty bow and arrow (although it was used mostly to launch a rope to help pull a kid with a broken ankle out of a shallow ditch. This might not seem very complex when compared to today‘s television offerings, but when compared to children‘s television of the day, such as Far Out Space Nuts, it seemed positively Shakespearean).
|Tremayne in "War of the Worlds"|
Mentor was played by the late actor, British born Les Tremayne. Tremayne worked in radio and film and was involved in television practically since it‘s inception. He was in two of my favorite films, Alfred Hitchcock’s “North By Northwest” and George Pal’s “War Of The Worlds”. On radio he played Dashiell Hammett’s witty detective Nick Charles in the radio show series “The Thin Man”. He also starred in many classic tv shows such as Perry Mason, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Ellery’s dad “Inspector Queen” in the 50s Ellery Queen series and My Favorite Martian among countless other appearances.
So there you have it. My rather lengthy explanation for my reasons and inspirations for creating this humble little blog. But enough about me. I also want to hear your stories. How did your love of comic books, collecting, movies, television, etc start? Personally, those stories are fascinating to me and I want to hear them. So, to those of you reading this let me just say...hello! Welcome to Mentor’s Camper!