Thursday, July 11, 2013

The League: Shopping Spree at Hake's Americana and Collectibles

I took a few weeks off from The League of Extraordinary Bloggers to sorta' focus on other posts and projects, but I'm back to partake in one of the group's more popular topics--

Go on a fictional shopping spree at Hake’s current auction #209 to make your collection a little more amazing.

This blog didn't exist the first time the League took a crack at this topic, so I'm glad it's back, allowing me the opportunity to peruse the site's current auction and pick out some favorites. It was a little disheartening at first glance, because while there is an absolutely overwhelming amount of incredible items, there wasn't much that appealed to me as a collector. Most of the items up for bid are from before I was born, and where I'm not against collecting stuff that's older than I am [especially comic books], my main areas of interest didn't seem to be covered.

So, I was originally content to sit out another week with the League, checking out all the other member's blogs and admiring their picks. And then I saw this--

Vincent, over at The Robot's Pajamas, picked out this particular item and I had to do the same. It's original art for the Gobots: War of the Gobots Golden Book done by Steve Ditko. This immediately jumped out at me for a number of reasons.

There's my love and admiration for the works of Ditko, easily one of my favorite talents in the entire history of the comic industry. I've mentioned his character, The Creeper, before, but never fully expressed how important the man's work has been in my life. My very first comic [Eclipse Comics Monthly #1] featured one of his stories, a quick tale starring a bizarre hero by the name of Static. Without even realizing it at a young age, I was constantly finding myself drawn to his numerous contributions to both Marvel and DC, as well as titles and characters from smaller companies.

And this particular Golden Book Super Adventure.

Yeah, that's right, I actually owned a copy of the book this art is featured in when I was a kid. It was lost sometime over the years, its fate unknown, which is unfortunate, because I wasn't aware that Steve Ditko was responsible for the art until seeing this auction. Even to this day, I'm still kinda' partial to all things Gobots, and combining them with a true legend of the comic industry like Ditko is too damn sweet to pass up.

Another piece of my childhood that I would love to own. Here's a framed, original poster for the "classic", 1961-release, Gorgo. This is one of the movies that I used to rent constantly on VHS when I was a kid [along with Godzilla 1985 and Dinosaurus!] from our local, mom 'n pop video store. It's a British made knock-off of Toho's Godzilla and a pretty fucking fun one at that.

Plus, there's an interesting connection to my previous pick. Steve Ditko illustrated 23-issues of a Gorgo comic book for Charlton Comics from 1961 to 1965.

This is another find that I saw on a few other members' posts which I likewise couldn't resist. It really shouldn't be too surprising that it would jump out at so many of us, right? My very first topic with the League briefly touched upon my shaky relationship with all things Star Wars, but nothing has ever diminished the flame within me that burns for Burger King. I am practically charbroiled infatuated with the fast-food franchise.

Oh, and Peter Cushing.

I was first exposed to the man's career thanks to his portrayal of Grand Moff Tarkin, so it would be nice to commemorate that with a poorly rendered image of his face on a Coca-Cola collectible glass. I only want to pay 59-cents for it, though.

Hello there, Funky Phantom watch, you beautiful thing. While the short-lived cartoon featuring a Revolutionary War-era ghost and a gang of teens aired a decade before I was born, I was able to discover it thanks to the early days of Cartoon Network. A time when the station was showing dozens of fantastic Hanna-Barbera programs like this, Jabberjaw, The Amazing Chan and the Chan Clan, and Scooby's All-Star Laff-a-Lympics. I was smitten with so many of those cartoons, but finding any sort of related memorabilia was difficult. Sure, I could find Scooby-related merch easily enough, but this is the kind of thing I would have loved owning when I was younger.

Does it also come in Grape Ape?

Speaking of apes.

I have no idea what "Mech-Gorilla" is, except for something that I need to own right now, please. According to the auction, it is a 5.25" tall die-cast gorilla Arkron Space Robot by Ark Co. Ltd. of Tokyo, Japan. It also apparently shoots knives from its chest and is interchangeable to form my own space robots. You might be asking what it is interchangeable with and god, the answer is incredible and such a goddamn tease.

The back of the box shows several other robotic creatures, all with pieces that you can remove and add to any of the others. The limbs and weapons can be intermixed between each of the six monsters shown. And these aren't just any generic, robotic beasts. Even with my limited knowledge of tokusatsu programs, I recognize a few of the featured robots as enemies of the heroic Ultraman.

Which is where the tease comes in. As cool as it would be to own "Mech-Gorilla" and pretend that he's Mechani-Kong from the brilliant, Toho-released King Kong Escapes, nothing is going to top owning a robot-version of Baltan or Red King.

Meanwhile, with the rest of the League--

A big thanks to The Robot's Pajamas for inspiring me to post by featuring so many great finds.

Shezcrafti found a lot of great '80s goodness, from Pee-Wee to Betty White.

AEIOU and Sometimes Why... wants to score with Space Invaders, which sounds a little risque to me.

Over at Branded in the 80s, we discover there's a "chicken-walker"-shaped hole in Shawn's heart.

And welcome to G.I.Jigsaw, who tackles their first League-topic and features some amazing, vintage finds.


  1. Oh wow! I love Burger King too! I had it for lunch today. I feel so sad typing that. I like your picks though. The Gobots art is really cool. The robot Godzilla is interesting, but how cool is the Gorgo poster!? I remember renting movies like that at the local video store. So much fun.

    1. Honestly, if I had a choice between the items I picked from Hake's and Burger King for lunch, I'm not sure which I'd end up choosing. Perfect trash-food for watching Gorgo on VHS.

    2. Oh for sure! You have to have trash food for watching Gorgo. lol : )

  2. Mech-Gorilla!?!? I think I'm having the same innate reaction.

    1. It is absolutely a thing of beauty, isn't it?

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