First and Only Weekly Online Fanzine Devoted to the Life and Works of Edgar Rice Burroughs
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Volume 3129
Edgar Rice Burroughs

ECLECTICA v.2010.09

Coming Soon in ERBzine

JoN does battle with two Tarzans in Tuacahn, Utah
(. . . and is whupped both times. . .)

New from Triad

Thomas Yeates Refreshes Burroughs' Barsoom
Posted by Steve in Arts, Books, Interviews, Reviews, The Magic Lantern - Steve Weintz on June 15th, 2010
Reprinted in Famous Monsters of Filmland
On the Horizon: A Second Printing with New Cover Art

Last year Barnes & Noble commissioned Eisner Award-winning comics illustrator Thomas Yeates to illustrate its new edition of the first three Mars tales of Edgar Rice Burroughs. The handsome new volume, John Carter of Mars, contains A Princess of Mars, The Gods of Mars, and The Warlord of Mars, which together comprise a trilogy recounting the fighting Virginian’s arrival and ascendance on the Red Planet.

A Princess of Mars was Edgar Rice Burroughs' first book, written after a series of unsuccessful endeavors led him try his hand at bettering what he read in the pulps.  His next book was the now-obscure The Outlaw of Torn; Yeates has done his part to revive this overlooked tale of the Middle Ages by illustrating a full color graphic novel edition to be published by Dark Horse under the title The Outlaw Prince (part one).  Burroughs' third book was somewhat better received; Tarzan of the Apes went on to conquer every entertainment medium in use at the time or invented since.  A Princess of Mars and its two sequels were followed by eight more Martian novels, but unlike the Ape-Man has never had success in Hollywood; great hopes attend Pixar’s [Ed: The Andrew Stanton directed Disney film scheduled for June 8, 2012 release] effort now underway.

Yeates’ art is infused with the spirit of high adventure and a healthy disregard for authority. Originally from Sacramento, he eventually moved to New Jersey to attend the first two years of the Joe Kubert School. He first got work doing back up stories in Sgt. Rock and various mystery and Science fiction comics at DC, then went on to Swamp Thing. After moving back to Northern California he drew Timespirits for Marvel/Epic and a number of projects for Eclipse including Brought to Light. A return to Swamp Thing and Dragon Lance graphic novels followed in the late eighties.

In the nineties he got to draw some of his favorite heroes, Tarzan and Zorro on various projects. Three Universe X and Paradise X specials for Marvel followed, and he helped Cary Nord pencil issues 3 – 14 of Conan for Dark Horse. Next up he did seven graphic novels like Robin Hood and Perseus for Lerner Publishing. Thomas is just now finishing two kids books on ancient myths by Anthony Horowitz titled Legends – Beasts and Monsters and Legends – Battles and Quests. Currently Yeates is also producing Conan art for Groo vs Conan with Sergio Aragones and Mark Evanier for Dark Horse.

John Carter's first glimpse of Dejah Thoris, the Princess of Mars
John Carter's first glimpse of Dejah Thoris, the Princess of Mars. 
From the new Barnes & Noble edition of Edgar Rice Burroughs' 
John Carter of Mars illustrated 
by Thomas Yeates.
John Carter and Woola in the land of Kaol from The Warlord of Mars
John Carter and Woola in the land of Kaol
from The Warlord of Mars in
the new Barnes & Noble edition of Edgar Rice Burroughs' 
John Carter of Mars illustrated by Thomas Yeates.
FM: Tell us first about you and Edgar Rice Burroughs, and his version of Old Mars, Barsoom.

TY: Like most Burroughs fans I started reading his books in my youth, by high school I'd gone from his Tarzan series to his Mars series and beyond the farthest star, so to speak. I first was interested in his books because I liked Tarzan movies and because of the terrific Frazetta and Krenkel cover art on paperbacks I’d seen. What keeps me interested in Burroughs today is his amazing vision of completely imaginary worlds and cultures, vividly described adventures and pointed amusing criticism of our own society, which he considered to be quite mad, and on that point I must say I agree with him. The first three John Carter books are among his best works and I absolutely had a blast illustrating them. I had always wanted to be a book illustrator, but there wasn’t much of a market for that when I got started so I ended up drawing comic books. This new profusely illustrated edition of John Carter of Mars should still be available either at Barnes & Noble stores or from them online.

FM: Please talk about your connections to Forrest J Ackerman and Famous Monsters of Filmland.

TY: Famous Monsters was advertised in the old Warren Magazines, Creepy, Eerie and Vampirella, which I pored over endlessly in my formative years, so I was aware of it, and thumbed through a few issues in the used book stores I haunted back then. This would have been the early seventies. In the late seventies I went to the Joe Kubert School and some of my classmates had issues of Famous Monsters laying around, probably Steve Bissette who was later my housemate; he’s a walking encyclopedia of monsters, famous and otherwise. I would look through them and study the black and white stills, which helped me understand dramatic noir lighting on imaginary creatures.

In more recent years I learned about Forry's interest in Burroughs. I recall Forry at two gatherings of Burroughs fans that I also attended in Southern California. He talked about going in his youth to visit an aging Edgar Rice Burroughs and that Burroughs was a nice man in a modest house who came to the door in a wheelchair. At both events Forry invited all of us to his house afterwards. And what a house, it had previously belonged to Jon Hall, star of many adventure movies and a jungle TV series. The house was a virtual museum of Hollywood, pulp, horror and science fiction. From the moth-eaten remains of King Kong’s armature and other movie monsters, to Dracula’s cape and tons of art, it was a wonderful place to visit. I recommend those who are interested in this stuff to watch the video of Forry, Ray Bradbury and Ray Harryhausen talking over lunch about their youth together. I think they'd all been friends since they were teenagers. They were among the very first fans of horror and science fiction, and seeing them reminiscing is a treat. The video is on a disk of Harryhausen's early short films of fairy tales. ["The Clifton's Cafeteria Reunion" on disc 2 of Ray Harryhausen: The Early Years Collection.]

Early eighties "Swamp Thing" page for DC Comics.
Laid out by Steve Bissette, pencils and inks by Yeates with inking help from Ron Randall. 
Script by Martin Pasko, story idea by Yeates, colors by Tatiana Wood.

Illustration of Cheyenne Indian myth 
for new kid's book 
by Anthony Horowitz from McMillan UK.
FM: What were and are the major artistic influences upon you?

TY: As I mentioned, there’s Burroughs illustrators, black and white Warren horror comics illustrators like Al Williamson, Angelo Torres, Reed Crandall, Wallace Wood, Alex Toth, etc., and old black and white movies. But I am also influenced by anything around me that catches my eye and looks interesting. I’m always staring out the window at clouds, light and shade on branches, houses, people, animals birds, machinery, lizards, you name it. Artistically I am fascinated by the illustrators of the first half of the last century. Hal Foster and Alex Raymond were the comics masters, but there were many equally talented illustrators working in magazine, newspaper and book illustration. Obviously Burroughs illustrator J. Allen St. John is one, N. C. Wyeth another, but there were tons of them.

Cover art for issue one of a new IDW Jurassic Park comic book mini series.
Written by Bob Schreck, cover art penciled and inked by Yeates, color by Jamie Grant.

FM: What interests you in imaginative entertainment today?

TY: For better of worse I’m really too busy to keep up on everything, but I catch a few things. I liked Avatar, which was very Burroughs-like; Lord of the Rings was great; I also was impressed by Pan’s Labyrinth. The films of Hayao Miyazaki are terrific. I love his vision, and I’m glad he’s out there doing what he’s doing. My teenaged daughter likes to get fantasy adventure films off Netflix, so I do see some of them. I loved The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus. Beowulf was pretty good, though the director’s cut I saw was way too bloody for my taste. I must say I’m a bit bored with the current recipe. That’s why I liked Pan’s Labyrinth, Miyazaki and Parnassus so much, they’re using different and more interesting recipes.

FM: If you could bring to life a lost or forgotten work, which one would it be?

TY: Well, let’s see; there’s the first version of the third Tarzan film with Johnny Weissmuller and Maureen O’Sullivan. A big-budget MGM thirties spectacular that was completely re-written and re-shot as the film Tarzan Escapes that was released. I’d love to see the first version, it had an attack by giant devil bats, but was never released and so far it remains lost. There is also the serial version of Tarzan the Fearless starring the great Buster Crabbe. The feature version that’s available is one of the worst Tarzan movies, but I like Buster otherwise and wish the serial, with all the additional footage, would turn up somewhere. There are other lost Tarzan films; Tarzan the Mighty, a silent movie with Frank Merrill, might actually be good. A Willis O’Brien concept with Vikings riding giant eagles fighting dinosaurs looked great, but War Eagles was never made. I love Willis O’Brien’s films, the original King Kong is probably my favorite movie of all time.

FM: Thanks so much, Tom, for sharing your work and passion!

TY: Have fun storming the castle, Steve.

John Carter's Chronicles of Mars 
by Edgar Rice Burroughs 
Paperback: 380 pages 
Publisher: Wilder Publications (February 2007) 
Language: English 
ISBN-10: 193445107X 
ISBN-13: 978-1934451076 
"Collected here in this oversized omnibus edition are five novels of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs: A Princess of Mars, Gods Of Mars, Warlords of Mars, Thuvia, Maid of Mars, and The Chessmen of Mars. These novels will transport you to a lush Mars that never was. A Mars filled with strange and wonderful flora and fauna; giants and monsters, and most importantly maidens in distress and fabulous adventures."


Tarzan reference from the NY Post
The Other Clint

New York Post ~ August 12, 2010
. . . The 6-foot-6 Clint Walker made his first screen appearance in a brief gag appearance as Tarzan in the Bowery Boys comedy "Jungle Gents'' (1954). "Huntz Hall and Leo Gorcey are about to take Jane on a river boat when I show up and say, 'No take Jane,' ''he recalls. "I spent a lot of time practicing the Tarzan yell, not realizing that they were planning to dub in a recording.'' . . .

Walker's breakthrough came when actor-producer Henry Willcoxon recommended him to play the captain of the guard in "The Ten Commandments.'' "He kind of adopted me and got me into the business,'' recalled Walker, who was then placed under contract to Paramount producer Hal B. Wallis. . . . More>>>

From ERBzine 0245: ERB  Eclectica 2000.01.07
Nicholas Anez wrote a three-part examination of "Tarzan's Greatest Adventure" that appeared in 1989 in Films in Review  Issue 40 (8/9) contained a letter to the editor on pages 444-445 by Tom Tolley of Fair Oaks, CA, which contained the following Clint Walker reference:

Although he (Hulbert Burroughs) admired the fine job that Gordon Scott had done with the character he was not he was not really impressed with him as a Tarzan -- too short, bulky, and defined. And his hair was too short. We both thought that Jock Mahoney was an improvement but were disappointed in his two films. Hully's ideal Tarzan (and mine as well, I guess) was Clint Walker. His height, bearing, voice, carriage and presence seemed the embodiment of those great J. Allen St. John illustrations that graced the early Burroughs books. It's a damn shame Walker never got a chance to don the loin cloth for real (although he did appear in a 'cameo' as an ape-man in Jungle Gents) and it's too bad that the movie going public still hasn't had a 'real' Tarzan film. Just think what Ray Harryhausen, a good cast and a big budget could have done with Tarzan the Terrible.

With familiar yell, 'Tarzan' celebrates his golden past ~ September 12, 2010
Original newspaper clipping of Olympic Gold Medal winner Don Bragg who earned a gold medal in the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome for pole vaulting. 

Bragg now 75, lives in Clayton, Calif. 

On Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2010 with his family and recently attended a 50th anniversary celebration of the former medal winners in Rome. 

Tarzan is alive and well and living in Clayton, and at 75 years old, he can still bellow the familiar Tarzan yell without much prompting. Tarzan's real name is Don Bragg, and though he doesn't swing from trees these days after suffering a stroke less than a year ago, he still gets around the jungle OK.

Bragg just returned from a trip to Rome, where medal winners from the 1960 Summer Olympics were honored. He won the gold in the pole vault as a member of one of the all-time great U.S. Olympic track teams, one that included decathlete Rafer Johnson, long jumper Ralph Boston, discus thrower Al Oerter and the late sprinter Wilma Rudolph. Other American athletes on that 1960 team were boxer Muhammad Ali -- then known as Cassius Clay -- and a couple of basketball players named Oscar Robertson and Jerry West.

Bragg didn't take a back seat to any of those athletes, primarily because of his effusive personality, his Tarzan alter ego and his flair for theatrics. When he received his gold medal, he let loose with a loud Tarzan "ahh-hee-ah-hee-ahh" that stunned the crowd. "It was just a gesture to let people know how I felt," he said, laughing.

Fifty years later, many still remember. Bragg was asked to be one of the keynote speakers at the reunion of Rome Olympic athletes, and he delivered -- yell and all. "I don't know how, but I was chosen. "... Maybe because of my big mouth, who knows?" he said. "But I can still give that baby pretty good. The Italians were really funny because they thought they had to answer me back. So there are guys all over the place giving me Tarzan calls after I did mine."

Bragg didn't pull any punches during his speech. He suggested, not so subtly, that the Olympians shouldn't have had to pay their own way to Rome -- Bragg said it cost him $5,000. He scolded the International Olympic Committee for not taking better care of its past performers. That said, he reveled at the reunion, visiting old haunts and chatting up old adversaries, notably Finland's Eeles Landstrom, who won the bronze in the 1960 pole vault. "Everybody was sitting around talking about their injuries and operations," he said. "I said to Eeles, 'I just to had a stroke in the last year.' And he said, 'I had one, too.' I said, 'I had a six-way bypass.' And he said, 'I had a four.' So it turned out to be kind of a competition, and the outcome was still the same."

Competitively, no one could touch Bragg in his heyday. He was the last great pole-vaulter to use largely inflexible metal poles before fiberglass and carbon-based poles forever changed the event. At the 1960 Olympic Trials in Palo Alto, Bragg used an aluminum pole to set a world record of 15 feet, 9 inches. Sculpted at 6 feet 3, 197 pounds as an Olympian, Bragg had already adopted the Tarzan shtick before going to Rome. In anticipation of his victory, Life Magazine persuaded him to do a photo spread at the Roman Colosseum -- a place he believes he once competed at in a previous life -- dressed in only a loin cloth. He agreed, believing that an Olympic victory would vault him into the movies as the next great cinematic Tarzan. Even Johnny Weismuller, a former Olympian who became the Tarzan standard in the 1930s and 1940s, remarked at the time that Bragg would have been perfect for the role.

Bragg signed a deal with a film company to shoot six movies of Edgar Rice Burroughs stories, to which copyright had lapsed. But while filming the first movie "Tarzan and the Jewel of Opar" in Jamaica, another studio asserting that it had rights to the Tarzan name sued, stopping production through litigation. The filming was stopped, and what film that was shot was lost in a fire.

His movie career derailed, Bragg nonetheless kept the moniker. "It's a little cheesy, but it's my thing, it's my mantra," he said. "I always imitated Tarzan, always swung through the trees, ever since I was 8 years old. Somebody in Rome asked me, 'How do you feel about never making a Tarzan movie that actually came out?' I said, 'I am Tarzan. So I don't need a movie to prove it.' I am who I thought I was."

Bragg went on to more noble causes, including building a boys camp for inner-city children. He served as athletic director at a small college in New Jersey. He wrote books, including his own autobiography, "A Chance To Dare: The Don Bragg Story." Luckily, he still has his Olympic medal. About 10 years ago, a fire destroyed the Clayton home of Bragg and his wife, Theresa. A fireman picked through the rubble and found the medal.

These days, Bragg spends time in Clayton with his family, writing poetry and retelling his stories to anyone willing to listen. "And if I'm not writing poetry, I'm down at the gym working out -- very light, but still working out and lifting weights," he said. "My ego is based on how big my arms are, and right now my ego is very low. But we shall return."

MapQuest: Map and 360 view of Ventura and Topeka in Tarzana, CA


New Tarzan art from France by Jean-Paul Ritrovato


A 10-years-old, David Lemmo in Portugal with relatives.
Check out the Portuguese Tarzan comic-book he's holding.
David's latest book project is Century of Tarzan
which should be published in time for the Tarzan Centennial.

"Tarzan Safety Club" Premium Button 
From the early 1930s (Pudlin, NYC)

Tarzan of the Apes (1918)  photo post cards 3-3/8:x5-3/8" showing Elmo Lincoln as Tarzan
posing over a defeated lion and pointing the way for safari group.

"Tarzan of the Apes" Promo from Movie Herald distributed by First National Exhibitors Circuit.

"Tarzan of the Apes" Window Card

A 14"x22" thin cardboard Stone Litho window card by Ritchey Litho Corp. The card is for "Adventures of Tarzan" a 15-chapter serial, and the fifth film in a series that brought back the original film Tarzan, Elmo Lincoln. The film was produced by Great Western Producing Co. for Weiss Bros.' Numa Pictures Corp. 

"Lions, Elephants, Crocodiles, Leopards, Apes, Monkeys And A Host Of Other Jungle Denizens. Scene After Scene Of Thrill And Excitement In Each Episode Of  'Adventures Of Tarzan.' 

"The Heroic Lincoln As Tarzan, The Ape-Man, Is The Central Figure In A Series Of Hair-Breadth Escapes And Wonderful Stunts Which Will Keep You On The Edge Of Your Chair Throughout The Entire Serial."

"The New Adventures of Tarzan Movie Poster

A 27"x41" sack silk-screened, one-sheet linen movie poster 
for the 1935 film that starred Herman Brix as Tarzan. 

In the summer of 1934, Edgar Rice Burroughs accepted an offer
to become the fourth partner in a project called
Burroughs-Tarzan Enterprises, a film company 
whose chief business would be to promote Burroughs' works. 

MGM, main distributor of Tarzan films campaigned against this company, 
harshly blocking distribution of "The New Adventures Of Tarzan"
in favour of their own upcoming release. 

They went so far as to threaten theatres that showed this serial
by stating they would not be allowed to show the third MGM Tarzan film.
Almost every big theatre chose to wait for the MGM film, 
not showing this serial. 
Merchandise and advertising from this film is rare.

Two of 20 pages from a Cuban Card Album of Walt Disney and Comic Characters
c. 1939 -  Issued by "La Estrella" chocolate/snack company.

"Tarzan" French Hardcover Books 
of Sunday Reprints
Four 7x8.75” numbered books published in Paris, France by Hachette.
©1936-1938 Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc. 
Books 1-4 are:
Tarzan And Gloria, 
Tarzan And The Lion, 
Tarzan And The Elephants.

They feature Sunday reprints with art by Hal Foster in all four
plus some Hogarth art in book no. 4. 

Book 1 has 64 pages, all in bw. The other three all have 48 pages in mostly full colour.
The format of most pages is 3 or 4 picture panels along with text with scattered pages of full page illos. 

A 9"x12”, 16-page program for the Watercade of 1950 swimming spectacular starring Johnny Weissmuller.
The show featured such feats of aquatic skill as diving, tandem swimming and synchronized swimming.
Synchronized swimmers were touted as the "Aquanymphs."
Weissmuller is pictured as Tarzan in a bw photo on the back cover,
and is seen on front cover in an art image surrounded by six mermaids.

Swim As Easily as You Walk by Johnny Weissmuller
A 1930s 5.5"x7.5" softbound, 32-page BVD premium book ©1930.

Johnny Weissmuller Publicity Photos
Two fan photos and one with swimming star Eleanor Holm, who was a star in the "Billy Rose’s Aquatic"c. 1939

Three Stills from Tarzan Escapes

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