Wednesday, July 23, 2014

John Coleman Burroughs...John Carter Warlord of Mars

Burroughs had tried to have a John Carter strip as early as 1929, but was caught up in the media wars between United Features Syndicate and King Features Syndicate as the early attempts were shelved for a later date. One of the creator’s sons influenced by artists J. Allen St. John and Gustave Dore decided to give it another try after a comic book adaptation he did for The Funnies. So on the unfortunate date of December 7, 1941, John Coleman Burroughs introduced his John Carter of Mars syndicated Sunday newspaper strip that he wrote and illustrated for seventy two exciting episodes which debuted in The Chicago Sun and finally ending in March of 1943. Since it opened on the day of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the feature was picked up by very few papers with paper rationing and competition from other strips. Starting with an adaptation of A Princess of Mars, he changed the storyline after five weeks in order to provide more action after King Features Syndicate made the request. The artist's wife served as a model for the lovely Dejah Thoris as she also helped with the backgrounds, lettering, and inking some of the Sunday. Featured below is an unpublished John Carter page produced for The Funnies that unfortunately never saw print.

1 comment:

bliss_infinte said...

That's some nice work. I love that 'classic' style of comic strip. As a big of an influence as John Carter is, he always seems to just fall short of the success he deserves.