This is almost as old as me

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Does the past haunt? or catch up with you? This has to be a pretty rare treasure.

Glen Mullaly here. Illustrator, occasional comic book artist, pal of Mr Ken Steacy Esq. Weird question… you wouldn’t happen to be the same Douglas Rogers that illustrated the 1975 Pop Shoppe giveawy comic “Captain Cola in the Triple Threat”, would you? Inquiring minds want to know…

“Yes”, I replied.

Thanks Doug. Not sure if you care to talk about it at all or not, but I have fond memories of this comic from my mid 70’s childhood here on Vancouver Island, but it took almost 20 years for me to track down what my foggy memory had stored (superhero battling some big anthropomorphized object, black and white, giveaway, etc) and find out that it might be Pop Shoppe related. Then another couple years to track down the Captain Cola character in ads and a jigsaw puzzle. Then finally two weeks ago a copy of the comic showed up on eBay for the first time since I started searching for it and I just recieved it in the mail today and saw your name on the art credit. A quick note to Ken to confirm you were in London, and another quick Facebook search and Bob’s your uncle. So I just wanted to pass along my thanks for the great memories, and let you know this will hold an important place in my nostalgia-filled, childhood-recaptured, too-much-time-on-my-hands-need-to-find-another-hobby collection. If you feel like passing along any stories you might have on how you got involved in the Captain Cola comic gig, (as someone who has done their fare share of advertising comic gigs I find this stuff fascinating) or if you ever did any other work for the Pop Shoppe, or even if you have any of the original Captain Cola art laying around that you’d be willing to sell (to find it’s way onto my studio wall along with originals from some of my other illustration heroes and childhood comic / book favourites like Gerry / Jerry Lazare, Al Wiseman (Dennis the Menace comics and Sunday strips from the 50s), Kelly Freas (sci-fi and Mad Mag cover god of the 50s and early 60s) and Bob Clarke (Mad Mag 50s-1980s) please let me know. If not, once again my gratitude for the great memories from this book, and all the best. Cheers – Glen

Well, Glen….I was recalling some things last night.

Curiously, I was trying to remember drawing the thing. Because I recall pulling the Green Lantern comic, an early Gil Kane, to swipe the cover. So my collection and the space and drawing table to do all the pages must have been proximate. Neither here nor there, but remembering where I was when I did it is puzzling.

A girl I went to BealArt with was working at an advertising agency, she being familiar with my interest in comics chased me down for the job. I couldn’t have been too far out of art school. I asked and got a surprising $85 per page and the thing turned around in two weeks. Likely a typical ad art deadline.  So, much of the art is clumsy. And I hated having to leave it all just cartoon-colouring book outlines. Oh, well.

Carol also found me for another -what will certainly be obscure for you- comic book job later. It was a four-colour informational thing about getting kids back into a college program at Fanshawe college here in London.

I did a much better job then, having more time and skills, though the web printing pony size stuff, as the cover of Captain Cola shows sucks hugely. All muddy and dark. Never had enough time to figure that bit out better.

So the art work belongs to the agency. I have none of it. Either agency is long out of business. I doubt the work exists anywhere at all.

And for a time I worked in Montreal at the animation company Disada.  If you’re interested in another obsessive frustrating pursuit, you might look for Winnie Witch and The Giant Potato Sunday page comics. There were not even a dozen newspapers in Canada. There were a mere handful of independent newspapers. I think Winnipeg was one.

It’s fascinating you were so obsessed by the book, and you went to the trouble to track this down. Leaves me a little warm and fuzzy. :-)

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