Sam J. Glanzman was born on December 5, 1924, and left us on July 12, 2017. He was an American comic-book artist and WWII veteran, best known for biographical war stories about his service aboard the U.S.S. Stevens (which I collected into two books within the last two years; the first containing his two A Sailor's Story graphic novels, originally published by Marvel in the 80s, and the second containing his actual U.S.S. Stevens short stories, originally published by DC Comics and Marvel Comics in the 70s. The U.S.S. Stevens collection was nominated for an Eisner Award). He is also well known for his work on many other titles, including Hercules (the mythological Greek demigod); and the Charlton Comics Fightin' Army feature he co-created with Will Franz, The Lonely War of Willy Schultz, about a German-American U.S. Army captain during World War II.
Over the last few years, I have worked to bring back into print as much of Mr. Glanzman's work as I could. So far, I put together three collections of his work while working at Dover (A Sailor's Story, U.S.S. Stevens, and ATTU). And here on Kickstarter, I successfully funded two collections of his work; Red Range (written by Joe R. Lansdale), which was recently published, and VOYAGE TO THE DEEP, which will be published very soon! This will be my third Kickstarter campaign created to publish (or, more specifically, republish) the work of Sam Glanzman.
This time around, I am doing something I have never done before. Instead of putting together another hard cover graphic novel collection, I will be publishing an actual comic book! The first, in fact, in a series of comic books entitled COMBAT, containing incredible stand along stories of WWII. These comics have been out of print since the 1960s, when they were originally published by a company called Dell Comics. And while there have been many educated guesses over the years as to who actually wrote these stories, the one thing everyone agrees on is that every single issue was brilliantly illustrated by Sam Glanzman! It helps that he included his signature at the beginning of most stories. :)
Upon the successful completion of this Kickstarter campaign, we will publish the issue of COMBAT that tells the story of DUNKIRK! To be honest, I picked this story because of the press surrounding the recent DUNKIRK film by Christopher Nolan, in hopes that it would help us in securing the most successful launch possible for these new issues of COMBAT!
For those who need a quick history lesson, The Battle of Dunkirk was a military operation that took place in Dunkirk, France, during the Second World War. The battle was fought between the Allies and Nazi Germany. As part of the Battle of France on the Western Front, the Battle of Dunkirk was the defense and evacuation of British and Allied forces in Europe from May 26 to June 4, 1940.
In one of the most debated decisions of the war, the Germans halted their advance on Dunkirk. Contrary to popular belief, what became known as the 'Halt Order' did not originate with Adolf Hitler. Field Marshals Gerd von Rundstedt and Günther von Kluge suggested that the German forces around the Dunkirk pocket should cease their advance on the port and consolidate to avoid an Allied breakout. Hitler sanctioned the order on May 24. The army was to halt for three days, which gave the Allies sufficient time to organize the Dunkirk evacuation and build a defensive line. Despite the Allies' gloomy estimates of the situation, with Britain even discussing a conditional surrender to Germany, in the end more than 330,000 Allied troops were rescued!
It stands out from other equally compelling events of WWII because instead of being a battle, it was actually an evacuation. And you will see that in this comic book version from the 1960s, both Field Marshal Rundstedt and Adolf Hilter are shown making the call to halt the attack on Dunkirk, leaving who actually made the decision to halt the attack a bit vague.
This new edition of COMBAT: DUNKIRK will contain not only the 27 page story of Dunkirk, but also an awesome four page back-up story (also illustrated by Sam Glanzman) entitled One By Sea, the black and white one-pagers on the inside front and back covers, the essay about Lord John Gort (Commander-in Chief of the British Expeditionary Force in Western Europe in the months that led up to the evacuation at Dunkirk.), the vintage advertisement that was originally on the back cover of this issue, the inclusion of the original cover art (possibly by artist George Wilson, known for his painted covers for various comics, magazines and paperbacks), a new standard cover created using artwork by Sam Glanzman, and a very limited variant cover by the legendary Walter Simonson! All this, plus a few surprise extras, will bring the page count up to around 48 pages! Pretty hefty for a single comic book!
Along with the creation of new cover art, the bulk of the work for bringing this old series back to life, will be in the cleaning up (with color and text corrections) of the interior story pages. Below is a sample, where you can see both the original page scanned, and the cleaned up final product, ready for publication. I hope everyone will find these newly restored pages a joy to read! Take a look!
We are excited about the return of COMBAT, but it can only happen with your help! We have a lot of great rewards to choose from (seen below), and we hope you will consider backing this project. Please feel free to contact me with any questions. Thank you. -Drew Ford
Risks and challenges
I am going into this with the experience of having brought a couple dozen collections to print. I have also run four successful Kickstarter campaigns. Beyond that, I am lucky enough to know several really talented people, who can help out with any bumps in the road.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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