Start of 5th year of this collection of new and classic pulp fiction
After a bit of a hiatus due to technical issues (yes, really), Bold Venture Press is back with another new issue of Pulp Adventures, #31 for Spring 2019.
This time we get a cover by Norman Saunders, whom most covers have been from. And as always, there is a mix of old and New Pulp in a wide range of genres: mystery, western, horror, adventure, pulp hero, and more. We also get third (or is it first?) Daemon Mask comic story! Bold Venture has done a great job of getting this zine out, and this starts the fifth year of it.
For classic pulp, we get stories by Johnston McCulley and Charles Boeckman. From McCulley (under his Harrington Strong alias), we get “Noggins Gets His Man” from Detective Story Magazine (Oct. 19, 1920). The last of the six Peter Noggins stories, who strikes me as a little of Columbo. This story has a crook who seems to have gone straight, but it’s all a ploy to bump off a criminal leader. Can he get away with it, or will the unlikely Noggins get his man? From Boeckmen, we get “You Can Get Away With Murder” from Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine (January 1975). (So maybe that’s not quite pulp, but it’s close to it.) Here we have a pair of detectives working on finding a killer, but trying to do so during Mardi Gras. I am curious if the artwork included with the story was also reprinted from AHMM as well, as is usually the case with the pulp reprints.
A third classic story, ” ‘Flapjack’ Meehan’s Coal Strike” by Frank Richardson Pierce, is from Western Story Magazine (Nov. 4, 1922). I’m not much for Westerns, but this one is set in modern times. We hear of cars and radiophones, about coal mines instead of gold mines, but there are still claim jumpers that need to be dealt with. Pierce was a prolific pulp author who moved into the slicks and even had several movies based on his works.
For New Pulp, we get a quartet of stories. First up is David Bernard with “The Death Clock.” A private detective is tasked to find a antique clock with a strange story tied to it. It usually doesn’t work, but when it does, someone dies. Is it true? From Edd Vick and Manny Frishberg, we get “The Ghost of Torreon,” which may launch a New Pulp hero, Doctor Wireless. This one is different in several ways, including being set in Mexico in the 1930s. And from Carson Demmans, we have “When the Punishment Fits the Crime,” a strange tale of an informant who is killed and reincarnated. But as what?
Finally, from Gary Lovisi, who has contributed stories before, we get “A Fear of Winning.” It’s always dangerous to cheat when gambling with criminals. If you win, you might lose.
Finally, we get “Daemon Mask: Crimson Wings of Silence,” an original Whisper comic story by Stuart Hopen and Russ Martin. We previously got his origin story in #24, and a second in #30. This one is The Whisper’s first published adventure, which had previously appeared in a one-shot comic titled Daemon Mask from Amazing Comics in 1987. The cover is reprinted as the back cover of Pulp Adventures. In this, which would be The Whisper’s third and final adventure, he goes up against a madman who finds a universal solvent that threatens the world. The world survives, maybe, but does The Whisper? We also get an afterward from Hopen on the creation of The Whisper and his influences. For various reasons, I doubt we’ll see additional stories. Also check out his Twilight Patrol series being reprinted by Bold Venture.
We get some non-fiction items, including one on the 100th anniversary of Zorro.
As noted, this kicks off the fifth year of this magazine. With the problems behind it, I look forward to the next issue of Pulp Adventures. Because the variety of stories in each issue, there are usually some stories that you might enjoy, so be sure to check out this and other issues in this series.