Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Cover Review: Doctor Tom Brent -- Young Intern #2

Charlton put out a lot of comics I liked.  They weren't always good comics, but I enjoyed them nonetheless.  My guess, however, is that in 1963 there wasn't a single sane person who ever uttered this phrase: "Oh boy!  It's the new issue of Doctor Tom Brent -- Young Intern!"  Not a single one.

How many things can you count wrong with this cover?  Let's start with the obvious -- the title. 

Doctor Tom Brent -- Young Intern sounds about as exciting as watching Lawrence Welk on PBS with your grandmother as she starts to nod off.  There is really nothing about the title that says, "Read me."  If your parents hated you, this is the comic they bought you.  "I know you wanted Detective Comics, but you've been a little bastard.  Read this instead."  Even Ned Flanders finds this boring.

A cover's job is to sell readers on the comic.  The artists, of course, would have no control over the title or the story inside (in this case, the yawn-fest "A Doctor Heals in Many Ways"), so they had to make the artwork engaging on some level.  They have, obviously, failed here.  Instead of drawing a cover that pulls you, they decided to come up with something even more boring than the title.  One doctor at a microscope, another one telling him that they had 12 hours to come up with some way of keeping a boy from going home to die.  Our hero, Young Intern Brent, has no clue how to do this.  Way to sell a book.  The only thing that could have made it worse was a cover blurb stating, "Now with ten MORE pages of TEXT inside!!!"  What were they thinking?  Who was the audience for this?  Who bought it?  Tom Brent probably doesn't know.

I have none of these issues in my collection, and I doubt I ever will unless someone sends me the wrong item when I win something on eBay.  This series could be the most exciting young intern series ever written for all I know.  You can't tell by the cover, however.  What you can tell is that there were probably quite a few kids who spent their twelve cents elsewhere.

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