12) War Comic Anthologies


One common type of war comic are anthologies. Comic anthologies will have several short stories that are generally unrelated. The stories may be one-shots or serialized. Sometimes anthologies can be used to showcase particular heroes so reader feedback can be used to decide if the hero is worthy of their own title. Showcase (DC) was a, none war comic, that was the spring board for many superheroes, including the Silver Age Flash, who later got their own title. If a war comic anthology specialized in a particular war then that anthology is reviewed in the article dealing with that particular war. Silver age war comic anthologies that focused on WW II more or less exclusively are dealt with in the 06.1) War Comics set in WW II-Silver Age section of this collection of articles. Silver age war comic anthologies that focused on the Korean War more or less exclusively are dealt with in 07) War Comics set in the Korean War section of this collection of articles.

DC has three war comic anthologies that deal with various wars and not just one war including Men of War later renamed All-American Men of War, Our Army at War later renamed Sgt. Rock and Star Spangled War Stories. DC war comic anthologies are mostly remembered for introducing interesting on going war heroes.

All-American Men of War introduced several war heroes including Tank Killer, Johnny Cloud and the WW I hero, Lt. Savage, the Balloon Buster which is dealt with in more detail in 05) War Comics set in WW I.

Tank Killer first appeared in All-American Men of War #69.

Johnny Cloud first appeared in All-American Men of War #

Men of War introduced several war heroes including Gravedigger, Dateline: Frontline and Rosa Master-Spy.  Gravedigger was introduced Men of War V1 #1.

The story of a war correspondent titled Dateline: Frontline was introduced in the back pages of Men of War V1 #4.

Rosa Master – Spy was introduced in Men of War V1 #17.

Our Army at War introduced Sgt. Rock in #81. Sgt. Rock in turn is probably the second most important war hero in comic book history. Marvel’s Sgt. Fury is number one but only because Nick Fury goes on to become a first tier character in the Marvel Universe.

Our Army at War introduced Enemy Ace in #151 and he is dealt with in detail in 05) War Comics set in WW I.  The Unknown Solider first appeared in Our Army at War #168.

Star Spangled War Stories introduced Mademoiselle Marie in Star Spangled War Stories V1 #84.  Marie may be war hero but she is still a woman so of course she cries in the end. I can’t recall Sgt. Rock ever crying.

The concept of GI’s versus dinosaurs known as “The War that Time Forgot” was introduced in Star Spangled War Stories and is dealt with in detail in the 11) War Comics plus Speculative Fiction section of this war comics series.

EC Comics has two war comic titles including Frontline Combat and Two-Fisted Tales. Frontline Combat #1 includes a story about the Korean War that shows how war dehumanizes soldiers.

Two-Fisted Tales started out as adventure anthology with some war stories and then became a war comic anthology. This can be seen in the variety of stories in Two-Fisted Tales #18.

In my opinion the best war comic anthology ever was Blazing Combat (Warren). The controversial story “Landscape” in the first issue has a strong anti-war message.

The story “Face to Face”, the truth of about the glory of war is revealed.

Dell published two totally forgettable war comic anthologies: Air War and War Comics.

Warfront (Harvey) introduced the world to Dynamite Joe.

Eventually Dynamite Joe gets an arch enemy named Half Mask.

Key Publications had two war anthologies which include Battle Fire and Flying Aces.

American Air Forces #1 by Magazine Enterprises.

Contact Comics #1 by Holyoke Publishing.

Fight the Enemy #1 by Tower Comics.

Foxhole #16 by I. W. Publishing-Super Comics

Parents Magazine Press published True Aviation and True Aviation Comics Digest.

Next 01) Introduction to War Comics

War Comics