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SECRET ORIGINS OF SWING WITH SCOOTER - PART 2 of 8

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COMICDOM BEGS THE BEATLES:
WE WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND!

The British Invasion hit America full force with the arrival of the Beatles (pictured right, duh) in 1964. George, Paul, Ringo and John didn't just influence American music, they revolutionized the world of pop culture, fashion, film, television, and even politics.

Beatlemania also hit the comic industry, with special one-shots devoted to the Beatles' life story and their animated movie Yellow Submarine, as well as ongoing titles with issues devoted to individual members of the group (see covers below). But that was just the beginning.
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THE BEATLES #1 YELLOW SUBMARINE #1 SICK #33
THE BEATLES in TEEN HUMOR COMIC BOOKS
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TIPPY'S FRIENDS MY LITTLE MARGIE #54 LAUGH #166
.ABOVE: Tippy's Friends: Go-Go and Animal features the Beatles on its cover, My Little Margie thinks "Yeah, yeah, yeah," and Veronica and Betty dream of the Beatles -- but Mr. Lodge is reminded of a different kind of bug. Great covers! But the boys also found their way inside several comic books, and began hanging out with the characters that populated them.

The Fab Four usually appeared in stories where someone's girlfriend desperately wanted tickets to see them in concert! "Live" appearances by the Lads from Liverpool were usually limited to just a single panel.

Pictured right: Reggie and Archie discuss the Beatles while walking by a poster announcing their upcoming concert in Riverdale.
THE BEATLES in ROMANCE COMIC BOOKS
The Beatles were frequent cover boys for numerous romance comics, often seen on posters or theater marquees, as on the cover of Heart Throbs. Next, they're pictured as floating, disembodied heads causing a girl's downfall in Summer Love, and finally, they appear in a fantasy daydream on Girls' Romances.
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HEART THROBS #101 SUMMER LOVE #46 GIRL'S ROMANCE #109

THE BEATLES MEET THE SUPERHEROES!
.Appearances by the Beatles were NOT limited to romance and humor comics! Shown left is a panel from Jimmy Olsen #100, featuring a story where Jimmy wants to take his girlfriend, Lucy, to a Beatle concert -- the usual plot for comic Beatle stories.

Sometimes, the Beatles' NAME appeared on comics they weren't actually in. Jimmy Olsen #79, cover pictured below, cast Jimmy as "The Red-Headed Beatle of 1,000 BC," and Jimmy Olsen #88, pictured below center, pictured Superman dancing the Krypton Crawl -- "He's bouncier than the Beatles!"
(Ummm... were the Beatles "bouncy?")

Adventure #326 featured the debut of Bizarro Legion, with Bizarro-Superboy drawn wearing a Beatle-inspired, mop-top hair style, early model. All three covers by Curt Swan.
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JIMMY OLSEN #79 JIMMY OLSEN #88 ADVENTURE #329

STRANGE TALES #130 (MARCH 1965)
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In Strange Tales #130 (cover by Jack Kirby pictured above), the Thing and the Human Torch got to "Meet the Beatles!" At least according to the story's TITLE they did. But as it turned out, Johnny and Ben -- half of comics' Fab Four -- didn't really get to meet the "other" Fab Four at all... but their girlfriends did. Good for Dorrie and Alicia! The panels showing the big meeting are seen below...

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The TEEN TITANS in THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD #60 (JUNE 1965)
.In their second-ever appearance, the Teen Titans fought a bizarre being called the Separated Man. This pink giant could literally split off parts of his body, which the Titans had to then defeat individually. It was Robin's job to defeat the Separated Man's .giant pink ear, so he organized a group of local teens to play their transistor radios at top volume, attempting to deafen the colossal ear.

And what then-current hit song was heard playing on all the kids' radios? What else but the Beatles classic "I Want To Hold Your Hand!" (original sheet music cover for the song pictured right).

As you can see below, Robin's crazy strategy worked. The giant ear flew off, confounded by the rocking sound of the Fab Four! The "super-square" in the last panel complains, "Whew! I think I'm deaf now, too!"
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THE METAL MEN #12 (FEB 1965)
Legends of rock met legends of metal when the Beatles guest-starred with Doc Magnus and his incredible metal-based robots in Metal Men #37 (cover and panel shown below) written by .Robert Kanigher, with pencils by Ross Andru and inks by Mike Esposito.
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Usually the super-popular Beatles drew crowds of cheering fans, but in this story it's the world-famous Metal Men who draw crowds, including the Beatles!

Ringo is apparently such a HUGE Metal Men fan that he wants the team to autograph his drum. Iron, Mercury and Gold chime in, chanting "Yeh, yeh, yeh!" (Translation: "Yeah, yeah yeah!" )
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ADVENTURES OF JERRY LEWIS #102 (OCT 1967)
Here are John, Paul, George and Ringo as they appeared in the pages of The Adventures of Jerry Lewis #102. The Beatles never looked better, mainly this story (and the cover, shown left, too!) was an early work by legendary comic book artist Neal Adams, who broke into the business doing humor titles such as Archie, Bob Hope, and Jerry Lewis. The Lads from Liverpool are shown playing "A Hard Day's Night" at the fictional Kamp Karefree, where Jerry Lewis is a counselor.
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BEATLES SATURDAY MORNING CARTOON
AT LAST! Cheated in their first encounter, now Ben, Johnny and the rest of The Fab Four finally DO meet the "other" Fab Four -- along with Spidey, Casper and King Kong too! It happened in this ad for ABC's slate of Saturday morning cartoons, which ran in numerous Marvel comics in the mid- to late-1960s. Of all the shows mentioned, "Journey To The Center of the Earth," and "King Kong" turned out to be flops. The FF and Spidey cartoons lived on for years, and became classics!
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."The Beatles cartoon aired from September 25, 1965 to April 20, 1969 on ABC Television. The Beatles themselves did not provide the voices for their cartoon counterparts. The voices were provided by actors, including world-renowned voice-over artist, Paul Frees, an American, who provided the voices both of John and George.

Englishman Lance Percival provided the voices of Paul and Ringo. Al Brodax decided to "Americanize" the Beatles' Liverpudlian accents so American kids could understand them. This led to much controversy, and the Fab Four themselves were most displeased.

The series performed exceptionally well in the ratings when it first appeared. The ratings started to decline though, in 1966, mainly due to the Caped Crusader!

When the live action Batman show premiered in 1966, kids fell in love with superheroes. Many copycat shows appeared such as Space Ghost, Frankenstein Junior, etc., and the Beatles series was never the same in the ratings."
(Text taken from Nostalgiacentral.com)
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NOT BRAND ECHH #8 (APRIL 1968)
.In one of their final appearances in comic books, the Beatles met Marvel's satirical superhero Forbush Man in "Not Brand Echh" #8. This 1968 comic featured Forbush Man trying to join Marvel's various superhero groups only to fail each time.

In the end of the story (by Gary Friedrich and Tom Sutton), Forbush Man finally encounters the Sgt. Pepper-era Fab Four, complete with uniforms and an authentic Sgt Pepper logo on Ringo's drums, seen below! (Wow! Was that licensed? Probably not.)

Unlike the Marvel teams, the Beatles actually ask Forbush Man to join them, but his "group" experiences have soured him on the whole team scene, so he doesn't even bother to look up, and refuses their offer...
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And finally, which comic mentioned THE BEATLES more
than all the others combined? You guessed it...
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CLICK HERE FOR PART THREE

See how the Fab Four influenced Scooter's
creation and early adventures in

Secret Origins of Swing With Scooter
Part 3: THE FIFTH BEATLE!