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SECRET ORIGINS
HOT STUFF, THE LITTLE DEVIL

HARVEY COMICS had created a small publishing empire with the characters Casper the Friendly Ghost, Wendy the Good Little Witch, and Spooky, the Tuff Little Ghost. Harvey bought Casper from Paramount Pictures, then the company created Spooky and Wendy to augment their line of comics. Each character had their own title, as well as several spin-offs.

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The Harey gang also included Little Dot, a girl with a fanatical obsession for dots, plus child duck Baby Huey, along with various cats, mice and crows. After Harvey signed a deal to make a TV series, they all got their own animated cartoons, starting in the late 1950s.
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This Casper cartoon, "Fright From Wrong," debute in 1956...
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In this bizarre little story, the Ghostly trio forces poor little asper to take "mean pills." These pills transform him into an absolute DEVIL...
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Complete with pointy tail! And evil devil Casper has only one thought: He is hell-bent on mutilating and torturing his three Ghostly foes...
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In the end, it turns out Casper never took the pills at all. He just pretended to, to teach the Ghostly trio a lesson! He's a little angel after all!
But that means Casper thought up those sadistic tortures all by himself! Hmmm... now who does THAT remind you of? A ghost who cuts people in half with huge scissors.... hmmmm...
Anyway, as Harvey's success increased, they went looking for new characters to join their ever-expanding successful line, which really WAS "loved by millions."
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Probably using "Evil Casper" as his main inspiration, HOT STUFF was created and drawn by Warren Kremer, adapting his own realistic horror sytle to the Harvey's cartoony house style.

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BELOW LEFT: Warren Kremer cover rough -- RIGHT: The finished cover!
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Black Cat Mystery #37, July 1952, by Warren Kremer
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Black Cat Mystery #45, and parody created for a Simpson's "Radioactive Man" ad.
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Another long-time HOT STUFF artist was Howie Post. He did a majority of the stories, while Warren Kremer drew most of the covers. Later at DC, Post created and drew the short-lived caveman teenager series "Anthro."
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“I really enjoyed working on Hot Stuff. He was a character that afforded lots of opportunities for pantomine. You could really exaggerate his characteristics and get a lot of laughs out of the guy. The stories in this book, drawn by Warren Kremer and myself, are still amusing and have stood the test of time. I am delighted to have added my contribution to this small part of comics history.” —Howie Post
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A baby devil who wears asbestos diapers, and carries a talking pitchfork he calls his "trusty trident"? It will never work. But it did! Here's the cover of HOT STUFF #1, October 1957!
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Hmmm... where did a certain "BRAT" get his inspiration from?
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BELOW: Harvey in-house ad for Hot Stuff #14, introducing a new, regular back-up feature for the book: Stumbo the Giant. I always hated Stumbo the Giant.
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BELOW: The issue seen in the ad above, HOT STUFF #14...
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Devil Kids starring Hot Stuff debuted in July 1952.
Here's the cover of the first issue...
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And here's Devil Kids #2. Original art on left, finished cover on right. Click it!
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Devil Kids #66, cover art by Ernie Colon. Also clickable!
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A trio fo Robby's favorite Devil Kids covers...
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Harvey comics ceased publication in 1982 -- but Hot Stuff, Casper and Wendy returned to the comic page with the publication of "Casper and the Spectrals" in 2009. This limited series was written by Todd Dezago, with art by Leanne Delgado and Kieran Cats.
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A brand new "ONE TO THRILL YOU" installment...
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