This and That, Pins and Teasers

Calling all Moon Maid fans, calling all moon maid fans. News just in that the electrifying Mysta Chimera will be very active in 2020 with a starring role in the story after the one beginning right now. That story, keen eyed Dick Tracy fans are deducing, will involve Splitface, a.k.a Haf and Haf. We also might get another surprise appearance, but I’m not saying any more.

I’m sure (super sure) I’m stealing someone’s thunder, but next summer we will also see a new Minit Mystery written and drawn by a groovy fellow by the name of Charlie Wise. Charlie’s been busy doing his own thing but is taking a time out to dive into the world of Dick Tracy. Can’t wait to see how he handles Moon Maid.

Baltimore Comic Con is coming up, November 18-20th. Baltimore is a big one, with a massive number of artistic alums. Our favorite, Dick Tracy artist Joe Staton will also be there. If you attending, make sure and stop by to pick up one of the new DICK TRACY PINS. I still need one!

As mentioned in the previous post, the ONLY TIME WILL TELL free comic, normally given away by Mike and Joe at shows will go to press in December. The Only Time Will Tell story is one you might remember, guest starring George Takei. This free comic will also include the Jim Doherty Minit Mystery. Can’t wait!

Supporting our friend Mike

Mike Curtis and Chowderhead

When I first started the Depot I was illegitimate. Documenting old stories, making lists of characters and using panel art, secure in my opinion I was lost on page 100 of most search algorithms. So my stomach dropped like a brick when I received a “To whom it may concern…” email from the TMS licensing department. To my amazement, it wasn’t a bad email. Instead I was told the current Dick Tracy creators had came across my little website. Praising me for enthusiasm, TMS granted permission to continue with some very minor legalize at the bottom of the page. I was (and still am) thrilled and I know I have Mike Curtis to thank for it.

How do I know? Three days after that heart-dropping email I received another email, this time from Mr. Curtis. “Hi, Joe and Hilarie are on their way home from the convention and took pix at the DT statue with Jim Brozman and Dick Locher. I asked him to send you the pictures when they return. Take care, – Mike” Yes, yes, yes I’m sure I replied.

Since that day six years ago, Mike has consistently kept me abreast with Dick Tracy news, dropping crossover teasers, convention notes and so much more. And I’m not the only one. Following various Dick Tracy groups, I see Mike interacting with all of them. Always friendly, always sharing. Take the Dick Tracy free comics for example. Not everyone can make a convention. Mike takes the time to personally make their day, sending comics to any who ask. As someone who’s done wedding invitations, that can take a lot of time!

Call to Action

Currently, my friend, our friend, Mike Curtis is having a serious health problem. He has been diagnosed with a brain aneurysm. The doctors don’t know everything yet, but what is known is that tests (and now more invasive tests) are expensive. Mike could use some help with those costs, he has said as much. Comic writers, Joe Staton unfortunately informed us, are not covered by Detective Tracy’s health plan.

A GoFundMe Page has been set up to help Mike out. If you can make a donation, or even if you are just wanting to support in spirit, I ask you to visit the page and see how things are going. Every little bit we do can help relieve some of the stress.

Thanks for reading,
Jeremy @ the Depot

Fall Action, Updates from Mike

Frisk as drawn by Locher, Staton imitating Locher and finally Staton’s version.

Leaves are dropping and cold weather is moving in, hopefully you all have been enjoying the current Mike Curtis story featuring the return of tough as nails Detective Frisk. It’s been 16 years since Frisk graced the comic panels of Dick Tracy and I love Mike’s dedication to creating a consistent Tracy continuity, tying together past and present. I am also thrilled to see Joe Staton’s rendition of the detective and am impressed when he chooses to adapt the style of other artists, in this case Dick Locher who originally drew Frisk.

Last Sunday’s Halloween one-day tribute to cartoonist Charles Addams, the inspiration for the Addams Family was a great holiday curve ball, delightfully keeping us unexpectedly on our toes. I love Halloween and with no Abner Kadaver or Bela Legosi to remind us of the season, I certainly got a smile by Sam and Tracy’s strange house call.

Admittedly I’ve been shy about writing posts lately, life gets busy. But Mike Curtis was kind enough to drop a line and let me in a a few secrets (or not so secrets). After Frisk, the coming Dick Tracy story will be the next full on crossover, but with whom remains a mystery. We’ve seen Annie, The Spirit and many others. I’m excited.

Also, the next Dick Tracy free give-away comic will be “ONLY TIME WILL TELL”, featuring an appearance by George Takei. After it goes to print, Mike and Joe will be giving it away. Free means free. All you need to do is track them down and ask for it. Success most likely at their convention booths or similar appearances, don’t do the alternative. While there you can grab one of the brand new Dick Tracy pins. I haven’t even seen a a picture and I want one. Visit Iowa please.

Ok, I’m done with the Curtis updates, you leave if you want, but I’ve been asked and feel I must answer. Who is Detective Frisk? A Mike Kilian creation, in 2003 Frisk was introduced as a hard working, rough around the edges detective who initially locked horns with Tracy on the Filligree case during the time of the “cop house mole”. Frisk and Tracy were initially at odds, suspecting each other with limited circumstantial. Frisk was soon falsely accused and suspended until Tracy was able to redeem her and invited the detective to join his team. The stay would not be long.

Over the holidays that same year, Frisk began working on the cold case of Sal Monella, a garbage themed villain.  Frisk was trying to get ahead in the department and kept her investigation from Tracy.  The detective found Monella and began to trail him as he gathered several bums together and formed a band.  Frisk suspected they carried weapons in the guitar cases and would take part in a robbery.  During a strange garbage themed stadium concert, Frisk tried to arrest the criminal for his past crimes.  Monella resisted and the two engaged in a shoot-out before both fell into a garbage truck that dumped its load into the bay.  Both were thought to have perished but neither body was recovered.

Jim Doherty Minit Mystery Arrives April 28th

Before Mike Curtis and Joe Staton took over the Dick Tracy comic strip from a retiring Dick Locher in 2011, they collaborated on a Plainclothes Dick Tracy tribute site. Mike penned a Major Crime Squad story, Joe provided the artwork and law enforcement officer and writer Sgt. Jim Doherty contributed prose Dick Tracy stories. They we’re not trying to slip past syndicate copyright, that was clearly displayed, it was a work of love, and as it turns out, an audition for Dick Tracy.

Eventually the syndicate became of aware of the website, and while Plainclothes and it’s content was sadly discontinued, the team was asked to take over Dick Tracy from retiring Dick Locher. Of course we know they said yes!

Now those of you who have read Dick Tracy Sunday’s are no doubt familiar with the Crimestoppers and Hall of Fame panel at the start of the strip. Chester Gould started this signature of the Dick Tracy Sunday and Team Tracy has kept the tradition alive with Jim Doherty writing almost all of the panels from 2011 to 2016 when Jim took his leave to pursue other interests.

So it’s very exciting to have heard Jim Doherty is returning to the Dick Tracy team as the guest writer of a new Minit Mystery. Minit Mysteries are one or two week stories. Jim’s mystery will begin Sunday, April 28th. Knowing his love of early era Dick Tracy stories (we’ve published a few of his articles), I’m not surprised to hear there will be a 1930’s style to this Minit Mystery and I’m also excited to see Joe Staton take a crack at that original Gould drawing style.

The Golden Age, 1942’s Chuck Sayne talks with Joe Staton

What did you do on Free Comic Book day last weekend?  Maryville, Pennslyvania residents had some fun when Dick Tracy artist Joe Staton and fellow artists Tom Nguyen and Robyn McCammon visited The Golden Age, 1942, a former radio station transformed into brightly red, yellow and blue comic book store.  Having itself opened on a Free Comic Book Day two years ago, the Maryville store celebrated the the annual event as both a holiday and an anniversary.  

Turn out was great, and freedom limited for the guests of honor but Chuck Sayne still had an opportunity to sit down and talk with Joe.  (Ok, they are standing I guess).  Check out the conversation in the above video and stay tuned for part two which I’ll append when it becomes available. 

Edit: Now available

In addition The Golden Age is hosting a charity auction for the Tennessee Alzheimer’s Association on their Facebook page, including a Golden Age Justice Society art print signed by Staton.   Check out everything up for auction here, The Golden Age can ship to the winner so make a bid if you are interested! (Auction Closed May 12th)