What do Johnny Cash, nazis, jive-talking pimps, and blimps have in common? Not much, but they made great fodder for christian comic books back in the '70s. Below are four complete, great/awful Spire comic books in PDF format, download away, sinners.
Hello, I'm Johnny Cash - 1976 (8.5 MB, PDF)
Read about how June Carter and God helped Johnny dump that nasty pill habit and eventually film a gospel movie. And just for fun, check out this early video of a gum-smacking Johnny Cash performing "Folsom Prison Blues" back in 1959 (youtube, thanks Ken).
Gospel Blimp - 1974 (4 MB, PDF)
Upstanding christian Herm gets a brilliant idea for effectively spreading the gospel to his drinking, gambling neighbors: a blimp that drops bible verses. When blimps speak, people listen.
Up From Harlem - 1975 (4 MB, PDF)
NYC televangelist Tom Skinner reminds gang members and prostitutes that God is neither white nor black, and that you have to convert The Man in order to stick it to him. This one pushes the modern PC meter far, far into the red.
Hansi - 1976 (4 MB, PDF)
This gem is subtitled "The Girl Who Loved the Swastika," and the storyline becomes increasingly twisted as the pages turn. Hansi wins a Hitler Youth competition, works for the Nazi party, falls in love with a soldier who's out of her league, gets shipped to a Russian labor camp after the war, escapes, is reunited with her lover, they move to America to start a new life, and yet something is missing. You guessed it... Jesus!
For more famously horrible Spire comics, visit this page (they have an Archie dept, and SO much more). Thanks to Andy for sending me the link.
Other comic delights previously featured on Beware of the Blog:
- All about WFMU's Comic Page
- Listen to Marvel's "The Curse of the Werewolf"
- Superhero comics gone homo
- Comic books and H.P. Lovecraft
- Nick Bertozzi's comics and graphic novels
- Search for your favorite comic book characters in the Picture of Everything
If you really want to be saved, check out Sinner's Crossroads with Kevin Nutt on WFMU every Monday evening. The show is even available as a podcast (info here), for those who prefer their salvation to go.