Sunday, April 16, 2017
Pappy’s Sunday Supplement #9: Mandrake the Magician
My introduction to the character was with this 1957 newspaper continuity, called “The Penthouse Mystery” in the index of Mandrake dailies and Sundays.* Mom and Dad began a subscription to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer newspaper, owned by Hearst, which also owned the King Features Syndicate. I was 10 years old, besotted by comics and in those days non-discriminating. I bought into the mystery of the flying carpet and flying horse.
In 1966, when King Features started their own short-lived comic book line, I bought Mandrake the Magician #1, and recognized the story as a redo of my introduction to Mandrake. They made it more comic bookish; even giving the unnamed thief of the 1957 strip a name, the Toymaker, but the story is essentially the same.
The newspaper strip is credited to Falk, and artist Phil Davis, assisted by his wife, Martha Davis. The comic book version is credited by the Grand Comics Database to Dick Wood for the script, and for the art Werner Roth, inked by André LeBlanc. Don Heck and Mike Peppe are credited for the cover.