The first two books are digest sized and date back to around 1974. The contents are completely hopeless. The art is fairly poor and the stories aren't much better, but I had to buy them if only for the Keith Chatto cover art. In fact, I did only buy them for the Chatto covers even if they're not examples of Chatto at his best.
Both books are small - the same size as those UK war comics that everyone is familiar with. I've seen some Charlton and Dell comics reprinted here in the same small format, but these are new to me. I have no idea if the stories are locally drawn, certainly the art in Tales Of Terror is superior to the Candid Confessions, which suffers both from poor art and even poorer publishing values. I do expect that the stories are reprints from either the UK or the USA, if it is the latter then they've been chopped up and reformatted badly. If anyone has any information on these then let me know, in the meantime I'll start doing some digging of my own.
Now this one grabbed me. It was in a box that was full of mid '70s Mad Magazines, Sick and Cracked, and a handful of Freak Brothers and Rip Off Press comics. Naturally I bought the lot, including an oversized Australian underground comic which I've not seen before. If this comic you see looks familiar yet looks poor it's because this might also be the first time you're seeing it. It appears to be an Australian edition of the Collected Adventures Of The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers. How do I know it's Australian?
There's nothing at all to indicate where this book was published. I've seen the USA original and it's better quality than this is so I knew straight away it wasn't the original. It was clearly a counterfeit, a pirate, it just remained to be seen as to where and when. As the other underground comics and indeed the other comics in the lot all dated from the early to mid '70s, I figured it was from the same time period. The only clue lies in the indicia which reads:
"The Collected Freak Brothers is copyright 1971 by Gilbert Sheldon. May be reproduced freely by any non-capitalist publisher (for definition of 'capitalist' see karl Marx). Not for sale to any person under 18 (sorry kids). The present day publisher refuses to die...Sir Frank Packer 1969."
And there you have it. Since I have serious doubts as to why any American in 1971, or indeed at anytime in the '70s would be name dropping Sir Frank, father of Kerry Packer, then this book must have been put together and 'published' in Australia, making it an Australian edition. Hence the bad cover, the insides would be straight photocopies of the USA edition, but the cover was probably shot in a hurry and printed poorly. The overall effect isn't dissimilar to a 3D cover.
Nice stuff if you can find it. Just thought I'd share before I decide to flake out for the night and plan the coming day.