Sunday, November 1, 2009

PS P.S.: Skybox Trading Card - 1993

This card--from the same set as the Tim Hunter subset from earlier in the week--is a real beauty, and I'm glad a couple of you pointed out its existence to me.

Regular IATPS commenter (and now Fantom Stranger) MW Gallaher first told me about the card (and pointed me to his neat Jim Aparo blog to see it), and then uber-helpful Fantom Stranger Richard Duncan sent it to me. Thanks fellas!

Even though this card came out sixteen years ago, I had never seen it before, so it was an especially nice treat to see the late, great Jim Aparo drawing the Phantom Stranger one more time. So when I decided to wrap up the blog with the items I missed, this seemed like the perfect item to go out on.

...and that's about it. Many of you commented that you hoped the blog would go out on October 31st, because, being Halloween, that would've been the perfect moment to wrap it all up. Initially I didn't think we'd make it, but thanks to you committed PS fans, here we are-ending it all with an exact year of posts (okay, a year and a day), a really nice way to go out.

Of course, The Phantom Stranger as a character isn't gone--if anything, the Stranger has made more appearances in the last few years than he did in almost all of the 90s, and he'll continue to be an ongoing concern in the DCU.

He's also scheduled to make his first animated appearance in an upcoming episode of Brave and the Bold--I can't wait to see the show's take on him!

And, like all of my blogs, IATPS isn't really gone forever (one of the things I love most about the blogs, they are as final as you want them to be)--I plan to do occasional updates as the Strange racks up more appearances. Like the character itself, this blog would pop up when you least expect it!

My thanks to everyone who came by and checked out what I was doing here, left a comment, or sent something in. I Am The Phantom Stranger never had the audience of some of my other blogs, but it was a remarkably consistent one--meaning the people who liked what I was doing stayed with me through this whole journey, which was great.

I also have to thank Mike W. Barr, Alan Brennert, Gerry Conway, Nick Cuti, Dan Mishkin, and my pal Paul Kupperberg for taking time out to talk to me for the blog. Getting to talk to the people whose work I've loved so much is one of the best things about doing these blogs, and each one of them was great fun to talk Phantom Stranger with.

Some of you wrote in to ask if I ever tried to interview Len Wein, who wrote arguably the best run of Phantom Stranger stories with Jim Aparo. The answer to that is I tried--I contacted Len about an interview, and he agreed. I sent him the questions, but not too long after that he had that terrible fire that destroyed his home, so obviously after that he had a lot more to worry about than doing our interview.

I felt so bad over the news that Len and his family lost almost everything in the fire that when Mark Evanier spearheaded the "Let's Rebuild Len Wein's Comic Book Collection" effort, I promptly sent Len my copies of all the Phantom Strangers he did with Jim Aparo--as much as I enjoyed having those great books in my collection, I decided I'd enjoy the idea of them residing with the author even more.

So that's it! Thanks to everyone for coming, and I hope you all enjoyed our time following The Phantom Stranger!

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