365 Reasons to Love Comics #130
The girls think he’s the absolute end– that fink’s got all my chicks tuned into his frequency! Who am I talking about? A great comic book character, forgotten by everyone except the bloggers. The concept is so great, that I would pay to write a revamp. How does this tie in to yesterday’s entry? You’ll just have to read to the end, gang. It’s totally smasho-wacko!
130. Swing with Scooter
Swing with Scooter was a title that started off brilliant and ended as just another Archie clone. Bear with me, and I will take you through this epic and sordid journey.
Developed by Barbara Friedlander, Jack Miller, and the esteemed Joe Orlando, Scooter started off as a mod amalgam of Paul McCartney and Archie Andrews, as DC tried to succeed once again in the realm of “teen humor” magazines. British bands like, y’know, the Beatles were hugely popular at the time, so they went with the idea of a famous British rock star, Scooter, named after his means of conveyance, quitting his band and settling down in some American town populated by other kooky teenagers.
The biggest standout of Scooter’s supporting cast was Malibu, who always wore a white trenchcoat and exhibited quite a few characteristics of vampirism, including ever-more-pointy ears and fangs. In fact, the early issues of Scooter contained many supernatural elements, including haunted houses, ghosts, monsters, mad scientists, polka-dotted Martians, and even the green, hulking Zekefreak!
Over time, however, Scooter became more “Archified” in every way. The logo got rounder, the art became cartoonier and more like the Archie house style, and the stories became… more plain. Oh, sure, a haunted house would pop up now and then… weirdly enough, it’s like their town was the haunted house capital of the world. Hmm.
This is where our friend from yesterday, Super-Hip, comes in. Where else would Benedict Arnold High, the school with the Universal monsters for faculty be, but in the haunted house capital of the world, where there’s a kid who’s basically a daywalking vampire? And hey, Scooter and Super-Hip would get along great! I say, what the hell– combine their universes. After all, Scooter and Bob Hope did meet in a house ad once.
Scooter hasn’t been seen since his title ended with #36. I think it’s ripe time for a comeback. Basically, it’s Archie meets the Beatles meets Scooby Doo meets Buffy meets Scott Pilgrim. Who wouldn’t want to buy that? It’d be zany, weird, and fun as hell. Not like the Archie-riffic stuff. Archie has its place, yeah, but not in the Scooterverse!
Now for the dedication part of this column. I have to thank Robby Reed at Dial B for Blog for igniting my Scooter appreciation and inspiring my pitching intentions. He wrote a tremendously awesome eight-part exploration of the Scooter mythos, which starts here. Everything bizarre I’ve referenced can be found there, and there are loads of pages from an array of issues. If you’re looking for the simpler, cleaner version, though, there’s always Toonopedia.
Everyone’s life is better with a little more Scooter. You groove, baby?