Friday, July 24, 2009

Capes, Crooks and Cliffhangers: Heroic Golden Age Serial Posters book new from Heritage

July 24, 2009
Posted by Noah

Heritage Auction Galleries has announced the publication of Capes, Crooks & Cliffhangers: Heroic Serial Posters of the Golden Age, a new comprehensive book about the posters of the Golden Age serial movies, which used to play to enthralled audiences before 1930s and 1940s Hollywood hits. The posters are widely sought today and can command prices well into the five figure range.

The coolest thing about this book? It comes with a special introduction by Noel Neill, TV’s original Lois Lane. the other coolest thing? The amazing images of these rare, valuable and amazing posters. Mmm-mmm gooood!

The standard softcover edition is available for $39.95. Also available is a deluxe slipcased hardcover edition – strictly limited to 100 copies – which comes with a numbered bookplate that is signed by both authors and by Neill, for only $125.

“All of these colorful characters, and many others from the comics, pulps, and radio, made their silver screen debuts as multi-part serials,” said Grey Smith, co-author of the book and Director of Vintage Movie Posters at Heritage, “in which the hero would face certain death at the end of each chapter, urging their fans to return week after week to continue their thrilling adventures.”

The superheroes that are now the subjects of multi-million-dollar blockbuster films and the centers of merchandising and comic book franchises – names like Batman, Superman and Captain Marvel – may have gotten their starts in the pages of Golden Age comic books, but it was actually in these serial adventures that their names and personas were forever bonded to the American psyche.

“In reading about these amazing posters, and the classic serials they represent,” said John Petty, Co-author of Capes, Crooks & Cliffhangers, “You get a real sense of how these chapterplays transported depression-era audiences to a place of absoluteness. There was good and bad, right and wrong and just and evil. You can imagine how important this was to people in such confusing times.”

No less a person than Stan Lee calls it, “… a page turner…a literary and artistic feast,” and Leonard Maltin hails it as “[a] welcome book.” Nice... Thanks Stan...

Fans of today’s blockbuster superhero movies owe it to themselves to see where America’s cinematic obsession with superheroes all began. For more information on ordering your copy of Capes, Crooks & Cliffhangers, click here.
-Noah Fleisher

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