Aristocrats of War – Foxhole Comics from Mainline
"We march. We walk for miles. Miles that don't stop. Miles that don't end. Miles that are filled with fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of the enemy. Fear of wounds. Fear of death. But we march on. Our boots try to stomp that fear into the ground."
When we think of war comics or important military comic characters, Captain America comes to mind, perhaps firstly. Well a duo of Jack Kirby and Joe Simon created Captain America after being brought onboard at Timely to expand their character line. Fast-forward to 1943, and Jack Kirby was serving under George Patton and was combat decorated with Bronze Star and almost had his legs amputated from frostbite.
After being discharged, both Simon and Kirby teamed up and created Mainline Publications and produced several titles including Foxhole, which Mainline promoted as being "written and drawn by actual veterans". Shortly Mainline closed shop as many small publishers did after distribution hardships, thus selling their unpublished materials to Charlton. Strangely, Kirby wrote some of the scripts ( The Face, for one), but did not consistently provide art. Although he did art for the covers. The Mainline run of Foxhole definitely was not short on controversy. The original cover for issue 4 was pulled, as there were concerns with the new discussions surrounding the fledgling CCA.
Foxhole Comics #1 was a fantastic cover that was eerily similar to a Joseph Hirsch painting. In my opinion, Jack Did it better and created a classic war cover. The letter the guy is writing home is such a tribute to military-family affairs. Usually, a stark contrast to the reality of any given situation.
Foxhole #1 has been on my hunt list for a bit, with one sighting but I never got a response from the owner as it was in a large group photo. Scarce may not be the correct term. Why? Well let's dive into the numbers:
The CGC Census has 6 copies accounted for with 5 Blue Labels (1.5 to 7.0) and 1 Restored Copy.
Sales have also been eerily quite with a Blue 5.0 in 2003 and a 3.5 in 2014.
Think it gets better with Foxhole #2, 3, or 4 Think again!
For Blue Labels there are a 9.0 and a 5.0, that's it with a single Restored copy.
I actually can't find any sales data for #2
For Blue Labels there is a lone 5.0 that sold once in 2014 for $68.00! WOW
Lastly, issue 4 has a lone 4.0 that sold once in 2014 for $61.00! Looks like both sales were the same month.
As you can see, this line is pretty much non existent. Superline (I.W. Enterprises) is supposed to have printed some reprints in the 1960's.
Do you have a favorite war book or war series? Leave a comment and let me know if there are some books you would like featured.