Saturday, April 9, 2011

Profile: Sherry The Showgirl

It isn't quite true to say the 21st-century output of Marvel Comics consists of all superheroes, all the time. But — close enough. But back in the 1950s, Marvel published a pile of material in other genres, such as westerns (e.g., The Rawhide Kid), jungle heroes (e.g., Lo-Zar), funny stuff (e.g., Homer the Happy Ghost), alliteratively-titled women in traditional female roles. Yes, that was once a genre at Marvel, ranging from the gloriously glamorous Millie the Model to the merely mundane Tessie the Typist, with Nellie the Nurse in-between. Sherry the Showgirl fell toward Millie's end of the spectrum. Actually, the whole genre was part of a larger genre of young female protagonists such as Della Vision, Patty Powers and Patsy Walker, whose major raison d'etre was to provide an excuse to till comic books up with cheesecake, i.e., pictures of attractive women, or as many comics fans like to call them, "good girl art".

Sherry (surname Storm) debuted in Sherry the Showgirl #1, published by Marvel during its "Atlas Comics" period and dated July, 1956. Like many "pre-Marvel" Marvel comics, including The Black Knight, Doctor Doom and The Blonde Phantom, it was written by Stan Lee, who also co-created many of the properties that make Marvel what it is today, such as X-Men, The Avengers and Thor. The artist was Al Hartley, who was better known for his work on Archie.

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