Saturday, February 22, 2014


Albie's Note:  I may be an ol' Baptist, but these here Mormon kids are funny!   If you've never seen the comedy sketch show STUDIO C from Brigham Young University  [new episodes air weekly on the BYU-TV channel, natch] you really oughtta check it out.  My 11 year old son, Gideon and I have become HUGE fans.  In my humble opinion, it has all the talent and great writing of say, classic Saturday Night Live, and it is done entirely without objectionable material. 

Plus, they even-- at least this once-- did a western!  


"We are outlaws, not monsters!"
Heh heh...

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

RANGER AL's WESTERN COMIX THEATRE #5 [Olympic edition!] : BUSTER CRABBE in "Showdown" 1953

Albie's Note:  This story, originally printed in BUSTER CRABBE Comics #5,  Famous Funnies Publications, July 1952, is a pretty well drawn and plotted tale of the old west...  attempting to cash in on the then-current TV popularity of the then already-past past repertoire of Mr. Crabbe; a one-time Olympic hero and pretty darn charismatic matinee idol, famous for myriads of movies in the Jungle, Western and Space [sci-fi] categories.  Although you rarely hear about ol' Buster today, he was actually a HUGE star from the thirties thru the fifties in entertaining B-movies that spanned varied genres. He played Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon AND Tarzan, by the way, so you can know he positively reeked of masculinity!

And now... here is a fine old red-blooded genre western:  SHOWDOWN!

The cover of BUSTER CRABBE # 5, 1952


Monday, February 10, 2014


Albie's Note:  I found this fine article in the on-line back issues of THE HERALD OF HIS COMING newspaper and decided to put it on my blog.  I had heard of the old-time preacher Paul Rader but never of his brother Luke, but I found a bio of him on the great Wheaton College Library site:

Luke Rader  was born in 1892 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, the son of Daniel L. Rader. Daniel was a minister in the Methodist Episcopal Church in Denver, Colorado, where his children grew up and attended college. Luke Rader emerged from college as an agnostic, but was led back to the faith of his parents after the birth of a son impressed on him the responsibility for spiritual guidance of his children.
Luke became a successful evangelist-pastor working in the River Lake Gospel Tabernacle in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a similar ministry to that of his more famous brother Paul, who was pastor of Chicago Gospel Tabernacle from 1921 to 1933. He was a forceful preacher, particularly interested in prophecy, whose ministry was primarily centered in the Tabernacle rather than in itinerant evangelism, though he did preach occasionally in Chicago at the Gospel Tabernacle. Rader's fine singing voice was a particular asset in his work, which also included a radio ministry. He died in Minneapolis in 1952.

In any case I was very convicted by these words about controlling one's tongue, which probably date from the 1920s. Good reading.

We are rapidly approaching the time when "we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that everyone may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad" (2 Corinthians 5:10).
    None of us for a moment would think of taking a dagger and going among our brethren, slashing, cutting, and stabbing whoever of them crossed our path, yet the harm so inflicted upon them would not be nearly as damaging as that which our tongues constantly inflict upon each other.

    Here you will be inclined to lay this article down, and sidestep facing this fault in your own life. Don’t do it. Face the issue. There is too much at stake in the careless use of our tongues. Dodging the issue is dangerous and costly both to ourselves and to others.

    In one church, some years ago, over three hundred people withdrew their fellowship because of a falsehood circulated by one woman. Only God can estimate the damage done, first to His work in the church, and second to those who withdrew; for as far as can be learned all but about fifty have cooled off, backslidden and some even gone back into outbroken sin. True, they should have investigated the story before believing it, but when reputable people repeat a tale, even a lie takes on the respectable clothing of truth. The more favor and honor God showers upon us, the more weight our words bear.

    With us Christians, what we could do as slaves of sin, we dare not do as kings and priests of God, lest we divide Christ’s Body, harm Christ’s prestige, and mar Christ’s plan.

    We need to be especially on guard against evil speaking when we are going through a hard testing, a time of chastening, for then it is easy for discouragement, resentment, and bitterness to get into our souls. In such times of heaviness, everything seems dark, faith is hard to grasp, and our bitterness may flare out to defile many. By such careless unbridling of our tongues in backbiting, we leave our proper place of trust and fellowship with God as priests in the Holy Place.

    Evil speaking and criticism are sure evidences of conceit and pride in our hearts. They spring from an assumption of superiority and mastery which exalts us to the position of judging others. As James puts it, "Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law; but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge" (James 4:11).

    Any careless talk, any bitterness hinders the Holy Ghost and His work. Paul says: "And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice; And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you" (Ephesians 4:30-32).

    Our unguarded talk not only embarrasses the Holy Ghost and hinders His work, but it denies the very love He is endeavoring to produce in us.

    Evil speaking (criticism, gossip, scandal mongering, backbiting) works more ill to our neighbors than all other things combined, dishonors God, grieves the Holy Ghost, and brings disrepute to the name of Christ. It does no good to us, to others or to God; it is evil and no good is in it.

    Evil speaking and criticism not only work ill to others and grieve the Holy Ghost, but also do us infinite harm. We are in a battle. In war, the watchword is "Watch." "Be on your guard constantly." One of the most effective tricks in fencing or boxing is to get the opponent’s attention on something else for a second, and then strike him. This is also one of Satan’s favorite devices. While watching others’ faults, our own are forgotten, to Satan’s delight.

    Christ’s most stinging irony is: "Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote (splinter) that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam (4 x 12 plank) that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye" (Matthew 7:1-5).

    When our brethren offend us, instead of backbiting them, we do as we are commanded: "Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and he alone; if he shall hear thee thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church; but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican"-- Jesus (Matthew 18:15-17).

    Paul sums the matter up in this glorious promise: "Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect, in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen" (Hebrews 13:20,21).

 27 He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit. 28 Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.
-- Proverbs 17:27,28


Saturday, February 8, 2014


Albie's Note:  He is now such an American  television "sit-com" fixture that it's almost hard to think of Bob Newhart [born 1929, now 84 years young] as a stand-up commedian, yet that was exactly what catapulted him to fame in the early 1960s.  In that early original form, Newhart's stand-up was different from nearly everyone else's as his laughs were generated almost entirely by an amazing sense of comic timing.  His first hit "Buttoned Down Mind" albums featured mainly his side of gag phone calls, a premise which would probably have fallen completely flat in anyone else's hands. If you ever see any of his TV shows, notice how often [virtually EVERY episode in his '70s "pschologist" show] the scripts place him on the telephone, and how often he generates voluminous audience laughter with this simple device.

Here, in a 2001 skit from  the show MAD-TV, Bob-- playing a psychiatrist again-- uses that same amazing comic timing as he explains a radical new therapy.  It's really quite simple.

"This is not Yiddish, Katherine, this is English!"


Monday, February 3, 2014

RANGER AL's WESTERN COMIX THEATRE #4: "The Slayer Of The Grizzlies," 1950

Albie's Note:  It's a classic purportedly true tale of "man vs. beast" from Hillman Publishing's "all-true" comics title DEAD-EYE WESTERN #11, Aug.-Sep. 1950.

As our hero Sam Stevens says: "You made it personal when you killed my horse!"

Great artwork in this late Golden Ager... Enjoy!

[Couldn't resisit adding some other "Bear Art," too.]

The cover of  issue #11

Frank Leonard Stick

OUTDOOR LIFE cover, Jan. 1938
...and of course one Bear Hunting Whiskey ad
[Canadian hootch, natch] :