Comical disappointment: how the ads from old comics stack up to reality

Comic book ads always promised so much. But given my collection (other than my Phantom comics) came from second hand shops, I was never really in a position to partake of the goodness they offered.

Allegedly the ads didn’t really deliver on the promise. So says Kirk Demarais who has made tracking down the products sold in the back pages of his favourite comic books his life’s work. That’s a link to a thoroughly interesting link where you’ll learn more than you ever thought necessary about the products sold in the back of a comic.

He exposes the secret of X-ray specs below (Spoiler alert)…

“The lens is made up of two pieces of thin cardboard, more like cardstock, with a hole in the center, and in between those cardboard pieces is an actual feather. It’s hard to explain how it works. I have the book here. Let me read. I said, “In the original Spex, the X-ray illusion occurs as the viewer looks through genuine feathers which are embedded between the cardboard. … The feathers’ veins diffract light, creating the appearance of two offset images. A darker area forms where the images overlap which can be interpreted as bone in your hand or the curves of a lady.”


Gav says:

I always wanted the army men. I’m glad I didn’t get them after reading that.