TreasuryCast #29 – Tarzan of the Apes


Rob welcomes back Tarzan mega-fan Brian Heiler to discuss LIMITED COLLECTORS' EDITION #C22, the first of DC Comics' Tarzan of the Apes treasuries! It am good!

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10 responses to “TreasuryCast #29 – Tarzan of the Apes

  1. Nice episode guys! The Kubert art on that story is just great & your discussion of Tarzan was informative & fun. There’s a nice coffee table book “Tarzan: A Centennial Celebration” that has a nice overview of Burroughs & his most famous creation. Highly recommended!
    A couple of quick thoughts:
    1. The recent movie with Margot Robie & Alexander Skarsgard was much better than I expected it to be. Pulpy in the best sense of the word.
    2. Dynamite Comics has been producing some nice Tarzan miniseries of late. Fun crossovers with Sheena, John Carter, Red Sonja, & the Planet of the Apes ( this last one was especially well done).
    3. The Lord of the Jungle met both Superman & Batman in miniseries from the early 2000s.

  2. Oh, man. I love Treasury Cast. I thoroughly enjoyed your discussion of, if not all things, then many things, Tarzan. I found myself nodding and smiling in agreement during so much of it.
    Although my first exposure to Tarzan was watching the Ron Ely TV series as a very small child in the early 1970s (on our family’s b&w set), I actually discovered the character with the Filmation cartoon a few years later. Those got me interested enough to start picking up the comics (published by Marvel at that point) and then I quickly moved on to the books. For a while I was a huge fan of all things Tarzan, although eventually that initial enthusiasm cooled a bit once I started to get a bit tired of the books.
    Anyway, back to the Treasury book – never had it, but it looks nice based on your gallery post. However, I have to say that even though I’m a big fan of Kubert’s art, for me the definitive Tarzan comics are Marvel’s, with art by the Buscema brothers. It’s actually too bad that Marvel never did a Tarzan treasury – maybe instead of one of the annuals? Seems like a no-brainer decision, since at about the same time they were printing a number of Conan treasuries with stories drawn by John Buscema. In any case, I’m looking forward to the Tarzan: Buscema Years omnibus from Dynamite (that is, if it ever gets published; the release date has been pushed back three times in the last year and a half – according to Amazon it’ll be out this January).

    By the way, I totally agree with Brian about the movie adaptations of I Am Legend – they all come up short in terms of the ending. Really, the whole point of the title is in that final scene…

    1. Oh, and I forgot to add: I absolutely loved Legend of Tarzan and have no problem saying that it is probably the best Tarzan movie ever made. When it was released, it seemed to me that much of the criticism had less to do with the content of the movie itself and more with the fact that anybody “in this day and age” would even make a Tarzan movie. However, I think the movie actually addressed and gently corrected (for lack of a better term) many of the racist and colonialist attitudes that burden the original books and many of the later adaptations into other media.

  3. I loved this episode! I even went to comixology to buy some Kubert/Tarzan stuff. Great to hear Brian and Rob with such love of the material.

    Sure, Joe Kubert. It’s that easy to draw like you.

    And what restraint by Rob! He waited almost six minutes before, once again, saying he attended the Joe Kubert School. We get it. You’re talented. Geez.

  4. Great episode fellas. I’ve always been a casual Tarzan fan, so I’m always fascinated to hear more about him. I don’t have this treasury, but if I see it at a decent price (and yes those prices fluctuate more than just about anything you’ll find at a comic con), I’ll will pick it up!

    I watched the Filmation show regularly, because like Brian said, it was on FOREVER. I think the last iteration was the Tarzan/Lone Ranger/Zorro Adventure Hour or something like that, way up in the early 80s. I don’t remember much about the show, honestly, but I do remember enjoying it.

    Little side note: as a kid, I could do one heck of a Tarzan yell. A buddy of mine would often come stay at his grandmother’s next door to me, and we’d take turns waking each other up early during the summer by Tarzan yelling outside our bedroom windows. I bet the neighbors loved it. 😉

    Oh, and the Legend of Tarzan is a great movie. I was skeptical, but I wanted to share Tarzan with my son, so we went and saw it in the theater, and both walked out VERY impressed. I can’t recommend it enough. I have the Blu-Ray!

    Bring Brian back for the treasury sequel, and do Legend of Tarzan on Film & Water!


  5. That was very entertaining, even for this not-much-of-a-Tarzan fan. I finished listening and rushed down to see what there is on Amazon Prime – lots, including the silent film, which I can’t wait to watch.

    The BBC recently did a radio version of Me, Cheetah, with John Malkovich playing the big man’s buddy, it got lots of praise.

    Did anyone else try that distinctive Tarzan family swimming style, that involved revolving in the water? Such fun.

    I’m a Kubert fan, but there’s something awfully sad about his Tarzan, I also prefer a bit of Buscema.

    Re: the feedback, stop me if you’ve heard this, but I wrote to the Answer Man in the Seventies asking how come Ghosts had the ‘true tales of the weird and supernatural’ subtitle when the indicia clearly stated that the stories had no relation to anyone living or dead. Wasn’t I a stinker? Anyway, pretty much the same time, #78 had the usual subtitle, #79 had none, and #80 brought it back tweaked to ‘NEW tales of the weird and supernatural’. I felt such pride!

    I’m hoping for more Brian on the Welcome Back Kotter episode – I never saw the show, but did enjoy the comic.

  6. Tarzan seemed a constant in my youth. He was always on TV. And while I agree that white messiah jungle adventure stories are off-putting today, I do think the last movie addressed the character’s colonial origins well and moved the characters into the 21st Century, so to speak.

    I hope to talk about Tarzan myself one day, as he’s been part of a number of team-ups…

  7. Hey guys, really enjoyed this episode. I am as Chris said above, a “casual” fan of Tarzan, but I have been reading a lot of ERB over the past 18 months or so and am really enjoying it, even if my reading has been leaning more heavily towards Pellucidar and Caspak (The Land That Time Forgot).

    I have not read this Treasury, but for those with the library app Hoopla, there are three volumes of Tarzan Archives, The Joe Kubert Years available for your reading pleasure. Definitely adding those to my reading list! I have read some of DC’s Tarzan and ERB output, and I have to agree that thy (DC) was definitely milking this license for all it was worth, as in addition to Tarzan, and Tarzan related characters like Korak, we also got features for Pellucidar and Barsoom (John Carter), mostly in the anthology title Weird Worlds.

    To expand a little bit on what you guys were saying in the show about Tarzan’s presence in the mid to late 1970s, it seems that ERB in general was popular again, as in addition to the comics from DC I mentioned, we also got 3 ERB movies from Amicus (the poor man’s Hammer) in the form of the The Land That Time Forgot, The People That Time Forgot, and At The Earth’s Core (all of which feature some amount of Doug McClure). Land That Time Forgot was a movie I saw a LOT as a kid on WTBS (now just plain old TBS) on Saturday or Sunday afternoons, and I have a lot of affection for all three of these ambitious B movies.

    Two last things: 1, those Trendmasters ERB toys were great. I had the Barsoom version of Tarzan which had removable armor, underneath was a standard Tarzan, so he could fit in either a Martian or Terran setting. Would love to track down some more of those. 2: I agree whole-heartedly with Brian about The Legend of Tarzan (a superlative effort for sure), but also the big screen Man From UNCLE, which got little fanfare but is completely worth your evening to watch it, an excellent and well constructed period action film.

    Thanks again for a really fun and insightful episode!

  8. As always, I enjoyed the show.

    I wonder if Tarzan got a treasury before Batman and Superman because he was more ubiquitous in pop culture in the 1970s, at least before the release of Superman the Movie. It may have been an attempt to lure in non-comic readers, due to the treasury editions’ unique size and format.

    I don’t remember a time from the 1970s until the mid 80s that one of the TV stations in our market didn’t show Tarzan movies on Saturday morning. Conversely, no stations showed Batman reruns until I was five. That was what led to my fandom. However, Batman didn’t air for long and I was 11 before it appeared in my area again. A local station picked up the George Reeves series, but it was only after Superman the Movie came out.

    Since Rob brought up the Bo Derek Tarzan, I think that movie may have led to a decline in Tarzan’s popularity. I never saw it until the early 90s on Joe Bob’s Drive-In Theatre. It was one of the few times Joe Bob ever apologized for the movie that he showed.

    As for the treasury itself, it was very entertaining. It is one of only three Tarzan comics that I have. Kubert’s art was great to see at treasury size.

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