Ah, the dog. The humble canine. Man’s best friend. But not, it would appear, Joe Kubert’s…
Time and again Kubert’s war comics covers would feature some mutt in danger. Case in point: the rather mangy specimen on this G.I. Combat cover. He’s about to become squashed roadkill beneath the caterpillar tracks of the Haunted Tank. Weep for Jeb Stuart’s observational skills—and wonder what happened to spectral General Stuart’s all-seeing eye.
G.I. Combat #153, May 1972
Now, don’t be alarmed. I can confirm for all you dog lovers out there that the poor little thing survives unscathed. But I think I’ll save the rather bizarre tale of “The Armored Ark” for another post. Meanwhile, check out this next example of Joe Kubert dog endangerment.
Our Army at War #255, March 1973
This time we got a poor pooch facing the wrath of the Third Reich! For him “ze var is ovfer” no doubt. Or will be, unless Sgt Rock gets to him in time. Years later, Kubert wrote and drew a Sgt Rock mini-series in which a Nazi officer did indeed kill a mongrel right in front of Rock just for kicks.
If you think seeing man’s four legged friend about to meet its maker is bad enough, check out this cover:
G.I. Combat #193, August 1976
Kubert’s pulled out all the stops here and threatens not only a dog, but a small child too! Oh, Joe.
Finally, we present the cover to a tragic Enemy Ace tale.
Star Spangled War Stories #148, January 1970
Now, covers can be symbolic, providing a feel for the kind of story that awaits within. Or, they can be representational, showing something that actually happens. Sad to report, this cover is one of the latter variety. Yep, poor old Schatzi bites the big one in this Kanigher and Kubert classic. The Hammer of Hell was always destined never to have much happiness in his life, and this one sticks it to him big time.
It’s a dog’s life being a hound on a Kubert war cover!
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