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Hedy De Vine Comics #22-35 (Aug. 1947 - Oct. 1949; continued from Young Allies #1-20, All Winners Comics #21) continued as Hedy of Hollywood Comics #36-50 (Feb, 1950 - Sept. 1952)).

Hedy De Vine #25Vic Dowd ( November 7, 1920 - 2010) was a Pratt Institute graduate. There he studied art and met his life-long friend Ken Bald (who married Vic's sister Kaye), as well as other soon-to-be Jack Binder shop freelancers Ray Harford, Al Duca, Kurt Schaffenberger, and Bob Boyajian. They were recruited for the Binder shop by Pratt alumnus and fellow Alpha Pi Alpha fraternity brother Bill Ward, and all continued their respective friendships for decades.

During his time at Binder’s shop (1941-42), Vic graduated from being a background artist to penciling and inking on a number of features that were packaged for various publishers. For Street & Smith, he drew “Blackstone the Magician,“ “Ajax the Sun Man,” and various fillers (in conjunction with studio mates). His Fawcett work was usually done with assists of various kinds from his fellow shoppers (sometimes he was the assistant, too): Golden Arrow, Spy Smasher (full art), Minute Man, Bulletman (full art), Captain Midnight, and Mr. Scarlet. He worked on the Fighting Yank series for Nedor, Captain Battle for Lev Gleason, and The Black Owl for Crestwood Publications.

His comics career interrupted by World War II, Vic was a member of the now-famous “Ghost Army,” also known as “The Secret Soldiers," which was the subject of several books once the information was declassified decades later. The “Ghost Army” was officially known as the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops, practiced in camouflage and illusion to deceive German Armies into thinking Americanoutfits were in places that they actually were not, They used sound trucks for audio effects, inflatable tanks, and phony radio transmissions, successfully fooling the Axis troops in more than twenty encounters. A number of drawings Vic did during this time have been published in various places, including our interview in Alter Ego #55.Vic Dowd

In the post-war period, Vic resumed his art career as a commercial illustrator for ad agencies and magazines such as McClain’s (a Canadian publication), and painted covers for various Magazine Management titles in the early to mid-1950s, as well as for several commercial comics for Scholastic. He also worked for the fabled Johnstone and Cushing art service from 1949-51 and did commercial comics for other publishers. Vic also returned to regular comics, drawing romance stories for Fawcett’s Sweethearts and a few features for Timely (Hedy  Devine, Nellie the Nurse, The Witness, and various fillers from 1947 to the early 1950s).

"I never worked on staff at Timely; I freelanced. It was a great account. I did a lot of humor comics fot Stan. I really wasn't interested in doing super-heroes. I wanted to draw pretty women and nice young guys - more the normal type than the heroic kind. You know, we didn't think we were doing anything of great importance. Even Stan Lee didn't think comics were going to last. One day Ken and I had lunch with Stan and he said , " I've got to get out of the comics books business and get into television." Stan was a writer and a good, fast one.

We were getting paid very little and just knocking out pages. Stan was knocking out scripts as far as he could, too. My girl friends posed for me occasionally, and Ken, who was drawing Millie the Model, was using Kay for a model. These books were easy to do - a lot easier than Blackstone the Magician, for instance.Battle 37

When I got a script from Stan, it was on yellow pads, with stick figures and balloons. I don't remember ever illustrating a Timely story that wasn't written by Stan. The scripts were like storyboards. I was able to take them and do whatever I wanted with them. The main thing was to make the girls pretty. They were clever stories and, of course, Stan was a very clever guy. Stan was so easy to work with, and even though he was an art director, too, he made no pretensions about being an art critic. He never criticized our work. Stan made it fun for us. It's just that comics didn't pay much and wasn't as prestigious as I wanted it to be. But Timely was a very good account."

In later years, Vic worked as a fashion illustrator and book illustrator, in addition to being a staff member of the Famous Artists School (1966-72). He became a successful painter, retiring at the age of 80, though he continued to paint for pleasure until illness forced him to stop. Vic was a loyal Democrat, a well-read, thoughtful, compassionate man, and a good friend to all. He was a joy to know.

From Alter Ego Magazine #55 and 102.