Concept

Cole Black

Summary
Cole Black is an alternative comic book hard-boiled detective created by Rocky Hartberg in 1976. The detective first appeared in the self-published full-sheet newspaper-sized Cole Black Comix #1 (1976) which had a print run of only 200 copies, all distributed in the Aberdeen, South Dakota area. Hartberg submitted Cole Black to Marvel Comics for inclusion in Epic Magazine in the late-1970s. Although Marvel initially like the concept and accepted the submission, changes in editorial direction at Epic Illustrated scrapped the project. In 1980, Hartberg initiated a second Cole Black series, this time in newspaper comic strip format. Between 1980 and 1983, five issues of Cole Black were published in this format. Each of these issues had national distribution and circulated between 1,000 and 1,500 copies. Informed by Bud Plant and other comics distributors that the newspaper strip format was limiting sales, Hartberg prepared African Dream in traditional comic book format. Although intended
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