“Lo, the Clobbering Time Doth Approach, Good Sirrah!”

21 Phrases from the Works of Shakespeare That Have Served as Handy Sources of Comic Story Titles Over the Years

1. ” To be, or not to be. That is the question.” (Hamlet, Act III, scene i) 

  • To Be or Not to Be a Bee…
    Bee-29 the Bombardier #1 (Spotlight, 02/45)
  • To Be or Not to Be???
    Abbott and Costello Comics #9 (St. John, 02/50)
  • To be or not to be…
    Candy #25  (Quality, 12/51)
  • To Be or Not To Be
    T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents #7 (Tower, 08/66)
  • To Be or Not to Be a Witch
    Creepy #30 (Warren, 11/69)
  • To Be or Not to Be
    Ninja High School #6 (Malibu, 08/88)
  • To Be or Not to Be
    Quasar #39 (Marvel, 10/92)

2. “Cry havoc, and let slip the dogs of war!” (Julius Caesar, Act III, scene i)

  • Cry Havoc…!
    Legends #4 (DC, 02/87)
  • Hell’s Hitman Part 2: Cry Havoc!
    The Demon #43 (DC, 01/94)
  • Cry Havoc, and Let Slip the Dogs of War
    Hellhounds: Panzer Cops #3 (Dark Horse, #3 (04/94)
  • War and Madness, Part 5: Cry Havoc
    Star Trek: The Next Generation #75 (DC, 09/95)
  • Cry Havoc!
    Hercules: Heart of Chaos #2 (Marvel, 09/97)
  • Cry Havoc
    Empowered #1 (Dark Horse, 03/2007)

3. “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.” (As You Like It, Act II, scene vii)

  • All the World’s a Stage
    Wow Comics #40 (Fawcett, 01/46)
  • All the World’s a Stage
    Arena #1 (Alchemy Studios, 01/90)
  • All the World’s a Stage
    The Eyeball Kid #3 (Dark Horse, 06/92)
  • All the World’s a Stage
    The Many Loves of the Amazing Spider-Man #1 (Marvel, 07/2010)

4. “What’s in a name?” (Romeo and Juliet, Act II, scene ii) 

  • What’s in a Name?
    Magic Comics #10 (David McKay, 05/40)
  • What’s in a Name!
    Patsy Walker #25 (Marvel, 11/49)
  • What’s in a Name?
    Mister Mystery #9 (Key Publications, 01/53)
  •  What’s in a Name
    The Adventures of Little Archie #19 (Archie, Summer 1961)
  • What’s in a Name? Doomsday!
    Shazam! #7 (DC, 11/73)
  • What’s in A Name?
    Josie and the Pussycats #101 (Archie, 08/80)
  • What’s In a Name?
    The Night Man #16 (Malibu, 01/95)
  • What’s In A Name?
    Betty and Veronica #230 (Archie, 11/2007)
  • What’s in a Name
    B&V Friends Double Digest Magazine #221 (Archie, 03/2012)

5. “That which we call a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet.” (Romeo and Juliet, Act II, scene ii)

  • A Thorn By Any Other Name
    All-Star Comics #72 (DC, 05-06/78)
  • A Ruse By Any Other Name…
    Iron Man #121 (Marvel, 04/79)
  • A Rose By Any Other Name!
    Superman #336 (DC, 06/79)
  • A Rogue By Any Other Name
    Secret Origins #41 (DC, 06/89)
  • A Raise By Any Other Name
    Walt Disney’s Uncle Scrooge #240 (Gladstone, 12/89)
  • A Rose By Any Other Name…
    Web of Spider-Man #89 (Marvel, 06/92)
  • A Blossom By Any Other Name
    Hilly Rose #1 (Astro Comics, 05/95)
  • A Rose By Any Other Name…
    Reign in Hell #5 (DC, 01/2009)

6. “This above all: To thine own self be true.” (Hamlet, Act 1, scene iii)

  • Adrenazon’s Revenge Part 4: To Thine Own Self Be True
    Marvel Comics Presents #126 (Marvel, 1993)
  • To Thine Own Self…
    Deathstroke the Terminator #35 (DC, 04/94)
  • To Thine Own Self…
    Scarlet Spider #1 (Marvel, 11/95)
  • To Thine Own Self Be True
    Gambit #9 (Marvel, 10/99)

7. “To sleep, perchance to dream: aye, there’s the rub.” (Hamlet, Act III, scene i)

  • Perchance To Dream
    Twilight Zone #66 (Western, 09/75)
  • To Sleep…Perchance to Dream!
    Micronauts #29 (Marvel, 05/81)
  • …Perchance to Dream
    Marvel Fanfare #41 (Marvel, 12/88)
  • To Sleep, Perchance to Dream…
    Team Titans #16 (DC, 01/94)
  • Perchance to Dream
    Legends of the World’s Finest #1 (DC, 02/94)
  • Perchance to Dream
    ElfQuest: Kahvi #2 (WaRP Graphics, 11/95)
  • Perchance to Dream
    Webspinners: Tales of Spider-Man #12 (Marvel, 12/99)
  • Perchance to Dream, Part 1: To Take Arms Against a Sea of Troubles
    Star Trek: The Next Generation — Perchance to Dream #1 (DC, 02/2000)
  • Perchance To Dream
    Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #636 (Gladstone, 09/2003)
  • …Perchance to Dream
    DC/WS DreamWar #6 (DC, 11/2008)

8. “First thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.” (King Henry VI Part II, Act 4, scene ii)

  • …Let’s Kill All the Lawyers!
    Star Trek #11 (DC, 08/90)

9. “A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury” (Macbeth, Act V, scene v)

  • Sound and Fury
    House of Mystery #285 (DC, 10/80)
  • Sound and Fury
    Sandman #7 (DC, 07/89)
  • Sound and Fury
    Green Lantern #3 (DC, 08/90)
  • Sound and Fury
    Protectors #10 (Malibu, 06/93)
  • Sound and Fury
    Flash Annual #10 (DC, 1997)
  • Sound And Fury
    Supergirl #11 (DC, 07/97)
  • Sound and Fury
    Detective Comics #719 (DC, 03/98)
  • Sound and Fury
    Fury of Firestorm: The Nuclear Men #2 (DC, 12/2011)

10. “Friends, Romans, countrymen: lend me your ears.” (Julius Caesar, Act III, scene ii)

  • Friends, Romans, Countrymen!
    Leading Comics #8 (DC, Fall 1943)
  • “Friends, Romans, Countrymen…”
    Jingle Jangle Comics #13 (Eastern Color, 02/45)

11. “The quality of mercy is not strain’d, it droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven.” (The Merchant of Venice, Act IV, scene i)

  • The Quality of Mercy
    Star Trek #15 (Marvel, 08/81)
  •  Quality of Mercy
    The Incredible Hulk Annual #16 (Marvel, 1990)
  • The Quality of Mercy Part One: Fire and Blood!
    Deathstroke the Terminator #22 (DC, 05/93)
  • The Quality of Mercy
    The Big Book of Death (DC, 1995)
  • The Quality of Mercy
    Generation X #46 (Marvel, 12/98)
  • The Quality of Mercy
    Supergirl #32 (DC, 05/99)
  • The Quality of Mercy
    Aquaman #34 (DC, 11/2005)

12. “Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more!” (King Henry V, Act III, scene i)

  • Once More unto The Breach
    Action Comics Weekly #619 (DC, 09/88)
  • Once More unto the Breach…
    Stormwatch #2 (Image, 05/93)
  • Once More unto the Breach
    Adventures in the Rifle Brigade #1 (DC, 10/2000)

13. “And all our yesterdays have lighted fools the way to dusty death.” (Macbeth, Act V, scene v) 

  • Valley of Dusty Death
    World’s Finest Comics #53 (DC, 08-09/51)
  • The Way to Dusty Death
    Sub-Mariner #37 (Marvel, 05/71)
  • Days of Future Past, Part One: And All Our Yesterdays
    X-Men Adventures #13 (Marvel, 11/93)

14. “Parting is such sweet sorrow, that I shall say good night till it be morrow.” (Romeo and Juliet, Act II, scene ii) 

  • Such Sweet Sorrow
    Marvel Fanfare #19 (Marvel, 03/85)
  • Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow
    Venom: Separation Anxiety #3 (Marvel, 02/95)
  • Sweet Sorrow
    New Warriors #75 (Marvel, 09/96)

15. “Double, double toil and trouble; fire burn and cauldron bubble…” (Macbeth, Act IV, scene i)  

  • Babble, Babble, Toil and Trouble!
    Superman #290 (DC, 08/75)
  • Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble
    Mage #4 (Image, 11/97)

16. “Now is the winter of our discontent, made glorious summer by this sun of York.” (Richard III, Act I, scene i) 

  • The Winter of Their Discontent
    Vampirella #45 (Warren, 09/75
  • Winters of Discontent
    Jonny Quest #10 (Comico, 03/87)
  • The Winter of Discontent
    Conan the King #48 (Marvel, 09/88)
  • Autumns of Our Discontent
    Jonah Hex: Riders of the Worm and Such #4 (DC, 06/95)
  • The Splinter of Our Discontent
    The Uncanny X-Men #331 (Marvel, 04/96)

17. “Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio. A fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy.” (Hamlet, Act V, scene i) 

  • An Infinite Jest
    Star Trek Unlimited #7 (Marvel, 01/98)
  • Playing to the Camera, Part 2: A Fellow of Infinite Jest
    Daredevil #21 (Marvel, 10/2001)

18. “For in that sleep of death what dreams may come when we have shuffled off this mortal coil…” (Hamlet, Act III, scene i) 

  • What Dreams May Come…
    The Savage Sword of Conan #4 (Marvel, 02/75)
  • Family Skeletons, Part Two: What Dreams May Come
    Dark Dominion #6 (Defiant, 03/94)
  • What Dreams May Come…
    The Uncanny X-Men #379 (Marvel, 04/2000)
  • What Dreams May Come…
    X-Men Universe #8 (Marvel, 07/2000)
  • What Dreams May Come
    Human Defense Corps #3 (DC, 09/2003)
  • What Dreams May Come…
    Tales of Tellos #3 (Image, 12/2004)

19. “Lord, what fools these mortals be!” (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Act III, scene ii)

  • What Fools These Mortals Be…
    Alpha Flight #5 (Marvel, 12/83)
  • What Fools These Mortals Be…
    Star Trek #53 (Gold Key, 07/78)

20. “By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes.” (Macbeth, Act IV, scene i) 

  • …Something Wicked This Way Comes!
    The Uncanny X-Men #139 (Marvel, 11/80)
  • Something Wicked This Way Kills
    Marvel Team-Up #108 (Marvel, 08/81)
  • … Something Wicked This Way Comes
    Adventures in the DC Universe Annual #1 (DC, 1997)
  • Something Wicked
    Generation X #58 (Marvel, 12/99)
  • Something Wicked This Way Comes…
    The Power Company #3 (DC, 06/2002)
  • Something Wicked This Way Comes
    Secret Avengers #30 (Marvel, 10/2012)

21. “More relative than this: the play’s the thing wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the king!” (Hamlet, Act II, scene ii) 

  • The Play’s the Thing
    Master Comics #114 (Fawcett, 04/50)
  • The Play’s the Thing
    Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories #302 (Western, 11/65)
  • The Play’s the Thing
    DC Special #2 (DC, 01/69)
  • The Play’s the Thing
    Grimm’s Ghost Stories #10 (Western, 07/73)
  • The Play’s the Thing
    The Adventures of Little Archie #160 (Archie, 11/80)
  • The Play’s the Thing
    Archie and Me #145 (Archie, 06/84)
  • The Play’s the Thing
    Walt Disney’s Comics & Stories #539 (Gladstone, 06/89)

 

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One response to ““Lo, the Clobbering Time Doth Approach, Good Sirrah!”

  1. As usual, your article is excellent.

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