G. I. Combat #68 (1959)

Man, just look at that cover below. I know that artist Jerry Grandenetti is nobody’s favorite, but just look at the simplicity of that cover. A lone soldier with a bazooka facing off against an approaching Nazi tank. There’s no need to add any drama to the situation. The scene itself is all drama. How can one man face down a tank?
Sure, one man can face down a tank, if he’s the Rock, a tough-as-nails boxer whose mantra is "I won’t stay down." Rock is a fighter. A boxer who always gets back up, no matter who knocks him down. What better metaphor for the US Army is there than the Rock?
It’s fun reading an old story like "The Rock" because it’s so straightforward and honest in its intensity. Writer Robert Kanigher always knew that war was a great equalizer, and that the constant backdrop of instant death was the most important element to hs stories. The Rock is just a man, pushed to his limits, who somehow managed to fight on.
This story ended up being the pilot for a whole Sgt. Rock series that ran for around twenty years. In that time, Kanigher’s scripts became a bit ossified and stale. But earlier on in the game, they were exciting and interesting. It’s a kick reading this old comic today.

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