Background artist unknown, after Howitt
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Several listings on eBay in February 2008 brought to light a host of American pulp and mystery translations from Mexico in the Thirties via a weekly digest-sized magazine called Detectives Y Bandidos.

Detectives Y Bandidos
Detectives Y Bandidos was launched by Publicaciones Herrerias, S.A. (General Manager Ignacio F. Herrerias) in the late 1930s as part of a mini-explosion of pulp fiction publishing in Mexico. (Source) At the time Herrerias also published Mujeres Y Deportes, Cuentos Y Novelas, Chamaco, and Novedades. Bandidos reprinted translated English works along side Mexican fiction, and the subtitle "semanario policiaco" suggests they did this weekly. This page (whose links don't work for me due to accented characters) seems to suggest Bandidos only ran 70 issues. A few issues are adorned with repaintings of American Shadow covers, but without having a Shadow story inside the magazine, suggesting that copyrights were a secondary concern.

The two issues I've obtained that feature "La Araña" are both from 1937 and contain 194 pages with a saddle-stitched binding (stapled in the center like a typical comic book) and the Howitt cover repainted by a local artist. The book is trimmed (poorly) at just under 5.5"x7.5" -- roughly the size of a current digest. The most suprising thing about the printing is the use of a second color (red) for story titles, chapter heads, captions, and even some parts of the reused Gould artwork (see below). "El Rey de los Vampiros" runs 100 pages in the magazine, while "El Regreso del Faraón y los Leprosos" runs 78. (This makes sense since Spider novels dropped from an average of 45,000 words to 35,000 when the magazine went from 128 pages to 112 in March 1936.)

Content-wise, these may not be direct or complete translations; This requires study by someone bilingual. Spot-checking the end of each story for key proper names and recognizable Spanish words reveals in both cases that the last few paragraphs of the original have been taken out. Basically the small-talk between the main characters at the tail end of each story has been cut entirely.



2-color art

#16 Cover




Comparison Photos
I took some photographs to give one a fuller impression of a Detectives Y Bandidos pulp, with a focus on comparing it to its American counterpart.

This is full-size comparison of the two pulps showing the difference in dimensions. This angle shows the binding and thickness of each. Bandidos is saddle-stitched.
This closeup shows the difference in painting styles and glossiness. Unlike the US original, DyB opens the story on a single page with no art.
Here is the "Vampire King" opening spread in the original American pulp. Part of the US opening art does make an appearance within the first chapter.
Here you can see the difference in the quality of the interior art. Argentina's better. A closeup showing a typical use of the second color within Bandidos.

Detectives Y Bandidos Page
To aid any other pulp researchers, this page outlines the contents of the two Spider issues covered above and four others that were listed on eBay.