HALAKHAK KOMIKS is the first regularly published komiks magasin in the Philippines. Born in 1946, Halakhak Komiks was published out of the initial efforts of Isaac Tolentino and Atty. Jaime Lucas.
At the time of the Halakhak’s birth, the Philippines was a devastated nation struggling to rise from the ashes of war. Most of the local publications were still closed because of the shortage of paper. Hence, many cartoonists were temporarily out of work. Understandably, reading cartoons at that critical time seemed a luxury, so that the few newspapers who managed to publish erratic issues carried only news and statements from the government.
One day, an unemployed cartoonist (of the former T-V-T) by the name of Isaac Tolentino was wandering through Azcarraga Avenue (now Claro M. Recto) in search of work. Tolentino chanced upon the newly-established Universal Bookstore owned by Atty. Jaime Lucas. Atty. Lucas immediately recognized Tolentino because he was a follower of the latter’s satirical cartoons in the Philippines’ Free Press. In the ensuing conversation, Tolentino casually suggested to Atty. Lucas the idea of publishing “funnies”, a regular comic book, after all, would it not be timely now to make people laugh after the grim destruction brought about by the recent war. At that time, no one had thought of publishing a regularly-issued comic book before. Since he was an admirer of Tolentino, Atty. Lucas agreed on the spot to publish comic-magazine which they agreed to call Halakhak. In the next few days, Atty. Lucas gathered enough funds – mostly from his personal money and loans from banks – for the initial printing. For his part, Tolentino gathered some of his pre-war cartoonist friends, which included the brothers Tony and Damy Velasquez J.M. Perez, Elmer Abustan, Gene Cabrera, Francisco Coching, Liborio Gatbonton, Fred Carillo, Francisco Reyes, Jose Zabala Santos, Hugo Yonzon, Larry Alcala, Pedro Coniconde and Lib Abrena.
Since Tolentino and Atty. Lucas had no printing press, they commissioned Carmelo and Bauermann, Inc. to print the 10,000 initial issues of Halakhak Komiks #1. They established the Halakhak’s office at #665 Evangelista, Quiapo, Manila.
The first issue of Halakhak Komiks contained the following comic strips:
1. Mga Hindi Sukat Akalain by Isaac Tolentino
2. Geslani by Isaac Tolentino
3. Eto na si Tibo by Gene Cabrera
4. Si Pino by Jose Zabala Santos
5. Talahib by Francisco Reyes
6. Doon daw sa Langit by Liborio Gatbonton
7. Bulalakaw by Francisco V. Coching
8. Kidlat by Damy Velasquez and Jesse Santos
9. Kasikoy by A. Roullo
10. Binong Lambanog by Noly Panaligan
11. Eniong Bohemio by Cris Caguintuan
12. Teryong Alat by Hugo Yonzon
13. Indo by Maning de Leon
All in all, the Halakhak had 42 pages and initially prices at 25 centavos (then about the price of one 80z Coca-Cola). The first issue was printed on a smaller usual size, about the size of a half of long bond paper, this is because of the shortage of paper, as already mentioned. In its later issues, however, it was made into the regular-sized komiks, and was priced at 40 centavos.
Initially, the company prospered but in its later issues, it began to have business troubles; it never recovered stability and the Halakhak lasted only ten issues; the company closed shop after that, financially ruined. The ultimate reason why Halakhak failed? Uncollected debt. Since there was no precedent as to how to run a komiks business, Atty. Lucas and Isaac Tolentino failed to understand its economics. Publishing comics for nationwide distribution required an effective distribution network, something Atty. Lucas and Tolentino did not have. They relied heavily on agents who advanced copies without payment. This eventually became the ultimate problem since many agents did not pay their obligation, even when the komiks had been sold out. Since there were only few advertisers in the Halakhak, these were not enough to cover the fees for artists, let alone pay for printing expenses. Atty. Lucas was forced to close the company. Thus, the Halakhak, which meant laughter, and was highly successful in giving laughter to its readers, failed to give laughter to its publisher. 
List of Serials
- Bernardo Carpio (1947) w: a: Dumlao
- Bulalakaw (1946-1947) w: a: Francisco V. Coching
- Eniong Bohemio (1946-1947) w: a: Cris Caguintuan
- Geslani (1946-1947) w: a: Isaac Tolentino
- Kani-Kaniya nga Naman (1946-1947) w: a: Jose Zabala-Santos
- Kidlat (1946-1947) w: Damy Velasquez, a: Jesse F. Santos
- Mga Hindi Sukat Akalain (1946-1947) w: a: Isaac Tolentino
- Siopawman (1947) w: a: Larry Alcala
- Talahib (1946-1947) w: a: Francisco Reyes