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  • 3 years 20 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    …but at this point I'd even welcome a few lousy Colletta pages. Or we COULD get some GREAT pages by Royer, Sinnott, Giacoia or Verpoorten...

  • 3 years 20 weeks ago | Krackles
    Krackles's picture

    … you gotta look at the bright side of things, Joltin' John.
    We are celebrating an anniversary!

    (Plus, we may have avoided the 7 sins of Crapletta!)

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    It's now been exactly one year since any new pages were posted on this site. I was hoping we would at least get to the 1200 page mark, since it's only 7 pages away; but it looks like that's never going to happen now. Ah well, it was fun while it lasted.

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | Mike T
    Mike T's picture

    I see your point, because when it comes to inks Wood was supreme, and you can't help but see him in the final results. There is definitely more black and more shadow than what Jack put down (based on all his other output).

    However, I'm not buying that Wood buried Jack. When you look at Woody's solo work--amazing as it tends to be (particularly the EC stuff)--it just doesn't reach the same level as Kirby/Wood. Jack's gifts/talents come through even with these high-powered inks, and these panels are just totally more interesting due to what Jack did than what would have been the case with any other penciller. Don't get me wrong, Wallace did great layouts and pencils too, but that's neither here nor there--Jack is still King, even in these panels. Neither Wood nor anybody else can ever take that away. Woody is merely a part--a superbly outstanding part--but still just a part of the Kirby Kollective.

    I stumbled across the official Wallace Wood website recently (or was it on Facebook?) and I was touched at the homage paid there to the King. There seems to have been a real bond or at least deep respect from the Wood entourage for Jack. I think one of the posts read "There's nothing like Kirby & Wood," and I have to agree. I read elsewhere (Kirby Collector I think) that Wood believed Kirby to be a genius and that's why he put so much effort into this strip. Now this I buy! And what an honor that someone like Wood thought that of another artist!

    I'd love to see the pencils of this. I'm betting they looked very much like the end result sans shadow/black.

    Here we have the greatest penciller and the legendary inker combining their talents--What's not to like?

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | MRE1957
    MRE1957's picture

    ...there isn't much of Jack left here to enjoy.

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    I've never seen this page before. I actually don't mind Colletta's inks on Thor, but this is much better than what Vinnie usually turned in. In my opinion Bill Everett was one of the true Giants of comics -- a brilliant creator who could write, pencil, ink, letter and color with the best of 'em. So it's always great to see his work.

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | Mike T
    Mike T's picture

    Whenever Bill Everett inked Jack, the results were almost invariably outstanding! But on this page, I don't know, it's a bit more hit and miss, Ulik just looks wrong. He seems to have lost his savagery, and appears somewhat slick/stylized. The inking of Thor is, however, fabulous, recalling both Stone and Sinnott while at the same time keeping Jack at the forefront (somehow!), especially in panel 4.

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    …I think the first one has a far more interesting and dynamic layout, we see more of the hero, more of the machinery, and even the dialogue (as shown on the Buyer's Guide cover at the link) conveys the story better, because it tells us the nature of the death-trap, which the second cover doesn't.

    Another interesting thing about the Buyer's Guide version is that it clearly shows the dialogue written in Jack's own hand (possibly darkened by someone else for better reproduction). Looking over a bunch of Jack's '70s DC covers, what I've noticed is that most of them are inked by Royer but lettered by DC's people in New York. So that must have been Jack's standard operating procedure at the time: write the copy directly on the board or on a separate piece of paper, have Mike ink it, and then send the inked art to DC for lettering and production. The comics.org website lists the letterer on the majority of the covers as Gaspar Saladino, which I think is probably correct in most cases, since he was DC's primary cover letterer during that period.

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | Mike T
    Mike T's picture

    I had been of the opinion that the printed cover was pretty darn good, but in comparison, the unused one is SO much better! Now I see what you're talking about. It doesn't make any sense that the first version wasn't used.

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | Dan Reed
    Dan Reed's picture

    When I said I like "This cover"... I meant to say I like the unused cover much better, not the one above...
    sorry about the confusion.
    Dan

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | Dan Reed
    Dan Reed's picture

    Looking through my back issues I came across the Jack Kirby Collector with the scan of the original cover art in it from Mister Miracle #10... it was issue #8, Page #24... I like this much better myself.
    Dan Reed

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | Dan Reed
    Dan Reed's picture

    Looking through my back issues I came across the Jack Kirby Collector with the scan of the original cover art in it from Mister Miracle #10... it was issue #8, Page #24... I like this much better myself.
    Dan Reed

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    All the copy sounds like Kirby wrote it, but you never know, since the cover was inked by Royer but lettered by someone else (possibly Gaspar Saladino) -- hence the paste-ups. Tom has the letterer credited here as Royer, but to me it very clearly looks like somebody else did it. If Mike had lettered it from Jack's copy, why would he use paste-ups? He'd letter it directly on the board. Also, Mike never did the typography on these covers, like we see at the bottom of this one. All that stuff was done by the DC production department. So if I had to take a guess, I'd say Jack had Mike do the inking in California and then sent the inked piece to New York (with the copy written on a separate sheet of paper) where Saladino and/or someone else in the production department then did the lettering.

    The first version of the cover and the pencils for this version have probably been printed in The Jack Kirby Collector at some point, but I'm not sure which issues they were in. As you mention, Jack usually lettered the copy directly onto the pencilled image, so if we saw a photocopy of the pencils, we would know for certain whether the copy was written by him or not. Here's a link to a blog entry showing the original cover…
    http://capnscomics.blogspot.ca/2013/07/mister-miracle-10-cover-by-jack-k...

  • 3 years 21 weeks ago | MRE1957
    MRE1957's picture

    ..."You've never met a more fantastic opponent!" Wonder if Jack wrote that copy? Is it on the penciled cover?
    Plus, I'd love to see that rejected cover to compare it to this one.

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | MRE1957
    MRE1957's picture

    What a prime example of the Lee and Kirby genius at work by allowing us readers a sneak peek into the everyday lives of Reid, Sue, Johnny and Ben. Look! They watch TV! Get angry! Throw tantrums! Go on dates—although—to Hawaii using their own I.C.B.M.! Plus, that last panel showing the typical 1960s American "Keeping Up With The Joneses" attitude. Priceless!

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | Mike T
    Mike T's picture

    John, I wouldn't bet against that! I just threw out the only 2 possibilities I could think of, but yeah, the one seems completely un-doable, and there's no sign of cutting/pasting in this scan either.

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    Thanks for the info, Tom. That original SPIRIT WORLD collage is certainly a beauty.

    Mike: I'd bet on an enlarged scan of the printed cover for the background of the reconstruction. You can see a scan of the printed cover at the link in Ferran's comment.

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | Mike T
    Mike T's picture

    ...and hopefully this lives up...

    So when you say the collage background is not original, etc., does that mean that the restorer went out and found the same photos Jack found and cut them into the same shapes and pasted them in the same locations on a new board? Or was the comic cover just scanned and enlarged for the reconstruction? It sounds like the ONLY thing original about this cover is the Superman & Olsen art. Even the lettering looks like it was "flown in" (although I think that is often the case on original cover art).

    It might be cool to add in a scan of the #138 cover for comparison at some point...

    Thanks, Tom!

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | Mike T
    Mike T's picture

    I've never been a fan of collages, even those by the King, but this one is effective and downright jarring! It actually looks like something Steranko might have drawn in one of his Dali homages. Surrealistic and nightmarish. Note that Jack filled the lower right by painting color directly on the art board rather than pasting in another piece. He then painted that color onto the smoke to tie it in. He also painted highlights on the skull and hand. I've not observed Jack touching up the photos before--is this typical or atypical?

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | Tom Kraft
    Tom Kraft's picture

    Yes the cover is a reconstruction. The collage background is not original and the lettering/titling as well. The art of Jimmy Olsen and Superman is. The background printing crop marks and other markings is also not original. 

    I agree that collages did not get their fair due in the printing process but when you see them in the original large color format its entirely a different thing. I own several collages, the one below from Spirit World is my favorite: http://www.whatifkirby.com/gallery/comic-art-listings/spirit-world-collage-issue-1-pages-2-3.

     
  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    But whoever it was, they did a pretty good job. It's impossible to tell that the additions weren't part of Jack's original collage without doing a direct comparison at the link Ferran provided. I also notice Tom says in the sidebar that this cover has been restored, which can't have been easy, considering the nature of the artwork. So the person who did the restoration also did a very fine job.

    It's interesting to note that Jack's original collage was in full color, while the one used on the cover was in black-and-white, with the final colors added after the fact by the colorist.

    I've always been of two minds when it comes to Kirby's collages. While I admit that some of them are quite interesting to look at, I also think they're usually not particularly successful as artistic storytelling elements -- firstly because the printing quality in those days was largely inadequate for reproducing them effectively and secondly because they distract the reader away from the story by drawing too much attention to themselves. I generally agree with Joe Sinnott's view that the art would have been better served if Kirby had just drawn all that stuff by hand -- particularly in the case of elaborate machinery and other-worldly locales, since Jack was really, really good at drawing those things anyway.

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | Mike T
    Mike T's picture

    So who altered the bottom half of the collage? Adams?

  • 3 years 22 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    Not sure whose idea it was to reject Kirby's original cover for this issue, but it was a pretty bad decision. Anyone who's seen Jack's first attempt at this image would probably have to agree that it was far superior to this one.

  • 3 years 24 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    Kirby excelled at the classic monster stuff!

  • 3 years 24 weeks ago | John S.
    John S.'s picture

    Yeah, Colan did some fantastic stuff. And honestly, I really love the Marvel black-and-white mags from the early to mid seventies. I'm just saying it's a shame DC didn't take Jack's suggestion for a Dracula mag, 'cause Marvel got some sensational material out of the same concepts shortly thereafter. If Infantino had taken Jack's idea, DC could have had it first and had some amazing Kirby stories and art as well. Evanier writes about it briefly in TJKC #13, for anyone who wants to check it out.