Cover includes 4 panels with stats from prior issues.
Scans of original art are from the Kirby Museum's Original Art Digital Archive.
Scans of pencil art photocopies for the Kirby Museum's Pencil Art Photocopy Archive courtesy of the Kirby Family, with thanks to TwoMorrows Publishing.
Please do not copy any images or content from this site without permission.
Sections look like Colletta but overall the inking style is not Colletta IMO. Thoughts?
Doesn't look like Colletta to me. My thought is it's Marie Severin.
I would guess Sol Brodsky also.
My only reservation about Brodsky is the other pages inked by him on display here are all quite nice, while this is awful looking by comparison.
Chrissie thinks it might have been a quick sketch by Kirby converted into a cover which looks more like a house ad.
No one thinks this is inked by Colletta I assume?
A lot of odd things about this cover. Looks like a mix of regular and blue pencil. Zooming in it looks like the head of Thor's hammer has been slightly redrawn in the inks. And what are those curlycues all over the place about?
I'm thinking it's Sol also. The cover appears to be an in house production at Marvel seeing there's a lot of cutting and pasting on panels--and Sol worked at the Marvel office in production. Also this is 3 years later since Sol inked anything of Jack's--the last being back in 1962 when he was inking the FF #4. Sol didn't ink a lot of muscle tone on characters in those FF stories because of characters wearing loose clothing and no bare skin like on this Thor cover, so we can't really make any comparisons in regards to that. I see Thor's knee guard and parts of his cape that appear to be rendered in ink the way Sol would do it. Then there's like shine effects on metal and the rendering on Herc's hair that seem to be Sol. And maybe Sol was inking it to keep it in the vein of the Colletta style.
...I would suspect this was Brodsky (or whoever) attempting to emulate Colletta's inking style to some degree, since Vinnie inked the actual story. As to the cover's format/design, Stan ran a lot of covers with this type of layout at that time, particularly on books that contained multiple reprints, so it's quite likely that the Thor/Hercules vignette was created specifically for this cover. I don't really see any blue pencil here. I think what you're seeing, Patrick, is white-out with a slightly bluish tint to it. The head of Thor's hammer may have been redrawn slightly by either Jack or the inker to ensure that its angle aligned correctly with the angle of the handle. And those curlycues, you'll notice, are all on top of motion lines. On the printed cover, all the motion lines are gone. This leads me to believe that the curlycues were pencilled in by Stan or Brodsky to indicate the elements that Stan wanted whited out -- which leads me to believe that the printed cover was shot from a stat and not the original art (which would also account somwhat for the fact that this piece is in incredibly good condition for a cover this old) and which further strengthens my suspicion that production man Brodsky was the inker here.
Not negating the idea that the piece was stated and used in production and resulting in a cleaner page but I believe this page was restored up. Its to white to be from this time and the back is almost perfectly even white which is very rare since most pages had graphite markets from Jack's drafting board and Marvel stamps in some cases.
Thanks for pointing out the speed lines were all removed when the cover was printed, that explains the curlycue marks. I've got the comic book in a box, but haven't looked at it since I bought it at a flea market back in 1971.
I was discussing the cover with Chrissie at her group, and the inker being asked to ape Colletta was a thought which crossed my mind as well. Another person there mentioned the original published cover is muddy looking and that would go in line with the idea the printed cover was shot from a stat.
My first thought was Marie Severin who was in house like Brodsky, but Brodsky sounds logical.
Oh yeah, Patrick, the reprinted version I see in the Marvel Masterworks is splotchy in comparison to the original here. You say you have the comic, wonder how that printed out in comparison to the original. I use to have that comic--but on longer do.
I also agree completely with the observations Frank made here regarding Brodsky and his inking style, so I think it's a pretty safe bet that Jolly Solly was indeed the inker on this cover.
Thanks everyone for your input. Happy to see Chrissie here too. I've updated the inker credit to Brodsky based on comments. I'm thinking the lettering was done by Rosen who inked the interior.
Lettering is a bit tougher to figure out, since Rosen and Artie Simek had such similar styles, but I'd definitely pick Simek for this one. His work was a little bit bolder than Rosen's and this cover has most of the stylistic cues that Simek's display lettering was known for.
Looks like Simek to me also. The way Artie did block lettering it almost has it's own voice or sound to it.
Imho, Rosen lettered the logo zone (probably a stat recycled from another cover) and Simek did the lettering exclusive to this cover, all at the bottom of the logo.
Yeah--I would agree with that, Ferran. You pretty much nailed it down to who did what. The style differences are right there for all to see. Good call.
Although I really wish Sol Brodsky inked this one, Mike Esposito assumed credit for it a few years before his passing. Mike said he also inked the FF Annual #3 cover which was released about the same time. This piece has been in my collection since 1990 when I purchased it out of a CBG ad. Although I can't fully confirm it, my suspicion is that it came from the estate of Marvel production manager, Mike Verpoorten. At the time I purchased it, the JIM was a very messy assemblage of art, stats, and white-out all pasted down to a piece of acidic-looking shirt cardboard for support. White-out covered the motion lines. To save it from impending deterioration, I sent it to conservator, Susan Cicconi,who performed what amounted to magic. Today, it looks great and stands as one of the earliest known JIM cvrs. in existence.
Thanks Hans for you input on this great cover. I updated the inker credit to Mike.
Correction: I meant John Verpoorten not Mike Verpoorten.
...how wrong can we be! I guess even The Committee can be mistaken sometimes! Good thing we didn't put our "infallible" stamp on this particular judgement!
Esposito did a fine job on this classic cover:
The JIM cover looks not quite right to me, and I'm wondering if maybe it was done from a sketch Kirby had done for another purpose?
Here's a splash penciled and inked by Esposito which has a very similar looking ink line as compared to the JIM cover.
Esposito did a fine job on this classic cover:
The Strange Tales #142 is much more typical of Mike's style than his work on the JIM Annual #1. That said, I grew tired of owning the ST #142 after a spell. The inks looked too sloppy to me. With all the cool gadgetry on the #142, I really wish Joe Sinnott had inked this cover.
I wonder if Hans has any more pages from the Hunger Dogs in their original form, before being heavily redrawn by Theakston?
This page inked by Berry is one of the post important pages in the book, and for some reason wasn't restored by DC when they restored the Royer inked pages for the Omnibus.
Berry is no Royer, but his inking on this page looks far closer to Kirby's intent than the published version.
I do own other examples from Hunger Dogs, Patrick. When I first got them, some pages had stats covering heads or panels. There were heavier looking inks added to the paste-overs themselves. The images underneath were exactly the same but only with the D. Bruce Berry finishes. I'm sure the stats were added and inked by Greg Theakston.
Recently I've had Greg's paste-overs removed and the glue-staining professionally cleaned. So all my pages are 100% Berry now. The Orion splash from my CAF you referenced was already "Theakston-free" when I first got it.
It would be wonderful if in the future DC could produce an edition with the original inks by Berry.
If you don't mind.
How many pages does this involve, and do you plan on posting them anywhere? If you attend conventions I'd assume Tom would see these pages as important.
Personally I've always seen the Hunger Dogs as one of Kirby's greatest stories, but thought it was badly marred by the inking.
As far as I know, Hunger Dogs originally had eighteen Kirby pgs. inked by Mike Royer. These were leftovers from the aborted New Gods #12 story. Then forty three more were pencilled by Jack and finished by D. Bruce Berry later on along with two collage pgs. That equals a total of sixty three. Of the original Berry inked pages I own, seven of them once had Theakston stats. The remainder are stat free. At last count, I think I have eighteen Berry inked original pages in total from the story.
However, there are also production art pgs. floating around. These are stats of the Royer and Berry pgs. that were re-inked by Theakston with new original art added along the edge to make them large enough to be compatible with the 14" x 18" graphic novel size. The center portion of all these pages is a stat with nothing original underneath. In some cases there is a production page and an original of the same page in existence. In some cases there's only a clean page or an original page with inked paste-overs. Got all that straight? :)
Hans, Thanks for the information. If I understand you correctly there are quite a few pages where GT applied his redrawn art to a stat rather than altering the originals, and in the cases where he worked on the original art itself, he used paste overs.
This would seem to leave open the possibility that DC might someday publish a more faithful version of the Hunger Dogs art. It's pretty disappointing they made such a half-hearted effort with the Omnibus book.
As I've said the story itself is one of my absolute favorites, and the artwork inked by Royer and the few untouched Berry pages is excellent, but the retouched art is painful to look at. Take a great page like pg. 327 of the Omnibus edition. Those head shots of Darkseid are the kind of expressive reactions which KIrby is a master of, but they are lost in the inking. And the full page splash of Darkseid on pg. 316...what a shame.
It's much better than the "Theakstonized" version.
I was gonna say Mickey Demeo. Lol. Nothing like first hand information to set the record straight. Thanks, Hans.
Yeah--instead of being tweaked, it's been "theaked".