Friday, 27 December 2013

Comic Book Resolutions 2013 Revisited

So as 2013 comes to a close, how did my resolutions work out? As usual with any resolutions I make I did very poorly. I certainly read a lot of comics but not the ones I had planned to read. Silver Age Spider-man? Nope. Black Panther? Nope. Werewolf By Night? Nope. Walt Simonson's Thor? Stan and Jack's Thor? Neither. I did read some Tintin but only the first four books. I would classify this as an almost total failure. 

Amazing Spider-man #3 (July 1963)
Art by Steve Ditko

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Hawkman by Kubert

Hawkman by Joe Kubert
The world is a poorer place without Joe Kubert in it but at least we can cherish his art. Nobody could draw Hawkman as well as Kubert. Murphy Anderson was great but Joe Kubert was very special.

Joe Kubert with large print of Showcase Presents Hawkman #101 (June 1978)
Art by Joe Kubert

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Super Sons: Superman Junior and Batman Junior

Do you seek an escape from an insane world? New 52 not floating your boat? Superman too grim and gritty? Legion of Super-Heroes cancelled again? Ben Affleck not your ideal Baman? Too many X comics, too many Avengers comics? Doc Ock as Spider-man confusing your inner fan boy? Never fear Bob Haney is the solution to all your problems!

World's Finest #215 (December 1972 - January 1973)
Art by Nick Cardy

Monday, 2 September 2013

Golden Age Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman is marketed by DC as one of their three top franchises but I have failed to connect with the character when I have attempted to read any of the numerous re-launches over the last twenty five years or so. However, this all changed when I read the original Wonder Woman stories from the Golden Age by William Moulton Marston and H G Peter.  I sometimes struggle with Golden Age books, hence the focus of this blog is the Silver and Bronze Ages, but there are some characters whose stories are truly excellent and I can recommend Boy Commandos from DC, Captain Marvel from Fawcett and Blackhawk from Quality Comics as being particularly good. I did not think for a moment that Wonder Woman would join this list but she has.

Sensation Comics #1 (January 1942)
Art by H G Peter and John L Blummer
Boy Commandos #5 (Winter 1943 - 1944)
Pencil Art by Jack Kirby, inks: Joe Simon
Whiz Comics #20 (August 1941)
Pencil Art by C C Beck, inks: Pete Costanza
Military Comics #13 (November 1942)
Art by Reed Crandall
Writer William Moulton Marston, who used the pen name Charles Moulton, was a very interesting and eccentric character himself.  A noted psychologist who contributed to the development of the polygraph test he was a feminist who shared his home not only with his wife Elizabeth but with his girlfriend Olive Byrne, who may also have been Elizabeth's lover.  Marston wanted to promote his feminist belief in the superiority of women and Wonder Woman was his ideal powerful beauty.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

A Salute to Jack Kirby: The King's Return to Captain America

It is Jack Kirby's birthday, he would have been 96 years old today.  It is impossible to overstate Jack's contribution to comics or twentieth century culture for that matter. Here is a small salute to the King.

PFC Jacob Kurtzberg (1945)
Criticised at the time, Jack's mid seventies run on Captain America is one of my fondest Bronze Age memories.  So in honour of the King's birthday here is a trip down memory lane:

Captain America #193 (January 1976)
Pencil Art by Jack Kirby, inks: John Romita