Back in the day The Fantastic Four was dubbed The World’s Greatest Comics Magazine. No such truer words were written when in 1965-1966, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby not only wed Reed Richards and Sue Storm but introduced characters like The Inhumans, Galactus and The Silver Surfer who have had impact in the Marvel Universe for 50 years and in today. Today we explore this comic that have been collected in Marvel Masterworks Fantastic Four Volume 5.
Also on today’s show: Marvel’s New Epic line of what are turning out to be colorized versions of the Essentials, thoughts on Carmine Infantino, DC’s New 52 Villains Omnibus due in December and the Eisner Awards.
When one looks at the work of Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko you can see that nearly all of it has been reprinted in some form or another. But some of the comics have slipped through the cracks and has yet to be collected at all. On today’s show I take a look a few of the comics most notably Just Imagine Stan Lee Creating the DC Universe, which was collected in a 3-volume trade paperback set, but was promised a complete Omnibus edition and was canceled for no apparent reason; Jack Kirby: Genesis from Dynamite Entertainment, an incomplete reboot of Silver Star, Captain Victory and other Kirby characters as envisioned by Alex Ross and Kurt Busiek to name a few; and finally what adds up to about 40 pages worth of comic book material by Steve Ditko that was haphazardly not included in the three recent DC Comics hardcovers: The Creeper, Ditko Omnibus 1 and 2.
Welcome to my 8 Year Anniversary Show! It’s hard to believe that I’ve been doing this for so long — and in 350 shows, to boot!
Of course I owe the success of this blog and podcast to you the reader and listener. I thank you very much!
As with past milestone shows, I wanted to do something special so for the first time I’m covering Jack Kirby (hard to believe I haven’t done so before). But instead of focusing on a long career retrospective of his work from reprints, I am taking a view into the future by listing upcoming collected editions of some of Jack’s greatest and sometimes very hard to find comics.
Also I comment on the Dark Horse’s $125.00 reprint of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan: The Sunday Comics 1931-1933 HC, TwoMorrows Publishing’s American Comic Book Chronicles and the sudden return of the Marvel Premiere Classic editions with Volume 107 – X-Force: Phalanx Covenant.
Is there one book that is a “must have” that came out this week? My friends Andy Tom (@AndrewJTom), Chris Campbell (ChrisCampbell8) and I are sharing six comic book collected editions, reprints and/or graphic novels released this week that you may be interested in.
Picked by @AndrewJTom: Adventures of Superman: Gil Kane HC (DC Comics)
Remember going to the corner drugstore and picking up a Superman comic because you couldn’t resist that awesome cover and just had to know what happened inside? DC brings back that feeling of wonder with the first volume in it’s Adventures of Superman line. Gil Kane was a master story-teller who was sadly taken from us a few years ago while he was still producing quality work. Thankfully, his glorious art will live on in the pages of hardcover collected editions like this. Gil’s kinetic pencils are on full display in this volume with classic stories featuring Superman vs. some of your favorite villains including the Super Powers versions of Luthor & Brainiac. This book is a “must have” for any Superman or Gil Kane fan. Collects Superman #367, 372, 375, Action Comics #539- 541, 544, 545, 546 and 551-554, Superman Special #1-2 and DC Comics Presents Annual #3, $39.99
Picked by ChrisCampbell8: Superman: Last Son Of Krypton TP (DC Comics)
The brightest star often burns the quickest, and that is what you have in this recent Superman collection. The story of Last Son chronicles the introduction of Christopher Kent, a character that has a profound impact on the Superman family and leaves the readers wanting more. With art by Adam Kubert and co-written by Geoff Johns and Richard Donner, the Action Comics Annual #11 may have been one of 2008’s best single issues. The collection is rounded out by the Brainiac storyline written by Johns and drawn by the amazingly talented Gary Frank. For those that enjoyed the New Krypton event, this story is indispensable. Collects Action Comics #844-846, 851 and 866-870, Action Comics Annual #11 and Superman: New Krypton Special #1, $16.99
Captain Marvel: The Death Of Captain Marvel TPB – New Printing (Marvel)
The Marvel purists already know that The Death Of Captain Marvel has been reprinted several times over, but here, in this nice trade, you get the whole story. A few years ago Marvel brought this collection out as part of their Premiere Classic line, and if you didn’t get it then, be sure to get it now. Captain Marvel is one of the most iconic characters Marvel has created and his demise is a heroic tale of service and sacrifice. Collects Captain Marvel (1968) #34, Marvel Spotlight (1979) #1-2 and Marvel Graphic Novel #1: The Death Of Captain Marvel, $19.99
Guardians Of The Galaxy: Tomorrow’s Avengers Vol. 1 TPB
More cosmic goodness from Marvel, this time showcasing the “Avengers of the Future”. A rag-tag teams of heroes come together to stop a powerful common foe named Badoom. The team was created by two greats: Arnold Drake (Doom Patrol) and Gene Colan (Tomb Of Dracula), who certainly know a thing or two about science fiction and fantastic tales. The second, and final volume, is scheduled for March. Collects Marvel Super Heroes (1967) #18, Marvel Two-In-One (1974) #4-5, Giant-Size Defenders #5, Defenders (1972) #26-29 and Marvel Presents #3-12, $39.99
Kirby: Genesis – Silver Star Vol. 1 TP (Dynamite)
Jack’s Kirby’s character, Silver Star, was initially to be an original movie superhero and not a comic book character. That all changed when the screenplay was rejected. Kirby went on to publish a six issue series for Pacific Comics, which has been collected by Image in 2007. Fast forward to 2011 when Dynamite acquired the rights to Silver Star and other Kirby owned heroes. Dynamite launched the Kirby: Genesis line of comics that included Kirby: Genesis (proper), Silver Star, Captain Victory and Dragonsbane, another character that was developed by Kirby. Sadly, Dynamite will not be publishing anymore Kirby books. I hope they will be able to put all four series together in a complete Omnibus someday. For now you’ll have to get the trades. Collects Kirby: Genesis – Silver Star #1-6 along with a complete cover gallery featuring Alex Ross, Jae Lee and Mark Buckingham, $19.99
Roy Thomas Presents The Heap Volume 1 HC (PS ArtBooks)
You know Swamp Thing. You probably know Man-Thing. You may even know Animal-Vegetable-Mineral Man. But do you know The Heap? The original swamp creature first appeared in 1942 in the pages of Air Fighters Comics #3 and continued on in the renamed Airboy Comics until 1953. He was revived in 1971 by Roy Thomas and here, in this the first of three volumes, Thomas reintroduces us to one of his favorite all time characters. Many (if not all) of these comics have never been reprinted. It’s a real treat for the Golden Age fanboy. Collects The Heap stories from Airboy Comics, December 1942 – May 1948, $47.99
Now it’s your turn. What books that came out this week do you recommend? Take a look at the sidebar to see this weeks collected edition releases.
It’s that time of year again! Time to pick a character or creator to immerse yourself in for 2013.
This is one of my favorite shows of the year because it forces me to read material I probably would have skipped. For 2013 I’m choosing The Fantastic Four starting with the original epic run by creators Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. I’ll be reading from my own 14 Volume set of Marvel Masterworks. In my ten years of owning these books, I have never read them! So this year I’m dusting them off, literally, and doing something that every comic book fan should do!
For fun let’s recap what I adopted the past few years:
2008: Luke Cage and Iron Fist
2009: The Spirit Archives Volumes 1-27
2010: Steve Ditko’s Spider-Man
2011: Silver Age X-Men
2012: Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.
I hope you, too, pick a character(s) or creator(s) to learn more about and to let me know who it is.