Archive for the 'Make Mine Marvel' Category



Marvel Super Special #8: Battlestar Galactica (1978)

BSG Cockrum

I posted the original Bob Larkin cover art on Facebook last week. Here’s some original Dave Cockrum art from the same issue. You can read the whole comic—written by Roger McKenzie and illustrated by Ernie Colón—at Alberto’s Flickr. It’s good stuff, and there are lots of extras.

Bonus: here’s a photo of some 1978 kids transfixed by the oversized beauty.

Greg Irons Art: `Strange Happenings’ Handbill, 1967

Strange Happ Irons 1967

Strange Happ Irons 1967-3

So very interesting. Steve Ditko created the Dr. Strange character in the early ’60s, and Stan Lee introduced the “Master of Black Magic” in Strange Tales #110 (1963). The Ditko/Lee creation was a reflection of the uncanny times, a generation’s embrace of all things mystical and occult. Here Irons simultaneously appropriates the Marvel “property” (there is no mention of the company or the character name) while emulating Ditko’s style and the spirit of his and Lee’s Sorcerer Supreme. Irons did at least three posters for Space Age.

California Hall is a San Francisco landmark and makes an appearance in Dirty Harry (1971) in the scene where Callahan talks down a suicide jumper.

The Amazing Spider-Man Adventure Set (Colorforms, 1974)

Spidey Colorforms 1974-1

Spidey Colorforms 1974-2

Spidey Colorforms 1974-3

Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends Trade Ad (1981)

Spidey 1981

Thundarr was #1. Spidey was #2. I always wondered: what happened to all those ice bridges after the friends beat the bad guys and went back to Aunt May’s? It’s better not to think about the answer as an adult.

Christmas Morning, 1979: Micronauts and Starcruiser 1

Christmas 1979-1

Christmas 1979-2

Joseph Dickerson has good taste. Everyone knows by now how much I love the Micronauts line (Ken Kelly box art on the Hornetroid), and that’s The Hulk Rage Cage (Fun Stuff, 1978) in the background of the first shot.

Starcruiser was a series proposed in the late 1970s by Gerry Anderson about “an ultra-modern house where a mother, father, and two kids lived. At the touch of a button the house would literally fold into a spaceship. The family would travel around the universe from planet to planet… ” (See here for source and more background.) The series never made it to the air, obviously, but a comic strip of the same name appeared in UK’s Look-In magazine from 1977 to 1979. The writer and author of the strip was David Jefferis, who was working on Usborne’s World of the Unknown and World of the Future series at the same time. (My interview with Mr. Jefferis will run next month.) Airfix’s gorgeous model (1979) was based on the strip.

Horrific Spider-Man Poster, 1973

Spidey 1973

I interrupt my holiday programming to bring you the worst Spider-Man poster anybody has ever seen. It was given away during an early stamp book promotion—a year before the Value Stamps were introduced in 1974. Extremely rare, according to seller Marvel Museum, and also extremely hideous.

Marvel Comics Trade Ad, 1980: ‘More Popular Than Santa?’

christmas marvel ad 1980

“Marvel Comics yearly reach an incredible 77% of all kids in the United States between 6 and 17.” I have to believe there’s some padding going on, but still, that’s a big number, and I don’t doubt it. Bringing a comic book to school would buy you a class full of friends for a day.

Dungeons & Dragons TV Series Promotional Poster (1983)

D&D Promo 1983

D&D Promo 1983-2

The art is by a young Bill Sienkiewicz, and was used later for the cover of the board game Le Sourire du Dragon. Too bad the atmosphere and look of the promo didn’t make it into the actual series.

Executive producers David Depatie and Lee Gunther also worked on Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends and G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero.

(Images via eBay)

The Art of Earl Norem: Marvel Super Special #10 (December, 1979)

Norem Super Special #10 12-79-2

Norem Super Special #10 12-79

Star-Lord’s second costume. You’ll notice that the original painting, posted at Comic Art Fans, has only Norem’s signature. The final cover has a second signature: Peter Ledger. I don’t see any differences between the two pieces, though Ledger presumably added some additional colors. Ledger also shared credit with Norem on the outstanding cover of The Hulk! #15.

The Art of Earl Norem: Tales of the Zombie (1973 – 1975)

Norem Zombie #5 1974-1

Norem Zombie #5 1974-2

Norem Zombie #9 1975-1

Norem Zombie #9 1975-2

Tales of the Zombie (1973 – 1975) ran for 10 issues and an annual. Boris Vallejo did the first four covers, and Earl Norem did the rest. You can see them all at the Marvel Wikia.

Norem was a much better all-around artist, in my opinion, even though Vallejo is the one who became famous. Norem could paint anything, electrify and dramatize any scene (see the falling flashlight and erupting chunks of earth above), catch the details (rain-soaked leaves sucked through a thrown open door, the textures of leather, denim, clean hair, dirty hair). Boris, on the other hand, was a one-trick pony. What he did he usually did well, but never as well as his master, Frazetta.

(Images via Fantasy Ink)


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