Friday, 22 July 2016

SUPERMAN VERSUS MUHAMMAD ALI...



Hear NEAL ADAMS talk about this 1978 classic.
See Neal Adams talk about this 1978 classic.  Laugh
as Neal Adams talks about this 1978 classic.  "Father of
comicbooks"?  Really?  Got it, read it, enjoyed it, but
it's not exactly the best comicbook I've ever read.

What do the rest of you think?

14 comments:

Colin Jones said...

I know nothing about this story but surely Superman would knock Muhammad Ali into the middle of next week ?

Kid said...

Now you'll have to read the story (or read about it), CJ, in order to fond out what happened. I'd hate to spoil your enjoyment by just telling you.

Vince and Siv said...

I'll admit when it was announced way back when (either in Comic Media News or Bemusing...remember those, the only way to get upcoming comic new in the pre-internet days!) I thought 'what a waste of Neal Adams' given he was on his way out of comics at the time, but when it appeared, I was won over....probably not the best comic ever, but certainly Adams and Giordano (and Terry Austin) at the top of their game.

Kid said...

I passed on it at the time - for some reason it just didn't appeal to me. However, I picked up the deluxe hardcover edition a few years ago. Enjoyed it, but Denny O'Neil dropped out not long after starting the project, and I feel it would have been the better for his continued involvement.

Paul McScotty- Muir said...

I was a Neal Adams fan (to put it mildly - still my favourite artist ever imho) and an Ali fan so I picked this up the second I saw it about a year after it came out in the US (in Virgins store in Glasgow - Union Street at the time). Like Vince and Siv I thought it was a strange use of Adams (and others) talents but I loved it, not the greatest comic ever but for me it is a milestone book in many ways. Like you I agree Denny O'Neil would have elevated this book had he stayed on the project. It was interesting to read that some folk (celebs) did not want to appear on the cover like Telly Savalas whose illo became Lex Luthor . Strange to hear Neal say he wanted to be remembered (rather than state he was) as the father of comics, maybe he was the father of modern art in comics (maybe not) especially as he is a comic historian - still he is and always will be a comic book God to me .

Colin Superman and Ali managed to fight evenly as they fought under a red sun (that negated Superman's powers) but I would still buy the book if you see it.

Kid said...

Ach, PM, you've given CJ the easy way out - I wanted him to put in the research. Is my memory correct when I seem to remember that Supes took a 'dive', so that he could then restore his powers and save the Earth, etc.? My copy is under a pile of books in the corner of my room and I can't be bothered digging it out. What did you think of Neal's 6 part 'The Coming Of The Supermen'?

Paul McScotty- Muir said...

Well it was better than his Batman Odyssey series lol - I haven't read it all only first 3 issues so far (got 4 and 5 to read and 6 to buy) - I like the art a lot its sketchy in places but still good and some amazing panels - there's a lot in it, a bit odd in places (a bit daft as well) but yeah overall I like it but I think Neal's work needs an editor to keep him focused what about you?

Graham said...

It never made it to my neck of the woods when it was originally published. I picked it up a few years ago and thought it was okay. I was never a big Superman fan, so it wasn't a must buy for me. Loved to watch Ali fight though and he was referred to back then as the Black Superman, so it could have been a good fight regardless.

DeadSpiderEye said...

The guy doing the interview spares no effort trying to ingratiate himself with Adams. Grief man, he must've gargled with boot polish before the interview, yet he still manages to put his foot in mouth. Initially I thought Adams was being a bit wry with that father of comics quip, there's a hint of irony in his expression but he seems to go on to compound it with his expansion on the question. Yeah I seem to recall Superman ducking out of the fight with some deviousness, so I did a double take when he mentioned that stuff about Ali beating him. I dunno, you don't think the script might've been edited in the reprints?

I can can give Adams licence to say pretty much what he likes about himself and his contribution to comics, there's not much room for hyperbole I reckon, although he might've found some in this interview.

Kid said...

Yeah, the art is sketchy in places as you say, PM, and Supes looks a bit odd at times. The story isn't really compelling and the dialogue is awful in places. More than once I had to turn the page back to check I hadn't jumped a couple ahead, because the dialogue didn't always flow in a consecutive way. Still a great artist, but not as accomplished as he used to be. Having said that, he's in his '70s, and his work hasn't deteriorated to the extent that Kirby's did. Definitely needs an editor, as did Kirby and Ditko.

******

I think it's a bit long at 72 pages, G, it would probably have been better at half that. I think it's an example of the occasion being more memorable than the actual finished product.

******

I don't think the dialogue or captions have been edited for the reprints, DSE, but Adam's reworked the face of Ali in a few panels, I believe. I certainly think Adams has contributed a lot to comics over the years, but I don't think he quite qualifies as the 'father of comicbooks'.

Phil S said...

I've met Adams a few times and he has always been gracious to fans. He is however an expanding earth conspiracy theorist.
This is why I can like you Kid. It's clear we may not agree on politics but it's also clear you love comics. And I I were to only be friends with people I agree with, my only friend would be myself and then only half the time.
So I like Adams art in this comic. I love what he did for Siegel and Shuster. I shrug my shoulders when I find out he's a bit of a nut.
It's still a fun comic. I got it when it came out for the sheet outrageousness of the subject.
Oddly I've always thought Adams Thor was the second best Thor after Kirby. Odd since they are two opposites on the spectrum. One highly stylized the other realistic.

Kid said...

I'm sure he's a very gracious man, Phil, and my little jocular pop at him regarding his 'father of comicbooks' remark is meant in a good-natured way. Also, while I can appreciate his still-obvious skill in his current work, my appreciation is tinged with sadness that he's not quite as good as he used to be - at least, not consistently so. I was never a huge Muhammad Ali fan - not as a boxer anyway (in his later years) - but I thought he was a good entertainer on chat shows, an immensely likable man. I think my favourite Thor after Kirby's would be John Buscema's, but Adams did a good job on the strip.

I'm slightly envious of you, because if I were my only friend, I think I'd only manage it for about one third of the time.

Colin Jones said...

Don't worry, Kid - I did the research. I googled Superman vs. Muhammad Ali before seeing Paul's comment. I also studied the cover and the only personality I could recognize was Jimmy Carter.

Kid said...

You mean you didn't recognize ME in the audience, CJ? And here I thought I stood out in a crowd.

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