Wednesday, 29 March 2017

KID'S NON-KLASSIC (KIRBY) KOMIC KOVERS: THE MIGHTY THOR KING-SIZE ANNUAL #5...


Image copyright MARVEL COMICS

It pains me to say it, but this JACK KIRBY cover is awful.
It gives the impression that Jack wasn't really trying to produce
great work (or was perhaps no longer capable of it), he was merely
meeting his page quota by churning them out as quickly as he could
with as little effort as possible.  His art had become a poor parody
of itself by this time, and he didn't even seem to care just how
obvious it was.  Oh, how the mighty had fallen.

9 comments:

John Pitt said...

Jack's art aside, - WHO won?

Mike said...

As much as I am a Kirby fan for life, that is one of his worst covers.

Kid said...

They were too evenly matched, so I suppose it was a draw, JP.

******

Yeah, it's almost painful to look at when you remember his best work, M.

paul Mcscotty said...

I assume the poorer quality of the cover was more down to him either being rushed or disillusioned and not age as in 1976 he was only about 59/60 which is not that old (he says as he rapidly approaches those numbers. Did Kirby do the interior art as well? I user to think Jacks work on DCs "Super Powers" comic was his worst work, but I picked up an issue recently and whilst not great it was ok. Still regardless this cover is better than some work I have seen on new comics.

Kid said...

I think it was a mixture of disillusionment, doing it too long, and having developed some shortcut techniques which became more abstract as time wore on and then became bad habits, PM. Also, he probably thought he had nothing more to prove and was 'coasting' a bit on his rep. Look at the musculature on T & H - not even a nod to reality, and the same squiggly lines on skin that he used to denote metal. It looks like something a teenager trying to draw like Kirby would've produced, not Kirby himself. Buscema drew the interior tale.

Graham said...

Awful cover, but a fantastic story inside. If only the cover had met the story's standard. It did seem a bit rushed to me, too. A lot of Kirby's 70's Marvel covers did to me.

Kid said...

Yeah, I don't think his heart was in them, G - and it showed. Perhaps he was smarting from Marvel insiders ridiculing his Captain America issues, but whatever the reason, his '70s return to the House of Ideas was not the success it should've been. A shame, but other artists had supplanted him in the totem pole, John Buscema chief among them.

Graham said...

You're right. In the long run, his second Marvel run was pretty disappointing. Still, it irritates me to think that he underwent any ridicule at all.

Kid said...

You'd think he'd have received more respect from his peers, G, but the trouble was, he was being compared to his own high standards of years before and found wanting. It's a sad fact that his '70s stuff was generally nowhere near as good as his work in the '50s and '60s 'though. It's like Ditko's work today - it's a poor shadow to his stuff in his heyday. Kirby and Ditko (and their ilk) set standards that newer, younger artists were forced to match, then exceed, until those who'd inspired them could no longer keep pace. Alas, it's usually always the way. (With the odd exception now and again.)

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