Friday, 12 February 2016


Images copyright MARVEL COMICS

'Twas a good idea.  A series of deluxe hardback books called MARVEL VISIONARIES devoted to celebrating the leading luminaries of The Marvel Age of Comics.  One annoying problem though.  Marvel was still using inferior proofs for reproducing some stories and covers, which meant that the published results weren't always of the archival nature that die-hard collectors expect or demand, despite the claims in the dustjacket's flyleaf.  "Restored and remastered"?  Not too well in some cases, sadly.  However, I'm probably just being pernickety, as, for sheer reading enjoyment, the books have a lot going for them. 

JACK KIRBY had two volumes to himself, so let's take a look at the covers reproduced in the first.  There's more content than is suggested by the covers alone, because a few stories are reprinted without them, usually where a story wasn't featured on the cover, or was part of a split-cover featuring more than one strip.  The following covers are scanned from the book, which, because it's so tightly bound, may have a bit of shadow down one side of the page in some instances.  However, don't  let that spoil your enjoyment too much.

Ready?  Good - then let's go!

This became AMAZING ADULT FANTASY with its 7th issue.
The last in the series (#15) featured the debut of SPIDER-MAN

Some dodgy 'touch-up' of the lettering to lessen 'blurring' spoils this
one a bit.  A superior proof of this cover has since been unearthed

This one is sourced from a stat of the pre-published version, before
 the right wing on Cap's mask was amended to match its counterpart 


Anonymous said...

I remember that Strange Tales story about Pildorr the Plunderer from when it was reprinted in a Marvel UK comic (probably Star Wars Weekly) - the human apparently sacrifices himself in order to stop Pildorr by escaping into space as his ship explodes thereby killing Pildorr but dooming himself to die in space without any oxygen. But the twist ending is that the human was a robot all along - he dramatically removes his own head in the last couple of panels, a great little tale.

Kid said...

Could've been Star Wars it was reprinted in, but I seem to remember it from either MWOM or SMCW. Anyone know for sure? (I've also got it in an issue of MCIC or Marvel Tales, I think.)

baab said...

I really want to read this book and I have some gift tokens for Forbidden Planet.
Lo and behold though - I have this on one of my shelves,forgot all about it.
Now I feel as if I am getting a bonus!

Phil said...

On the one hand you can't possibly capture all Kirby's brilliance unless the book was a tall as I am. But on the other hand who hasn't seen most of these? I would get a Kirby rarities book though. Westerns and monsters.

Crispynev said...

SMCW had the occasional Tales of the Watcher so quite possible.

Kid said...

Have you got volume 2 as well, Baab?


That's probably why they devoted 2 volumes to him, Phil. The Western Masterworks look interesting.


I'm sure I saw it in one of them, Chris - I'll have to dig through them when I get a chance.

baab said...

I don't have volume two Kid,that may be the next purchase.

Kid said...

You can use your gift tokens for it, Baab. That's a win-win situation.

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