Wednesday, 17 October 2018


Images copyright MARVEL COMICS

"Where men are the most sure and arrogant they are commonly the most mistaken..." wrote Scottish philosopher, historian, economist and essayist DAVID HUME.  He was right.  Nearly a year ago, someone I knew gave me the above comic mag.  I was extremely pleased as it had a JACK KIRBY cover, so I put it on my blog, first submitting it to some computer technology to lessen the fingerprints which mar its surface - clearly seen in the un-retouched scan before you.

This is what I wrote at the time:

"Originally the splash page of FANTASTIC FOUR #51, this great JACK KIRBY image of The THING now graces the cover of this new MARVEL 2 IN ONE first issue.  Superb stuff, eh?  Unfortunately, there were a few fingerprints (none of them mine) on the cover which have lifted the colour, but I've digitally disguised them as much as I can.  Still a great pic though, eh?"

As you can see, I attributed no blame to anyone, namely because I didn't know at what stage it had acquired the unsightly digit-daubs before passing into my possession.  I received an angry text (which I didn't see until a couple of days after Christmas because I never checked my 'phone over the yuletide period) from the bloke who'd given me the comic, saying that in 40-odd years of handling comics, he'd never given anybody one with fingerprints on it.  (Actually, he had, as I'd received similarly-defaced comics from him before, but I wasn't going to argue the point as they'd been free and I didn't want to appear ungrateful.)

I replied, wishing him a merry Christmas, and explained that I wasn't blaming anyone or even complaining (I had merely mentioned the fingerprints in case any readers noticed some 'fogginess' about the cover), but he was so intent on feeling offended that he ignored my festive felicitations and informed me how insulted he was.  Know what?  Dancing around the hyper-sensitivities of people who go through life with a chip on their shoulder and are determined to be offended or insulted at the slightest thing, especially where no offence or insult is intended (or even exists), is not something I'm prepared to do, so I closed the door on that source of potential vexation in no uncertain terms.  I've found that people who continually take offence often do so in order to have others apologising to them all the time and indulge their overblown sense of self-importance, but as far as I'm concerned they can play that game on their own.

Thing is, it only just occurred to me (half an hour ago in fact) to check out the cover on ebay and see if, as had been claimed by the person in question, the fingerprints were a deliberate effect intended by the colourist, instead of, as I had assumed, careless handling by some anonymous, inadvertent vandal whose hands were in need of a wash.  (Could've happened at the distributor's warehouse for all I know.)

As you can see in the image below (taken from ebay), the fingerprints in the picture above are conspicuous by their absence, meaning that I was right in my initial assumption and the other bloke was wrong - he had given me a comic with marks on the cover.  Maybe I should take offence and feel insulted at being accused of causing offence and being insulting when I was right all along?

And I have to admit - I love it when I'm right!  But then again, who doesn't?

See?  The prints aren't on the printed comic

Click to enlarge and compare


Barry Pearl said...

Kid, I do not have any original art. But If Imcould have one Kirby page, this’s would be it.

Kid said...

It's a beauty, ain't it? I may print it out as an A3 poster and put it up on one of my walls.

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