Monthly Archives: June 2013

Bees with Honey – Part 2

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Quick story: I remember back in around 2003 or so, on eBay Stan Lee was selling his “favorite” BMW or Mercedes. Anyone remember what type of car it was? I forget the make of the vehicle. I think Lee had bought the car around the time Jack died, and Lee had a fleet of other cars, but the description claimed this was his “favorite.” And there was this big picture of Stan standing next to his “favorite” car with a big grin on his  face standing next to one of his manshions. Boy, I wish I still had that photo and I wish I had copied the whole desecration (that was a funny typo, I meant “description”) it was truly surreal. Anyway, to make a long story short, in the description for the car, Stan offered to SIGN THE CAR! That’s right, if you paid, I dunno 100 grand or whatever for Stan Lee’s “favorite” used car, he would autograph it for you, on one of the seats. I think he might have been willing to sign the body of the car too. The hood or the trunk. I forget. I know he said he would autograph the seats.

I figured that had to be a joke. That couldn’t be real, right? Could Stan Lee possibly be that out of touch with reality? I mean, I could see maybe some imbecile wanting Jay Z to sign one of his used hoopties, but in the early 2000s could Stan have possibly thought someone on planet Earth would be such a super Stan Lee fan that he/she would want to own one of his old cars — AUTOGRAPHED? And my God, think of the greed. The guy had tens of millions of dollars. But he had to have that extra 10 bucks for adding his signature to the back seat.

I figured it had to be a scam, so I contacted the seller. But… it was true, Stan Lee was offering one of his old cars for sale on eBay and he really thought offering to sign it would help increase its value. And maybe it did. My point: the guy is your archetypal used car salesman. You can’t make a character like Stan Lee up.

So you think I’m “childish and petty” for reporting on the news — what Stan Lee is up to — well, I think that Stan Lee is childish and petty. Imagine the ego on a guy who would think anyone would want him to autograph one of his used cars. Amazing…

But sure, I’m childish when I compose satire. That’s what a lot of comedy is. It’s looking at the world through the eyes of a child and picking it apart to reveal its simplicity and absurdity. Is goofing on Lee petty? The guy is selling Stan Lee cologne, and I’m petty?

Cologne is snake oil!

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Part 3 tomorrow.

Detroit Sells Off All Evidence Of Its Once Prosperous Past

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Here’s one more article from Forbes. And of course, the Billionaire bankers and coporate heads who read Forbes are the ones bankrupting the country. The last few paragraphs are particularly chilling — the idea that you can’t eat artwork so better to sell it to the global billionaires in return for a loaf of bread. You can’t eat the Washington Monument, might as well just sell that to somebody for fast cash.

Relating this to Kirby, I thought this line was ironic: “The art in any museum is somewhat like firewood, the stored energy of sunny days long past.” That was the logic of the individuals who stole and continue to sell stolen Jack Kirby artwork from the 1960s. The attitude is, “Oh, it was just garbage about to be thrown out, or burned up, but luckily the Kirby art was ‘liberated’ for future generations of art collectors by us.”

Nobody planned to burn Jack’s art “in the shed” in the same way nobody plans to burn any of Detroit’s art. The only thing that has changed is the thieves are more sneaky now: instead of actually breaking in and stealing art, 21st century crooks will just bankrupt entire cities then swoop in with their billions to plunder anything they consider of value.

Detroit Sells Off All Evidence Of Its Once Prosperous Past

In the most ironic turns of history the city is once again looking to art to change its economic fortunes. The emergency manager installed by Michigan’s Governor to rescue the city’s finances has raised the possibility of selling the enormously valuable collection of the city’s art museum. For over a century the Detroit Institute of Art has amassed an extraordinary collection; gifts from the city’s proud industrialists have made its collection one of the best in the world. Collectively, the world-renowned paintings and sculptures of the DIA might be worth $3 to $4 billion! Perhaps its just too good to be true in the eyes of the current generation of Detroiters – found money desperately needed to, among other things, pay off the pensions of retired city employees.

It is interesting to reflect on the tautology mentioned above in light of the notion that the city can loot its patrimony to solve, temporarily, its budget problem. Most of what’s in the building was given to enhance the city’s civic life, by grateful citizens who had prospered in the city’s heyday. Their notion undoubtedly was that the museum would be there forever, a constantly improving treasure for those lucky enough to live in an extraordinarily inventive and hard working place called Detroit. The DIA collection represents the voluntary and generous gifts of thousands of citizens, now long dead, to the future. (Much of what’s in the building was given before there was even an income tax so the gifts were not subsidized by tax deductions.) The men who built cars, their wheels, their bodies, made their paint and fashioned their bumpers, sought to enrich the lives of everybody in town by sharing the best of human creativity in a dedicated and marvelous public space. All they sought by way of recognition, and many gave anonymously, was a little card on the wall besides a painting recognizing their gift.

The art inside the great beaux art palace on Woodward Avenue is among the city’s last emblems of its once grand civic aspiration, the sine-qua-non motivation for all great cities. When the art created under patronage, owned by subsequent generations of patrons, and given to the public by Detroit’s patrons is gone, Detroit will have scrubbed itself clean of the last meaningful artifacts of a once wildly prosperous city that succeeded at becoming a particularly civilized place.

The art in any museum is somewhat like firewood, the stored energy of sunny days long past. With Detroit unable to make wealth, its economic sun has gone out. What else are we seeing but the desperate act of burning the firewood left in the shed? Once it’s gone the city will be a remarkably lesser, somehow colder, place.

In the future, Detroit’s art will be the product of a planned creative district that manufactures aesthetic objects intended to be the platform of a new economy rather than genuinely brilliant artistic achievements from around the world that an economy, after it was successful, acquired on its own terms. Someone should remember: Lascaux’s drawings could never have fed the hunters and gatherers.

Anxiety in Detroit Over a Prized Car Trove

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Here’s another recent article on Detroit (below my comment).

Anxiety in Detroit Over a Prized Car Trove

I’m not a big car guy, but the thing to take note of is the precedent this could set. You may think I’m exaggerating, but the way things are going, that Facebook kid Zuckerberg could end up owning something like the Lincoln memorial one day, if he wants it. That’s where we’re headed if a tiny handful of people end up owning all of our resources. And as you see, it’s happening right before our eyes (by the way, how shocking is it that the corporate-run New York Times actually reported on a real news story. I guess when one of America’s greatest cities in our history is descending into the stone age, they have to have somebody on staff mention that). Gee, I hope nobody in the Government gave the reporter the Detroit story, they both could end up in prison for treason.

DETROIT — As this debt-ridden city lurches toward a possible bankruptcy filing, residents and workers have been locked in a grim faceoff with creditors over how to preserve what remains of their services and benefits.

Contributing to the municipal anxiety is the possibility that some of the city’s cultural treasures could be sold off, including masterpieces in the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Belle Isle park in the Detroit River.

But there is another Detroit family jewel in question that is largely unknown outside the automobile world and to some people even more treasured — a collection of 62 lovingly maintained classic cars donated to the city since the 1950s by civic-minded families seeking to preserve the Motor in Motor City.

Most of the cars are stored under protective plastic bubbles in a World War II-era riverfront warehouse on the grounds of Fort Wayne, while others are on display at the Detroit Historical Museum or on loan to exhibits around the country.

Just as art patrons are resisting selling van Goghs and Matisses to satisfy Detroit’s debt, car lovers are pushing back at the possibility of losing what they regard as the city’s historic industrial heart and soul — including a Cadillac Osceola that dates to 1905, and a vintage Ford Mustang worth an estimated $2 million.

“The cars stand for us, the expression of the thousands of people working hard to produce the birthright of America,” said Jerry Herron, a Detroit historian and dean of the Irvin D. Reid Honors College at Wayne State University. “It would be a sad day for Detroit and for America.”

Just the fact that this conversation is taking place is a sad day for America…

The “People’s” Art for Sale…

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I got a bunch of emails from people when I mentioned Detroit considering selling some of the “peoples” (supposedly our, the “public’s”) artwork recently. Here are some updates:

Detroit Institute Of Arts, Zoo Safe For Now, But Could They Be Sold Off In Bankruptcy?

DETROIT — When Johnathan Shearrod gazes at Van Gogh’s “Self Portrait,” Bruegel the Elder’s “Wedding Dance” or any of the other treasures at the Detroit Institute of Arts, he can’t help but fear for their future.

If Detroit falls into bankruptcy, those masterpieces and other prized artworks could go on the auction block to help satisfy the city’s staggering debts. Though the auctions would raise much-needed cash, they would also strip the city of its cultural riches, including paintings by Rivera, Renoir and Matisse, and maybe even zoo animals and historic automobiles.

Detroit bankruptcy could force museums to auction off cultural treasures to help pay city debt

If he doesn’t get the concessions he seeks, Orr could move Detroit into a Chapter 9 bankruptcy. That would make it the largest U.S. city to do so.

Should the city enter bankruptcy, everything, including the potential sale of artwork, “is probably on the table,” said Ben Feder, a bankruptcy attorney with New York-based Kelley Drye & Warren.

But “it would be the choice of the city to go that route. Without the consent of the city of Detroit, probably nothing” could be sold, Feder said.

Selling or privatizing other Detroit assets, like its electric and water departments, makes more sense because they would bring in a steady flow of revenue, he added.

The sale of a painting brings in a one-time sum. The museum won’t put a price on any painting, but it’s easy to imagine the work of famous artists fetching tens of millions of dollars.

Van Gogh’s “Portrait du Dr. Gachet” sold for more than $80 million at auction in 1990. A Henri Matisse bronze nude sold three years ago for more than $48 million.

This is how it goes down, the corporations and bankers destroy the middle class then they divvy up all the “peoples” treasures in our museums and use artwork as their new fiat currency amongst themselves. This is how those guys operate, they take our savings, our homes, then they fight over old Matisse paintings. It’s like watching the ultimate Greek tragedy taking place live. I guess future generations will call this “American tragedy” unless we can figure out some way to change course.

Bees with Honey – Part 1

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Thanks to a reader on Facebook for commenting on my post where I examined the front page of Stan Lee’s website. I hope Luke doesn’t think I’m picking on him in this reply. I have gotten hundreds of letters like his over the years (and read thousands of them on private chat forums where the writers are afraid to post their remarks on the public record, or they post their comments on public forums using lame pseudonyms), so I commend Luke for sharing his comment in public and for doing it using his real name. I’m going to use his letter as a sort of archetypal letter I get all the time to clear up a few things. Here’s his whole email, I’ll break it up point by point below.

Luke Mosher: I find it really sad that the Kirby Museum can’t be about how great Jack Kirby was and not about putting someone else down. It seems childish and petty. I really want to support you guys but you make it so hard. This is not how professional societies like this are supposed to conduct themselves. You guys just come off as surly bitter people with a chip on your shoulder. You get more bees with honey or whatever.

Let me start by saying, Luke is certainly in the majority. I have received hundreds of emails, and read thousands of them from people saying that the Lee/Kirby comic books had a tremendous impact on their childhood and on their lives. They love Stan and Jack. Stan and Jack are father figures to some people. They want to remember Stan and Jack as they saw them in their childhood imaginations, as buddies working together in the bullpen, creating their beloved 1960s comic books. They imagine Lee jumping up on his desk and acting out all of the roles of the characters, and Jack busily scribbling notes so that he can then accurately transcribe his Leader’s vision.

When I came to this subject in 2000 I knew nothing about the topic of Jack Kirby. Over the last 10 years or so I’ve learned a lot by discussing the subject with comics fans, comics historians, comics pros (most off the record since they want to work for Marvel) and Jack’s associates. I’ve come to the conclusion that Jack Kirby was heavily involved in the creation of all the 1960s characters, and from 1960 – 1963 Jack wrote pretty much all of his stories using visuals, then from 1964 – 1970 he used visuals and margin notes.

That means Stan Lee is a total fraud. In my opinion of course. And I am still allowed to share my conclusion in America right now. But that could change. Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Disney, or whatever Mega Coproration they evolve into may flag criticisms of Stan Lee as hate speech in the future and I may end up in a prison as a “terrorist.” But for now, I still have the right to goof on sweet ol’ Saint Stan Lee. And he deserves a good tongue lashing. What he did to Jack – pretending he created all those 60s Marvel characters alone – is one of the biggest cons of the 20th century. So to quote Steve Martin:

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“Excuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuse me” for poking fun at Stan Lee’s truly, truly pathetic, mind-boggling rip-off of a website. A website that, of course, totally fits Lee’s lifelong pattern of being a junk peddler.

Okay, let’s get to Luke’s email.

Luke Mosher: I find it really sad that the Kirby Museum can’t be about how great Jack Kirby was and not about putting someone else down.

Here’s my take on this. First of all, I don’t speak for the Kirby Museum. If you follow my weblog you’ll notice I’m actually quite critical of the Museum at times, and I can tell you for a fact I don’t speak for anyone involved with the Museum at all. I don’t even know it they like me or like my weblog. I’ve literally never heard a peep from anyone on their board of trustees commenting on what I have to say. They may love me, they may hate me, I have no idea whatsoever.

They have let me use a few HD scans from their archives which I really appreciate. They seem like good folks. But what I do is totally separate from what they do. Understand though, I support the Museum 100% and my goal is to bring traffic to the site — right now I bring about 10,000 hits a month, which ain’t a lot, but it’s my tiny way of supporting the Museum — but when you comment on Kirby Dynamics, it’s not fair to refer to what I write as “The Kirby Museum.” The Kirby Museum allows me to have a weblog on their website.

The Museum does allow me a pretty good deal of freedom of speech which I find commendable. You’d hope a guy like Kirby would’ve appreciated something like that. If the Museum censored material like my posts on Stan Lee? I would stop doing the weblog immediately and go back to blogspot. So although I appreciate your comment, and trust me I’ve gotten literally thousands of comments like that over the years via private email and on the old Yahoo Kirby-l discussion forum, my point all along has been that Stan Lee is a public figure and right now we have the right to compose satire about public figures and criticize public figures. That’s what I’ve been doing for a decade in terms of my Stan Lee “rants” which are almost always pieces of satire. I’m blown away by Lee’s hypocrisy so I joke about it. I know of no other way to examine Lee’s behavior other than laughing at it. If the day comes where goofing on Stan Lee of all people is verboten, then everything Jack Kirby fought for during the Second World War will have been for naught.

It seems childish and petty.

Two things. One, that’s what satire is. It’s silly. How can you not laugh at that Stan Lee webpage. If I did like a serious somber analysis of Stan Lee’s website I’d sound like a fool. That website is HILARIOUS! I mean, Stan Lee cologne? Can that possibly be real? That has to be a joke, right? But y’know what, from studying Stan Lee over the last 10 years? I think that website is real. It fits Lee’s modus operandi. Lee has been doing this exact same thing for 50 years now. He stamps his name on anything and everything he thinks will make him a buck (sadly that included Jack’s 60s stories and art so unfortunately Jack doesn’t get the credit he deserves for that material, and Lee’s lies make it almost impossible for Jack’s family to pressure Marvel into giving Jack’s Estate any kind of fair settlement).

This is a long reply, and I know Generation Tweet has about a 1 minute attention span so I’ll break this up into five posts.

Belushi 25 Years

Stan Lee Website

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Back in the early 2000s on the old Kirby-l Yahoo forum there were a handful of really creepy old geezers, one of whom spent 2 decades slamming Jack on that website, and I always asked those weirdos: “Why don’t you guys go start your own Stan Lee website if you love the guy so much instead of attacking Jack Kirby and his fans on a fan site devoted to studying Jack’s life and work?”

Fast-forward 10-years to 2013. Thanks to a reader for sending in this link — lo and behold, check this out: someone finally did start up a Stan Lee website:

http://therealstanlee.com/#blog

Let’s see what The Fearless Leader is up to.

I guess now he calls himself “Your Generalissimo.” I’m just going to make a few screen caps of the front page.

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Looks like Stan or one of his handlers is tweeting a lot. A bunch of nonsense. I thought Stan was going to quit working for Marvel in 1960 and write a novel. Why on earth would he be wasting his time in 2013 tweeting like a 12-year-old? I guess The Fearless Leader/Generalissimo calls his True Believers “Brigadiers” now. Stan sure loves that Master/Follower terminology.

2013-06-25_152335Wow! You can buy a “Mr. Stantastic” t-shirt. I’m sure guys are lining up for those and the ladies will be real impressed with that. I wonder if Jack’s family could sell something like this without the Disney-Marvel lawyers raining down on them like a landslide burying them with legal fees.

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It would appear Stan promotes concerts now. I guess if you dress up like Wolverine you can win some lame prize if you go to see Daughtry, whatever that is.

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Stan Lee perfume. You can’t make $%@# like this up folks.

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Stan trying to get his tentacles into every market imaginable; maybe he can stamp his Stan Lee brand onto a new generation of impressionable kids. Doesn’t this guy have enough money yet? The greed is staggering.

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…”nuff said.”

I don’t know if Lee has any more chotchkies he’s trying to sell on this website, but I think I’ve seen enough.

Not even sure if Lee has anything to do with this scam, but based on the patterns we see repeat over and over in his life — it would not at all surprise me if Stan Lee himself is involved in this embarrassing operation.

So, there you have it Stan Lee fans. Finally somebody created a Stan Lee website devoted to your Leader where you can celebrate his life and work. You Stan Lee fans (I mean Brigadiers) should be real proud of the Real Stan Lee website — it is about as prefect a representation of your Fearless Leader’s character (I mean Your Generallisimo’s character) that I could imagine. In fact, if I was making up a Fake Stan Lee webpage as a piece of satire, I could not have come close to coming up with what we see on the Real Stan Lee webpage.

My one complaint? Could they at least sell Stan Lee brand Barf Bags? Now there’s something a Lee Brigadier could actually USE after looking at Stan’s webpage.

Addendum:

And to Stan’s fans, spare me the “Oh boo hoo, you are so mean to sweet ‘ol Stan” emails. This Stan Lee website is an embarrassment. It’s a total joke. Stan Lee cologne? Ridiculous. If Stan has anything to do with this rip-off it just proves once again this guy remains (and has always been) nothing more than a snake oil salesman.

Quit shooting the messenger. I don’t make stuff like this up. This has been Stan Lee’s pattern his entire life. All I’m doing is reporting what all the cowards who dream of working for Marvel one day are afraid to say. Stan Lee is a Con Man.

And let me add one thing: Long Live Stan Lee. I hope the guy lives forever and sells millions of dollars worth of his Mr. Stantastic t-shirts and Stan Lee cologne. I wish the guy no ill-will. But c’mon, we still have some free speech here in America — you can’t expect everyone to bow down before this guy. Paris Hilton is jealous at how shameless this dude is in terms of selling garbage with his name plastered all over it.

It’s just sad and pathetic. Maybe amassing as much wealth as he can get his hands on and becoming as famous as possible helps him forget who he really is. I remain hopeful Stan Lee may one day redeem himself and spend less time selling junk and a few moments telling the truth about the man who made him an international superstar and a multi-millionaire. I remain hopeful Lee will realize “you can’t take it with you” and the one thing that matters in life are your friends and family. I remain hopeful Lee will drop the Shyster routine and tell us the truth. Who really created all those 60s Marvel characters and wrote all those 60s Jack Kirby Marvel stories, Stan?

Jack-Kirby

Red Dragon

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I’ll probably continue to bounce around a bit as I go through the pencil scans in my K-Files. I’m attempting to contact the Kirby Museum to see if we can access more pencil scans and hopefuly view them at higher resolution. I’ll let you all know when I have more info. Above is an image recently posted on the Kirby Museum Facebok page: a scan of a full-size photocopy of Jack’s pencil work for page 14 of “The Angel of Death!”, first published in Pacific Comics’ Silver Star # 6 (Jan 1984).

I’ve mentioned before the image reminds me a lot of this one: William Blake’s “The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with Sun” (1805).

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Here’s a quick screen cap of the images side-by-side.

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I can’t say for sure if Jack consciously used this William Blake composition as the inspiration for his Silver Star artwork — initially I thought it was pretty obvious that this image was the influence, but I think it’s important never to assume anything. Unless Jack spoke about this in an interview we need to be careful — it may be that we’re simply looking at a rare image: a character’s back; the Kirby character having wings is coincidental; and that X-composition is accidental, unconscious, or simpy Blake’s image was one of a thousand influences on Kirby.

I’d still wager Blake’s image influenced Jack which is interesting because it might mean Jack was studying his artwork during this period, but ultimately we can never know for sure. Artists are constantly exploring similar themes and since Jack created almost 200,000 individual image in his life, surely he’s going to create imagery similar to other artists either consciously, unconsciously, or independently.

Here’s an example where the Blake image was clearly the inspiration: Ralph Fiennes, Red Dragon (2002).

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Kirbyholic

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Thanks to a reader for sending in a link to this website: Kirbyholic.

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There are 100s if not 1000s of great Kirby images here. I don’t even have time to go through all of them myself. Kudos to the people who put this Facebook page together. There is a ton of amazing scans at this site that I don’t have in my files.

I encourage the Kirby Museum to consider contacting Kirbyholic and either collect all of those scans for future Kirby historians to study, or ideally make Kirbyholic a part of the Kirby Museum project. At the very least I think it would be a good idea to post a link to a site like this on the Museum site homepage — I think whenever passionate people are sharing Jack’s work and promoting it like this, it’s important to support those people and help them promote their websites.

Great job to Kirbyholic. Here’s just one image out of the 100s at the site that dovetails into yesterday’s K-Dynamics post. Il Capolavoro di Jack Kirby! I think capolavoro means “masterpiece” in Italian.

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I encourage you all to check out the artwork at Kirbyholic — you have to log into Facebook to see all the images. If you don’t log in you only see a handful.

I have to admit, I’d love to see a website Kirbyholic take over for Kirby Dynamics. I think it’s time for the next generation of Kirby fans to take over and Kirbyholic is exactly the type of Kirby website I’ve been hoping to see come onto the scene and do this. I’d love to see younger people take the torch and run with it. I actually encourage you to stop reading Kirby Dynamics and read Kirbyholic. Go over there, participate in the dialogue and share your memories and thoughts on The King. Like most weblogs Kirby Dynamics is a dinosaur. Sites like Kirbyholic are the future of comics discourse.

If anyone running the Kirbyholic webpage reads this, email me, I can pass along the Kirby scans I’ve been given over the years by Jack’s fans. I’ve got 10s of thousands of pages. All of the scans were exchanged amongst the first generation of Kirby scan collectors; I consider myself a second generation scan collector since I started studying Jack in around 2000. It will be great if a third and fourth generation keeps the ball rolling.

Over the last 10 years my philosophy has been now is the time to promote Kirby online while his family is still trying to get some kind of fair settlement from Marvel (what is now Disney). They may erase Jack’s name from their comic books and bury his name in the movie credits after the names of the people who clean the port-o-potties, but as long as we have free speech on the internet, by discussing Jack and showing his artwork we can fight Marvel and Stan Lee’s fake propaganda — proving that Jack Kirby was indeed the true catalyst, the true visionary, the true genius, the true architect behind the Marvel empire and really the whole superhero revoltuion that took place in the 1960s through the 1970s.

So again I hope Kirbyholic gets in touch with me so I can share with them the scans so many unselfish Kirby fans have shared with me, and you can in turn share those scans with your readers for many years to come. Now is the time to post this material online folks, because Iet me tell you something — I seriously doubt future generations will be able to exchange and discuss copyrighted material like this so freely on the internet. Assuming the world is going to be some kind of idyllic Utopia where all information is free forever online is naive.

Eventually the internet is going to crack down on sites like this because to put it simply, we don’t own this artwork. Companies like Marvel and DC (and the Megabanks that own those companies) own this material outright. Inevitably they will all be gobbled-up (or googled-up) up by Mega Corporations and once that happens free speech is going to be gone. You’re going to have to pay out the arse to use this type of material in the future, and you’re going to have to jump through a bunch of hoops and toe the company line if you even have a chance to get permission to use copyrighted material like Jack Kirby artwork. “Fair use” is a foggy, mercurial legal concept that eventually will be swept away like dust on the front porch. Once every piece of intellectual property has a digital fingerprint, not getting legal permission to use that material will be considered theft. Hell, the way things are going in America right now, it may be considered treason. Of course I hope I’m wrong, I’d love to see free information exchange forever. I’d also love it if the sky rained money and candy.

So now is the time to put Jack’s material out there while this “wild west” atmosphere still exists online; now is the time to promote Jack and talk about him; now is the time to talk about the real history behind the art, before the day comes where the owners of Jack’s art are the ones who will fashion future false propaganda.

And don’t tell me this is a “conspiracy theory.” One need only read garbage like Stan Lee’s fairy tale “Origins” book or Lee’s infamous “How I Invented Spider-man” article to see the type of “history” the folks who eventually own Jack’s stories and art are going to force down the throats of future generations. If there is even a middle class left in America or the rest of the world to read such propaganda. Chances are if our grandkids and great grandkids survive the oncoming economic collapse, they’ll be lucky if they have a pile of garbage to crawl into where they can use their Obamaphones in order to trade their daily water rations for access to a grainy YouTube clip of the 2054 virtual Stan Lee appearance in the Avengers vs. X-Men XVII film.

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Big thumbs up to sites like Kirbyholic for promoting Jack. Sure, there are 10,000,000,000,000s of other things we can discuss online, but one thing is for sure: Jack Kirby is one of the more uplifting and inspirational topics out there, and in these trying times it’s always great to take a moment off from the rat race and seek inspiration from the great minds, the great creators, the great visionaries of the past.

Surf Kirbyholic and experience a tiny glimpse into the power and imagination of Kirby.

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Kirby Photo From 2001 Treasury (1976)

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Thanks a lot to several readers for sending in scans of the image from the 2001: A Space Odyssey Treasury Edition (1976) of Jack working on Eternals # 2.

Notice most of that big space ship has been inked. Common sense would suggest Jack added those inks himself. Maybe Marvel requested a photo for the 2001 Treasury book; Jack happened to be working on Eternals # 2 at that time; Jack selected the page 2-3 splash to be on his artboard, then Jack inked the ship so that the artwork itself would show up better in a photograph; the photo might have been taken by his wife Roz. Pretty effective decision to ink the spaceship, pencils barely show up in a photo.

This photo is one of my favorites of Jack. Although I’ve heard interviews where Jack seems to view the label “The King” as something he was not particularly thrilled with — because Jack was a down-to-earth, humble, self-effacing man — there’s no question that this is an image of Jack when he was truly The King. After an amazing 40 years in comics, sitting at his drawing board in 1976 working on that masterpiece of comic art, Jack Kirby was a true master at his craft still producing phenomenal, relevant stories and artwork. One can sense from his smile that he is a man proud of his work, and for me I remain blown away to this day by that page of art. It’s wonderful to see Jack working on it — a tiny snapshot into history where the greatest comics artist of all time (and I consider Jack one of THE greatest artists of all time) is still way at the top of his game.

Thanks again to all the readers for sending in scans of the image.

Eternals # 2 Cover

eternals2varvfnmNice HQ scan of the cover for Eternals # 2. Looking in the top left corner it looks like in some parts of the country the price of the books had gone up to thirty cents. I was fortunate to live in an area where the books were still a quarter. Getting 4-books-for-a-buck compared to 3-books-for-a-buck was a big deal to me when I was 12-years-old.

It’s absolutely mind-blowing to me how expensive comic books are now in 2013. I literally cannot imagine how a 12-year-old would have that kind of money to buy a comic book. And I think 1 comic is like $5.99. 4 comics would be about $25.00 bucks!!

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AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!

In this economy, how could anyone even consider spending that kind of money on a comic book? And haven’t Marvel and DC kind of redone Jack’s ideas 100 times already? Does someone really need to spend that kind of loot to read X-Men vs. Avengers Secret Civil War XVII?  Plus the things are still full of advertisements. I guess mainly kids in their late-teens with jobs as cashiers buy comics nowadays? And adults?

I’m not one of those geezers sitting around yearning for the “old days” but man, I was so lucky to be a comic fan in the late 70s. It was wonderful to walk up to the local 7-11 on a hot summer day and buy a pile of comics for a buck.

mitchell_ghost_rider