I’ve added a page over to the sidebar for Evanier’s upcoming KIRBY: KING OF COMICS book. So far just the cover and a few quick buying links and info, but eventually it’ll be your one-stop shop for links to any previews and reviews that come along.
I don’t often post about non-Kirby comics here, even (especially?) “Kirbyesque” stuff, but I wanted to quickly note Bryan Talbot’s new book, ALICE IN SUNDERLAND. Partly because of the image above, a panel from a sequence where Talbot’s character has a crisis of confidence about the scope and viability of the book. It was a funny line in a funny scene. But up to that point I’d already been thinking of Kirby a lot during the book.
That’s partly because earlier Talbot had evoked Kirby art in a sequence dealing with the Battle of Hastings. That’s among many references in style to old comics that Talbot uses in the book, including pages evoking EC horror comics, Herge’s TINTIN, British “Boy’s Adventure” comics and many more. But even more, I was struck by how Talbot is able to fully integrate his own art with photography and collage in this book. Kirby, of course, was a pioneer in the use of collage in his comics, going back over 40 years, but for the most part was let down by technical limitations, like the printing which couldn’t handle what he was throwing at it. I imagine he’d be impressed by how far we’ve come, where Talbot can achieve what he aims for here.
I also imagine that he’d be impressed by the fact that the comic book industry has progressed to a point where Talbot can do something like this, an original 300+ page book, in a format that suits it best. It’s not a book which would have worked serialized into regular sized chunks, so thankfully it wasn’t forced to. Something I’m sure Kirby would have appreciated back he was (unsuccessfully) pushing for new formats over 30 years ago.
Anyway, it’s a great book. I’ll write more about it on my other site soon. You can read more about it on Talbot’s site, including details about his signing tour (which brings him to Toronto later today, so I might go) and you can buy the book at various places if it suits your fancy.
Thanks to Glen for answering the previous post about reprint editions of the 1978 SILVER SURFER book, and sending this scan of the cover of a 1997 paperback reprint (ISBN #0-7851-0652-9) that he has. I was into Kirby and going to comic shops on a pretty regular basis back then and I don’t think I saw a copy of it. And searching that ISBN on the usual places online shows either no record of the book, or a Masterworks edition of the early Buscema issues or this book, just as the ISBN for the hardcover is as likely to come up with some other book entirely. I suspect that Marvel might have mistakenly slapped duplicate ISBNs on some books.
For the record, Galactus face from page 43, Galactus hands from page 29, Earth from page 18, Surfer from page 30 and some of that Kirby crackle and the tech around the edge from some other source. You know, Kirby did a perfectly fine cover for this book (see TJKC #9 backcover). And bad enough that this was hard to find when it was re-released in 1997, why is there no edition in-print now that the Surfer is going to be in, y’know, a movie?
I’ve been trying to definitively establish some sort of reprinting history for Kirby’s 1978 SILVER SURFER book published by Fireside. I know there was a hardcover edition dated March 1995, officially titled MARVEL LIMITED: SILVER SURFER, with an ISBN of 0785101179 and with a print run of 742 copies according to the enclosed note. What I’d like to know is, was there ever a mass-market reprint (hardcover or softcover) from Marvel at that time or since? The internets are proving no help as that ISBN also seems to refer to some 2001 book by Paul Jenkins, and I’m never sure if any other listing I see is for the original 1978 hardcover or softcover, the “Marvel Limited” book or some other printing that I don’t know of or some other book entirely. So if you have any printing of the book other than the original Fireside hardcover or softcover or the Marvel Limited hardcover, or know for sure that they don’t exist, let me know. If there is any other edition, a scan of the cover would be useful so I know what to look for.
Just did some much needed updates to the Kirby in Print Guide, always available over there on the sidebar. Among other things I’ve added links to Tales of Wonder for most books, including the MARVEL MASTERWORKS series most at 30% off, with affiliate info that gives part of each purchase to the Kirby Museum.
A quick mention of a few things I forgot to include on the previous Kirby in 2006 post. As Harry’s noted on the S&K Blog (another noteworthy addition to Kirby collecting in 2006) there were two separate series of books for younger readers and libraries about comic book creation. One set from ABDO & Daughters covers six comic creators, including volumes on Jack Kirby and Joe Simon. Another set from Rosen Publishing covers the creation of various Marvel characters, including volumes on Captain America, the FF, Hulk and X-Men.
And if you like your comics digital, you can get DVD-ROMs full of PDF copies of four decades worth of FANTASTIC FOUR, AVENGERS, X-MEN and SPIDER-MAN.
Very big year for Kirby publications, with 49 publications of note, a handful trivial but a lot of major releases. Good mix of genres, as well, with some major war, western and romance releases in addition to the wide variety of super-heroes. Book of the year is a hard call. The complete ETERNALS in one book is pretty, if pricey. It was good to see Kirby’s FF run finished up in two different formats. But I’m going to go with ESSENTIAL THOR v2, for sheer volume of prime 1960s Kirby.
Most of note, a good year for TwoMorrows, with five big Kirby releases. The latest COLLECTED COLLECTOR has some great out of print issues and three big volumes of the current tabloid format, each one including one or two complete stories (like the first Boy Explorers story in #47) plus the usual assortment of delights. And the SILVER STAR book is a lot of fun, though it’s a shame that not every page was available to reprint from the pencils.
Two books from some other publishers. Not sure exactly what was in AC’s MEN OF MYSTERY book, but Pure Imagination’s COMIC STRIP book had some great early work by Kirby. The Socko the Seadog strips are a lot of fun, and it’s interesting to see Kirby’s early progression.
THE COMIC STRIP JACK KIRBY VOLUME 1
MEN OF MYSTERY: CHAMPIONS COLLECTION VOLUME 1
DC’s Kirby reprints for the year were confined to 1950s material in their new black and white Showcase Presents format, including all of Kirby’s 1950s Green Arrow and Challengers stories and one minor science fiction story. Each book includes a lot of other neat stuff.
Marvel was all over the Kirby this year, in just about every format.
A highly recommended book for those less familiar with Kirby’s career is the second MARVEL VISIONARIES – JACK KIRBY book. Good mix of stuff, mostly from the 1960s, all worth a look.
The 1970s at Marvel got a good trio of collections, with CAPTAIN AMERICA and BLACK PANTHER seeing volumes concluding Kirby’s run (and PANTHER going a bit beyond to finish a storyline) and ETERNALS getting a big hardcover volume collecting the whole series.
Two major Kirby ESSENTIAL volumes, with the FF volume finishing up Kirby’s run and beyond, and THOR coming a dozen issues from the end of that run. A few others had some stray covers.
ESSENTIAL CAPTAIN AMERICA VOL. 3 TPB (one reprint of a reprint cover inside)
ESSENTIAL CLASSIC X-MEN VOL. 2 TPB (a handful of covers)
ESSENTIAL DEFENDERS VOL. 2 TPB (one reprint of a reprint Hulk story)
ESSENTIAL MOON KNIGHT VOL. 1 TPB (one cover)
ESSENTIAL NOVA VOL. 1 TPB (three covers)
Huge Kirby year in the MARVEL MASTERWORKS series, with Kirby art in eleven volumes, only one of them really trivial, and several of them major, from throughout the Silver age period.
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: ANT-MAN/GIANT-MAN VOL. 1 (eleven stories, seven other covers)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: ATLAS ERA TALES OF SUSPENSE VOL. 1 (eight stories, seven covers)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: ATLAS ERA TALES TO ASTONISH VOL. 1 (eight stories, nine covers)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: CAPTAIN AMERICA VOL. 3 (ten Kirby issues)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: FANTASTIC FOUR VOL. 10 (Kirby’s last nine full issues)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: HULK VOL. 3 (layouts for five stories, plus some covers)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: HUMAN TORCH VOL. 1 (nine stories, nine other covers)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: IRON MAN VOL. 3 (a few covers and one story)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: RAWHIDE KID VOL. 1 (first nine Kirby issues)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: SGT. FURY VOL. 1 (eight Kirby issues plus five other covers)
MARVEL MASTERWORKS: THOR VOL. 5 (eleven Kirby issues)
A few other collections had a comparatively small amount of Kirby among other contents. Of most interest is the MARVEL ROMANCE book, which had a number of stories never reprinted from the early Silver Age.
MARVEL ROMANCE TPB (about 30 pages of Kirby from circa 1960)
MARVEL MONSTERS HC (four monster stories, same as Oct 2005 one-shots)
MARVEL WESTERNS HC (various reprints, as the 2006 one-shots below had)
CHAMPIONS CLASSIC VOL. 1 TPB (one cover)
And off the bookshelf into the more classic format comics, first off are the three issues of the series by Lisa Kirby and friends, based on some Jack Kirby concept artwork, some of which was used on covers and inside:
JACK KIRBY’S GALACTIC BOUNTY HUNTERS #1
JACK KIRBY’S GALACTIC BOUNTY HUNTERS #2
JACK KIRBY’S GALACTIC BOUNTY HUNTERS #3
And various Kirby reprints were used in a pair of all-reprint books:
MARVEL MILESTONES – BLOODSTONE, X-51 & CAPTAIN MARVEL II (reprints MACHINE MAN #1)
MARVEL MILESTONES – RAWHIDE KID & TWO-GUN KID (first Kirby issues of each)
And Kirby reprints used as backups to new material in six other books (all of them have been or will be included in hardcover collections of that new material):
MARVEL WESTERNS – KID COLT AND THE ARIZONA GIRL (two back-up stories)
MARVEL WESTERNS – STRANGE WESTERNS STARRING THE BLACK RIDER (two back-up stories)
MARVEL WESTERNS – THE TWO-GUN KID (one back-up story)
MARVEL WESTERNS – WESTERN LEGENDS (one back-up story)
STAN LEE MEETS DR. DOOM #1 (reprints FF #87)
STAN LEE MEETS THE THING #1 (reprint FF #79)
And two odd ducks, a different style of reprint and a spotlight book:
MARVEL’S GREATEST COMICS: FANTASTIC FOUR #52 (single issue reprint scanned from a printed comic)
MARVEL SPOTLIGHT – STAN LEE/JACK KIRBY (interviews with Lisa Kirby and others, biographical information, previews of some upcoming projects)
Looking ahead to 2007, THE JACK KIRBY COLLECTOR should be reaching its 50th issue, so expect some extra special stuff from that. DC will have another KAMANDI ARCHIVES book and the first FOURTH WORLD OMNIBUS. I don’t know what Marvel has confirmed, but I’ve heard tell of a second FANTASTIC FOUR OMNIBUS (logical, since it’ll include the Silver Surfer debut that the second FF movie is based on) and a DEVIL DINOSAUR book, plus the conclusion of GALACTIC BOUNTY HUNTERS and the “reconstruction” of FF #108. And no doubt a lot more, based on what the published this year. And Image has a SILVER STAR hardcover listed on Amazon, but the listing also lists it at 336 pages, more than twice the total pages of the original series, I’m not sure how reliable it is. Also, it’s from Image, so I doubt we’ll see it in 2007. As usual, we have a page for listing this kind of stuff as we get confirmation.
Been having some scanner issues and no time to address them this past week, which have kept me from getting back to regular posting. Should be fixed up soon, but if anyone has some advice on models of decent and inexpensive flatbed scanners, feel free to comment.
Welcome one and all to the new Jack Kirby Comics Weblog, now hosted by the Jack Kirby Museum and Research Center. If you’ve read the BlogSpot hosted version of the site you know what to expect, and all the old posts from there have been imported here as well (check the pages on the sidebar for alphabetical and chronological links to previous posts).
A bit of background, I started the weblog back on September 12, 2004, shortly after I’d been unable to find a good sample on-line of Kirby’s romance or western work (other than covers). I figured I had more than enough Kirby comics to fill several years worth of content on a weblog, and figured it would also be a good excuse to do a random re-reading of all my Kirby comics. In the year and a half since, I posted some brief words and at least one image from 590 different Kirby comics, covering every genre and era of his career. I also started monitoring and reporting on newly announced and released Kirby reprints, which thankfully have gotten quite plentiful since I started the weblog (pure coincidence, I’m sure).
Moving the site here, I plan on continuing more of the same, with at least another two years of daily posting before I exhaust my own collection. Over the next few months I’ll also be revising the earlier posts, mostly to improve the scans (which were somewhat constrained by bandwidth and server space considerations early on) and update a few links. After I get done with that I have a few other plans for some fun stuff I’d like to try.
A few other things. Generally I avoid posting the covers of books, unless that’s the only Kirby art in there. I highly recommend the Grand Comics Database as a source for covers.
I usually defer to the Jack Kirby Checklist, which is also the source of the Kirby Catalogue Raisonné on this site, for inking credits. However, it’s far from definitive, so feel free to comment if you disagree.
I’m leaving commenting open, no registration required, for now. That might change if the usual comment spam gets to be a problem.
Be sure to check out the rest of the Museum site, and consider getting a membership if you want to help with some of their future plans.
And thanks again to James Burns for the Kirby-tech weblog logo.
I think we got all the bugs in the format worked out, but comment if something looks screwy on your browser, or you have any thoughts on the site (I still haven’t decided exactly how to use the categories for regular posts. What would be most useful, company (Marvel, DC, Prize, Other)? Genre (Romance, Super-Hero, Western, Horror)? Note that I can have multiple categories for each post).