Friday, April 18, 2014

Tarzan of the Apes #155 - Russ Manning art

Tarzan of the Apes v1 #155, 1965 - An adaptation of the original Edgar Rice Burroughs novel begins. Tarzan's origin is chronicled, including his parents' fateful voyage, his jungle upbringing and his first encounter with Jane. Obviously, the novel is extremely abridged, but Russ Manning's artwork is beautiful throughout. Compare this adaptation to Joe Kubert's in Tarzan #207. Manning also draws a Brothers of the Spear tale and a full page promo for the next issue (swiping the cover). Both just meet expectations. Other artists in this issue include George Wilson (cover). This is number 116 of 132 Tarzan issues with Manning art and/or covers (not including reprints). See today's posts or more Manning or Tarzan issues. See also this blog's Russ Manning checklist.
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"Tarzan of the Apes" Manning story pencils and inks 24 pages = ***
"Vanished" Manning story pencils and inks 4 pages = ***
Manning next issue advertisement pencils and inks 1 page = ***

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Find on ebay: >this issue>more Manning issues>more Tarzan issues

Voyage of the Deep - comic series checklist

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Voyage of the Deep v1

3 - mis-attributed Alex Toth art

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See today's posts, more series checklists or the master list of series. See also this blog's artist checkliststop 10 lists or readers polls.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

X-Men #1 - Jack Kirby art & cover (1st X-men, Magneto)

X-Men v1 #1, 1963 - This seminal issue introduces Marvel's most popular super-hero team today. Professor X, Cyclops, Angel, Iceman, Marvel Girl and the Beast all make their first appearances. Their baptism of fire occurs when Magneto (also introduced here) takes over a US military base by force. Jack Kirby's cover fits the characters into a neatly organized layout. His minimal background also puts more emphasis on the figures. Despite its iconic status, the drawing is dampened by the mediocre inking job. The story art fares better, particularly the first half of the book, where the mutants' personalities and abilities come to the fore. Some of the highlights include: the Angel and Beast's elaborate (pre-Danger Room) tests on pages 3-4 and the X-men's civilian identities revealed on page 8 panel 5. Kirby's visualizations of the team would evolve, but his initial efforts remain impressive and memorable. This is number 1 of 17 X-Men issues with Kirby art and/or covers (not including reprints). See today's posts or more Kirby or X-men issues.
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Kirby cover pencils (Sol Brodsky inks) = ***
"The X-Men" Kirby story pencils (Paul Reinman inks) 23 pages = ***
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Find on ebay: >this issue, >more Kirby issues, >more X-men issues

House of Mystery #184 - Neal Adams cover, Alex Toth, Wally Wood art

House of Mystery v1 #184, 1970 - Though different in style, two artists make significant contributions in this issue. In Alex Toth's story, a college professor embarks on a treasure hunt in the Egyptian desert (see interior page above). The loose, stippled drawings convey a sense of antiquity, especially in the artifacts on the first page. Wally Wood embellishes Gil Kane's tale of a basilisk terrorizing a medieval village. Dynamic pencils are softened yet streamlined for optimal results. Neal Adams once again combines innocence and horror on his near-symmetrical cover. This is number 10 of 26 House of Mystery issues with Adams art and/or covers, number 3 of 7 House of Mystery issues with Wood art and/or covers and number 5 of 8 House of Mystery issues with Toth art and/or covers. See today's posts or more Adams, Toth, Wood or House of Mystery issues. See also this blog's Adams checklist, Top 10 Adams comics, Wood checklist or Toth checklist.
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Adams cover pencils and inks = ***
"Eyes of the Basilisk" Wood story inks (
Gil Kane pencils) 10 pages = ***
Toth intro page pencils and inks = ***
"Turner's Treasure" Toth story pencils and inks 10 pages = ***

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Find on ebay: >this issue>more Adams issues, >more Toth issues>more Wood issues, >more House of Mystery issues

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Western Picture Stories / Giant Comics Editions #11 - Matt Baker cover & reprints

Western Picture Stories / Giant Comics Editions v1 #11, 1949 - Surrounded by abundant text, Matt Baker's cover drawing appears even more lackluster. The figures seem hurried and stiffly rendered. No stranger to westerns, Baker nonetheless falls short on this effort. A note about this issue: St. John Publishing collected remainders of previously printed issues and re-bound them with new covers. Consequently, contents varied widely although usually within the same genre.  supplies this fairly tame bondage-themed cover, whose figures are somewhat overwhelmed by the abudant typography. This is number 3 of 6 Giant Comics Editions issues with Baker art and/or covers. See today's posts or more Baker issues. See also this blog's Baker checklist.
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Baker cover pencils and inks = **
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Find on ebay: >this issue>more Baker issues>more Giant Comics Edition issues

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