Thursday 17 June 2010

"Covering the Covers" - The Sequel!

As promised roughly a week ago, it's the second part of my trawl through my favourite Bronze Age covers. And we kick off with four Nick Cardy covers in a row.

Superman #273, Nick Cardy Cover

Poor old Superman. First of all, in Superman #273, he's rejected by the people of Metropolis in favour of a man who dresses like Liberace...

Action Comics #440, Superman, Nick Cardy cover

...then, in Action Comics #440, he's rejected by his own dead parents.

Superman #276, Superman vs Captain Thunder/Marvel

Still, at least in Superman #276, Captain Thunder can't wait to meet him.

Superboy #194, Super-MerBoy

Something fishy going on. Superboy #194.

Mike Kaluta, the Shadow #12

I seem to spend all my time on here going on about how I prefer Frank Robbins' and E.R. Cruz's version of The Shadow to Mike Kaluta's. So, to prove I'm not Kalutaphobic, here's his rather stylish and magnificent cover for The Shadow #12

Frank Robbins, the Shadow #7

Then again, I can't not include Frank Robbins' cover for The Shadow #7

Jack Kirby, Kamandi #20

My second Kamandi cover, this time from issue #20, and my second Jack Kirby cover.

Jack Kirby, Where Monsters Dwell #2, Sporr, the giant amoeba

I know this is technically not a Bronze Age cover, having been drawn by Jack Kirby for 1960s' Tales of Suspense #11 but it's reprinted here on a Bronze Age comic, Where Monsters Dwell #2, and frankly that's all the excuse I need to post a picture of a giant orange amoeba threatening all mankind.


Jozeph Dukö said...

In superman #276 is it an alternate reality? Because the logo on Captain Marvel's chest is different.

Steve said...

Hi, Jozeph. I've not read the issue since I was a kid but, if I remember rightly, it's not actually Captain Marvel. It's a character called Captain Thunder who's somehow entered our world from another dimension. He is, however, clearly Captain Marvel in everything but name. He has the same powers, the same costume and the same sort of origin. His alter-ego is also a young boy. For whatever reason, it seems DC weren't willing to have the real Captain Marvel fight Superman, and so created an alternate version of him purely for this story.

If anyone else can shed any light on the whole Captain Thunder thing, I'd love to hear it.

PS. Around the same time, Superman came up against Captain Strong who was clearly Popeye. DC were clearly into putting the man of steel up against ersatz super-doers.

Jozeph Dukö said...

Special Pre-Captain Marvel (Shazam) story using knockoff "Captain Thunder" character, by Elliot S! Maggin. Art by Curt Swan

This is what it said about Superman #276 on

Anonymous said...

"Make Way for Captain Thunder" was reprinted in Best of DC #16 (September 1981). Willie Fawcett came from an alternate Earth. A Mohegan medicine man gave him the powers of Tornado, Hare, Uncas, Nature, Diamond, Eagle, and Ram. He was hypnotized by the Monster League and showed up on Earth-One, where he fought Superman. Superman helped him overcome the villains' mind control and return home to Earth-T.

Anonymous said...

A text page in that 1981 "Best of DC" digest explained that DC had acquired the rights to Captain Marvel/Shazam in the early 1970's, but were "not quite ready" for a crossover with Superman at that time. So they brought in the pastiche character Captain Thunder as a substitute. Later, Superman and the real Captain Marvel met in Justice League #135-137, All-New Collector's Edition #58, and several times in DC Comics Presents.

Anonymous said...

Superman appeared on the cover of DC's Shazam #1, but not in the story. Luthor visited Earth-S in Shazam #15. And Captain Marvel went to Earth 2 and met the Justice Society (including the 1940's Superman) in All-Star Squadron #36-37, IIRC. Elliot Maggin said in an interview that it was hard to integrate the tongue-in-cheek Captain Marvel/Shazam Family with the more serious style in DC's other super hero comics, so the Marvel Family usually stayed on Earth S, and cross overs with Superman and the JLA were relatively rare.

Steve W. said...

Thanks for all the info, Anon. :)

Anonymous said...

Originally, Fawcett Publications intended to call their hero "Captain Thunder" and the comic "Flash Comics." But DC had already secured a copyright for a "Flash" title and Fiction House was publishing a comic with a character named Captain Thunder. So Fawcett changed the names to "Whiz Comics" starring "Captain Marvel."

Steve W. said...

Thanks, Anon. :)