Friday, 11 June 2010

Covering the covers, Part One.

Let's face it, when we were all knee-high to the wondrous Wasp, there were two factors decided whether you bought a comic or not. One was the star of it, the other was the cover. Of course, in the best of all worlds, it was both. But I thought I'd take the opportunity to post my favourite Bronze Age covers.

As is the case with the rest of the blog, I'm only going to post stuff I actually had as a kid, so there might be some great covers that get left off simply because I never had them. It's also my pick of the pics that grab me most, not necessarily what I think should be counted as the greatest covers of that age, so bear with me if some of my choices seem odd, perverse or just plain baffling.

After not a great deal of thought, I've managed to narrow it down to sixteen choices. To avoid going overboard on the image posting, I thought I'd split it into two posts of eight covers. So, in no particular order, here's my first batch:

Jack Kirby, Kamandi and the killer whale

I have to admit Jack Kirby isn't one of my favourite cover artists and, by all accounts, he hated doing them but, every so often, he showed us all how it should be done. Kamandi #23 is definitely one of those occasions. That thing's practically leaping out of the page, let alone the water.

Charlton Comics, Many ghosts of Dr Graves, Tom Sutton werewolf cover

The late Tom Sutton might not have been one of the more high profile artists but, for Charlton's Many Ghosts of Dr Graves #45, he gave us a masterclass in terror.

Jim Starlin, Rampaging Hulk crucified

Rampaging Hulk #4. Jim Starlin as good as ever.

World's Finest, cover, Superman and Batman vs Capricorn

World's Finest #218. Was there ever a better cover artist than DC's Nick Cardy? Like all his covers, I just love his composition for this, with the note from our villain cheerfully undermining our smug (and somewhat unobservant) heroes.

Tomb of Dracula, skeleton

Dracula looking like a wild beast, his foe looming like the spectre of death, as lightning crashes and tombstones stand witness. If Gil Kane and Tom Palmer's cover for Tomb of Dracula #16 doesn't leave you thinking we're in for the fight of the century, I don't know what could.

Weird Adventure Comics, Jim Aparo cover, the gasmen and the Spectre

It's Jim Aparo. It's the Spectre. It's (Weird) Adventure Comics #436. It's green. It's purple. It's simply the most elegant thing you've ever seen.

DC Comics, The Unexpected, Nick Cardy cover

Just to prove he didn't just do super-heroes, Nick Cardy gives us The Unexpected #149. If only the stories inside DC's horror mags had matched up to the drama of their covers.

Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes, Timber Wolf, cover

It's Nick Cardy again. Is there no stopping the boy? There might be but there's no stopping Timber Wolf in Superboy #197 as he takes on the Legion of Super-Heroes, single-handed.

No comments: