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Friday, March 24, 2006


Lo, There Shall Be A Blog Post

Tried this one a few days ago and all the image links broke:

There are thousands upon thousands of great comic book covers, most of them better than the interior contents of the comics they're selling. Tom Spurgeon put out his call for memorable covers a couple weeks ago, and Mike Sterling has listed a few of his favorites. Now here are a handful of mine (all scans from the invaluable Grand Comic Book Database):

Justice, Inc. #1: Joe Kubert at his best, with a richness of color that disappeared with the mid-1970s; The Denny O'Neil/Al Williamson story inside suffers mightily in contrast with its own cover, but this is Kubert; they never stood a chance

Journey #11: mmm, pretty

Action Comics #425: A beautifully cartooned Nick Cardy shot that in retrospect seems like an elegy; his early 1970s run of Action covers has a high percentage of classics

Monkey Vs. Robot: sublime; exactly what it says it is

Marvel Super-Heroes #20: A classic Marvel Pop-Art Production; again, the story inside pales in comparison, but who cares? Somehow, a pedestrian logo and figurework add up to something you can't stop looking at; this is a DR. DOOM COMIC, you miserable cretin, as Doom himself would have it

Acme Novelty Library #1: Ware's despondent wit is firing on all cylinders here; tragedy, pain, miscommunication, blah blah blah, but Ware knows the power of a funny drawing as well as Bill Watterson

Phantom Stranger #26: Those colors have no right working so well together; Adams and Aparo did wonderful work on the book, but Kaluta trumped both of them here

The Shadow #1: More Kaluta, with an image that is solely responsible for any interest I have ever had in this character; I almost went with the less famous #2 or #3, but really, this cover is the best of them all, possibly the best comic book cover DC put out in the 1970s

Daredevil #169: Miller's best, creepiest cover for this series

Limited Collectors' Edition C-25, C-31: The comic cover holy grails of my childhood; my first superhero comics in early 1975 carried house ads for DC's tabloids, with the Batman edition always half-covered by an ugly "SOLD OUT" banner. The Batman book sports an Adams shot taken (and recolored) from an inside panel of Batman #251, while the Superman book uses an oil painting that adorned a wall at DC comics for decades

More Fun #61: When I was little, with no inkling of comics fandom or access to old comics, my best glimpse into the books of the Golden Age was through the color cover sections of the Overstreet Price Guide, which for some reason was always available in my local bookstore; this cover, which I first saw in a mid-70s Overstreet, captures the early freakiness of Howard Sherman's strip--the odd character design, the quaint lightning bolts; this comic looks like exactly what the title promises

The Spirit #25: Will Eisner never really went back to his signal creation in a narrative sense, but he seems to have had fun producing these covers for the Kitchen Sink reprint series in the mid-1980s; this is among the best of an excellent bunch

The Defenders #25: Now here's a cover that shows you exactly what you're in for; for a few years every cover of this comic showed an insane dogpile of costumed bodies drawn from Marvel's B- and C-lists wrestling, getting it on, or both; James Kochalka's new superhero comic is in its trappings a LSH pastiche, but with their massive dysfunction, private agendas and barely-disguised contempt for one another, the Defenders were the original SuperF*ckers

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