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Showing posts from May, 2012

Original Art Stories: Jack Kirby & Joe Simon's Stuntman #4 Cover Art

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Now this is a definite find - the original, unpublished, cover art to Stuntman #4, as drawn by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon in 1946, which was rediscovered and subsequently inked and coloured by Simon in 2000, or so the story goes.  There are those who question Kirby's involvement in this art, but I'll leave that to others to debate it's veracity in that department and to make that judgement call as to if Joe Simon lied in his resulting affidavit.  The art is up for auction at the moment, complete with Simon's affidavit about the history of the piece and his disappointment at the original selling price that he gained back in the early 2000s.  It appears that when the piece didn't raise what Simon thought was a fair price, he considered suing (Simon was nothing if not litigious) only to find that the buyer was his own lawyer, who subsequently refused to sue the auction house.  The documentation completes the package really, and the end result is a very desirable item.  …

"Inventory and Appraisement Of The Estate Of Robert E Howard..."

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Robert E Howard created Conan the Barbarian, but that didn’t stop him from dying, leaving an estate worth less than $3,000.  At the end of his life, none of his creations could save him, and even though his vision and work has endured for over 75 years, he never really reaped the benefits that others have enjoyed down the years.  As can be seen from these documents, the bulk of Howard’s estate was, surprisingly, money, with two bank accounts containing over $2,500 of the final sum.  Howard’s estate went to his next of kin, in this case his father, Issac Howard.  Issac Howard must surely have had the worst of weeks, first his son fatally shoots himself in the head and then his wife passes away shortly after, never waking from a coma, resulting in a double burial.  Such is the price of devotion to one’s mother, and Howard's actions have created conversation amongst his many admirers ever since.

Luckily, for the world at large, Howard had a vivid imagination and gave us several creati…

Hoax Of The Year: Jack Kirby's Spiderman

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Let's nip this right in the bud now and call this image bullshit (as Penn & Teller would say).  Yesterday a link was emailed to quite a few people, showing the image you see on the left, which is supposedly the Jack Kirby version of The Amazing Spider-Man.  If it the art was genuine then it'd rewrite Marvel history as we know it.  There's one slight problem though - it's a hoax, and not a very good one at that.  Someone has taken the Giant Man image from the splash page of Tales To Astonish #51 and doctored it, using a logo taken from page #183 of Joe Simon's Comic Book Makers book and parts of the design that Steve Ditko drew for one of Robin Snyder's books (in which he discussed the differences between Jack Kirby's discarded version of Spiderman and the final, Steve Ditko-Stan Lee version of Spider-Man) and mashed them all together.  As to why anyone would want to do that, or what end they hoped to achieve is beyond me.  But then that's life.  

Sad…

"...Please Sue Someone." Dark Horse vs Dynamite Entertainment

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Does anyone have any idea what makes this announcement such a big deal?  No?  Then allow me to give you a bit of background.  For readers who have followed both Conan and Red Sonja since their relaunches at Dark Horse and Dynamite Entertainment respectively, the enduring question is when will there be a cross-over, and the answer has always been, not any-time soon.  Part of the reason for this has been laid at the feet of Dark Horse, who have steadfastly refused to entertain the concept of a cross over, but never really explained why, however the following sampling of internal emails gives an indication of the real reason why – Dark Horse feel that Dynamite are the ‘poor relation’ when it comes to comic books, with accusations of professional sabotage, theft of ideas, concepts, artists, writers and designs being lifted and implemented, with the most damning email of them all – a request for a cross-over being shot down on the basis that Dark Horse doesn’t “…want to work with Dynamic F…

(Australian) Universal Monsters

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A slight change of pace from the usual grist.  Whilst doing some serious research for a long-term project, I came across these vintage movie ads for a few Universal Horrors.  The ads all date from the right period - that being the early 1930s through to the 1950s - and they all feature artwork that appears to be unique.  
I can only imagine how it would have been heading down to the cinema in 1932 and seeing a movie such as Frankenstein or Dracula, let alone The Mummy or Freaks, movies that disturbed me when I first saw them here in Adelaide.  Every Friday evening in the winter of 1982, Channel Seven would show a midnight movie, and those movies were Universal Horrors.  In this way I was able to see classics such as Dracula, fifty years after it's release, the Frankenstein and Mummy series, the classic Lugosi/Karloff films such as The Black Cat along with lesser known movies by Lon Chaney, Jr, Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi and many more.  I'd sit there in the dark, watch the movie…

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