Original Art Stories: Jack Kirby & Joe Simon's Stuntman #4 Cover Art
Stuntman featured some of the most unique examples of Golden Age cover art. The series ran for three issues, with the last issue being mailed to subscribers. The covers were fascinating and showed Simon and Kirby at their most imaginative - instead of straight images, the covers were designed to showcase the comics as being books, complete with spines. This approach was ground-breaking in it's day and the concept is only just being caught up with in recent times. However the strength of the cover also led to it's weakness - by pretending to be a book, and not a straight comic book, it would have confused everyone, hence it's short run. In all honesty, Simon and Kirby cover art never really got any better than this, and it was done in the mid 1940s (according to Joe Simon). If I had the money spare, I'd be making a serious run for this art. After all, a genuine Golden Age unpublished cover, by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon, drawn in 1946? Forget paying five or six figure sums for art done in the last twenty years, this is pure history.
UPDATE: "I ran an inked copy of this (cover) in THE COMPLETE JACK KIRBY. It was inked and looked nothing like this. Bogus." -- Greg Theakston
So, is the art that Joe Simon sold real or a recreation? There's those who believe it's the latter, and if this is the case, did Joe Simon then lie in his affidavit? If he did recreate the art from scratch then the answer must surely be yes. The differences between the coloured cover that Joe Simon sold as being the original Jack Kirby penciled cover that he inked, and the cover that Greg Theakston showcased in The Complete Jack Kirby #3 (which you can see on this page) are very clear to be seen. And if two covers exist for this, then one must surely be a fake, or a recreation, if the other is genuine. Which is which?
|This is the art that Joe Simon sold and signed the following affidavit for. According to Simon, this art is genuine - it is Jack Kirby pencils and Joe Simon inks/colours|
|According to Greg Theakston, this is the actual Stuntman #4 unpublished cover - notice the differences between this cover and the one that Joe Simon claimed in his affidavit as being the 'real' version|