Starfire Poster by Mike Vosburg

Starfire was another creation of writer David Michelinie – creator of Claw the Unconquered – and brought to visual life by penciller Mike Vosburg, debuting with Starfire No. 1, cover dated Aug/Sep 1976.

Read more


Claw the Unconquered Nos. 13, 14 and 15 – Unpublished

Following up on a post discussing Claw's origins, we turn to the issues produced but unpublished after its cancellation with issue No. 12.

Read more


Green Lantern No. 110 Cover by Mike Grell

Along with writer Denny O'Neil, artist Mike Grell had taken Green Lantern from being a back-up in The Flash and relaunched into his own mag with No. 90 in 1976. By the time No. 110 came out in 1978 during the DC Explosion, Grell was about to leave the book to handle writing and pencilling duties on his own creation The Warlord, a book that went from bi-monthly to monthly status during the same time.

Read more


Green Lantern No. 56 Cover by Kane & Anderson

A great cover to a great issue of Green Lantern from 1967. The creature is reminiscent of Jack Kirby's Thing for Marvel's Fantastic Four and bears some resemblance to The Abomination from The Incredible Hulk, a character Gil Kane also designed.

Read more


The Justice Society of America by Anderson and McCorkindale

Editor Julius Schwartz did a brilliant thing when he had Gardner Fox write "The Flash of Two Worlds" for The Flash No. 123. Bringing back the original versions of the Second World War-era characters was a unique and compelling way to integrate them into the Silver Age - the second era of super-heroes.

Read more


The Arthurian Era by Brian Bolland

Crisis on Infinite Earths had concluded, turning the DC Comics multiverse into a supposedly coherent universe. The History of the DC Universe two-book set documented the new timeline, and The History of the DC Universe Portfolio celebrated it with tabloid-sized images by some of DC's top talent.

Read more


Marvel Treasury Edition No. 6 Cover – Doctor Strange by Frank Brunner

Frank Brunner was at Marvel Comics for only a decade, but he made an impact with each comic he did, foremost among them his collaborations with writer Steve Englehart on Doctor Strange in Marvel Premiere and volume two of Doctor Strange.

Read more


Amazing Spider-Man No. 102 Cover by Kane and Giacoia

The last issue of the Six-Armed Spider-Man saga, writer Roy Thomas used the larger page count to tell the chilling origin of Michael Morbius and deliver a final battle between Morbius, Spider-Man and The Lizard.

Read more


Amazing Spider-Man No. 101 Cover by Kane and Romita

How do you top giving Spider-Man four extra arms in a last-page reveal of Amazing Spider-Man No. 100?

You put Spidey up against a brand-new character once again acceptable due to changes in The Comics Code: Morbius the Living Vampire! And for good measure you add The Lizard trapped somewhere between his monstrous persona and his human form of Dr. Curt Connors.
Read more


Amazing Spider-Man No. 100 Cover by Romita and Giacoia

It was a time of transition. The Sixties were ending, leaving a very different world than when they'd begun. The Silver Age in comics was giving way to the Bronze. The Seventies would be a decade of experimentation in packaging for new publishers and slow decline for Marvel and DC until they worked out a different model of distribution.

Read more


Detective Comics No. 481 Unpublished Cover by Jim Aparo

Books come and books go, and in the latter half of 1978, DC Comics was in the throes of The DC Implosion and nearly half their titles disappeared.

Read more


Batman Family No. 20 Cover by Jim Starlin

It was the best Batbook of its era, and it had gotten there with new talent like Marshall Rogers, Mike Golden, Joe Staton and others breathing new life into the Batman family of characters.

Read more


Superman Pin-Up TPB Cover by Neal Adams

Neal Adams is recovering from an illness that nearly claimed him, and we're all reminded that those whose work we love won't be around forever. And when Adams can still knock it out of the park, it's a testament to a life spent practising his skills, and that we always look forward to seeing more from him.

Read more


Batman No. 313 Cover by José Luis García-López

This is an amazing symbolic cover. On the surface, it's merely a clever division of Two-Face's hideout, but if you extend the idea to the tragedies these antagonists have endured, it's even more interesting.

Read more


Ghostly Tales No. 97 Cover by Steve Ditko

When Steve Ditko wasn't at DC or Marvel, he could often be found working for Charlton Comics. This wonderfully-designed cover is from 1972.

Read more


Dynamo No. 3 Cover by Wally Wood

Tower Comics was a short-lived American comic book publisher that was an imprint of Tower Books. Wally Wood's T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents was the forefront super-hero property.

Read more


BEM No. 28 Cover by Brian Bolland

BEM – or Bemusing Magazine was a British comics fanzine of the 1970s and 80s, and I've had a scan of this cover in my files for a bit, meaning to do a new colour version.

Read more


Hot Box by Jack Kirby

Foxhole was a Joe Simon & Jack Kirby Studio-produced comic from 1954 published originally under the Mainline imprint, with stories told from the soldiers' perspective.

Read more


Rex Morgan MD by Bradley and Edgington

Rex Morgan MD is a long-running story strip that is still published today, and is currently written and drawn by Terry Beatty, co-creator of Ms. Tree, Wild Dog and other comic book creations.

Read more


Batman No. 340 Cover by Jim Aparo

Jim Aparo became so strongly associated with DC heroes like Aquaman and Batman that we sometimes forget that he was a solid horror artist and in an alternate reality could have spent his career working in DC's anthologies.

Read more


Starfleet Navigator Class Starship

Coming out of my work on the revised Star Trek Starfleet Technical Manual, it got me thinking about something a little sleeker that your average starship. It would be Starfleet's answer to the Romulan Bird of Prey.

Read more


Blade Runner: The Comic Book Adaptation by Williamson & Garzon

Blade Runner came and went during the summer of 1982, neither a hit nor an outright flop. The film would garner its audience and appreciation in the years that followed, aided by the growing home video market. Today it’s regarded as one of science fiction film’s best.

Read more


Time Warp No. 4 Cover by Michael Wm Kaluta

As ever, I'm a sucker for a Time Warp cover drawn by Michael Wm Kaluta. How the trumpet player ended up with demons/angels on a rock in space is anyone's guess, but it was certainly headier stuff than your average DC fare of the day.

Read more


The Phantom Stranger No. 33 Cover by Jim Aparo

In the early 70s, both DC and Marvel went to a cover format that put solid colour behind the masthead and boxed in the cover art below it. It might have made covers more consistent and easier to lay out, but to my eye it was cramped and did a disservice to the power a good cover could generate to get a potential reader to pick up the comic off the newsstand. It put production convenience and cost control before editorial and artistic decision making. Penny wise and pound foolish is another way to express it.

Read more


The Brave & the Bold No. 122 Cover by Jim Aparo

Swamp Thing was a great comic, and the issues done by creators Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson are classic horror tales, but the book's sales waned in other creators' hands. For the remainder of the 1970s, Swampie was relegated to reprints, and guest-star appearances like this one in B&B.

Read more


The Brave & the Bold No. 116 Cover by Jim Aparo

Another of Aparo's inset covers for a 100-page The Brave & the Bold. A creepy idol comes to life in a supernatural team-up of Batman and the Spectre.

Read more


Valley of the Dinosaurs No. 2 Cover by Fred Himes

1974 was the prehistoric year for Saturday morning TV shows on the three major American networks. NBC debuted the live-action The Land of the Lost which would live the longest at three seasons, ABC had the live-action Korg 70,000 BC which survived one season, and CBS green-lit the animated Valley of the Dinosaurs which also lasted a single season.

Read more


Vengeance Squad No. 5 Cover by Pete Morisi

From 1976, Vengeance Squad was a Mission: Impossible-style trio of operatives in crime-fighting adventures. Beginning with issue No. 2, it was drawn by veteran artist Pete Morisi, who by this point in his career was drawing in a highly-stylised and simplified art style.

Read more


The Brave & the Bold No. 112 Cover by Jim Aparo

In early 1974, DC Comics decided to turned part of its line into 100-page comics for 60¢ after previously releasing specials and one shots in similar sizes and price points. Accompanying the normal features were reprints from DC's large library of material. It was my generation's introduction to the deep well of Golden and Silver age stories.

Read more


Wonder Woman No. 184 Cover by Sekowsky & Giordano

Coming in the middle of the New Wonder Woman run – where Diana lost her powers and resembled Emma Peel more than an Amazon princess – we have this issue where her warrior roots are front and centre.

Read more


The Brave & the Bold No. 87 Cover by Sekowsky & Giordano

I've always loved this cover with Batman driving a Formula One car of the era. But it wasn't until I found a scan of the original art that I realised I liked it even more. Behind the trade dress and flat orange background colouring, there was a great European mountain village and the wheel the Speed Racer-style villain had just sheared off the Wayne Special.

Read more


Wonder Woman Neal Adams OG

Wonder Woman Pin-Up by Neal Adams

I'm less of a fan of the Wonder Woman as warrior than I am of her original conception with bracelets she used to bounce bullets off of, and a Lasso of Truth that forced bad guys to own up to what they'd done. But, her popularity now is due in part to the current conception of her kicking butt while wielding a sword and shield.

Read more


Madame Xanadu Pin-Up by Michael Wm Kaluta

Michael Wm Kaluta has been associated with Madame Xanadu from her first appearance in Doorway to Nightmare No. 1 in 1978.

Read more


Night Fighter and Sky Giant by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby

Joe Simon and Jack Kirby created Captain America for Timely Comics (later to become Atlas and finally Marvel Comics), and in the post-war period continued to create comics for their own publishing ventures as well as other publishers.

Read more


World's Finest Cover by Jim Aparo

Jim Aparo spent most of his comics career at DC Comics, associated with Batman, Aquaman, Spectre and a plethora of team-ups in The Brave and the Bold. He was a triple threat, pencilling, inking and lettering his stories.

Read more


Wonder Woman by Colleen Doran

For the better part of 40 years, Colleen Doran has had a diverse career in comics, encompassing her own epic saga A Distant Soil, assignments from publishers both large and small, and collaborating on graphic novel projects with writers at the top of the field.

Read more


DC Special Series No. 26 Superman and His Incredible Fortress of Solitude Cover by Andru & Giordano

One of DC's best tabloid editions was nearly its last. An all-new tale by Roy Thomas, Ross Andru, Romeo Tanghal, Gaspar Saladino and Jerry Serpe, it used the rich mythos of mementoes in Superman's Fortress of Solitude as its backdrop.

Read more


Batman by Alex Toth

It's just a sketch. 40 years old and fading. But nothing of its power has diminished. Few people could distill a drawing down to its essence as well as Alex Toth. Running across something like this is always a welcome surprise. Like finding a sapphire on the sidewalk.

Read more


Wonder Woman and Donald Trump by Ramona Fradon

Ramona Fradon was one of the few female artists working in professional comics in the late Golden, Silver and Bronze Ages. She had a great run on Aquaman, co-created Metamorpho with Bob Haney, and later did The Super Friends comic. In her 90s, she's still going strong with commissions.

Read more


Flash Gordon by Jim Keefe

From 1996 to 2003, Jim Keefe was the writer/artist of the Flash Gordon comic strip, the last in a long line of great cartoonists on one of King Features' most prestigious strips. It's a testament to his work that it remains in circulation on flashgordon.com for today's audience.

Read more


Marvel Treasury Edition No. 30 - X-Men Fractures by Dave Cockrum

Rarer than regular tabloids that reprinted popular material were the special editions that contained new material prepared expressly for their oversized pages.

Read more


The Mechanoid Associates by Paul Gillon

The world was different in the early 80s. No internet meant limited paths to new information. And for me as a teenager living in a small Canadian town, we were even more isolated from the dynamism of large cities. So when I discovered that Heavy Metal magazine existed on the newsstand, it was my first exposure to European comics and their creators, as well as some of the most progressive North Americans: Jean 'Mœbius' Giraud, Enki Bilal, Caza, Philippe Druillet, Richard Corben, Howard Chaykin and many more.

Read more


Marvel Treasury Edition No. 29 by Severin & Tartaglione

If you were reading comics between 1975 and 1980 or so, tabloid-sized comics were a wonderful thing to find on the newsstand. Oversized with cardstock covers, they most often reprinted older material. Seeing some of your favourite stories printed big was an awesome thing to experience.

Read more


Time Warp 6 OG

Time Warp No. 6 Cover by Michael Wm Kaluta

Time Warp lasted five issues in 1979-1980 before DC Comics cancelled it. But it's well-remembered among a certain era of readers for its imaginative sci-fi stories and amazing covers by Kaluta.

Read more


Daredevil Poster by Frank Miller & Klaus Janson

It had made Miller a star creator, first joining Daredevil as its penciller and then becoming its writer as well. Aided and abetted by Klaus Janson, the finishing inker and colourist played a larger and larger role over time as Miller's pencils became simplified layouts.

Read more


Green Lantern Takara OG

Green Lantern by Marcio Takara

For this colouring and packaging commission, the client wanted this ink-wash drawing turned into a vintage Green Lantern cover.

Read more


Claw the Unconquered OG

Claw the Unconquered by Michelinie, Chan, Giffen et al

Claw the Unconquered was a DC Comics title that debuted in 1975. DC wanted to get a piece of the market Marvel had established with adaptations of Robert E Howard's Conan the Barbarian, Red Sonja, Kull the Conqueror and Solomon Kane. Editor Joe Orlando talked with writers, and after a false start settled on David Michelinie. Claw emerged as a Conan-like character at first, and the art supplied by Ernie Chan – himself a Conan contributor over at Marvel – for the first seven issues of the comic deviated little from that conception.

Read more


Foom 9 OG

FOOM No. 9 Cover by Jim Starlin

Here's another cover to FOOM, Marvel's 1970s fan magazine. Jim Starlin was making waves at Marvel as a writer and artist with a strong interest and ability in science fiction and all matters cosmic. He began with Captain Marvel, injecting new life into that character, and by the time of this issue in 1975, he had revived and was revolutionising Adam Warlock.

Read more


FOOM 14 OG

FOOM No. 14 Cover by John Buscema & Tom Palmer

FOOM was the successor to the MMMS and was the fan service of the MCG. Translated for the less geeky: Friends of Ol' Marvel was the successor to the Merry Marvel Marching Society and was the fan service of the Marvel Comics Group.

Read more


Claw New Colour

The Case for New Comic Book Colouring Directions

This comes up every time we talk about reprints and collected editions:

Should original colour separations be used, or should the colour be updated to take advantage of improved production and reproduction methods?

Read more