Monday, August 13, 2012

The Discovery of the Golden Age: Part 7: DC and Marvel from the 30s, Part II

The New Reprints: A Voyage of Discovery to the Golden Age of Comic Books

Part 7: DC from the 1930s and the Origins of Marvel, Part II

This project will be presented in twelve parts. Unfortunately, I can’t change the order, so later posts will appear first. Please try to check this out in order! And your comments are important. Please post how you became aware of comics and their history!
  1. Introduction/Comics in "real" books.
  2. 1960s: Reprints from the Comic Companies: 80 Page Giants & Marvel Tales!
  3. 1960s: The Great Comic Book Heroes
  4. 1960s: The Paperback Era
  5. 1970s: The Comic Strips AND the Comic Book Strips! 
  6. 1970s: DC from the 1930s and the Origins at Marvel Part I
  7. 1970s: DC from the 1930s and the Origins at Marvel Part II
  8. 1980s until Today: Horror We? How's Bayou! The EC Age of Comics
  9. 1990s until Today: The Archives and Masterworks
  10. How The West Was Lost
  11. When Comics Had Influence: Public Service, Education & Promotion
  12. Journeys End, What We Leave Behind: A Century of Comics
So let us continue our voyage to and from the 1960s and discover the world of comics once almost forgotten. Our expedition is mostly into the world of reprints that were available OUTSIDE the newsstands and comic book stores but we will have a few detours on the way.

Thanks to Kid Robson and Randall Krauskop!

By the mid 1970s, Comic Book Stores were becoming more common. Since they had more space for comic book-related material, more reprint comics began to come out. Marvel was now regularly publishing “Where Monsters Dwell”, “Beware” and other comics featuring stories from their 1950s Atlas Era. By the mid 1970s about 25% of Marvel’s output were reprints. None were from their Golden Age of the 1940s. DC, however, would soon be lead by Jack Kirby into the Golden Age.  But first....
As the new Comic Books stores opened they all had their own price lists, which would later be called price guides. These lists were rexographed or mimeographed using the cheapest forms of reproduction available at the time. The lists were not made to last long, as their inventory and pricing changed almost daily.

There were a few mail order companies who did enough business to actually use a printer or Xerox machine to reproduce their own lists. A few of the “big” guys might have given away the list, but most required a dollar or two and a stamped, self-addressed envelope. 

The prices were NOT standardized, until the Big Overstreet Guide came out, in 1970. It took time, but this list became the standard bearer for the industry. This guide was almost anti-competitive because it SET prices, rather than have different dealers, in different markets, set their own. It generally caused an immediate raise in prices of comics and a lot of haggling. Way back then, in the ancient times of the 70s, there was NOT a large range of grading; comics were rated poor, good or great. And many dealers didn’t grade at all, they just gave one price.

But there was something else, something I needed: A list of comics! While most lists concentrated on recent titles, many had mentions of those Golden Age comics I was looking for. Some even mentioned name changes! So there were 38 issues of the Human Torch, the last one in 1954; Mad became a magazine with issue #24; Issues #74 and 75 of Captain America were named “Captain America’s Weird Tales” and Marvel Mystery changed its name to Marvel Tales with issue #93. Not that you’d see many of the Golden Age comics at the local comic shop, which mostly had comics printed after 1960.

There were now hints and clues of what had been. But, as you look at some pages from the first Overstreet Guide, (which cost a whole $5), note that it was only 28 pages. It listed about 150 comics, but only fifty or so were from the 1940s and 1950s. Comics were called by their familiar name, not the official “Superman’s Girlfriend, Lois Lane,” but just “Lois Lane.” A mint copy of Action #1 was $300, Amazing Fantasy #15 was $16, Fantastic Four #1 was $30 and Marvel Mystery was $250.

Marvel had stopped printing Golden Age Super-Hero stories in the late 1960s. But national events and personnel changes at DC pushed them into reprinting Golden Age stories in 1971. DC (and, very briefly, Marvel) went from 15 cent, 36 page comics to 25 cent, 52 page comics. To slow inflation, President Nixon initiated "price and wage" controls making it difficult for DC to return to their old structure.  And DC had made paper and printing commitments, so DC was "locked" into the bigger size for almost a year. Bad for DC's bottom line, but good for me.

DC's Golden Age with Jack Kirby

Jack Kirby had returned to DC to create his Fourth World.  Except we didn't call it that at the time, we called it: The New Gods, Forever People, Mister Miracle and Jimmy Olsen. This lead to a very pleasant, but surprising discovery of the Golden Age: Simon and Kirby had done a lot for DC in the 1940s. And we were going to see some of it!

The New Gods reprinted Newsboy Legion with the Guardian,  Forever People reprinted the Sandman, Mister Miracle reprinted Boy Commandos and Jimmy Olsen reprinted the Manhunter.  Hot Socks!  This was the first time I was seeing these characters.  Often, DC included some text pieces to explain them.  Sadly, they faded away in about a year when DC comics went back to their "usual" size. Most of the stories were from 1942.  BUT WAIT!!! See the Boy Commandos story: Isn't Jack Kirby's wife named Ros?

The rest of the DC line, including Superman, relied upon early "Silver Age" stories for their needed reprints.
A bit later, Golden Age stories appeared in the DC Annuals and Giant-Size issues, mostly for the Flash or Justice League. There would be an occasional surprise. For example, I had never heard of the Seven Soldiers of Victory. Here, in the JLA 1974 Giant,  DC published an essay on them and just a picture, no story.

 I also had never heard of the Star Spangled Kid, as revealed in this 1971 Flash Giant.


Johnny Quick (right) had appeared in the JLA/JSA crossover in issues 29 and 30. The big surprise here was an unpublished Golden Age story of the original Flash. DC was a little more comfortable bringing out the old guys than Marvel.
Comics, Anatomy of a Mass Medium by Reinhold Reitberger was published by Little Brown and Company in 1971. In many ways this books was different than the ones that before it.  First and foremost, it treated comic books as equals to comic strips. As with all books, we first must get into the history of comics and discuss the Yellow Kid, but this book very quickly draws comic books into the conversation and doesn’t leave them out of any discussion.

Second, the book is very current. It’s in black and white with many illustrations, but instead of relying of reproductions of older strips, or of older reproduction of current strips, it includes a great many of the then “current” episodes of comic strips. The book is divided into chapters of humor, adventure, sci-fi, but comic strips and comic books are combined in each one.

Third, it does convey the universality of comic strips, with many strips printed using foreign languages. Peanuts in German is fun.

Finally, DC was now an old story, and Marvel’s rising influence is evident in this book. In fact, the first full page illustration is of Steranko’s Nick Fury, not the Yellow Kid. Throughout the book, the authors point out how Marvel’s ingenuity has become a dominant force in the industry. DC is not left out, it’s talked about throughout, but it is no seen as a driving, new force.  Marvel is.

The book though, is not meant to be a retrospective of early strips or books and therefore fails to deliver a lot of information regarding the Golden Age of Comics.  For 1971, it was very current. Today, we get to look at many strips that were current then, but are gone now.

If we can backup a bit:
On the Scene Presents Superheroes was a 1966 Warren Publication. This was a 64 page, black and white magazine that costs 35¢. It came out during the “overwhelming” Batman era on TV, as the new Batman movie was being released. (The movie was not released, it just escaped.) This magazine though, was mostly about the older Golden Age characters, Superman, Batman, The Phantom, Flash Gordon and Captain Marvel that had made their way into movie serials. While I had known about and seen the Flash Gordon serials, for the first time I learned that these super-heroes had their own serials. 


Their individual chapters here gave a brief history of their life in comics, often a few reprints (of their comic strips, not books) and a detailed synopsis of their series.  With the exception of Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers, these serials were not shown on TV, this was another key to the past.

Rather than show the comic reprints, it is more fun to show the characters in their costumes. I placed this segment  here because something struck me then. That bad Batman movie costume actually looks more like the original Batman, with long ears, that we will see below.

On top are the 1st Editions, on the bottom are the Millennium Editions
Starting in 1974, DC published nine Golden Age First Editions. The new Comic Book stores had room to display these, while many newsstands did not. These were reprints of the first comics featuring their super-stars. They were Giant Sized, Treasury Editions, and they cost a buck each. The comics featured Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman, the Flash and a few others. Twenty five years later, in the year 2000, DC would publish their “Millennium” Editions, regular sized comics featuring even more Golden Age super-stars. (And Silver Age also.)

Complete with statues, here are the Masterpiece editions. The comics are the large 11st editions, Millennium editions and the ones that come with the box sets.

At this time DC also packaged for Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, in big box sets that included their first comics, a model and a new book by Les Daniels. I put them all together so you can see the differences in size. The 1st Editions and Masterpiece sets had the ORIGINAL advertising intact. The Millennium issues left them out.

Here is the Bat's box set. I used the 1st Edition comic, because it is bigger, to show the ad.
  With these books DC got a head start on Marvel in reprinting Golden Age stories. Let's now look at Marvel's take on its Golden Age characters. Stan Lee at Marvel never seemed to really want to connect his characters to their Golden Age counterparts. He often said that era had failed and he did not want to return to it. Yes, he brought back the Human Torch, and Sub-Mariner but only Captain America brought with him a small part his past…Bucky, The Red Skull and a few other villains. It was Roy Thomas, mostly, that linked the Silver Age characters to their Golden Age history, bringing back Toro and Betty Dean, and creating the Invaders and Liberty Legion.  Marvel, however, really did not forget its Timely past, and, if you were good, you caught some of the redos.

 The Vision, created by Simon and Kirby, originally appeared in Marvel Mystery Comics #13 (Nov. 1940)

What's in a name?  In Detective Comics #18, Fu Manchu appears and Doctor Doom is in a Big Little Book from 1937.

Ka-Zar appeared in Marvel Comics #1, 1939 and then came out of retirement for X-Men #10, 1965

The Destroyer was introduced in Mystic Comics #6, 1941 and reappeared in Iron Man and Captain Marvel comics in the 1970s.

I was introduced the Owl in Daredevil #10 in 1965 and then saw his look alike from Young Allies #3, 1941

     Combat Kelly originally fought the Korean war starting in 1951. Twenty years later he was drafted to fight WWII in the 1940s. Notice how people scream using foreign symbols and that gunfire makes different sounds when fired at Koreans.


   Marvel Boy had three incarnations.  In the 1940s (upper left) he appeared in Daring Mystery Comics and was created by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. In the 1950s his name was used for a totally different character. Marvel Boy premiered in his own comic dated December, 1950. It had it's title changed to Astonishing with issue #3. His creators then were Stan Lee and Russ Heath.  

Marvel Boy reappeared in F.F #163 and was renamed the Crusader.


                   The Molten Man-Thing is from Tales of Suspense #7. The Black and White one is from Savage Tales #1.

The original Jack Frost was a good guy from USA Comics #1, 1941. When defrosted, he came back as a villain in 1965.

                                                    The Original Black Widow appeared in Mystic #4, 1940

                                             The Red Raven appeared in Red Raven #1, 1940.

The Yellow Claw (with Jimmy Woo) appeared in four issues of his own comic starting in 1956.  Jim Steranko brought them back in Strange Tales #160, 1967.

Ringmaster: In Hulk #3, 1962 and in Captain America #5, 1941. Later, they were revealed to be father and son. Maynard Tiboldt,and his father Fritz Tiboldt.

  After the success of the Invaders, In 1976, Roy Thomas introduced The Liberty Legion, with members of: The Blue Diamond (introduced Daring Mystery Comics #7, 1941); Jack Frost (USA Comics #1, 1941); Miss America (Marvel Mystery Comics #49,1943); The Patriot (Human Torch Comics #3, 1941); Red Raven (Red Raven Comics #1,1940); The Thin Man (Mystic Comics #4,1940); The Whizzer (USA Comics #1, 1941).

The Whizzer and Ms. America had already appeared in The Avengers and were revealed to be the parents of the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver. (How things will change!)

Marvel had not forgotten their Golden Age characters, they just did not connect them to their past as DC routinely did. So, it took me decades to connect the dots.

Competitors, especially in comics where copyright issues crop up, don’t like admitting that they look at their competition. Of course they do. Don’t forget the Fantastic Four was started because Goodman saw that the Justice League was selling well. Previously I speculated that Marvel Tales was an “answer” to Secret Origins. 

With the four Bonanza books out there, especially the book on origins, one can  speculate that Marvel was influenced by these publications.

So in 1974, Marvel began a series of trade paperback reprints, starting with “Origins of Marvel Comics” followed by “Son of Origins” a year later. These and the future volumes all had introductions by Stan Lee. Sadly, these were NOT reprints from the Golden Age, but of their recent creations. Actually they were thicker version of their Marvel Tales Annuals! However, they were still a lot of fun to read, especially for newcomers. The introductions offered little insight and no new details on each series' creation. The 250 page, full color, books were published by Simon and Shuster and cost $7 each. The first book opens with:

“In the beginning Marvel created the Bullpen and the Style.
And the Bullpen was without form, and was void; and darkness was upon the face of the Artists. And the Spirit of Marvel moved upon the face of the Writers.
And Marvel said, Let there be The Fantastic Four. And there was The Fantastic Four.
And Marvel saw The Fantastic Four. And it was good.”
In 1977, The Smithsonian published a large, color and black and white book on comic strips for $30. In 1982, The Smithsonian published a similar sized book for comic books, “ A Smithsonian Book of Comic Book Comics” featuring reprints from everywhere, Superman, Batman, Pogo, Little Lulu, Mad, Animal Comics, Spirit, Tessie the Typist and much more, including stories by Disney. It was edited by J. Michael Barrier and Martin T. Williams. And it featured the first Pogo story.

In 1978, “Crawford’s Encyclopedia of Comic Books”, was published by Jonathan David Publishers, listed at 68-22 Eliot Ave, Middle Village NY, which was just a few blocks from my house. It sold for $20.

This was an extremely detailed book, it broke down the chapters by publishers; more publishers than I have ever heard of. They discussed each company in a separate chapter. Crawford also included the comic strip syndicates such as United Feature and King Feature. The authors discussed the history and creation of each company and gave backgrounds on their creators. They even discussed the characters and their story lines.

There were brief color sections, including one with an aquatic creation by Bill Everett, but not the Sub-Mariner. There were also a great many black and white illustrations, often not reproduced too well. BUT ONE MORE THING!!!!!!!

At the end of each section there was an alphabetical list of the comics that each company printed. FINALLY, a comprehensive list. And while it did not include the issue numbers, it was a great start and a great reference. I should have walked over and said hello to the publishers!!!! Mike Vassallo didn’t live far from them either and he would have walked over and given them a list of corrections.  The book is filled with inaccuracies, but was one of the first of its kind and was helpful.

By the late 1970s, “stray” magazines were found in bookstores and newsstands. They printed in black and white, old comics, mostly out of copyright.  Ron Goulart had a five issue run, starting in 1984, with Comics: The Golden Age. There were similar publications reprinting Human Torch and Wally Wood stories.  The quality of the reprinting was never very good, but there were  often  surprises. Here, Goulart publishes the first Black Panther, from Stars and Stripes comics #3, 1941.  Goulart publications gave some insight into the era.  See here his Who's Who for Timely. At last some of the artists were being revealed.

          Below were two small treasures printed by DynaPubs Enterprises, featuring Human Torch and Wally Wood Stories from EC's Weird Fantasy. They were in black and white and were very badly printed.


DynaPubs would publish over eighty comics featuring Golden Age comic book and comic strip characters including Plastic Man, Superman, Captain Marvel, The Phantom, Buck Rogers and Captain Midnight in the 1970s. DynaPubs also published a separate eighty-five issue run of Vintage Funnies Comics which featured reprints from only the Golden Age Sunday newspaper strips including Superman. But all of these DynaPubs publications were near impossible to find in my neighborhood comic or bookstore.  Bookstores then, at least in my neighborhood, were rather small by today's standards and had no coffee shops. Often, you had to order a book, but, of course, you first had to know it existed.

 The Golden Age of Comic Books, 1937-1945, by Richard O’Brian was an oversized book published by Ballantine that cost $7.  It was disappointment in many ways.  It featured, in full color, 40 pages of enlarged covers from the era, another 5 or so in full color, and very brief descriptions, usually a paragraph or two, of Golden Age characters. He goes through a half dozen characters in 377 words, about 60 words each.

Fox's Blue Beetle was, improbably, a popular superhero during the golden age, and has been—again improbably—revived several times since. Aside from early cover appearances (see No. 24), The Blue Beetle had nothing to recommend him: uninspired art, drab stories. It could only have been animal magnetism, The Green Mask (No. 17) was also popular for a time, and again without much reason, once one got behind the covers—although the interior art by Walter Frehm (later, as World War II approached us, Frame) had some of the raffish look of the syndicated comic strip "Red Barry," on which Frame served as an assistant. Samson (No. 23), whose adventures were more or less on the level of The Blue Beetle's, both artistically and as to narrative, was another of Fox Publications Big Four—The Blue Beetle, The Green Mask, and The Flame being the others.
Although in those days strictly secondary to The Blue Beetle and relatively equal in importance to The Green Mask and Samson, The Flame is the Fox character who has worn best over the past three and a half decades. The Flame (No. 19), who replaced the legally strangled Wonder Man as the lead feature in Wonderworld Comics (formerly Wonder), beginning in issue #3, was the one superhero Eisner and Fine had got involved with at Fox. As a result The Flame's tales are among the best drawn of all the golden-age characters and, as in the accompanying black-and-white origin sequence from Wonderworld Comics #11, presaged the artistic breakthroughs that would later be found in The Spirit (to which Fine made considerable contribution).
Fiction House had no bestselling superheroes, but did produce one of the most popular female comic-book characters of the day, Sheena, Queen of the Jungle. Sheena was Eisner's conception, but he did little, if any, of the art on her. Bob Powell was the artist most closely associated with the jungle heroine, but the best cover art was probably done by Dan Zolnerowich (No.27). In my opinion, the cover I've selected was the most striking of the close to two hundred covers Sheena appeared on (despite the sloughed-off artwork on the background figures). Zolnerowich did an enormous number of covers for Fiction House, all of them of high quality.

Then, at long last, quietly, a giant size volume arrived in the bookstores; it contained material that was taboo and hidden for most of my life. I would finally get to see it, and, well...

Let's leave that story for the next installment...


  1. Some great images there, Barry. That's some collection you've got. Now tell me, when are you going on vacation and could I get a truck in your driveway?

    1. Kid,

      It's too late. I got to Barry's house when he went out with my brother to the movies and filled up a van with his collection. He'll get it back in a couple of years...

  2. Seriously, your story is SO close to my own! BTW, that Smithsonian book is available at Amazon for literally pennies!!! I highly recommend it to all!

  3. Steve,

    You know, I may write about that. That is, a lot of great books are available really cheap as good used books on Amazon and even Ebay. I have gotten dozens that way.

  4. "Johnny Quick (right) had appeared in the JLA/JSA crossovers" baffled me for a minute until I realised that you were talking about the villain with the same name!

  5. Barry,

    You are easily my favorite comic book historian. That is saying something because I only came across your site a few weeks ago. The number one thing I enjoy about your work is that I can easily tell how much you love this hobby. You also bring the facts. You have done a tremendous amount of research. I am still looking forward to that piece you have coming up about Kirby. Keep up the great work.

  6. Anon, when they published "Crisis on Earth Three" I did not know which new characters were from the Golden Age. It took me time to learn. That story in the Flash was helpful

    James, thank you SO much for the compliment. It helps make the work in putting together these blogs worth it! The Kirby blog will appear soon after this series concludes. You have to be super careful because the Kirby people will discount everything you say, if you make one "error." For example, when I quoted Kirby from a 1977 article, they discounted my points because, they said, it was a 1976 interview, published in 1977. So I have learned to be careful.

  7. Barry,

    I can tell how much research you put into your reports. The word blog does not do justice to what you write. You bring major knowledge in your writing. Unlike some comic book "historians" who just throw everything against the wall and hope something sticks. I know how harsh the Kirby fanatics can be at times. Unless it fits their Kirby agenda they do not want to hear it. They certainly do not want anyone to say it. It is unfortunate in your case because I can tell from your work that you are a true Kirby fan. You just deal in facts and not propaganda. For the purpose of full disclosure I am not much of a Kirby fan. I grew up in the seventies and eighties. When I came into comics the game had changed. Guys like Neal Adams, Frank Miller, and John Byrne were the hot artists. Steve Engelhart, Denny O'Neil, and Roy Thomas had raised the quality of writing. I believe you had written in one of your posts on Kirby that Lee and Simon had kept him focused when they worked together. I totally agree with that point. When he had a good writer and a good inker; he could produce quality work. The stuff he did on his own leaves me cold.

    I have also noticed that you post on a number of sites I visit. I came across you a few weeks ago on Daniel Best's site. You always leave well thought out comments. That brought me here and to the Comic Collector's Club. I have told all of my comic book friends to check out your work. I have also had my daughters read a few of your articles. They are teenagers, but they have always loved comics. One of my oldest daughter's first words was Superman. Now they have lives of their own. They have grown up and do not share a lot with dear, old, dad anymore. Unless I get them talking about comics. Thank you for your time and all of the work you put into this hobby. It is much appreciated on my end.

  8. Thank you again.

    You actually touched on something I consider very important and will be a point in an upcoming blog. You wrote, “For the purpose of full disclosure I am not much of a Kirby fan.”

    Well, there is simply nothing wrong with that! Many of the Kirby people do not understand that many people are NOT Kirby fans, or not big one, and don’t want every conversation on comics to be about him. Others like Kirby, but do not see him as the be all and end all of the comic book industry. Yes, I am a Kirby fan, but I am also a fan of Steranko, John Buscema, Gene Colan, Steve Ditko, Roy Thomas and Steve Englehart. And I realize that ALL of them were given freedom at Marvel, that they did not get anywhere else.

    In fact, one of the creators you mentioned told me, personally, that he liked Kirby, but his favorite artist was Joe Kubert. The Kirby people find that hard to believe and then, if you don’t line up the way they like, don’t think you were a fan.

  9. Barry,

    I cannot tell you enough how much I enjoy your insight on comic book history. It is such a relief to be able to discuss a subject I love without digging through propaganda. Especially being able to discuss it with a rational mind such as yours. Even though I am not much of a fan of Kirby's work; I have always enjoyed reading about him. He has a rich history and he has also been an enigma to me. How he bounced around from place to place. How he was not the respected artist he is considered to be today. When he was working he was ripped apart by fans and professionals. Now in certain circles he is considered to be the creator of everything in the comic book universe. How was it that he went from one extreme to the other? It can be hard to separate fact from fiction when discussing Kirby.

    I have read through numerous sources how Kirby had pretty much burned his bridges at DC when he returned to Marvel in 1958. Just in case someone wants to write and correct me; I am aware that Marvel was once Atlas and Timely. Just as DC was once National. Just for the sake of this post I am going to use the names that most people know. I also have read from numerous sources how the people at DC made fun of the artwork at Marvel in the sixties. DC's art was much more polished at that time. They made comments at how ugly Marvel's work was at the time. Primarily at the expense of Kirby and Ditko. Of course the Kirby fanatics deny that any of that is true. I also believe that Jack Schiff sued Kirby and won over royalties that Jack had not paid. Schiff was an editor at DC. That was the biggest reason that he ended up at the mom and pop operation that was Marvel. I remember a post of yours that dealt with Kirby's work on Sky Masters. I am just not sure if you touched on that or not.

    One of the biggest problems I have with the Kirby fanatics is how they rip apart Stan Lee. How he beat Kirby out of the credit he deserved. Correct me if I am wrong; but was Stan Lee not the first editor to give credit in the books to the people that worked for him? DC certainly did not at that time. It seems like from reading through those old back issues that Stan wanted everyone to know who was working on their books. I seem to remember an old Gene Colan interview where he talks about how the industry had changed so much. How when he first started they were not allowed to put their names on their work. Then he talks about how much comics had turned into an art form. How now everybody receives credit. I believe that interview was from 1993. If Stan was so determined to take all the credit for himself; why did he put their names on the book to begin with. The Kirby faithful never seem to have an answer for that one.

  10. I remember reading a quote from someone that the only thing Stan Lee had done wrong was to live so long. At least words to that effect.In other words, if he had passed away sooner, he would not be criticized so much today. I wish I could remember who said it. I have always wondered if some of the statements that have come out stem from simple jealousy. Jack has long since left us and Stan is still going strong. He is all over the place. I have always thought that every industry should have a spokesperson like Stan Lee. He is very articulate and carries himself very well. From everything that I have read, Jack never had that gift for gab. I am also not so sure that Jack had a strong love and passion for the comics field like Stan. In my opinion it was just a job to Kirby. I know in one of your articles I believe you touch on the fact that Kirby never read any of the books. Including the ones he worked on. I have also read that from many sources. I have also thought that Stan was truly hurt by the dissolution of his partnership with Jack. From the things I have read I do not think Jack ever cared much for Stan, or Ditko for that matter.

    I have also read how much of the holdup with the return of Kirby's artwork from Marvel was his own fault. The Kirby side of course blames it on Marvel and them wanting Jack to sign paperwork different from any of the other artists. The things I have read and what I believe is that Jack and his lawyers insisted on that special paperwork. That even then he had wanted Lee's and Ditko's names taken off the things that they had been credited with. That he had wanted his name put in place of theirs. I know that the artwork was not a big deal until the collectors market opened up in the seventies. Before that the artwork had been considered worthless. I have read about companies giving it away to visitors and even using it to cover up water on the floor. I know the Kirby faithful deny most of this, but I would enjoy your take on anything I have covered. If you want to expand on certain things, put them in a future post, or just to correct me where I am wrong.

    I did not mean to go on and on. Comic book history is a passion of mine and I love to read as much information as I possibly can. Especially from a reliable source such as you. I would also enjoy any information you can give me about Joe Maneely. I know that until his untimely death he was Stan's right hand man. I know this deals in speculation, but how different would the Marvel Universe be if Maneely had lived? I also have to add that Joe Kubert was head and shoulders above his contemporaries. In my humble opinion it was not until Neal Adams came along that someone could come close to the quality Joe produced. Once again thank you for your time.

  11. James, honest to gosh, we will cover all those issues here at the end of these chapters. Let me not get into it now, but in just a few posts we can discuss fully.

  12. Barry,

    Thank you again. I am sorry that I hit you with so many things all at once. Comic book history is a passion of mine. Even with all of the stuff that I just posted; there are still about a thousand other things I wanted to write about. In this day and age with so many many comic lawsuits in the news; I truly believe the actual history of the creation of these books needs to be told. It is amazing to me that so many people know Kirby, but not Bill Everett. I actually had a discussion about comic book history a few years ago with a friend of mine that works in the industry. She had never heard of Carl Barks. I almost fell out of my chair. Thank you again Barry and now I am going to jump in your horror comics post.

  13. Barry,

    Another excellent post. I would add that the only golden age reprints I recall from Marvel in the 1970s was in the back of Giant-Size Invaders # 1; Giant_Size Avengers # 1 and in the Human Torch reprint comic, which headlined Torch stories from Strange Tales and included Golden Age Human Torch back-ups. Marvel also reprinted Marvel Boy in an issue of Marvel Super Action, Yellow Claw in the back of Giant-Size Master of Kung Fu and Venus in Weird Wonder Tales #'s 16-18.