Wednesday, July 19, 2017

1st Issue Special #1 / Atlas - Jack Kirby art & cover

Jack Kirby
First Issue Special v1 #1 featuring Atlas, 1975 - Jack Kirby produces his first of three issues, each introducing new characters from his fertile mind. Here the artist draws from ancient Greek mythology to create a modern interpretation of the titan Atlas. Kirby's cover is frenetically designed with cool-colored combatants surrounding the brighter central character. The composition is not among his best and the inks by D. Bruce Berry only partially delineate the figures. Their collaboration on the interior art nicely compensates for it with bold chapter divider pages and a triumphant double page spread. This is number 1 of 3 First Issue Special issues with Kirby art and/or covers.
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Kirby cover pencils (D. Bruce Berry inks) = **
"Atlas The Great"
Kirby story pencils (D. Bruce Berry inks) 20 pages = ****
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Jack Kirby
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3 comments:

  1. First Issue Special was a reprint series. Does that mean somewhere there was an original Atlas comic book? We can't seem find it anywhere, even though we've seen original art. What can you tell us about it?

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  2. This was not a reprint series. This was the first time these stories had been published.

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  3. FIRST ISSUE SPECIAL was not a reprint series. It was a tryout series that premiered a new series each issue. Kirby premiered three new series here ATLAS (issue 1), MANHUNTER (issue 5), and DINGBATS (issue 6).

    Both Atlas and Manhunter, to my knowledge, he never did more issues of.
    But Dingbats he did two more issues of (unpublished) that I bought Xeroxes of a few years ago.

    The first appearance of Mike Grell's THE WARLORD was in issue 8 also.
    And Ditko's the CREEPER, though not a new character, had a new Ditko story in issue 7.

    Joe Simon and Grandenetti's GREEN TEAM from issue 2 also had two more unpublished stories, that turned up in CANCELLED COMIC CAVALCADE in 1978.
    Simon/Grandenetti also created THE OUTSIDERS in issue 10.

    Issue 9 had a great Simonson DR FATE story.

    I also liked Vosberg's STARMAN (issue 12), and an O'Neil/Vosberg version of the NEW GODS in the last issue (13).

    Plus Ramona Fradon on issue 3 (METAMORPHO), John Rosenberger on issue 4 (LADY COP), and the weakest issue by Milgrom in # 11 (CODE NAME ASSASSIN) that I still somewhat liked for one issue.

    All in all, a pretty interesting batch of new material, for a brief 13-issue series.

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