Saturday, April 26, 2014

MY FAVORITE COMICS - The Mighty Thor #193-194

More than story, what attracted me to comics were the actual drawings and, later on, the visual storytelling. Looking back, no one gave a better balance between power and grace to drawn characters than  John Buscema. Sure, his craftsmanship was among the finest comic book professionals, but what conquered me was the beautiful people he drew. These were drop dead gorgeous figures - the way superheroes were supposed to be! There are quite a few gems on this couple of issues that still inspire me even after all these years...

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Saturday, April 19, 2014

MY FAVORITE COMICS - The Incredible Hulk #1-5

I was lucky enough to read all the first five issues of The Incredible Hulk as a kid and I still love every single page of them. Reading these feels like I'm watching missing episodes of The Twilight Zone or The Outer Limits. While not as revered by fandom as other works by the same creative team, there's a primitive quality about these tales, both in art and story, that has never been matched in the Hulk's subsequent stories - it's almost like there are two Hulk characters, the one by Jack Kirby on these issues and the one that has had a lengthy run done by several hired hands afterwards. There's an eeriness, an ominous mood about these tales that even today I find extremely captivating and that I've never seen on any other subsequent Hulk comic.

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Saturday, April 12, 2014

MY FAVORITE COMICS - "To become an Immortal!" from The Mighty Thor #136

The fact that many of my favorite comics from back when I was a kid were reprints from earlier times probably says something not only about my tastes but also about the enduring quality of those same comics. This one hits the motherload! We get Jack Kirby's art and storytelling at the height of his creative power and vision, Vince Colleta's scratchy ink lines, Stan Lee's verbose diarrhea, old cheap four color printing on pulp paper and a tale chronicling the final moments of the forbidden romance between a beautiful mortal girl and the norse god of thunder. What else could a seven year old kid possibly want?

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Saturday, April 05, 2014

MY FAVORITE COMICS - "The Origin of Doctor Strange" from Strange Tales #115

Why does Hollywood keep on redoing the origin of popular characters whose genesis everybody already knows? Why do origin tales inspire so much fascination among people? Could its source be the mysteries surrounding our own collective origins? Is there such a thing as a perfect origin story for a character? Whatever the answers to those questions might be, I know that one of my personal favorite origin stories of a comic book character is this short comic originally published in the 1960s. It entered my life many years later through a reprint when I was around seven. There was something so perfect about how everything came together on this one, from Steve Ditko's simple yet expressive drawings to the character journey of the arrogant doctor turned humble pupil. In fact, it's so perfect, I find no personal need for any further Doctor Strange stories.

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