Thursday, April 26, 2007

JACK KIRBY!!!

COVER IMAGE (C) Copyright Marvel Characters, Inc.

Jack Kirby Lives!!!
Jack Kirby really left the living world in 1994, but his creations will live on forever, in one form or another, many of them have already stood the test of time. The recent "death" of CAPTAIN AMERICA, co-created by Joe Simon with Jack, seems to be a short-lived publicity stunt, and Cap, a wonderful symbol of the United States of America, is not a relic that should be buried in the memories of a small number of comic book fans, he is a figure who was created over 60 years ago, and he, like Jack Kirby, should be long remembered.
Kirby, who not only co-created CAPTAIN AMERICA, but also THE FANTASTIC FOUR, THE INCREDIBLE HULK, THE MIGHTY THOR and many other characters, with former Marvel Comics editor-in-chief and writer, Stan Lee, had a dynamism in his work that is rarely equalled and never surpassed, in the world of comic book art.
There is a power and glory to the unique acrobatic poses and stunts that Kirby characters are depicted in, and performing, and this is what I love about Jack's work. There is also a rich humanity in Jack's super-characters, whether one believes that God created humanity in God's image or not, or if there even _is_ a God, it is hard to deny the God-likeness of Kirby's heroes.
They have an innate raw beauty, most exquisitely portrayed in Jack's initial four titles for DC COMICS during the 1970's, in such titles as NEW GODS, MISTER MIRACLE, FOREVER PEOPLE, and SUPERMAN'S PAL: JIMMY OLSEN, yes, that Jimmy Olsen. These titles, comprising the beginning of what was called "Jack Kirby's Fourth World" brought DC COMICS and the world of comic book fans the character Darkseid, an immense villain whose soul reson for being is to be in control of everything, and Kirby pulled out all the stops to depict his heroes grappling with this hideous force, probably the only DC COMICS baddie that is as easy to root against as The Joker.
The world of Kirby's Gods, shown in both MARVEL COMICS' THE MIGHTY THOR and in these above described Fourth World titles, is an immense, sparkling place, where saints and sinners alike abound, in an excess of grand and glorious power and pageantry, the stuff of which has rarely been seen before or since, in comic books or elsewhere.
Earlier in Kirby's career, he and partner Joe Simon brought the comic world two genres, that of the "kid gang" strips, perhaps inspired by "The Dead End Kids", from movies, in the form of THE NEWSBOY LEGION and BOY COMMANDOES, BOYS' RANCH, one of the best comic books of all time, and BOY EXPLORERS for one genre, and that of "Romance Comics", which comprised a huge portion of those comic books both published and sold during the 1950's and 1960's. The drawing and plots of these comic books, generally more adult in nature, were superbly drawn by Simon & Kirby and their "shop", a highly gifted group of cartoonists who worked harmoniously with Joe and Jack, to produce some wonderful comic books. The shop staff, consisting of Bill Draut, Mort Meskin, John Prentice, and others were all very fine cartoonists in their own right, and seem to have been truly inspired by working with Jack Kirby.
--additions and edits and more will follow!!!

To See Jack's Work And Support His Legacy, See:

http://www.jackkirbymuseum.org/

1 comment:

Dan said...

Who inked more Jack Kirby books than anyone? Sinnott? Ayers? Royer? Nope. It was Vinnie the great. How about an article on Colletta?