Friday, August 07, 2009

Highlighting House Ads: Strange Tales Annual #2

Here's a great ad from Fantastic Four Annual #1, letting readers know in full Marvel hyperbole about the Spidey vs. Torch battle beckoning to them from their local spinner rack. Considering that both characters had only been around 18 months or so at this time, just how 'long awaited' was this battle? In addition, just who said that Marvel Comics was 'top ranking' in 1963? Then again, Stan was never really one for empirical date. It's a pretty terrible image - Kirby's worst cover of the 60s? Nick Caputo states that it was likely inked by Syd Shores, and I'm not going to argue with him. The final product had a grey, rather than pink, background - but the spider emblem was still missing from Spidey's costume. Aside from the over the top caption in your typical ad, I don't find much to love in these Marvel house ads from the 60s. DC really outshone them in this department, especially toward the end of the decade.


KKoRR said...

As a kid when this came out, I was turned off by the crudeness of Marvel's art and I couldn't tell who was the good guy and who was the villian. And Marvel heroes seemed to spend more time fighting each other instead of the bad guys.

But now I love the crudeness of the early Marvels. It's true the DC house ads were much more pleasing to the eye. But the early Marvel stuff is really evocative of how rough and tumble the early days of Marvel comics were. I love the early Marvel stuff before it became slick and codified.

Anonymous said...

Not Syd Shores. Sol Brodsky is the likely culprit. Shores inking is quite distinctive and he was not doing anything for Marvel in this period.

Nick Caputo