Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Action Comics 419 Cover by Neal Adams: Superman streaking into the sky!

I am a Neal Adams fan as I am sure many of you are. I love his Superman covers, he did dozens from the late 60s to the early 70s. My favorite cover is a 100 page Super Spectacular that I wrote about here, but a close second is this Action Comics cover.

Action_Comics_419_Neal_Adams

Action Comics 419, drawn by Neal Adams, inked by Murphy Anderson, and some collage work by Jack Adler using a real photo. It's a super (pun intended) cover showcasing the classic Man of Steel. The image of Superman has been lifted off this cover and used in all kinds of merchandising. I believe this issue of Action Comics is the first one edited by Julius Schwartz, who took over from Murray Boltinoff.

Action Comics 419 original art

Here is the original art to the cover with notes to the letterer about the cover blurbs below. One interesting thing about this original art is that it is now owned by David Mandel, a veteran writer in Hollywood who has worked on Seinfeld, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Veep and many other shows. He owns many other classic original art covers from the Bronze Age as well as this one.

Action_Comics_lettercol

In addition to a new editor, the letter column header also changed, showing Clark Kent changing into Superman through a phone booth (remember those?) at super speed!

How many times have you seen the image of Superman from Action Comics 419 used in merchandise? Cups? Books? I would love to know. Please leave a comment if you had ever seen this elsewhere. Nuff Said!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Krypto and Bizarro Number 1 by Paul Guinan

Paul Guinan on Facebook shared this wonderful illustration of Krypto meeting Bizarro!



Very cute. Notice the tail tucked between the legs. Nuff Said!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Matt Reeves interview on The Planet of the Apes

I am sure everyone but myself has seen War for the Planet of the Apes this past weekend?



I did not, but looking forward to it. I still think the original 5 Apes movies are the best but these are good, and have some easter eggs for long term fans. I listened to KCRA's podcast The Business which has an interview with director Matt Reeves. The process involved in making these films is fascinating; they actually cut the movie together with all the dudes in their wetsuits (before the CG magic happens) and then send that off to Weta for the effects shots. On Dawn he had to make the movie within 2 years with a ticking clock; on War he had a full 3 years and reviewed every Apes film to figure out how to make this one. Reeves also discusses the forthcoming Batman film he is making starring Ben Affleck.

I was accidentally spoiled on the ending for War, not by Twitter, not by Facebook, but by the New York Times! The article is Andy Serkis on the Ending of 'War for the Planet of the Apes' and I did avoid it. However when flipping around to the end of the arts section, they had a question in bold type which my eyes could not avoid!

Terrible! All I can hope is that Ed Sheeran is not in a cameo in this film the way he was on Game of Thrones the other night! Nuff Said.

Monday, July 17, 2017

The Thirteenth Doctor Who: Jodie Whittaker!

The new Doctor Who was announced yesterday morning (California time) as the first ever woman to play the role: Jodie Whittaker!



I was more excited by this announcement than I might have thought! I don't have problems with Doctor Who being played by a woman, a black man, a gay person, or whoever. All I want is for Doctor Who to be interesting and vital. The reaction from fans was intense, including Francesco Francavilla above who did this nifty image of Whittaker as the Doctor from the teaser. For this fans who hate this change, I say: you don't have to watch. If you want a male Doctor there are hundreds of hours of past adventures you can view or listen to.



I have watched Doctor Who off and on since 1973. I watched the start of the Russell T Davies era and a handful of Tennant episodes. But I haven't become a hardcore fan until the Moffat era and Matt Smith arrived as the Tenth Doctor! He was so wonderfully comical, fun, and physical in the role. Smith was able to play an old man in a young man's body so perfectly. I loved his episodes so much I bought a Matt Smith blu ray collection with a special album format. This was my gateway drug. I suddenly got why Doctor Who is loved by fans all over the world. I even started watching classic Doctor Who to see what I missed. I got the Troughton connection to Matt Smith.



I was very excited to see Peter Capaldi take over the role in Season 8. I loved him in The Thick of It. His Doctor had a rough beginning in the first few episodes; unlike Matt Smith, he was not overly heroic and a bit too mean at the beginning. But Capaldi's Doctor evolved over time and by the time Pearl Mackie arrived, they were a delight this past season. I hate to see him go but I am very much looking forward to see Capaldi team up with the First Doctor in the Christmas Special this year.



It's way to early to tell how Jodie Whittaker will play the Thirteenth Doctor! But I think this is going to increase the popularity of Doctor Who. From the clips I have seen of her acting, she can be dramatic, funny, quirky, etc - combined with her relative youth (mid-thirties) this is going to be very appealing. While I loved Capaldi a lot - and what I really appreciated was that he was 180 degrees different than Matt Smith - I think a younger Doctor just naturally brings in more viewership. And with The Doctor being a woman it may bring new stories to the Tardis.

Onward and upward! Nuff Said!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

New DC Comics Super Spectacular inspired blog logo by Scott Dutton!

You might notice a brand new logo on top of this page! Or perhaps you never visited before and think it's a cool nod to DC Comics Super Spectaculars. It's the work of Scott Dutton from Catspaw Dynamics who generously designed a new logo for me.



For comparison you can see my old logo here! Very crude, I put it together myself back in 2010 using some crude tools. I wrote a post about it here and how this blog originally started with the title Photon Torpedoes. I was always bothered by several things about my ham-fisted logo, first of all, for a blog where I do a lot of DC Comics stuff, it doesn't look like a DC Comic.



Scott Dutton previously revamped my header on Giant-Size Marvel and offered to do the same here. His new logo is dynamic and looks like the 1970s Super Spectaculars. The characters are from the 1970s and all resemble that era's Justice League. We've got a DC bullet and still at the low low price of 50 cents! And a number one issue.



To assemble this logo, Scott used the masthead from Superman Family 170, circa 1975! When giant-size DC comics were 50 cents and contained lots of content. Scott says "I added letters in the same style to finish the words. Geek was set in a suitably-fat typeface so it would stand out."



The Justice League figures come from this 1982 style guide page by José Luis García-López with inks by Dick Giordano. I think it's great how Black Canary (always my favorite) is waving hello to the viewer. Very nice. The days when J'onn J'onzz the Martian Manhunter was part of the team. Man, I miss that version of Green Arrow, too.



You can see Scott Dutton's specific coloring work on DC Comics here! Some great classic covers are there and creations of covers that were never published. Click on the images on his blog to see his process for each one. This particular recoloring of Wonder Woman 269 really made me pay attention to Scott's work. I love how he accentuated Wonder Woman in the foreground by changing the color scheme of the background players. That is a classic DC Comics vibe to me.

(Not Scott's work but my clumsy attempt!)

I've kind of let this blog go dormant over the past couple of years. I've always renewed the domain thinking I will get back to it. I gave up a while back, depressed at times over lack of traffic. My other blog, Giant-Size Marvel, gets a lot more eyeballs, I suspect because my keywords are better there and Marvel properties are so hot. I started this blog as Photon Torpedoes back in 2006 and I covered every geek topic under the sun. I complained every time someone revamped a comics character. I was doing images of comics cover art before Tumblr existed. I decided to split off all my Marvel stuff into Giant-Size Marvel and saw how having a narrow focus increases more interest.  For this blog, I renamed it Giant-Size Geek in 2010, more DC centric but also reviewing some books and movies.

Why continue to blog at all? I decided it doesn't matter if I get traffic, I disabled all the crappy ads I used to have. I simply enjoy the act of writing once in a while and revisiting the comics that I love. I used to snark more. I have decided snarking or complaining is a waste of time and it's better to focus on things you feel mostly positive about. I won't update the blog every day, but perhaps 1-2 times per week from now on. Until I get lazy again.

Nuff Said!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Howard Chaykin interview on The Virtual Memories podcast

Howard Chaykin is stirring up a lot of controversy with this recent Image series, The Divided States of America.

Stars My Destination Chaykin Nomad


He's been a fascinating creator that I've followed since the 1970s. The image above is from an adaption of The Stars My Destination, a Byron Preiss project that he did in the period before American Flagg. Chaykin is also an interesting figure to me because one of his mentors / friends was Gil Kane. The Virtual Memories Podcast has an epic (nearly 2 hour) long interview with Chaykin about his entire career and life. If you are a fan you will want to listen to this, it covers his early career to American Flagg, his period away from the industry (working in television), his life in California and sobriety of over 25 years.

Nuff Said.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Steve Rude on Jack Kirby's Metron, Orion, Big Barda!

I recently joined the Steve Rude fans page on Facebook where I found a number of New Gods related commissions...

Darkseid Orion by Steve Rude full color

Darkseid and Orion, father and son.

Metron

Metron! Holding a little Mother Box the X-Element (see this image and comment below) in his hand, very nice.

Orion vs Demon

Orion versus The Demon!

Big Barda

Big Barda.

big-barda-oberon-by-steve-rude

Big Barda and Oberon!

Infinity Man by Steve Rude

Infinity Man.

Lashina by Steve Rude

Lashina, lashing out!

Nuff Said!

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