Thursday, December 1, 2011

Micronauts Special Edition covers by Jackson Butch Guice and Joe Rubinstein

I was touched by the sad tale of Bill Mantlo's life after his car accident, which resulted in head trauma and his life in a Queens rehabilitation center.  One of the most affecting moments was the one where his son, Adam, showed Bill the covers of various comics he wrote for Marvel: Hulk, Cloak and Dagger, ROM, and of course, the Micronauts.  One of my favorite series from the 1970s, the approach that Mantlo and Michael Golden brought to this licensed toy property really made it work.

Micronauts Special Edition 1983 cover by Butch Guice and Rubinstein

I dug out some of my old issues and remembered this set of covers from Micronauts Special Edition (baxter reprints) from 1982-83.  The interiors featured the Golden art from the first twelve issues, but the covers were executed by Butch (aka Jackson) Guice and Joe Rubinstein.

Micronauts Special Editon 2 1983 cover by Butch Guice and Rubinstein

Guice took over the series around the time these reprint covers were published.  Michael Golden was a very hard act to follow.  I remember Gil Kane drawing some issues and Pat Broderick did some nice work for a while.  When Guice took over, I remember seeing some potential in his work.  He progressed very quickly on the series and eventually went on to draw an X-Men/Micronauts crossover with Bill.

Micronauts Special Editon 3 1984 cover by Butch Guice and Rubinstein

The first twelve issue Micronauts formed a nice little graphic novel, with the team going from the Microverse to Earth and back home to confront the Vader-like Baron Karza.  It was probably a job that few people at Marvel wanted and the creative team made it something special. 

I also remember Bill Mantlo taking the time to write me a postcard after I praised one of his stories in Deadly Hands of Kung Fu.  I've heard similar tales from other fans.  If you're interested in helping out his family, this article contains a donation link.  Nuff Said!

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