This post is Filed Under:

Home page Highlights,
Interviews as well as Columns,
Product reviews

Wayne Markley

by Wayne Markley

This blog I am going to look at three graphic novels all set in the past as well as are about very different subjects as well as are from different time periods. some of these are brand new stories set in the past as well as some of them are reprints from material from the past. The common thread is they are all excellent, alas for different reasons. The three books are S.H.I.E.L.D. by (Stan) Lee as well as (Jack) Kirby, new deal by Jonathan Case, as well as The Adventures of the Snow man by Frank Frazetta.

S.H.I.E.L.D. by Lee & Kirby: The complete Collection SC

First off is Lee as well as Kirby’s S.H.I.E.L.D. This trade came out a few weeks ago, with the complete SH.I.E.L.D. Omnibus out today. The trade collects odd Tales #135-150 by Stan Lee as well as Jack Kirby as well as others. Stan wrote all the stories but two as well as Jack did the pencils though issue 142 then did breakdowns for the next eight issues with a variety of pencillers finishing up the art. They include Don Heck, Ogden Whitney, as well as John Buscema. There is likewise a second S.H.E.I.L.D. collection by Jim Steranko that collects issues #151 through the end of the run in odd Tales as well as the first five issues of the S.H.I.E.L.D. monthly book that Steranko did. There is likewise the omnibus that collects all of the odd Tales as well as all of the S.H.I.E.L.D. single comics (1-15) as well as other material. This is the most complete collection of this material offered with a number of stories post Steranko having never been reprinted before.

S.H.I.E.L.D. complete Collection Omnibus

Back to the Lee/Kirby material. These early stories are a lot of fun as well as are very standard Lee/Kirby in they are ten pages stories that are three to five parts as well as end with a cliff hanger as well as overall tell a larger story. The first thing that sticks out is how heavily influenced this was by James Bond as well as the man from U.N.C.L.E. as well as the whole spy craze of the 1960s. It is terrific to see all of the crazy gadgets that Kirby would come up with as well as would ended up being marvel lore in the future such as the flying car, LMDs, as well as the S.H.I.E.L.D. hydrocopter. This collection likewise reprints wonderful four #35 which was the first appearance of Nick Fury as a secret agent as well as not a war hero. This is what leads to the ongoing series as well as it is significant that in the FF story Fury does not have an eye-patch. The stories are essentially the same with some secret organization threating the world as well as Fury (along with Dum Dum Duggan as well as Gabe Jones) has to stop them. We are introduced to Hydra, AIM, the secret empire (who were already well established in other marvel books as well as were later used in Steve Englehart’s run on Captain America in one of the best Cap stories ever), as well as Them. They likewise throw in the Captain America story from Tales of Suspense #79 which ties directly into the story in odd Tales. There is very tight continuity here as the S.H.I.E.L.D. stories tie into Tales of Suspense as well as Tales to Astonish quite closely with references about what is going on in those books constantly. likewise a character who is all over the early stories is Tony Stark. He is the chief weapons designer for S.H.I.E.L.D. as well as is in a number of the early stories as well as had a hand in picking Fury to lead S.H.I.E.L.D. I found it interesting that while Tony Stark is all over these stories he is never referred to as Iron Man, as well as his change ego is barely ever hinted at existing. I likewise found it interesting what a complete ass Fury was in the early stories. He was a hard-nosed commander that was regularly barking orders as well as rarely said a great word. As time went on Jasper Stillwell was added as a character as a super-goody two shoes as well as a kiss-up who drives Fury up the wall with his positiviness, but verified to be a very good agent. I likewise found it interesting that the comic from the 50s as well as 60s, Soupy Sales, is referred to multiple times by Fury, which need to have had a fair amount of cultural relevance at the time. overall I really took pleasure in this book. It was a lot of fun with very quick paced action that never gets boring. It is very dated in the look as it is very 60s looking with the men all wearing hats as well as the women fashions, plus Fury battling in a suit as well as tie is wacky, but overall I would recommend this collection. (Or the Omnibus if you want a true experience with all of Jim Steranko’s mind blowing art).

The new Deal

The new deal by Jonathan case is a brand new graphic novel from Dark horse Comics. It is a full color, (well, there are limited colors) in a very great hard cover. I really took pleasure inthis book as it was like enjoying a great old caper motion picture on Turner classic Movies. The story is set at the Woldorf Astoria hotel in new York City in the 1930s as well as is involves a bellboy, a maid, as well as a number of the guests. I won’t say too much for concern of giving away the exceptional plot that is filled with twists as well as turns. It is a very great mix of crime as well as comedy as well as each page is so gracefully drawn your eye glides across the page. I really took pleasure in this book as well as I was taken with it charm as well as sense of fun, even though it is a crime story. I found this book to be very refreshing in its creativity as well as its subject matter. I would strongly recommend this for anybody trying to find something different or enjoys European graphic albums (and this rates up there with the best of Euro novels.)

Frank Frazetta’s The Adventures of the Snow Man

Frank Frazetta’s The Adventures of the Snow man is a full color hardcover from Dark horse Comics. let me be up front as well as say this is not the Frazetta from later years with the visually sensational paperback covers or the EC Comics Frazetta or even the humorous Frank Frazetta (which there is an exceptional collection of his humor work from IDW called Frazetta’s funny Stuff). The Adventures of the Snow man was written as well as drawn by Frazetta when he was 15 as well as is collected for the first time here. This book is in no way great, it is very good for a 15 year old, but I am recommending it a lot more for its historical relevance than the actual work. It is a short story about a snowman out for revenge. It is entertaining but it is a quick read. I found it interesting that in this early work from a man who would greatly influence fantasy art years later you can see tiny little look of what is to come decades later. There is likewise a very interesting essay in the back of the book by Frazetta’s kid disusing this story, which first appeared in Tally Ho Comics in the 1940s, as well as his father.

That is all for this time. These are three very different books from different times. All three are good to terrific for different reasons, with the new deal being the best of the three as well as S.H.I.E.L.D. being the most interesting since the influence these stories would have on marvel over the next 50 years. All three are worth checking out. everything I have written here is my opinion as well as in no way reflects the thoughts or opinions of Westfield Comics or their employees. Please let me know what you think, did you take pleasure in these books? hate them? Why? What have you read that you really enjoyed? I look forward to hearing from you, I can be reached at MFBWAY@AOL.COM. As always,

Thank you.

Leave a Comment