, but I’m hopin y’all didn’t mind it too much. I started hosting a freestyle battle on my radio show and even participatin in the battles a bit.

I have also been reading the first Inhumans masterwork, which has some excellent Roy Thomas and Neal Adams comics. It has much better Jack Kirby comics before it, even, collecting the back-up tales from Thor that Stan Lee and Jack Kirby co-wrote. What’s even more fantastic is that the characters were all created on a whim, which Mark Evanier’s [always informal and informational] voice historicizes in the introduction. Faced with a desire to create more Marvel titles, then editor-in-chief Martin Goodman wanted to add more titles to the line. Jack Kirby wrote a bunch of short stories about the new heroes, the Inhumans, partially as a way to explain Madame Medusa’s origin [who was a villain hated and feared by humanity with much in common with Magneto’s motivation, but with few of his conclusions].

Marvel was denied the ability to add new titles to its lines, so the stories were developed in the Fantastic Four main series and Thor back-ups, before Jack Kirby was asked to make an Inhumans story.

He made a forty page epic in two days that was cut into two individual issues published soon before his departure from a company insistent on denying him worthwhile pay. He got to cut it into multiple issues, although the final issue of Silver Surfer, with his primal, here almost enraged, degradation of his own style [that would, very delightfully, become his norm] while drawing a stan lee script he did not see as characterizing his own creation, Silver Surfer, whom he always saw as being a silent herald of doom. Instead of the soliloquizing and noble creation Stan Lee turned him into.

“Silver Surfer was the fallen angel, relegated to duty on Earth”, he says in an interview. And in the one issue he draws of them, he has The Silver Surfer and The Inhumans fight, his two dogged, underselling, and impossibly poorly edited creations, with the haunting final page of Jack Kirby’s exit from Marvel comics.

 

Marvel never ended up finding anyone able to write the SAVAGELY NEW SILVER SURFER, and The Inhumans were left dormant in their city for almost a decade, shattered by Black Bolt’s savage cry.

Ah, but that is yet to come, for my blog, but, more basically, for my collection. The Inhumans comics show the tip of Kirby’s creative wrath and pilgrimage across the DC Universe that would soon become The New Gods, but these Inhumans comics here are just the tip of that iceberg. There is the constant creation of fresh and magnificent monsters in these pages. It’s wonderful hearing him speak about how he came up with these creations. Which especially begins around 1:55

“My inspiration were the facts that I had to make sales. I had to come up with characters that were no longer stereotypes. I couldn’t depend on gangsters, I had to get something new. I went to the bible.”

And he also went to race almost immediately after gettin biblical with Galactus. Two months later we saw the emergence of The Black Panther, the ritual identity of the king of the hidden African nation Wakanda. Suggesting an intriguing human culture full of potential as well as smashing a cultural stereotype with teh first African superhero in two issues, these comics would spawn two of the best superhero runs humanity has ever seen with Don Macgregor and [mostly] Billy Graham’s Panther’s Rage as well as Christopher Priest and company’s Marvel Knights relaunch of the character.

Jack Kirby, I hope you’re resting in peace.

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