Topic: Comic Book History
I have been blogging for the last several months about new comics and graphic novels that I have received for possible review in this blog...
So at times I kind of forget that this Blog is titled "ComicBookCollectorsBlog.com". Which means that I should be blogging about comic book titles that are also truly 'collectible' as well as a good read!
Well, today I'm going to mention again the DC Comic Book Series that Jack created and was an early 1970's hit and 'collectible' today because it is relatively easier to find at least reading copies of this series.
Quite honestly I was a BIG Fan of Jack Kirby and Stan Lee's collaborations. When they split, it was like the Beatles breaking up! Plus I truly was a 'Marvel Zombie', picking up everything by that Comics publisher, including romance, westerns, war comics, and yes... I did say romance comics... my excuse was the artists in those: Romita, Steranko, Colan, Heck, etc.!
So when Jack left for DC I felt I should read his new series there and give his solo work a chance; The New Gods, Mister Miracle, and The Forever People. Even picked up some Jimmy Olsen comics that Jack was doing, even though I hadn't read that title in years...
However, I just didn't 'get' Jack's "Fourth World" series, it wasn't what I was used to writing-wise in his earlier collaboration. Yet I was drawn to the titles because of the art... And too soon those title ended for those that enjoyed Jack's foray into the world he created. And with that, my brief time reading more than usual of DC Comics ended also.
So I missed the beginning of 'Kamandi' by Jack, even though he has been brought as a DC Universe character since then...
The majority of Kamandi's appearances to date occurred in the first comic book series Kamandi: The Last Boy on Earth, which was published from 1972 to 1978.
Kamandi was portayed as a young 'hero' in a Post-Apocalyptic future, which was set in a parallel Earth of the DC Universe's future.
It was set in a period after an event called "The Great Disaster". In that period humans are a persecuted minority in a world ruled by intelligent, highly evolved animals. If that sounds familiar to you, then remember that an earlier 1968 movie 'Planet of the Apes' also portrayed an animal-ruled world!
Indeed, the cover of Kamandi #1, showing a demolished Statue of Liberty, was posibly inspired by a similar scene in the 'Planet of the Apes' movie just before it ended!
However, if you were to think that Jack Kirby was copying the movie, he actually had drawn a similiar theme in a comic book story in 'Alarming Tales' #1 back in September 1957.
In that comic book Jack drew a story entitled "The Last Enemy." In the story, he has a man traveling in time to the year 2514, where he finds that humans are extinct! That time traveler finds that the world is ruled by tribes of intelligent tigers, dogs, and rats!
Jack's drawings of these intelligent animals are very much similar to his later drawings in Kamandi 15 years later.
This series was one of the last that Jack Kirby wrote and drew for DC Comics before returning to Marvel Comics. Just so you don't think that Jack did it all in this DC title, I'll give you a brief credits history;
The original series itself was launched in October-November 1972. Jack wrote and illustrated the series through its' 37th issue. That was cover dated January 1976. Jack continued to illustrate issues #38 thru #40, but Gerry Conway did the scripting chores.
When Jack left DC to go back to Marvel, DC Comics continued publishing the series. Those were written by Gerry Conway and drawn by Chic Stone. I had enjoyed Chic's early inking on Jack's Fantastic Four issues, plus Chic's own works in ACG Comics.
Later issues of Kamandi were then alternately written by Paul Levitz, Denny O'Neil, Elliott Maggin, David A. Kraft, plus Jack C. Harris. The pencilling was done by Pablo Marcos, Keith Giffen, and Dick Ayers. I had always enjoyed Dick's work on his Marvel Comics titles, Sgt. Fury, Ghost Rider (western), and The Torch solo feature in Strange Tales, so it was fun seeing his artwork in this Kamandi title.
I haven't covered in my Blog the period at DC Comics when so many titles were canceled. This was called the "DC Implosion" of 1978. Kamandi was one of those titles cancelled during that time. The final published issue of Kamandi was issue #59, and that was cover dated September/October of 1978.
Like I wrote earlier at the beginning of the 'Main Feature' section, you quite often can find low grade (reading copies) copies of these at comic book conventions. It is the higher grade comics that are HTF nowadays. I have sent in several to CGC for earlier grading, and have just a couple of those left for sale.
Now I'm also listing unslabbed 'raw' copies from my own personal collection for sale here at Make It So Marketing's eBay Store. Just click on the top right photo of the cover of issue #3 to see the link with all the Kamandi listings we currently have for sale.
Also, for other Jack Kirby works, including comics and magazines, just click on Jack's photo at the top left of this blog post to see those issue for sale.
Thanks to Jack Kirby who has given me so many hours of pleasure of reading the comics worlds that he created or co-created. Kamandi was one that I enjoyed, albeit years later!
AND... Thanks again to all of YOU reading our current and archived blog posts! We do blog daily on comic book creators, comic book reviews, comic cons, and other pop culture news and events including some TV shows and theatrical films as they are shown!
PLUS... Welcome to ALL of You that were reading the eBay Version of our Blog prior to eBay closing 'their eBay blogs platform'. That version of our Blog had 1.37 MILLION page views before the closure... However, This Blog version is the same Blog that has been published at the same time the eBay version was being published. I've been publishing this version since September 2007, so it has the same Fun Stuff You are used to on the eBay version you were reading!
Speaking of eBay... Be sure to check out our new listings of comics, graphic novels, Comic Con exclusives and more pop culture items for sale in Our online eBay Featured Store that our blogs are based on! It's due to sales at this online store that keep us going with the ability to post blogs like the one you have read here today!
~ Michael @ ComicBookCollectorsBlog.com