Week 7: it’s in the air

I was thinking of going hard on a Valentine’s Day theme but decided against it; I still added a few to remind us of what really makes the world go around.

One of my favourite Undervalued Spotlights was when I featured My Love #14 with its hippy cover. I think I like Gray Morrow’s trippy splash even more! My Love #14, November 1971.

A few years back I scored some nice original art. My favourite piece was a two page DC War splash page by Russ Heath; for some reason, I don’t remember the title and the issue number. Russ Heath did a whole series of these two-page splash pages during his Our Army at War run.

I wanted to do a Matt Baker romance splash but ended up being memorized by the cat fight on this Phantom Lady splash page. From Phantom Lady #14, October 1947.

Al Williamson has had a storied career: don’t ask me why I picked a Star Wars splash, it just kind of jumped out at me. I tried to find an unedited version without the digitized colour but couldn’t. I prefer the more faded newsprint aesthetic, from Star Wars #42, December 1980.

Gene Colan and Bill Everett give us a great splash page from My Love #13, September 1971.

Walter Durajlija
Walter Durajlija

Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton Ontario.

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  1. I like all of them for various reasons, but similar to last week’s selection, the Williamson is just not in the same league as the others. There was about zero chance I was ever going to look inside _Star Wars_ #42 to find this gem, so many thanks. Like I commented elsewhere about a Neal Adams cover – look at the work on those trees! Most people would barely give them a glance, but the attention to detail really pays off in the impression from the entire composition.

    That _My Love_ is a very cool book, no question. I am a huge Heath fan and I have not-too-shabby copies of _G.I. Combat_ #86 and #87 to prove it. Similarly one of less-prized _Phantom Ladys_ with a Matt Baker cover somewhat reminiscent of that splash.

    I wasn’t familiar with _My Love_ #13 so I looked it up. As usual for the good ol’ days, no continuity between the cover by Buscema and the splash by Colan and Everett (looks very heavy on the Everett to me, all for the best). The first thing I noticed on the splash was the push-button telephone – “how mod!” Sure enough, Buscema drew a dial telephone.

  2. Well, this is if course another great group of splashes! Williamson became synonymous with Star Wars from doing the daily newspaper strip so the page is a good representation… I am an old fuddy duddy and prefer the faded newsprint as well Walt… made the whites creamier too and gave the artwork a softer more organic feel IF it was printed correctly! Now I think I tried asking this question before ( I tried with no luck to find the source, may have been an Alter Ego Colan interview) I thought I had read in the late 60’s more splashes appeared in comics… mainly Marvel I believe, because it had something to do with paid page rate. I don’t know if artists were inserting them because it was less work for one panel as opposed to a multi panel layout or that management pushed for them because they paid less for them and it meant the job would be finished sooner. If anyone can illuminate further as I look for my source please chime in! I do know I have read comics before where I questioned why a splash was placed at that point in a story. Both your columns are fascinating Walt and I am being entertained as well as educated… errr should I be taking notes in case there is a pop quiz?

  3. You take the space ship and Luke out of the bottom of that Star Wars splash and you have an early 50s EC Sci Fi landscape.

    Gerald, yes expect a pop quiz at some point!

    Tell me about it Klaus.

  4. I also just noticed the little peek of side boob in the center of the PL splash. Baker sure knew what would catch the male (and some female) readers.

  5. My first comment went up when there was nothing on the page…

    I was so distracted by the unbridled legs, I missed the other so thanks to Klaus for the shout out. Never got into the romance comics – am I missing something? One of the vendors at my local antique mall has a bunch of them in their display case.

  6. Walt will tell you Tim… its all about the covers! There are some great artists doing some of them as well like Matt Baker and L.B.Cole. The had never registered with me either until Covers 365, now I have a couple dozen if them and am always looking for others.

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