Archive for August, 2013

Fantastic Four #14: Reed’s Stretchy Body 23

Posted in Reed's Stretch Body with tags , , , , , , on August 30, 2013 by quizlacey
Fantastic Four #14, page 6, panel 7

Fantastic Four #14, page 6, panel 7

Script: Stan Lee

Art: Jack Kirby

Inking: Dick Ayers

Lettering: Art Simek

Today’s door-scrapingly flat panel comes from a series of moments where Reed imagines his wonderful stretching powers and how they mean nothing of Sue is going to be off thinking about Namor all the time.

What I like about this panel is the thing double-edge around Reed’s face, suggesting that his body is the same thickness all over, presumably about a centimetre or so. It then gets a little weird when you realise that Reed is drawn out of scale with the single door that he is sliding under. Not drastically out of scale, say he’s about the width of a hobbit standing in a normal human door. Has he been on the Pym Particles?

Check out our coverage of Fantastic Four #14 on our twelfth episode: HYPNOFISH!!!

[audio http://traffic.libsyn.com/ffcast/FF_Episode_12.mp3]
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Fantastic Four #14: Blatant Sexism 2

Posted in Blatant Sexism with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2013 by quizlacey
Fantastic Four #14, page 4, panel 7

Fantastic Four #14, page 4, panel 7

Script: Stan Lee

Art: Jack Kirby

Inking: Dick Ayers

Lettering: Art Simek

After a short break, it’s time to check in with the Fantastic Four, who themselves are having a short break. Having fulfilled President Kennedy’s ambition to land a man on the moon before the end of the decade during his own lifetime, having fought the Red Ghost and his stupid super apes, discovered The Watcher, and been mobbed at the airport, it’s only natural that the team want to take a rest.

Except for Sue, who manages to live up to a gender stereotype by deciding that now is the time to do a spot of housecleaning. What merits this inclusion on the list of sexist moments is Reed’s wonderfully patronising response.

Ah, Reed, you pompous ass.

Check out our coverage of Fantastic Four #14 on our twelfth episode: HYPNOFISH!!!

[audio http://traffic.libsyn.com/ffcast/FF_Episode_12.mp3]

 

Happy Birthday, Jack Kirby

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on August 28, 2013 by quizlacey

Jack ‘King’ Kirby

On this day in 1917, one of the most influential comic book artists of all time was born. The list of his creations and co-creations is longer than that of almost any other creator in comics, and almost any of them on their own would mark him out as one of the key creators in comic book history.

He was one of the few Golden, Silver and Bronze age comic creators, and one of the few to successfully navigate from Timely to National Publications, back to Marvel, then to DC, then back to Marvel once more. The small and big screens are littered with adaptations – both faithful and not-so-faithful – of his creations, characters and plots.

His name is Jack Kirby, and he is second only to Stan Lee in his influence on a small publishing company dipping its toes in the waters of super-hero comics for the first time in nearly a decade when in 1961 it produced – with Stan writing and Jack drawing – Fantastic Four #1.

Jack left us in 1994, years before I even began recognise the name, let alone comprehend the influence and legacy of his work. In more recent years, parts of his family have been in legal struggles with Marvel Comics, Disney and other companies using the characters and concepts Jack created or co-created. Whilst I don’t take a side in this debate, I do recognise that Jack Kirby and his struggles later in life and those of his family following his death have highlighted the need for creator rights in the comics industry.

Which is why today I’ll be donating to the HERO Initiative on behalf of Kirby4Heroes. The Kirby4Heroes was set up by Jack’s granddaughter Jillian in 2012, aiming to recognise both the anniversary of Jack’s birth and the fact that many creators sometimes need a helping hand when times are bad.

I hope that you too are able to spare a small amount to this campaign.

The Fantasticast Episode Forty-Seven: Because Once Just Isn’t Enough

Posted in Podcast with tags , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2013 by quizlacey

Episode 47

(Oops, I can see I gave Sam the wrong X-Men cover to use for the image. That’ll teach me to arrange podcast stuff when drunk. Aside: It won’t.)

Hello and welcome to the 47th episode of The Fantasticast. There’s a strong sense of deja vu in the air today, as thanks to a recording failure, Steve and Andy are doing it all over again. So, for the second time, we’re covering Fantastic Four #43, wherein an evil Ben Grimm does his best to help the Frightful Four defeat the Fantastic Four. We’re also checking in with X-Men #13, wherein a slightly-brainwashed Johnny Storm does his best to help the X-Men defeat the Juggernaut.

Along the way, we discuss Omnibuses, the departure of Matt Fraction, the awesomeness of Karl Kesel, the un-awesomeness of the original X-Men logo, and we have special guest-appearances from every guest-host we’ve had on the show to date.

There’s also some singing. Sorry about that…

Listen to the episode below, or click this link to go to the libsyn page for the episode.

[audio http://traffic.libsyn.com/ffcast/FF_Episode_47.mp3]

We are now available on Stitcher, both through Stitcher.com and through their app.

Send feedback to the show to fantastic4podcast@gmail.com or through the comments on this blog.

Fantastic Four #14: Reed’s Stretchy Body 22

Posted in Reed's Stretch Body with tags , , , , , , on August 12, 2013 by quizlacey
Fantastic Four #14, page 3, panel 3

Fantastic Four #14, page 3, panel 3

Script: Stan Lee

Art: Jack Kirby

Inking: Dick Ayers

Lettering: Art Simek

Today’s panel sees the Fantastic Four arrive back from the Moon to immense public interest and acclaim. Disembarking their ship at a nearby airport, the team are mobbed by fans and the media in scenes reminiscent of The Beatles arriving in the US for the first time.

This wonderful panel occurs when two Mr Fantastic fan clubs go a bit crazy over him, stretching him out against his will, rendering him more than a little helpless in the face of such in-your-face attention.

Check out our coverage of Fantastic Four #14 on our twelfth episode: HYPNOFISH!!!

[audio http://traffic.libsyn.com/ffcast/FF_Episode_12.mp3]

Strange Tales #107: Flamin’ ‘Eck 19

Posted in Flamin' 'Eck with tags , , , , , , on August 11, 2013 by quizlacey
Strange Tales #107, page 11, panel 2

Strange Tales #107, page 11, panel 2

Plot: Stan Lee

Script: Larry Lieber

Art: Dick Ayers

Lettering: Art Simek

Given that there are people with serious nut allergies who have less severe reactions than Johnny does to water in later issues of Strange Tales, it does seem rather unlikely that even with his nova blast going, he would be able to dive into the sea for several minuets without his flame going out.

But that’s not what today’s panel is really about. It’s been two issues since Dick Ayers has assumed both pencilling and inking duties for this book, and yesterday’s panel and today’s really highlight the differences between his art and that of Jack Kirby. The biggest criticism that can be levelled at Ayers is the lack of detail in his art. Other than in the light patterns on Namor’s hair, pretty much everything in this panel is rendered with one thickness of line, a pretty heavy one. Johnny and his flame are depicted in outline only, and the previous panel only used a few sparse triangles to suggest his all-over body flame. When compared to Jack Kirby being inked by Steve Ditko in Fantastic Four  this very month, there really is no competition – Jack wins out by a country mile.

That’s not to say that I don’t like Dick Ayers – in the context of the Sgt Fury comic, on which he would again replace Jack Kirby, his artwork strikes a deft balances between miltaristic realism and great cartoon influences on the characters, each face saying as much about the personality of the Howlers as Stan’s hilarious dialogue. However, there he was normally inked by someone else, suggesting that he had the time to put the detail into his pencils. Here, assuming double-duty, his artwork falls short of what Kirby had established for the Fantastic Four and Strange Tales.

The Fantasticast Episode Forty-Six: Change, My Dear, And Not A Moment Too Soon

Posted in Podcast with tags , , , , on August 10, 2013 by quizlacey

ff-episode-46

 

After 19 months and 46 episodes, Steve and Andy have decided to call it a day. Join us at the start of this episode as we broadcast live to the world to exclusively announce who the next hosts of the Fantasticast are. The betting has been hot, Rich Johnston keeps naming other potential hosts other than the ones who will be announced, and shortly, the secret will be revealed. Here’s hoping all of the anticipation isn’t in aid of a 30 second opening gag that ultimately changes nothing…

Hello and welcome to the 46th episode of the show. For real. Steve and Andy are trying a new way of recording, hoping to make Steve sound like a normal human being, and we hope you’ll notice an improvement in the sound quality of the show.

It’s a shorter episode than normal, as there’s only one comic up for coverage this time around. So, we take a bit of time to trawl through the e-mails and feedback we’ve been receiving recently. Then it’s into Fantastic Four #41 as the Frightful Four make their return with devastating consequences for the team.

Listen to the episode below, or click this link to go to the libsyn page for the episode.

[audio http://traffic.libsyn.com/ffcast/FF_Episode_46.mp3]

We are now available on Stitcher, both through Stitcher.com and through their app.

Send feedback to the show to fantastic4podcast@gmail.com or through the comments on this blog.

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