Monday, September 15, 2014

A Touch-Up for the '70s

At first glance, it's difficult to tell why the reprint of Fantastic Four #82, featured in Marvel's Greatest Comics #64, didn't simply stick with the original cover drawn by Jack Kirby and inked by Joe Sinnott. Sinnott pencilled and inked the replacement MGC cover--and, aside from the features of the Thing and Reed, there seems to be very little difference between the two that would warrant alterations:

But at second glance, it looks like there are a few more things going on.  Both Crystal and Medusa now appear to be younger--while the colorist on the MGC job has altered Crystal's costume to that of her Inhuman costume's hue, even though Crystal was still active in the FF at the time. But as for Ben and Reed, their features (as well as Johnny's flame) are more in line with artist Rich Buckler's work on the FF book, which wrapped up about four months before this issue of MGC--and if the cover was commissioned four months ahead of publication, perhaps the thinking was to keep the characters' features closer to what readers were currently accustomed to seeing on the sales rack. (That might also explain the attempt to avoid confusion with Crystal's costume, since Sue was back with the FF at the time.)  Ben, the Torch, and Black Bolt are also a little smaller to accommodate the MGC format as well as the MCG banner.

Art Adams would do a later take on the cover as a variant for Fantastic Four #600:

(Note the addition of Triton and Lockjaw.)

Sinnott's original mark-up, featured on the Joltin' one's website!


Super-Duper ToyBox said...

Wonderful little post- VERY interesting!

Anonymous said...

Marvel's Greatest Comics was a great, cheap way to pick up the Lee/Kirby F.F. run. I've got a few of the originals, which of course I prefer, but, hey man, I ain't a millionaire.
Thank God for reprints!
Still, I wish they stuck with the original covers more often. I understand they were trying to make them more current, to catch the eye of young pups like me.
But I'm a Kirby man, and I wanted to see them original covers!mp

Comicsfan said...

SDTB, thanks!

mp, at first I worked by way backwards with the FF in the same way, by reading Marvel's Greatest Comics. They were edited for space at times, but they were fun reads--and well-marketed for reprinted material.

Tom Brevoort said...

As I understand it, at the time, suitable reproduction materials couldn't be located for the cover to FF #82, so Joe was asked to recreate it.

Comicsfan said...

Tom, thanks, good to know!