Friday, October 5, 2012

Ghastly Origins!


I'm currently enjoying The Spectre's Silver Age adventures, but to be honest the first time I really "got" the character was when I stumbled across this reprint of his Golden Age origin story from More Fun Comics #54 and #55.


I didn't get Secret Origins regularly, so it must've been the startlingly good Nick Cardy cover art which attracted me. I simply love this cover! The potent narrative in those three distinct panels drives home the essential core of what makes The Spectre tick. He's dead and returned and seems bent on kicking criminal butt. Look at that glare on his pallid mug as he rises out of the water. Ouch! And check out how Cardy uses the implied motions of the water to add to the sense of momentum when the Spectre emerges from his watery tomb.
 


The original covers for these stories are pretty dang effective in their own right. The Bernard Bailey artwork here is spare but offers up a truly creepy and cadaverous rendition of the "Discarnate Detective" as Gardner Fox dubbed him. Those blasts of energy framing his craggy face really makes these covers pop just enough.This feature being in "More Fun Comics" is a bit of hoot for sure.

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2 comments:

  1. Not to disparage the work of Anderson or Adams or Aparo or Grandinetti or especially Baily...but that Secret Origins issue may have been the most effective cover image the Spectre ever had, for all the reasons you mention.

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  2. I agree and it's the word "effective" that convinces me. Adams did grander, Anderson did dramatic, but this Cardy cover communicates.

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