Sunday, January 12, 2014

Tarzan And The Ads Of Gold!

Here's yet one more look at the dynamic cover by Morris "Mo" Gollub for Gold Key's handsome retelling of Tarzan's origin by Gaylord Dubois and Russ Manning. Gollub's image of Tarzan battling a ferocious great ape is classic, but in this case is almost certainly inspired by Russ Manning's own artwork.

Here's the ad which appeared in the previous issue of Tarzan from Gold Key hyping the upcoming classic turn in the series. Manning's sleek Apeman is perhaps even more entwined with his simian enemy.

This Gollub cover is reinterpretation of more artwork by Manning.

This ad depicts the same scene for sure despite some few changes in perspective and distance. Gollub was correct in bringing La closer for the cover as she would've been hard to detect in this original layout.

The connection between this Gollub cover and ad art is extremely close.

Manning's apes seem a bit more human somehow than Gollub's. One interesting detail is how the stone knife in Manning's image becomes a somewhat more mundane but more readable steel blade in Gollub's cover. Gollub's covers were designed for maximum impact in a split second, and fine details can detract.

Great stuff by two fantastic artists.

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  1. Are these considered tributes or swipes? :)

    I'm just playing devil's advocate. Cause I think some people get in a tizzy over artists who swipe.

    1. I don't think these covers fall into any of the regular categories. Russ Manning likely knew that his drawings, layouts, or whatever were going to be translated into paint by Mo Gollub, so he probably produced them with that in mind.

      The fact that Gollub is working from another's layouts might put some folks into a tiff, but I don't see the problem, it was just the way these products were put together. These artists were cogs in the artistic machine which created these packets of entertainment.

      I know it's seen differently these days, and I get why, but that's the way it worked.

      Rip Off

  2. I never took Morris "Mo" Gollub painted covers of Manning as "swipes"
    They are so great. Yes he took the composition of Manning.
    And made them his own.
    Look at all his other painted covers for Gold Key.
    Most amazing TUROK
    There wasn't any swiping there.
    The man did his job! Looking at those covers on the spinner rack
    just had to make you buy them.
    For 12 pennies Just amazing isn't it?

    1. I agree that Gollub doesn't just slavishly copy Manning, but he doesn't veer too far off what Manning has developed. The final product did indeed do the job it was intended for, advertise the comic from afar and draw in potential customers to the comics rack. Many sadly forget that was the purpose of these covers, even the wonderful lush Gold Key ones.

      Rip Off

  3. Looking at these again, I love how on the one cover Tarzan is pulling the guys by their beard braids.


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