Sunday, September 20, 2015

All-Star Comics - Boon Companions!

With the publication of The All-Star Companion Volume 1 in 2000 Roy Thomas finally realizes a dream to fully annotate aspects of his favorite superhero team's title. Roy has often commented how important All-Star Comics are to his development as a kid and as an artist and he'd often over the decades evoked aspects of the series in his work, such as the The Invaders at Marvel and All-Star Squadron at DC among many others. In the limited series America Versus The Justice Society he attempted to document in a modern context all the JSofA adventures and while it might have been a monumental research accomplishment it was a meager comic at best. In these somewhat scholarly volumes from Twomorrows Publishing he is at last able to do the full-blown documentation he craves sans the need to force it into some sort of actual tale. The audience is there to be fed details, trivia, and minutiae galore. And he does it a bang up job, but as is usually the case with the loquacious Thomas one volume wasn't enough.

So soon we get The All-Star Companion Volume 2 which purported to follow the characters past their Golden Age roots into the Silver Age and the Bronze Age before falling victim to the Crisis on Infinite Earths tsunami. And again Roy doesn't get it all said, instead focusing on his All-Star Squadron work.

It would not be until The All-Star Companion Volume 3 that we'd get a detailed analysis of the team's Bronze Age revival, much of which I've taken a closer look at in previous posts this month. Under an outstanding George Perez cover these stories glow again in full nostalgic glory.

With the fourth volume Roy actually seemed to run out of things to say but instead focused on the individual team member appearances and other aspects of those vintage All Star Comics which so ignited his imagination so many decades before. The Jerry Ordway cover is stellar.

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