Tuesday, June 14, 2016
Tale Of Two Jimmys!
Jimmy Olsen #147 is an oddball comic for certain. The great Jack "King" Kirby was ending his memorable run on the series and it would revert to more typical Jimmy stories for several issues before being folded into the Superman Family comic along with Lois Lane. But the cover for this issue ain't by Kirby, and that's about all anyone knows for certain. The boys at the Grand Comics Database are pretty savvy fellows and they have a keen eye for comic art styles, but there's a great deal of disagreement even there about who produced this cover. The comic has had Carmine Infantino as the artist, even Bob Oksner. Kirby ismentioned but I see no evidence of that at all. The most likely culprit is Neal Adams (he would do the next cover for certain) with some nimble help from Dick Giordano on the flying figures. Murphy Anderson steps into to give it a proper Superman gloss, but whoever did it, it's pretty much a mess. And the reason is most likely speed.
This appears to be the original cover for this issue by Kirby with some handsome Anderson inks. It's no prize winner itself and the action is pretty difficult to decipher at a glance, the key job of a comic book cover back then. So I can see why it was rejected, even if it was the King. But sadly its replacement was no improvement in my eyes, so best to leave it alone to begin with.
Here is the Kirby artwork with some inks, most likely by Mike Royer. This is the strongest image of the three. Maybe that old saw about too many cooks in a kitchen might be in play here.