Avengers Spotlight #39, 1990 – “Cry Crusader!”

One of my all-time favorite characters, is none other than the Black Knight! I think it goes back to the Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends episode where he guest starred. It was a tale featuring the menace of Mordred! Or maybe it’s my love of Arthurian times. Either way, the Black Knight kicks butt! A flying horse, (Valinor), and the Ebony Blade, make him quite a formidable fighter, and he’s proven his worth many times over as a member of the Avengers, or just as a solo hero.

In this awesome issue, the Black Knight gets framed for murder, and he must solve the puzzle of who is committing these murders using a sword, and wearing a cape and armor! With Roy & Dann Thomas writing, Greg Capullo on pencils, Tom Dzon inking, Bob Sharen on colors, and Joe Rosen lettering. An excellent story and solid artwork from a young Capullo (cover by Steve Lightle)! Enjoy!

 
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DC Comics – Batman #442 (1989)

You know, I seldom buy a comic book that I don’t intend to eventually collect the entire series. First off, I’m a completest, and secondly, in the grand scheme of things, what’s the point if you don’t intend on reading the entire story? Well, recently I bought Batman #442, which falls into that category, and there were a couple of reasons, but mostly because of the George Perez cover. Yes, it’s the first appearance of Tim Drake as Robin, as well, and actually seems to be a good story too.

Plotters, Marv Wolfman and George Perez, pencils by Jim Aparo (one of the best Batman artists of all time in my humble opinion), inker, Mike DeCarlo, letter, John Costanza, and colorist Adrienne Roy (editor Denny O’Neil), bring this great story with the villain, Two-Face! Tim makes the decision to don the mantle of Robin, as he attempts to save Batman and Nightwing from certain death! Enjoy!

 

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Mystic Arcana (2007)- Marvel’s Realm of Magic!

Typically, this forum is for me to spotlight something Bronze Age, but this series is something special. In 2007, I saw a book on the shelf at my local comic shop, and the cover of the Black Knight is all that was needed to suck me in. I’m a big fan of Arthurian legend, and the Black Knight has always been one of my favorite Avengers. The concept of the limited series, Mystic Arcana, (of one-shots), was to show some of the magical “highlights” of the Marvel Universe, jumping from Medieval Camelot, to ancient Egypt, and everywhere in-between. Each of the four one-shots featured one of Marvel’s magic based characters. The Black Knight, Magik, Scarlet Witch, and Sister Grimm, all have an arcane adventure in each book of the series.

In addition to those stories, there was a back-up story as well, featuring the Dr. Strange nemesis, Ian McNee. We see the young mage, as he attempts to do the bidding of Oshtur, or so he thinks. By stories end, he’s battled Morgan La Fey, Queen Llyra, Nagala, and so on. These tales were written by David Sexton, and illustrated by Eric Nguyen.

The series of one-shots was littered with talent new and old. Everyone from Roy Thomas, Walt Simonson, Jeff Parker, C.B. Cebulski, Phil Noto, and others, contributed to this great series, and everyone who’s a fan of Marvel’s magical side needs to own this one. Oh, and before I forget, check out these ridiculously awesome covers by Marko Djurdjevic, too! There was also an OHOTMU edition published later too, and it must be mentioned for any and all who covet these volumes of information!

 

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Marvel’s Unsung Heroes! -Sal Buscema!

When people hear the name ‘Buscema’, they just about always gravitate to John.  Sometimes just at first, and sometimes only, but I’m here to tell you that the other Buscema brother has chops too! Sal Buscema is a gifted artist that never seems to get his due. Well, he’s going to get it today, as I spotlight some of his work right here and now! It doesn’t matter if it was The Avengers, The Defenders, Rom, or even Spider-Man, Sal Buscema put his heart and soul into his work, and that cannot be denied! He and J. M. Dematteis crafted one of the most emotional death scenes in the history of comic books. So, here’s to you, Sal Buscema, as we go forth and spread the word of your awesome work!

 

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Super-Spectacular Birthday Post- Werewolf by Night!

It’s no secret to anyone that follows me on Twitter, or is friends with me on Facebook, that I love horror comics. Mostly old school, Bronze Age stuff, but even some of the more recent books as well. So, listen, today is my birthday, and that means I’m going to post some random images of one of my favorite horror characters, Werewolf by Night (Jack Russell)! There have been many artists who’ve lent their talents to this great character, and I’ll try to be as diverse as I can using only my collection as material (as always but yes, I own a lot of black & white reprints, and do search out color shots on the web from time to time for my blog). So here’s to you Jack, may the fleas stay away and the dog biscuits be scrumptious! Enjoy!

Cover by Neal Adams

Cover by Neal Adams

artist- Leonardo manco

artist- Leonardo Manco

artist- Juan Doe

artist- Juan Doe

cover by Patch Zircher

cover by Patch Zircher

artist- Mico Suayan

artist- Mico Suayan

artist- Greg Land

cover by- Greg Land

artist- Don Perlin

artist- Don Perlin

artist- Mike Ploog

artist- Mike Ploog

 

Gene Colan Tribute- part 1!

To finish off the month of March, I let my favorite artist for last! Gene ‘The Dean’ Colan, has always been my favorite, and always will be. His style just jumps off of the pages to me, and speaks to me like no other. Over the years, he was an artist who could draw any genre, but he certainly excelled at the macabre! Just his Tomb of Dracula (with long time partner, Marv Wolfman) alone could be enough to push him into the hall of fame, but when you look at his entire body of work (Strange Tales, Daredevil, Captain America), you’ll be astonished! Let’s dispense with the verbiage, and get right down to the work of the master himself, Gene Colan! Here is some early work in the title, Strange Tales in 1952!

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John Romita Sr. Tribute Finale!

Well, here it is, time for the John Romita Sr. finale! You know, Jazzy John is most notably known for his romance work, and of course, Spider-Man. He did do a fantastic job though on everything he touched, as evidence showed in my first post. As we move further into his career, lets look at some of his other work for Marvel. His runs on Daredevil, The Fantastic Four, and Captain America, are also most excellent! Three cheers for Jazzy John Romita! Enjoy!

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Monster Massacre vol. 1 (Atomeka/Titan Comics)

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The over-the-top cover is extremely misleading, to those who will dismiss it just on that quality alone. Inside however, lies an anthology of stories and artwork that are top-notch! What better example of this could you imagine, than a story from the 1950’s, by legends Joe Simon and Jack Kirby? Of course the answer is none, and that’s what you get right out of the gate from this beautiful hardcover. The glossy pages of this book, are graced with some of comic books coolest creators. Dave Elliott, Alex Horley, Andy Kuhn, Dave Wilkins, Dave Dorman, and so on.

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Each story has its own unique voice, that lends a piece to the overall tone of the book. The fantasy vibe, definitely harkens back to the days of Frank Frazetta, and Boris Vallejo. These legends have inspired countless creators since the 1970’s, and will for a very long time. In the middle of the book, we even get a good prose story (Mike Elliott), followed by a solid story that’s part color, part black and white. It was a really cool to see that abnormal twist. The Cthulu-esque tale “Deep Six”, with great action, and an explosive ending!

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There are also two incredible galleries inside, one by Alex Horley, and the second by Steve White. The first, is one that will remind you of Heavy Metal or Vampirella style books. Big monsters, beautiful girls, and the such. The second one has some really interesting images that are varying in subject matter ranging from undersea life, to wooly mammoths. Throw in a good dinosaur story, and you get more than your monies worth from Atomeka and Titan Comics! Check out the links below for more info on this great book, and look for volume two in stores in the coming months (or pre-order it now)!

Atomeka on Facebook

Atomeka on Twitter

Deviant Art Page