|09-28-2005, 02:16 AM||#11|
Join Date: Mar 2002
Re: Comic Book Talk!
Speaking of Arthur Adams, is there any artist in the game you wish could get his pages done in a timely fashion more than Adams? The guy is a true genius but he ended up being limited as a "special project" artist because he just couldn't get his pages done.
Funny thing is that Art Adams first published drawing was in a letters section of Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew (he sent in a drawing of Farrah Foxett and they actually published it).
Little known and completely irrelevant (but fascinating) trivia factoid #2:
The first time Dave Cockrum's name appeared in comic book print was the Silver Age Hawkman #13 (also the letters page). Here's what Cockrum wrote to the Editor of Hawkman in 1966:
Dear Editor: Hawkman 11, featuring "The Shrike Strikes at Night", was the latest triumph of art and adventure from a magazine which is noted for outstanding stories. If not your best mag, Hawkman is at least one of the top three (the other two being Atom and Green Lantern), and I firmly believe that Murphy Anderson's art is the top, no ifs, ands or buts.
The Shrike was an outstanding character- both as a villian and later as a hero. I preferred him as a hero and I, for one, would certainly like to see him again sometime. He's too good a character to let relapse into complete oblivion. Being of a star-traveling race himelf, perhaps he and the Winged Wonder could meet on Thangar for an adventure sometime.
I must admit, however, that another reason for my liking the Shrike is the sneaking suspicion that I was in part responsible for the creation of the character. Some months ago I sent you a sketch of a proposed Hawkman foe called the Black Shrike. Perhaps I'm wrong, but it's fun anyway, seeing that one's efforts inspire outstanding work like "The Shrike Strikes at Night!"
-Dave Cockrum, NAS, Miramar, Cal.
The Editor's response:
(As you surmised, the Shrike was inspired by your sketch- and in appreciation, we have sent you Murphy Anderson's original cover! The same deal applies for any other accepted cover ideas or characters contributed by our readers.)
(end quotes- and yes, the reason I have the above communication is because I own the book)
Less than a decade later, Dave Cockrum would create characters that were just a titch more important than the Shrike. Their names are Colossus, Nightcrawler, Storm, and Thunderbird. Ironically, Cockrum partnered on the cover to Giant Size X-Men #1 with the very same artist who drew the Green Lantern he loved- Gil Kane- two years after beginning his professional comic career as a penciller with DC (Legion of Superheroes). Later in his career, Cockrum also created Mystique of X-Men fame.
But the letter above and the acknowlegement that Cockrum did, in fact, assist in the creation of the Shrike predates Cockrum's first published work in Fantastic Fanzine (while stationed in Guam with the US Navy) by two years and his first attributed professional work by even more. Shortly after his work was published in Fantastic Fanzine, Cockrum returned to the States, stopped in at DC headquarters and was given the tour by a DC legend- the late Julie Schwartz, then DC's Editor in Chief. He was introduced to Neal Adams at that time (still one of Cockrum's best friends).
There was no work at DC or Marvel, so Adams sent Cockrum over to Warren Publishing and began pencilling Vampirella in 1971 and asked Adams to critique his work and noted that Adams "...showed me what to fix." before Cockrum submitted it.
Later in 1971, Schwartz found out that there was a penciller who needed a background inker to work on his book. That book was Superman. That penciller was...Murphy Anderson. Yes, the same Murphy Anderson whose Hawkman #11 cover Cockrum now owned due to his help in creating a character that Anderson drew five years earlier.
Talk about coming full circle!
But wait...there's more...
Dave Cockrum got rid of Nightcrawler's Image Inducer (see Uncanny X-Men #107 for an example of how it worked) because Nightcrawler was Cockrum's favorite character and he felt that the Image Inducer was making the X-Men more like "Nightcrawler and the X-Men". But if not for DC's stupidity, Nightcrawler would have never graced the pages of that title. Cockrum had offered the character to DC years earlier while penciling Legion of Superheroes and DC didn't want him. So while Cockrum created the Shi'ar Royal Guard as an homage to the Legion in Uncanny #107, Nightcrawler was playing for the home team.
To me, that's incredible stuff.
"The problem with strikeouts isn't that they hurt your team, it's that they hurt your feelings..." --Rob Neyer
"The single most important thing for a hitter is to get a good pitch to hit. A good hitter can hit a pitch that’s over the plate three times better than a great hitter with a ball in a tough spot.”