Sunday, July 27, 2008

REVIEW: Kirby Five-Oh! (The Jack Kirby Collector #50)

DESPITE a few reservations, this oversized book is a stunning tribute to The King, celebrating 50 issues of The Jack Kirby Collector.
In reality, it's merely TJKC #50, but it's been put out by editor John Morrow - a dedicated Kirby fanatic since 1994 - as a high-quality soft-cover publication, a stand-alone tome celebrating Jack Kirby's greatness.
Kicking off with an excellent Kirby rendition of Superman on the cover (inked by the brilliant Darwyn Cooke), Kirby Five-Oh! gives us list after list of the 50 greatest this and 50 greatest that involving the prolific artist.
So what's to love? Well, the swag of rare photos and art easily made it worth the thirty bux I paid at Kings Comics (how appropriate) in Sydney. The colour section was also a welcome touch.
There are also intriguing lists like Kirby's 50 Best Stories (one per year) and 50 Best Covers - the top vote-getter was Fantastic Four #12 (1963), a suspenseful scene with The Hulk about to pounce on an unsuspecting FF in an underground cave.
The 50 Best Examples Of Unused Kirby Art was intriguing as was the mini-interviews with 50 artists influenced by Jack Kirby.
Quibbles? Well, there's the usual sycophantic ravings by people who seem to think that EVERYTHING Kirby did was brilliant. And a few ACTUALLY think he was a decent scripter. Ha!
And fuckwit Adam McGovern is deluded enough to claim 1985's The Hunger Dogs - possibly the worst piece of unintelligible drivel ever vomited out by Jolly Jack - is a piece of genius. Puh-leeeeeeeze!

Despite these minor flaws, Kirby Five-Oh! is a stirling effort by TwoMorrows Publishing.
Buy it and get an overview of why Jack Kirby remains the most influential comic book artist of all time.

No comments: