On the heels of Michael Netzer's glowing blog review of his front cover mock-up, Tom Hartley has created a brand new Martian Manhunter Archives Vol.6 back cover web page, where you get to decide which four covers in the collection will grace the imaginary back cover! Tom explains:
Sadly, Michael Netzer didn't provide covers for any of his Adventure Comics issues, although his mentor Neal Adams provided a nifty cover to that story's final chapter in World's Finest Comics #245. The best and most influential story of the bunch was Justice League of America #144, but Commander Blanx is the star of that Dick Dillin cover.
In my own four, I went with a different Dillin, Justice League of America #71, one of the single most important Martian Manhunter comics ever published. It explored J'Onn J'Onzz's life on Mars, why he stayed on Earth, the introduction of arch-nemesis Commander Blanx, the destruction of Mars, Manhunter's departure from our world and his team, and the launch of the Bronze Age Mars II stories. Next was Nick Cardy's World's Finest Comics #212, possibly my all-time favorite cover starring the Alien Atlas. I mean, he makes Superman bleed-- and gloats about it! Squeal, Man of Steel, squeal! Out of the two covers by a fellow amongst my lifetime best loved comics creators, Jim Starlin, I favored his introduction of Mongul and another Superman fight in DC Comics Presents #27 to his more passive role against Despero in JLofA #178. The JLofA #115 cover is plain weak (Ernie Chan?) so my last choice was between two great Chuck Patton/Dick Giordano pieces. Manhunter whacking Aquaman upon his return to Earth in JLofA #228 was cool, but I went with Justice League of America #230, because I've loved that dynamic image of a battle with The Marshal since before I really even knew who the Martian Manhunter was.
So, which did you choose?
World's Finest #212: J'Onn vs. Supes, drawn by Nick Cardy
JLA #178: J'Onn & Despero, by Jim Starlin
DC Comics Presents #27: J'Onn & Supes vs. Mongul, by Starlin
JLA #230: J'Onn vs. the Marshall, by Chuck Patton & Dick Giordano
(The lame JLA #115 cover ["The Last Angry God"] is by Nick Cardy.)
I always love the Choose-Your-Own-Back-Cover, Tom!
My choices, based solely on visual appeal:
World's Finest #212 (punching Superman...very dramatic), JLA #228 (punching Aquaman...I'm sensing a trend...), JLA #178 (nice throwback to the first Despero battle), JLA #230 (again with the punching...)
Tom, it looks like you chose the four covers best at showcasing the Martian Manhunter prominently by a great artist. Neal Adams pushed J'Onn too far into the background to compete in that regard, and your Sophie's Choice seemed between a great Starlin & Patton cover a piece.
Liss, for someone who spends a lot of time talking about J'Onn's vulnerability, you seemed to choose only the most proactive cover images. Hmm...?
Yep, I picked covers that prominently feature Our Hero, and I also wanted all three titles that have covers to be represented: JLA, World's Finest and DC Comics Presents. As for great artists, I think that applies to ALL of the cover artists: Sekowsky (JLA 71), Cardy (World's Finest 212 & JLA 115), Adams (World's Finest 245), Dillin (JLA 144), Starlin (JLA 178 & DCCP 27) and Patton (JLA 228 & 230).
That is so cool!
I went with JLA #71, World's Finest #245, JLA #178, and JLA #228.
"Liss, for someone who spends a lot of time talking about J'Onn's vulnerability, you seemed to choose only the most proactive cover images. Hmm...?"
I was probably feeling subconsciously violent because I had just been reading that post about Valerie D'Orazio over on Green Lantern's Butts Forever...
Tom, I like Sekowsky as a storyteller, but not usually as a cover artist. In particular, his JLofA covers hinged too much on gimmicks, and he (perhaps by necessity) skimped on backgrounds like an Image artist. On covers with fewer characters, especially later in his career, he seemed to give more thought to his layouts. Mostly though, what made or broke his covers for me was the strong hand of the inker (Murphy Anderson, Sid Greene, Mike Esposito.)
Rob, do you have a theme? No repeated artists? Design elements? Just plain coolness?
Liss-- totally understandable. A shame I can't think of any particularly strong J'Onn kissyface moments for the ad campaign. Maybe a Mandrake panel?
I was trying to pick the four covers that evenly spanned the decades covered, plus factoring in how significant they were to JJ. PLUS just how cool the cover was. :)
"Liss-- totally understandable. A shame I can't think of any particularly strong J'Onn kissyface moments for the ad campaign. Maybe a Mandrake panel?"
I've got one!:
The subtitle should be: Colgate Celebrates Martians, Because They Are So Cool, They Get TWO Girls.
Superman, eat your heart out.
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