I was trolling (use either definition) on eBay last night and found some wicked cool deals on some nice ungraded comics. Some comics from the Silver and Golden Age have incredible covers. I know we all love the Sterankos, I love the Schombergs, and there’s something really cool about the primary and secondary color palettes used before computer colorists came to be the norm.
Cover art tells you a story, it grabs you like a visual soundbite. You know you’ve picked up an album (or clicked on a download preview) from a good photo. You’ve pulled a book from the stacks when that cover image yanks out an emotion. The inside may be garbage, but a good cover with a bad story is more likely to end up in your hands than a great story wrapped in a Wendy’s bag.
X-men 17 is an incredible image, given that it’s from the 60’s, but it’s just RED. RED RED RED. That took some balls for Marvel to go with possibly alienating a first time reader to a young title; who wants to pick up what looks like either a printing error or a company cheaping out on ink? But it worked. It’s TERROR. It’s suspense. If you were a casual X-men fan you know it’s the color of Cyclops unleashed eye beam fury, or the impending doom of Magneto’s pride-filled swollen chest (old costume, people!)
Dick Ayers and Jack Kirby made their best offer, I made mine. Bought it.
Check out Coverbrowser.com and take a look around at some of the other great covers they’ve archived: