Fantastic Four 48,49,50
8 8

130 posts in this topic

189 posts
On 1/24/2019 at 12:17 PM, KirbyJack said:

Ooh, you should buy an FF 51!

May not ever be a money book, but it will complete* your mini run (45-52), and it just happens to be one of the greatest comic stories ever printed! 

Now, to really have something special, complete Fantastic Four from 35 to 67. Those issues represent the apotheosis; the greatest run of The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine!

 

* if you don’t already have it

51? Best Thing Cover Ever. And tell me more about this Apotheosis :foryou:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8,065 posts
2 hours ago, kc2112 said:

51? Best Thing Cover Ever. And tell me more about this Apotheosis :foryou:

A word I borrowed from Mark Alexander, used in The Jack Kirby Collector #58 “The Wonder Years”. An in depth look at Kirby’s Fantastic Four (every one of ‘em!). Highly recommended!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
335 posts
3 hours ago, kc2112 said:

48's are selling for about 2,500 in 7.0 and 1,500 in 6.0. That seems like a very big difference to me for those grades. I believe also that in the past say 2 years a lot more people are starting to collect, and some of these people have lots o' money and are just going ape feces with their bidding. It only takes two of them to drive the price way overboard. At least that's what I've been noticing on the auctions I am losing lately. 

Quick question please, would you rather have one FF 48 CGC 7.0 or one of each 48, 49, 50 in 6.0?

Good question. I used to have a FF 48 CGC 9.2 and a FF 49 CGC 8.5 for years before the recent jump. Now I own a FF 48 9.0 and a FF 49 6.5. I really like having the higher grade FF 48 so I would have to answer a CGC 7.0 for your question. I have upgraded by FF 49 CGC from a 5.5, to 6.0, to my current 6.5. There is a huge jump in price from 6.5 to 7.0 so I don't think I am upgrading again for a while.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
189 posts
7 hours ago, KirbyJack said:

A word I borrowed from Mark Alexander, used in The Jack Kirby Collector #58 “The Wonder Years”. An in depth look at Kirby’s Fantastic Four (every one of ‘em!). Highly recommended!

Thanks for that recommendation, I've already started looking into it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
429 posts
7 hours ago, Phicks said:

I have always thought the cover to FF 50 was questionable marketing.  As the reader gets to the end of FF49, the world is about to end at the hands of an unstoppable cosmic foe.  The cover for issue 50 says "And Johnny Storm starts college!"  Well, I guess if he's doing something that mundane, all that Galactus nonsense  cant be all  that serious...

Yeah, the corner pic of schoolboy Johnny taints what could have been a classic cover.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
335 posts
11 hours ago, JohnH19 said:

Yeah, the corner pic of schoolboy Johnny taints what could have been a classic cover.

I definitely agree with this - it distracts terribly from a classic Silver Surfer cover (his first major one in fact). I also don't care for the brown background - the cover could have really been a standout with a black or red background (think SS 1 or FF 72) IMO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8,065 posts

That’s something I’ve been ranting about for years. 

Kirby was always about “what’s next?”

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1,085 posts
8 minutes ago, KirbyJack said:

That’s something I’ve been ranting about for years. 

Kirby was always about “what’s next?”

go figure. That was always Ditko's tag line as well. What's next?"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8,065 posts
5 hours ago, Cushing Fan said:

I definitely agree with this - it distracts terribly from a classic Silver Surfer cover (his first major one in fact). I also don't care for the brown background - the cover could have really been a standout with a black or red background (think SS 1 or FF 72) IMO.

Not so very long ago, FF 50 was slightly more desired by the buying public because of the big Surfer image. 

I’m personally happy to see 49 getting it’s moment in the sun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56,024 posts

I've said this before...maybe even in this thread...if the cover to #50 (sans Johnny's blurb) had been the cover to #48, #48 would be worth 3-5 times what it is.

You get the sense, from the covers, that Stan and Jack were a bit unsure as to who was the real focus of the story.

By the time they started work on #50, however, it was obvious. And that was before they started getting feedback about #48.

I don't know if Stan's ever said this, but I get the feeling that the Silver Surfer was among the top 3 of his favorite creations...and that's saying something.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56,024 posts
1 hour ago, KirbyJack said:
6 hours ago, Cushing Fan said:

I definitely agree with this - it distracts terribly from a classic Silver Surfer cover (his first major one in fact). I also don't care for the brown background - the cover could have really been a standout with a black or red background (think SS 1 or FF 72) IMO.

Not so very long ago, FF 50 was slightly more desired by the buying public because of the big Surfer image. 

I’m personally happy to see 49 getting it’s moment in the sun.

If the cover had a STARRY black background....and had been the cover to #48....it would have put the book on par with earlier SA first appearances.

Can you imagine...? Maybe I should commission someone to do that! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

I've said this before...maybe even in this thread...if the cover to #50 (sans Johnny's blurb) had been the cover to #48, #48 would be worth 3-5 times what it is.

You get the sense, from the covers, that Stan and Jack were a bit unsure as to who was the real focus of the story.

By the time they started work on #50, however, it was obvious. And that was before they started getting feedback about #48.

I don't know if Stan's ever said this, but I get the feeling that the Silver Surfer was among the top 3 of his favorite creations...and that's saying something.

 

 

He definitely loved the Silver Surfer but like most silver age marvel he didn't create it, Jack Kirby did.  Well worth a look for folks to look into that Kirby in fact created almost everything along with ditko. Stan had vague ideas but these guys actually had the ideas. Kirby is quoted as saying Stan didn't know anything about norse mythology or mutations (the origin of their powers)  If you look at chasllengers of the unknown (a jack kirby creation) you see a similar quartet and even a story where the are hit with cosmic rays and get powers.  "Very often," Lee has said, "I didn't know what the hell [Kirby] was going to give me. I’d get some pages of artwork, and I wrote the copy and turned it into whatever story I wanted it to be ... It was like doing a crossword puzzle. I would try to figure out what the illustrations meant and then I would put in the dialog and captions.”

 

The early Fantastic Four said "written by Stan Lee, drawn by Jack Kirby." Nice and simple. In "Origins of Marvel Comics" and other interviews, Stan Lee indicates that he came up with the ideas and Jack Kirby drew them. But there are several big problems here:

  • Both before and after the early 1960s, Stan Lee was not known for producing great new ideas. Jack Kirby, on the other hand, was always producing big ideas, such as Captain America (co-created with Joe Simon) and the Fourth World series for DC (entirely on his own, immediately after leaving Marvel).

     

  • Stan Lee was just too busy to write everything, and would often just deliver the faintest outline for a -script. In this letter from 1965 (printed in the book "The Stan Lee Universe") he outlines what became known as "the Marvel method:1965 letter

     

  • Stan would often would just phone in a suggestion and Jack would do the rest, delivering the pages for dialog to be added. For example, Stan said something like "this month have the Fantastic Four fight God" and Jack then created the Galactus saga, perhaps the greatest comic story ever. Famously, when Stan first saw the Silver Surfer he asked "who's this guy?" 
    "Very often," Lee has said, "I didn't know what the hell [Kirby] was going to give me. I’d get some pages of artwork, and I wrote the copy and turned it into whatever story I wanted it to be ... It was like doing a crossword puzzle. I would try to figure out what the illustrations meant and then I would put in the dialog and captions.” (Source) 
    Kirby would even add blue pencil notes for dialog. Stan would then add the actual dialog (which often contradicted what Jack wanted, but Jack seldom had time to read the finished comic). 

  • In 1968, the magazine "Castle of Frankenstein" #12 published a Stan Lee interview where he said “Some artists, such as Jack Kirby, need no plot at all. I mean I’ll just say to Jack, ‘Let’s let the next villain be Dr. Doom’… or I may not even say that. He may tell me. And then he goes home and does it. He’s so good at plots, I’m sure he’s a thousand times better than I. He just about makes up the plots for these stories. All I do is a little editing… I may tell him that he’s gone too far in one direction or another. Of course, occasionally I’ll give him a plot, but we’re practically both the writers on the things.” (emphasis added) In interviews such as that it seems that when Stan says "writing" he means adding the dialog to the finished art, but when Jack Kirby says "writing" he means deciding what happens from panel to panel, and adding notes in the margins as needed.

  • The surviving artwork often includes written notes from Jack telling Stan what is going on. This example (from the Kirby Museum) is from issue 61:

     
  • Almost everything in the early FF has similarities with other Jack Kirby creations. In particular, the FF has many parallels with Challengers of the Unknown, a series Kirby had just produced for DC. It was about four friends who survived a plane crash and dedicated their lives to the good of mankind. Even the suits were the same. Issue 2 featured one of them crashing in a space ship and gaining various super powers. For full details see Dial B For Blog, probably the greatest comic blog ever.
    Challengers 2Dail B For Blog

  • In later years, Kirby stated plainly that he created it all. 

  • Stan openly admits to having a notoriously bad memory, so how he remembers it may not be as others remember it. 

  • Stan has a powerful motive for claiming credit: copyright law means that if Kirby created it then he (or his estate) would now be due hundreds of millions of dollars in royalties. But Stan is always the consummate company man, so as long as he claims credit (and takes his million dollar a year salary) Marvel is legally safe. 

  •  Kirby ignored most of what Stan wrote. This is from John Romita Sr: "I heard them plotting in other instances! [laughter] Jack would say, 'Stanley, I think I’ve got an idea. How ’bout this?' Stan would say, 'That’s not bad, Jack, but I’d rather see it this way.' Jack would absolutely forget what Stan said, and Stan would forget what Jack said. [laughter] I would bet my house that Jack never read the books after Stan wrote them; that’s why he could claim with a straight face that Stan never wrote anything except what Jack put in the notes. He was kidding himself; he never read them.

Jack Kirby was only paid as an artist, but he felt he should be paid more because he also contributed story ideas. He believed he had been promised payment and it never came, so he finally left Marvel. Years later, in the 1980s, Jack was fighting to get his original art back from Marvel, and the two sides became polarized. Some fans felt that clearly Stan did everything. Others felt that he had taken credit for Kirby's work. Still others felt that their contribution was equal. The battle rages to this day. So who is right?
 

The case against Stan Lee

Some people argue that Jack Kirby created everything. These quotes were assembled by Patrick Ford (see the comments section in the link):

Stan Goldberg:
” Stan would drive me home and we’d plot our stories in the car. I’d say to Stan,”How’s this? Millie loses her job.” He’d say,”Great! Give me 25 pages.” And that took him off the hook. One time I was in Stan’s office and I told him, “I don’t have another plot.” Stan got out of his chair and walked over to me, looked me in the face, and said very seriously, “I don’t ever want to hear you say you can’t think of another plot.” Then he walked back and sat down in his chair. He didn’t think he needed to tell me anything more.”
[interviewer: ” Sounds like you were doing most of the writing then.”]
“Well, I was.”One time I was in Stan’s office and I told him, “I don’t have another plot.” Stan got out of his chair and walked over to me, looked me in the face, and said very seriously, “I don’t ever want to hear you say you can’t think of another plot.” Then he walked back and sat down in his chair. He didn’t think he needed to tell me anything more.”

For contrast, Goldberg said this about Kirby:
“Jack would sit there at lunch, and tell us these great ideas about what he was going to do next. It was like the ideas were bursting from every pore of his body. It was very interesting because he was a fountain of ideas. One day Jack came in and had this 20-page story and proceeded to tell us he was having his house and studio painted. I asked, “Where did you draw the story?” Jack said,”I put my board on the stair banister, and drew it.”

Steve Ditko (letter to Comic Book Marketplace magazine published in issue #63)

"The fact is we had no story or idea discussion about Spider-Man books even before issue #26 up to when I left the book. Stan never knew what was in my plotted stories until I took in the penciled story, the cover, my -script and Sol Brodsky took the material from me and took it all into Stan’s office, so I had to leave without seeing or talking to Stan."

The legendary artist Wally Wood goes even further:

Did I say Stanley had no smarts? Well, he DID come up with two sure fire ideas… the first one was “Why not let the artists WRITE the stories as well as draw them?”… And the second was … ALWAYS SIGN YOUR NAME ON TOP …BIG”. And the rest is history … Stanley, of course became rich and famous … over the bodies of people like Bill [Everett] and Jack [Kirby]. Bill, who had created the character that had made his father rich wound up COLORING and doing odd jobs. 

Gil Kane's opinion of Stan Lee is apparently similar.

"On each page, from 1964 – 1970 next to every single panel Jack wrote extensive margin notes explaining to Lee what was taking place in the story. It took Jack about 2 weeks do do a single story, it may have taken Lee as little as 4 hours to add text to Jack’s art." (source)

In the attached image you can see how much storytelling kirby is doing

 

 

 

 

 

 

FF61-Kirby-created.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

I've said this before...maybe even in this thread...if the cover to #50 (sans Johnny's blurb) had been the cover to #48, #48 would be worth 3-5 times what it is.

You get the sense, from the covers, that Stan and Jack were a bit unsure as to who was the real focus of the story.

By the time they started work on #50, however, it was obvious. And that was before they started getting feedback about #48.

I don't know if Stan's ever said this, but I get the feeling that the Silver Surfer was among the top 3 of his favorite creations...and that's saying something.

 

worth taking a look at these

http://www.tcj.com/jack-kirby-interview/6/

https://comicbookhistorians.com/marvel-1960s-jack-kirby-stan-lee-steve-ditko-who-created-what/

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56,024 posts
1 hour ago, ORRGO THE UNCONQUERABLE said:

(snip)

;)

Sure. Lots of debate as to the extent of Stan's involvement. My comment was meant to be casual, not a definitive statement of Stan's contributions. 

:cloud9:

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, RockMyAmadeus said:

;)

Sure. Lots of debate as to the extent of Stan's involvement. My comment was meant to be casual, not a definitive statement of Stan's contributions. 

:cloud9:

 

oh for sure, I just found all this out not too long ago so im over eager to share ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
713 posts
Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, ORRGO THE UNCONQUERABLE said:

He definitely loved the Silver Surfer but like most silver age marvel he didn't create it, Jack Kirby did.  Well worth a look for folks to look into that Kirby in fact created almost everything along with ditko. Stan had vague ideas but these guys actually had the ideas. Kirby is quoted as saying Stan didn't know anything about norse mythology or mutations (the origin of their powers)  If you look at chasllengers of the unknown (a jack kirby creation) you see a similar quartet and even a story where the are hit with cosmic rays and get powers.  "Very often," Lee has said, "I didn't know what the hell [Kirby] was going to give me. I’d get some pages of artwork, and I wrote the copy and turned it into whatever story I wanted it to be ... It was like doing a crossword puzzle. I would try to figure out what the illustrations meant and then I would put in the dialog and captions.”

 

The early Fantastic Four said "written by Stan Lee, drawn by Jack Kirby." Nice and simple. In "Origins of Marvel Comics" and other interviews, Stan Lee indicates that he came up with the ideas and Jack Kirby drew them. But there are several big problems here:

  • Both before and after the early 1960s, Stan Lee was not known for producing great new ideas. Jack Kirby, on the other hand, was always producing big ideas, such as Captain America (co-created with Joe Simon) and the Fourth World series for DC (entirely on his own, immediately after leaving Marvel).

     

  • Stan Lee was just too busy to write everything, and would often just deliver the faintest outline for a ---script. In this letter from 1965 (printed in the book "The Stan Lee Universe") he outlines what became known as "the Marvel method:1965 letter

     

  • Stan would often would just phone in a suggestion and Jack would do the rest, delivering the pages for dialog to be added. For example, Stan said something like "this month have the Fantastic Four fight God" and Jack then created the Galactus saga, perhaps the greatest comic story ever. Famously, when Stan first saw the Silver Surfer he asked "who's this guy?" 
    "Very often," Lee has said, "I didn't know what the hell [Kirby] was going to give me. I’d get some pages of artwork, and I wrote the copy and turned it into whatever story I wanted it to be ... It was like doing a crossword puzzle. I would try to figure out what the illustrations meant and then I would put in the dialog and captions.” (Source) 
    Kirby would even add blue pencil notes for dialog. Stan would then add the actual dialog (which often contradicted what Jack wanted, but Jack seldom had time to read the finished comic). 

  • In 1968, the magazine "Castle of Frankenstein" #12 published a Stan Lee interview where he said “Some artists, such as Jack Kirby, need no plot at all. I mean I’ll just say to Jack, ‘Let’s let the next villain be Dr. Doom’… or I may not even say that. He may tell me. And then he goes home and does it. He’s so good at plots, I’m sure he’s a thousand times better than I. He just about makes up the plots for these stories. All I do is a little editing… I may tell him that he’s gone too far in one direction or another. Of course, occasionally I’ll give him a plot, but we’re practically both the writers on the things.” (emphasis added) In interviews such as that it seems that when Stan says "writing" he means adding the dialog to the finished art, but when Jack Kirby says "writing" he means deciding what happens from panel to panel, and adding notes in the margins as needed.

  • The surviving artwork often includes written notes from Jack telling Stan what is going on. This example (from the Kirby Museum) is from issue 61:

     
  • Almost everything in the early FF has similarities with other Jack Kirby creations. In particular, the FF has many parallels with Challengers of the Unknown, a series Kirby had just produced for DC. It was about four friends who survived a plane crash and dedicated their lives to the good of mankind. Even the suits were the same. Issue 2 featured one of them crashing in a space ship and gaining various super powers. For full details see Dial B For Blog, probably the greatest comic blog ever.
    Challengers 2Dail B For Blog

  • In later years, Kirby stated plainly that he created it all. 

  • Stan openly admits to having a notoriously bad memory, so how he remembers it may not be as others remember it. 

  • Stan has a powerful motive for claiming credit: copyright law means that if Kirby created it then he (or his estate) would now be due hundreds of millions of dollars in royalties. But Stan is always the consummate company man, so as long as he claims credit (and takes his million dollar a year salary) Marvel is legally safe. 

  •  Kirby ignored most of what Stan wrote. This is from John Romita Sr: "I heard them plotting in other instances! [laughter] Jack would say, 'Stanley, I think I’ve got an idea. How ’bout this?' Stan would say, 'That’s not bad, Jack, but I’d rather see it this way.' Jack would absolutely forget what Stan said, and Stan would forget what Jack said. [laughter] I would bet my house that Jack never read the books after Stan wrote them; that’s why he could claim with a straight face that Stan never wrote anything except what Jack put in the notes. He was kidding himself; he never read them.

Jack Kirby was only paid as an artist, but he felt he should be paid more because he also contributed story ideas. He believed he had been promised payment and it never came, so he finally left Marvel. Years later, in the 1980s, Jack was fighting to get his original art back from Marvel, and the two sides became polarized. Some fans felt that clearly Stan did everything. Others felt that he had taken credit for Kirby's work. Still others felt that their contribution was equal. The battle rages to this day. So who is right?
 

The case against Stan Lee

Some people argue that Jack Kirby created everything. These quotes were assembled by Patrick Ford (see the comments section in the link):

Stan Goldberg:
” Stan would drive me home and we’d plot our stories in the car. I’d say to Stan,”How’s this? Millie loses her job.” He’d say,”Great! Give me 25 pages.” And that took him off the hook. One time I was in Stan’s office and I told him, “I don’t have another plot.” Stan got out of his chair and walked over to me, looked me in the face, and said very seriously, “I don’t ever want to hear you say you can’t think of another plot.” Then he walked back and sat down in his chair. He didn’t think he needed to tell me anything more.”
[interviewer: ” Sounds like you were doing most of the writing then.”]
“Well, I was.”One time I was in Stan’s office and I told him, “I don’t have another plot.” Stan got out of his chair and walked over to me, looked me in the face, and said very seriously, “I don’t ever want to hear you say you can’t think of another plot.” Then he walked back and sat down in his chair. He didn’t think he needed to tell me anything more.”

For contrast, Goldberg said this about Kirby:
“Jack would sit there at lunch, and tell us these great ideas about what he was going to do next. It was like the ideas were bursting from every pore of his body. It was very interesting because he was a fountain of ideas. One day Jack came in and had this 20-page story and proceeded to tell us he was having his house and studio painted. I asked, “Where did you draw the story?” Jack said,”I put my board on the stair banister, and drew it.”

Steve Ditko (letter to Comic Book Marketplace magazine published in issue #63)

"The fact is we had no story or idea discussion about Spider-Man books even before issue #26 up to when I left the book. Stan never knew what was in my plotted stories until I took in the penciled story, the cover, my ---script and Sol Brodsky took the material from me and took it all into Stan’s office, so I had to leave without seeing or talking to Stan."

The legendary artist Wally Wood goes even further:

Did I say Stanley had no smarts? Well, he DID come up with two sure fire ideas… the first one was “Why not let the artists WRITE the stories as well as draw them?”… And the second was … ALWAYS SIGN YOUR NAME ON TOP …BIG”. And the rest is history … Stanley, of course became rich and famous … over the bodies of people like Bill [Everett] and Jack [Kirby]. Bill, who had created the character that had made his father rich wound up COLORING and doing odd jobs. 

Gil Kane's opinion of Stan Lee is apparently similar.

"On each page, from 1964 – 1970 next to every single panel Jack wrote extensive margin notes explaining to Lee what was taking place in the story. It took Jack about 2 weeks do do a single story, it may have taken Lee as little as 4 hours to add text to Jack’s art." (source)

In the attached image you can see how much storytelling kirby is doing

 

 

 

 

 

 

FF61-Kirby-created.jpg

Yes, as key-people no longer has any thing to loose, more and more people in key positions will go on record and add their pieces to what we all know: the raw creative fountain came through Kirby and Ditko. Lee used his managerial power at Marvel corp. to nail down as much creative ownership to himself as possible. But the lie wont last. 

The Sources you mention Orrg from this epoch of Marvel history is slowly stacking up evidence against Lee.

 

Edited by Mr bla bla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56,024 posts
8 hours ago, ORRGO THE UNCONQUERABLE said:

Stan has a powerful motive for claiming credit: copyright law means that if Kirby created it then he (or his estate) would now be due hundreds of millions of dollars in royalties. But Stan is always the consummate company man, so as long as he claims credit (and takes his million dollar a year salary) Marvel is legally safe. 

Without getting into it too much, I suspect the above is not even remotely true. I wouldn't claim to know the ins and outs of work-for-hire contracts from the 60s, but I don't believe this is how it works....at all.

Nether Stan nor Jack owned the characters, regardless of who claimed credit...Marvel did, which means Goodman did, under whatever shell companies Goodman was using at the time, until he sold the company to Cadence in 1968. And none of this was news to Jack, who had been working for Goodman off and on since 1940.  

I'm pretty sure that whoever "claims credit" is functionally meaningless to who actually owned the copyright IF the work was contractual work-for-hire (and it was.) Again, not a lawyer, but I believe the above statement is flat out wrong.

From the US Copyright office:

"Copyright law protects a work from the time it is created in a fixed form. From the moment it is set in a print or electronic manuscript, a sound recording, a computer software program, or other such concrete medium, the copyright becomes the property of the author who created it. Only the author or those deriving rights from the author can rightfully claim copyright.

There is, however, an exception to this principle: “works made for hire.” If a work is made for hire, an employer is considered the author even if an employee actually created the work. The employer can be a firm, an organization, or an individual"

https://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ09.pdf

 

(emphasis added)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
8 8