Lee & Kirby: Even More on FANTASTIC FOUR #1

This is a topic that never quite gets exhausted for me. Over this past weekend I had a need to revisit the pieces I had originally devoted to analyzing FANTASTIC FOUR #1 and the assorted art changes and adjustments that I detected therein. And in doing so, a number of new ideas struck me--including one … Continue reading Lee & Kirby: Even More on FANTASTIC FOUR #1

Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: Farewell to the King

In response to having serialized his final Fantastic Four story, the wonderful Leonardo Ortolani sent me over an additional tale very much in the same spirit which I had never seen before. He told me that he had done it in early 1994, right after Jack Kirby passed, and that it ran in a fanzine … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: Farewell to the King

Lee & Kirby: More Thoughts on FANTASTIC FOUR #1

I recently got an e-mail from Glen David Gold, the fine writer and Kirby enthusiast, who had a few additional thoughts about FANTASTIC FOUR #1 and how it may have been put together. We ended up corresponding a bit dissecting these questions, and so with Glen's permission, I'm going to post some of that correspondence … Continue reading Lee & Kirby: More Thoughts on FANTASTIC FOUR #1

Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Five

This is the back half of the fourth and concluding installment of the Final Fantastic Four story that Italian creator Leonardo Ortolani produced for the tenth issue of the Italian fanzine MADE IN USA in 1994. It was set immediately after the last FF issues produced by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby and was intended … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Five

Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Four

This is the fourth and final installment of the final Fantastic Four story that Italian creator Leonardo Ortolani produced for the tenth issue of the Italian fanzine MADE IN USA in 1994. It was set immediately after the final FF story produced by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby and was intended as a climactic finale … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Four

Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Three

This is the third installment of Italian creator Leonardo Ortolani's fan-created wrap-up of the FANTASTIC FOUR mythos created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. This chapter was published in the fanzine MADE IN USA #9 in 1993. We're getting to the meat of Leo's Alan Moore-style reinterpretation of the events of the series here. As … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Three

Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Two

This is the second installment of Italian creator Leonardo Ortolani's four-part fan-drawn final adventure of the Lee and Kirby Fantastic Four. It was originally published in the fanzine MADE IN USA #8 in Italy in 1993, and hasn't ever been made available in English as it was an unlicensed production. While the first episode was … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part Two

Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part One

This is a bit of a forgotten masterpiece, both because it saw limited distribution, and because it was published in a non-English speaking country. Between 1992 and 1994, in the pages of the Italian fanzine MADE IN USA, devoted to American comics, cartoonist Leonardo Ortolani (often better known by his simple signature, Leo) was such … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Ortolani: The Last Fantastic Four Story, Part One

Lee & Kirby & Goldberg & Hartley: The Unlikely Cameos of Jack Kirby

Reader Steven Thompson asked me a question about this recently, so this piece exists entirely due to his interest--you can thank him if you find anything here of value. There was a time-honored tradition of writers and artists inserting themselves into their stories, and Stan Lee and Jack Kirby were no different. In general, the … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Goldberg & Hartley: The Unlikely Cameos of Jack Kirby

Lee & Kirby & Ayers: More on the Strange Case of STRANGE TALES #119

Thanks to an observation by reader Ben Herman we can take a bit of a closer look at the question of the lead story in STRANGE TALES #119, which appeared to have been retooled from being a Hate-Monger adventure into one pitting the Human Torch against the new-but-similar villainy of the Rabble Rouser. After yesterday's … Continue reading Lee & Kirby & Ayers: More on the Strange Case of STRANGE TALES #119