Sunday, November 4, 2007

kirby's manhunter '75

For our first Kirby post, here are some pages from First Issue Special #5 (1975) featuring Kirby's updated version of the Manhunter. The first version of this character was introduced by DC in the 1940s. After a couple of years, he was revamped for a first time by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon. In the early 1970s, another version of the character, by Archie Goodwin and Walt Simonson, appeared in a few awesome issues of Detective Comics, but was quickly killed off. First Issue Special was DC's way of giving potential series a trial by tire. If readers liked what they read, they were encouraged to write in and ask for more. Kirby did a few of these and attempted to again retool the 1940s version of the character, but it was never picked up. A couple of new versions of Manhunter emerged in the 1980s. One was a group of evil law enforcement robots from space. The other was a human, who somehow had something to do with these alien robots or some kind of cult. Or something. There's another version of the character now, a woman, but I've only seen a couple of issues and don't really know what her deal is.

Anyway, here's Kirby's 1975 take of the character. Great art, as always, and though the story is pretty simple, I think the writing here is quite good and very effective. Kirby was good at giving characters small moments that revealed their depth, or added some depth to the story, and you see that here with the older Mahunter's lamentations over his advancing age.

Check back later in the week for our next Kirby entry (Justice Inc., also from DC in 1975), and also our first Kinski film. Until then, stay negative...

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