Post by BlackScorpionIII on Jan 7, 2015 14:24:12 GMT -6
I'm interested in letters printed in comics! Have any to share?
3 things of interest to me: 1. They were there, too! -There are some future comics writers/artists that were printed as kids, teens, and rookies. It's nice to see their interactions as readers before they become a part of the comic industry. 2. There's gold in them hills! -There are some insightful critiques and comments that are worth revisiting. 3. Look, Yahoo Answers is funny. -Sometimes old letters in comics are funny, too.
I thought about all of this after reading Amazing Spider Man 188 and finding a (-then 19 year old) Kurt Busiek letting loose on Marv Wolfman! [See attached]
It was always too expensive to mail letter to the US, so sadly I’ve got nothing in a printed comic. I do have a very cheesy letter and photo in a ZX Spectrum magazine from 1991, and a couple of letters in bass guitar magazines in the early 00s.
Post by honorbuddy on Jan 14, 2015 10:14:02 GMT -6
I love reading old Vertigo series and seeing some people writing in very weird stuff. I'm in the middle of reading Enigma and got excited when the series started getting a letters page halfway through.
Post by BlackScorpionIII on Jan 18, 2015 2:11:54 GMT -6
Just found a letter from artist Leonard Kirk (JSA!...and lots of other stuff now) published back in a 1987 issue of Batman. About 200 issues before he would take up artist duties for the title, he wrote this letter to point out a concern over a panel from Batman: Year One-
Dear Bat-People, (Especially you, Frank and Denny) I have a small bone to pick with you about BATMAN #406. Specifically the third panel of page 16 where it says, "...every member of Brandon's team, every cop, and everybody in the crowd were vaccinated against rabies for their bat bites. Never have so many had so much trouble sitting down." Those people should have been complaining about belly aches. The standard shots of the rabies anti-toxin injected into the abdomen. As a comic book fan, and hopefully a future artist and writer, I like to pay close attention to detail. Please don't get me wrong. Aside from this small portion, I have no complaints about the YEAR ONE series. It's one of the finest series I've ever had the pleasure of reading. The art is magnificent. Batman looks much more realistic, more like an athletic man in a tight costume than Mr. Universe with his skin painted gray. Thank you Frank, David, and everyone else responsible. Leonard Kirk 21 Wiley St St. Catherines, Ontario Canada L2R 4E6
Busiek's Spidey letter (-previous post above) was pretty intimidating to read. Seeing such a young Kurt Busiek call out Wolfman for exploiting death for spikes in sales was impressive. This Kirk letter, however, was relieving to read. I'm glad that some people I love had some petty complaints- let's me know they're human, too.
Post by BlackScorpionIII on Feb 2, 2015 14:24:23 GMT -6
Remember Jason Todd's "dial-a-death"? I'm not a fan of that moment. There have been a lot of low points in comics history, but the turnout to murder a kid is not something anyone should feel to good about. And when Denny declares "The Great Robin Experiment" hype stunt a success in boosting sales, I think we saw a bad bad precedent for the decades to come.
"...I voted to kill off Jason because...Hey, this is only fiction." -Steve Case, Address Withheld [*<--- of course this dude withheld his address- MURDERER!]
"I feel I must dial the KILL number many times, exhausting my resources, until Robin is dead." John Britt, Miami FL
"Kill him off before he stagnates again...Being totally logical I would kill him, since the ensuing storyline would be awesome! Batman and the Joker in all-out war, and Bruce Wayne in pieces." Marc Dube, Calgary Alberta
Post by BlackScorpionIII on Feb 12, 2015 22:07:44 GMT -6
What's it like to be a colorist in comics and want to contribute to the story? I was reading Avengers #220 and saw a letter from a long-time industry guy: John A. Wilcox (Excalibur, Amazing Spider-Man, Marvel Comics Presents). Wilcox had his opportunity to write for the occasional title outside of the big two (three?) like Archie, Elvira, and Mighty Mouse. This 1982 letter finds Wilcox asking for Jim Shooter to revisit the roster and consider adding more diversity to the lineup:
Dear Jim, AVENGERS #216, along with last issue, was(were?) the best of the recent series of stories you've written. However, that's not the point of my letter. What I am writing concerns the line-up (once again in flux). What the book now needs is some additional diversity. Tigra was a welcome change, but with her departure (and Yellowjacket's), you again have spaces to fill. Once again, I have some suggestions. Jocasta. Admittedly, she has very little personality, but that in itself is interesting, as we can see her acquire one over a number of issues. Hawkeye. That brash son-of-a-gun adds spice to any book. The Black Panther. He is the most deserving of all to be again an Avenger. The best issues in the series have featured him. The Black Knight. I know that he'd be hard to portray, but he's such a striking character, that he would really give the roster a lift. I'm not trying to shove these ideas down your throat. They're merely suggestions...do with them what you will. Okay? John A. Wilcox Westport, CT
I think what I'm amazed by is this guy being in the middle of the comics biz about 5 years later, but not getting the chance to play with his favorites. I found his Twitter (@johnawilcox) and website (progsheet.com) and the guy just seems really ...INTO things! Whether he's interviewing Ritchie Blackmore (Rainbow!) or making fan pages for his local rollergirl squad, the guy just seems like a fan that is always on the fringes of the things he loves.
Post by BlackScorpionIII on Mar 18, 2015 0:27:18 GMT -6
I may have found something amazing: The moment that the code was cracked on how to write a super-team story! Charlton Comics writer and comic strip illustrator Charles T. Smith had this letter printed in a 1968 issue of Justice League of America. He pitched an idea that I thought was obvious (-by today's standards) but definitely was not (-when looking at any older JLA issue). Ya don't send the whole team at a problem. You use their specialties. Write villains and scenarios that target particular abilities and limitations of the team. That's exactly what he suggested.
Dear Editor: After reading a recent JLA Mail Room-Extra, I got the impression that you might like some ideas on a method to determine which hero goes where to fight who in each story. Thinking it over, I came upon an idea that is simple, and I hope usable. You are aware that each member has his own weaknesses and special abilities. Also, each villain usually depends upon some peculiar environment in some way (attacking from space, using windstorms, etc.) These two facts provide the crux of my idea. Each hero's ability enables him to work in an environment different from most of the others, as illustrated in the following chart. Abilities used most uniquely in: (1) Outer Space: Superman and Green Lantern, because of their almost unlimited powers. (2) The Air: Wonder Woman, Martian Manhunter, Hawkman, because of their flying abilities. (3) The Sea: Obviously, Aquaman. (4) The Land: Green Arrow, The Flash, Batman, and The Atom, for different reasons. Some of the heroes can be further classified as to the best defense and offense methods: (5) Martian Manhunter: Infiltration of enemy ranks via invisibility and identity-assuming ability. (6) Atom: Least effective in actual combat; however his shrinking ability enables him to enter buildings or sneak up behind villains for distraction purposes. (7) Batman: The world's greatest detective, plus a great deal of technical knowledge. (8) Hawkman: Coming from a more advanced culture, has greater than normal scientific knowledge and advanced weaponry. Now then, once the author has a villain in mind, why not choose the heroes by their specialized abilities to work in different environments? For example, the chairman of the J:A receives an appeal of aid. A villain attacks the earth from a moon-base by disrupting the tides. The heroes would be chosen thusly: Since Superman and Green Lantern are the most powerful, they would be sent to the moon-base. Aquaman would be the best one to try to calm the tides because of his knowledge of the sea and its forces. Perhaps Hawkman would join him, since on Thanagar, climate control is an everyday occurrence. If the villain manifests his power through agents on earth, then: Batman would use his detecting ability to identify those agents. A combination of the others would be involved in pursuing and apprehending the agents. If distance and time were involved, Flash would use his super-speed. If unusual weapons were involved, Green Arrow would nullify them with his trick arrows. Perhaps the idea has some merit. -Charles T. Smith, St. Paul Minn. (Merit enough, at least, to merit negative and positive reactions from your fellow readers- which will serve as our guide-lines. -Editor)
The editor's response is hesitant about this, right? Is Charles T. Smith responsible for our modern template of superteam stories? It was not uncommon to see entire teams forced into underwater gear or space gear. We may owe a very large debt to Charles T. Smith.