Archive | Spider-Man

Face Front, One Last Time

Though not unexpected, it is certainly sad to mark the passing of Stanley Martin Lieber, known the world over as Stan Lee, at age ninety-five.

“Silver Age Stan,” circa the mid-1970s

Much has already been written about Stan’s career while he was with us, and his obituary is appearing everywhere, including The New York TimesThe Hollywood ReporterThe Comics ReporterBBC News, and elsewhere.

I met Stan once, at a Boston convention, along with my good friend Mike Dudley. Stan was gracious to all, and personalized a bit of Fantastic Four memorabilia for Mike that had been previously autographed by both “King” Kirby and Joe Sinnott.

Stan in his later years, when the public-at-large knew him primarily through his movie cameo appearances.

And of course, in recent years I interviewed Stan in association with our own Amazing Spider-Man newspaper strip collections. Stan was forthright and upbeat, and as we wrapped up our twenty-minute session he told me, “You’re a good interviewer, and I wish you a lot of a lot of luck with those books.” A cynic might say he was only being polite, but it was a pleasant moment for me, to have a man whose work brought me years of enjoyment give his brief connection with me a thumbs-up.

It’s natural to want to speak of one’s own brushes with a passing Great, but it also seems right to me to use this occasion to let The Man speak for himself. Here is Stan, on the Soapbox that was familiar to so many of us in our formative years, delivering a message at least as relevant today as it was when it was first published, almost a half-century ago:

Speaking for everyone at The Library of American Comics, our most sincere sympathies are extended to Stan’s surviving brother, Larry Lieber (himself just recently retired from drawing the Spider-Man newspaper comic), and Stan’s daughter, Joan (J.C.) Lee.

Rest in peace, Mr. Lee.

Larry Lieber, May Your Webs Never Wiggle!

Back after too long an absence: deadlines are implacable (just finished proofing galleys for Steve Canyon Volume 9, which is chock-full of terrific material) and some family commitments placed their demands upon me (including a wedding in my wife’s family, which took me out-of-state earlier this month) … but the crunch is over, so at last I have a chance to offer a hearty “Salute!” to Larry Lieber, who stepped down in September from penciling The Amazing Spider-Man newspaper strip after an incredible run that spans more than three decades. I’ve selected ten examples of Larry’s work on the wall-crawler’s newspaper adventures, grouped loosely by theme. Peter Parker’s far-famed bad luck is on display in these three strips from January of 1981 and July and October of 2001:

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Barry One, Pearl Two

A few months ago in this space I showed you some photos of our LOAC books, arrayed on my bookshelves — you can see it here, if you’d like a refresher.

More recently, we received some impressive bookshelf photos from another comics historian, the estimable Barry Pearl. Check out this first of five shots of Mr. Pearl’s amassed comics collections and be prepared, like me, to resist the urge to whistle in appreciation …

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Episode 008 with special guest Jeff Kersten

Dean Mullaney is on vacation so LOAC Associate Editor Bruce Canwell joins Kurtis Findlay for another episode of the Library of American Comics & EuroComics Podcast!

In this episode, Bruce and Kurtis talk about Jerome K. Jerome Bloche, Vol. 2: The Paper People as well as upcoming projects like Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 5 and Steve Canyon, Vol. 9. Plus, Dick Tracy enthusiast and historian Jeff Kersten discusses the political subtext found between the panels of Dick Tracy and what we can expect in vol. 23 and 24!

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Briefly Noted

Bits and pieces picked up on the road between Star Hawks Volume 3 and Steve Canyon Volume 9 …

 

“Now It Can Be Told” Dept:  Here’s hoping you were able to tune in on Wednesday, May 16th, to see my wife, Krista, vie with two other competitors on Wheel of Fortune. Krista is an exceptional word-game player (it’s murder trying to beat her at Scrabble!), and her skills were on display throughout this episode — though the capricious Wheel can both giveth and taketh away. That said, I was — and am — very proud of her! Here’s her official publicity picture, taken by a show photographer:

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… You Might Just Say, “It’s Bleeding Cool!”

Up now at the popular comics newsite Bleeding Cool, an interview with yr hmbl svnt — but not just any interview, a three-part interview!

Ian Melton, who writes for the site, contacted me several weeks ago. As a fan of the Amazing Spider-Man comic strip, Ian had bought our reprints of the wall-crawler’s newspaper exploits and asked me if I’d like to talk. Glad to do so, but what I didn’t expect …

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Back to the Shelves

Several years ago we took some time in this space to show you what my LOAC bookshelf looked like. I shelve my books in alphabetical order by author, or by publisher where that makes more sense — for instance, while my William Saroyans are under “S”, my Fantastic Fours are under “M”, with the rest of my Marvel Comics collections. My Library of American Comics titles are therefore under “L,” and then shelved alphabetically in a logical way (well, logical to me, anyway), as you can see:

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