Covered Beyond 365 – Finale!

Thanks to my loyal readers, particularly champion commenters Gerald and Bud, for sticking with me through this fun exercise. And of course thanks to Walter Durajlija for the original Covered, 365, which gave me lots of enjoyment and interest in keeping the concept going.

I haven’t come up with any really compelling idea for an encore. All I can say is tune in tomorrow and maybe I’ll post something. My constraints (unsurprisingly) are time and material. Without GCD I’d really be sunk.

As one might expect, the topic went out with a whimper as the number of titles dwindled. I didn’t want to finish off that way, so today I’m going all the way back to the beginning of the year, and recapping my favorites. If you have particular favorites from the past four months, do tell.

In picking my favorites I did try for variety, so these might not be my exact ranked absolute top, but I do love them all.

During the course of Covered, 365 I went from rejecting painted Four Colors to really loving the good ones. My favorites from Covered Beyond 365 are #421 and #632:

four_color421

four_color652spaulding

I especially love the high contrast, dark background painted covers.

I love so many of the Adams Detective covers that I had to pick and choose – like I said above, in truly absolute terms I might have picked another one or two of these as favorites. My tip-top choices are Detective #395 and #404:

detective395

detective404

I fought with myself about whether one reason for choosing #395 was its importance rather than the cover, but I can’t disentangle this, and it is certainly a great cover.

The other Batman cover that I just have to note is Cho’s Detective #1000:

d1000cho

I first saw this cover when choosing covers for this blog, and it grabbed hold of me and won’t let go. I am not the only one – there are multiple limited edition prints of this cover. The World of Doomed Olsens (or The World of 1,000 Olsens?) meets The Caped Crusader – bliss!

No real theme for the remainder, unless you consider recent Marvels to be a theme. The one DC is Adventure #437, my favorite of the generally great Aparo Spectre covers:

adventure437

ASM #567 was one of the most beautiful covers I saw:

asm567

While Uncanny X-Men #491 might be my choice as the most beautiful:

unc_x-men491

Avengers #687 is simply amazing:

avengers687

This was the top cover of many by Brooks that I picked. I went from never having heard of Brooks in January to being a huge fan.

The cosmic purple of Uncanny X-Men #473 was the one factor that brought it to the top:

unc_x-men473

I am a big fan of Davis, and his art plus the wonderful colors and the blackness of space bring FF #577 onto the list:

ff577

And finally I close with Acuna’s tour de force Captain America #615.1:

ca615p1acuna

I’m sad to see this exercise over, but there are so many covers out there that we don’t have to worry – just open up the Gerber or dial up the GCD, and start all over again! And this is just the covers! I still have about twenty feet of Omnibuses and other reprints to look at! The greatest hobby in the world!

Covered Beyond 365 – Marvel Legacy VI

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

Today I won’t make three, because we have run out of covers. I’m squeaking this one in under the wire, so rather than a big wrap-up, I think I’ll be brief and save that for tomorrow. I have an idea for that, although honestly still no idea what to do for an encore.

I’m afraid that neither of today’s picks will be unanimous winners, but I calls ’em as I sees ’em. And I sees ASM #826 as a fine and different cover:

asm826gleason

I think it might be the times influencing me, but Gleason really captures the spirit of NYC with this one. I hope NYC will look like this again real soon now.

ASM #833 is a great poster for the end of this exercise:

asm833adams

Yes it’s Art Adams, but hopefully not quite as repellent to my loyal readers as that set of FF covers. I love The Lizard climbing out of the window.

Drop by for the big wrap-up tomorrow. I can’t promise anything for the days after, but I’m still thinking of something that is both reasonably entertaining and not too time consuming – I have a day job…

 

Covered Beyond 365 – Marvel Legacy V

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

The penultimate day, and then onto a new adventure (?).

What do you think of ASM #815?:

asm815ottley

I think this one is worthy, but the goofiness might be a turnoff for some. However, aside from the dullness of the colors I love it. A seriously great Rhino, and seriously great mayhem.

More dullness in Ramos’s ASM #820, although clearly intentional to draw attention to Our Hero:

asm820ramos

Another great Rhino here, and exceptional b/w work by Ramos. I don’t think dialing down the colors was so necessary – this is a comic book, guys.

The American Dental Association endorses ASM #825:

asm825brown

Yuck! But fantastic work by Brown. The unintentional theme of the day emerges, all the way down to the artist’s name.

 

Covered Beyond 365 – Marvel Legacy IV

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

Time really does grow short now, I think we are down to the last three days of this topic. Another four months of great (or sort-of great) covers was fun. I’m still thinking about what to do after this. Maybe I’ll just vamp for awhile (“covers with a lot of blue in them”) until I think of something.

Anyway there are still a few Marvels that I liked. Thor #711 is stylistic but pretty cool:

thor711

This plays like a poster but presumably is a story (sorry but I haven’t kept up). Is the Phoenix wielding Mjolnir, or stealing it?

A real poster is Ross’s virgin ASM #802:

asm802ross

This is one for the truest of the True Believers.

Granov’s Galactus variant for ASM #813 is truly monumental:

asm813granov

This is another of those “what does he have to do with anything?” variants, so points off for that, but I am sucker for a great Galactus wherever, whenever.

Covered Beyond 365 – Marvel Legacy III

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

Brooks’s big wrap-around event kick-off cover for Avengers #675 is classic Brooks style:

avengers675brooks_nolent

Another poster – and how do they breathe in space anyway? – but beautiful work.

I think I like Larraz’s variant better;

avengers675larraz

I guess if you don’t like the more stylistic approach this isn’t for you, but I think anyone can appreciate the composition and colors.

Brooks turns in another beauty with Avengers #689:

avengers689brooks

Maybe not quite enough of the Goldblum for me.

Covered Beyond 365 – Marvel Legacy II

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

Today starts with a monumental and beautiful cover, Ribic’s version of FF #650:

ff650ribic

It seems like the doves are both for Alicia and Ben, and for Stan.

I don’t know what the deal was with these “Immortal” variants, but I think the Lee Human Torch one for FF #659 is the best of them:

ff659lee_immortal

Since I had more than three yesterday I’m going to leave it at two for today, to hold back some material as tomorrow also contains a matched pair.

Covered Beyond 365 – Marvel Legacy I

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

(Squeaking this post in under the wire for the day – with only a few days left, I’ll try to do better for the rest.)

We’ve run out of sensibly numbered covers, but I’m not out of gas, and there are more covers! The Marvel Legacy Numbering covers! Because of the way I searched for covers later in the game, I missed a lot of these, and we are not going to end this theme with The Hathaways.

Tracking these down was almost as unpleasant as looking at all of those Four Color photo covers, and comprehensiveness or consistency is out the window. I decided on these guidelines: I would start with FF #646 as lowest legacy number to consider, only look at issues with explicit legacy numbering (even if this shared the cover with a “new” number), and not duplicate any territory I had happened to cover earlier in this theme. A true fanboy would probably do better, but you get what you pay for.

We start as we should, with an extravaganza from The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine, FF #646 and #647:

ff646adams

ff647adams

I normally like to stay in issue order, but this one can’t be helped. Art Adams’s crazy detailed two-issue connector is a fantabulous poster. However it’s pretty awkward to have to break the spine of two books to get to look at this.

(I can’t keep it to just three covers today, as all of the FF #646 variants should be shown at once.)

Ross’s “virgin” Invisible Woman variant of #646 is my favorite of his four:

ff646nycc_ross

The Perez “remastered” variant is a third great poster:

ff646perez

And Quesada’s epic Galactus variant of #646 is beautiful with a world-class giant hand:

ff646quesada

 

Covered Beyond 365 – #1244 to ∞

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

This is it, the end of the line for the “true” numbering.

If this were really going to be my last post of this theme, I wouldn’t show any of these, but as I’m going to go back and hopefully show some great covers from the Marvel “legacy” numbering, I thought I’d firmly close out Four Color with a big nail in its coffin. I had to look at hundreds of photo covers, so my readers have to feel some of my pain. This is the Bizarro of this topic.

Yes hundreds of photo covers, but Four Color #1298 holds special honors:

four_color1298

Photo cover? Check. Bizarre? Check. Animal abuse? Check.

Covered, 365 and Beyond Covered 365 have been a showcase for great painted Four Color covers. Four Color #1336 is not one of them:

four_color1336

It just blows my mind that the artist could turn in such an excellent and yet weird and repellent depiction of the guy at the bottom. “WILL THESE LICE NEVER STOP??!!” And check out the face on the guy getting kicked.

Finally, we close out the longest running series of all time with the pitiful whimper of #1354:

four_color1354

Action or Detective had better run another twenty years so this one can eventually be placed in the dustbin of history.

Covered Beyond 365 – #1021 to #1243

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

This theme is definitely not going out with a bang. I am posting late in the day because after reviewing hundreds of Four Color photo covers, I am somewhat dejected to see it end like this. Dell, this is on your hands.

So today’s picks don’t really live up to “great”, but they’re the best of the bunch. Tomorrow is going to be downright weird, and that will be that. If that were really to be the end I’d be waxing more poetic, but I still plan to revisit some “legacy numbering” Marvels, which should have us end on a more positive note.

Four Color #1063 gives us the last interesting Santa Claus Funnies:

four_color1063

Nice painting and I like the contemporary-now-retro rocket sled.

We have to go forward a full one hundred issues to #1163 for my next pick:

four_color1163

The background and subject matter remind me of the beloved Tomahawk #116:

16646

Did Neal crib from the Four Color? Certainly by the time of the Tomahawk it wasn’t as cool to be an “Indian Fighter”.

Four Color #1243 is admittedly the worst of the three:

four_color1243

However, this is about as close to PCH as you are going to get from Four Color, so I think it is of interest just for that. It is really creepy, particularly the face on the voodoo master.

Covered Beyond 365 – #1005 to #1020

Three great comic book covers a day until we run out of covers or I run out of gas. Please chime in if I miss a great one, and if I concur (!), I’ll recap.

Action #1008 is not “my” Superman, but maybe that’s the point:

action1008

Yes, Gerald, Dekal’s cover is another poster, but a really good one. The background is what makes it for me.

JR JR’s Action #1017 grabs me:

action1017romita

This is another cover that probably isn’t for everyone, but I love JR JR’s style here and the great array of colors. There is definitely the story element, with each villain bringing a souvenir from their battle with their nemesis.

Detective #1020 is super grotesque:

detective1020walker

I just love detailed pieces, and that hideous Two-Face is about the most finely detailed that I’ve seen.