MTVG-Kirby-OpEd

Jack Kirby is probably the single most important figure in the development of American comic books. His career spanned seven decades, and though he is best-known for his work on super-hero titles, he defied simple categorization and worked in nearly every style of comic: horror, science fiction, romance, comedy, fantasy, funny animal, crime, war, western, and probably some others that I'm forgetting.

He didn't just define a single genre: he constantly defined (and re-defined) the entire comics medium, right up until his death in 1994. So in honor of his 96th birthday, we here at MTV Geek have assembled A Week Of Jack Kirby, a series of posts celebrating the life, work and inspiration of the man that Stan Lee dubbed simply 'The King'.

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MTVG-KirbyMuseum

Jack Kirby is probably the single most important figure in the development of American comic books. His career spanned seven decades, and though he is best-known for his work on super-hero titles, he defied simple categorization and worked in nearly every style of comic: horror, science fiction, romance, comedy, fantasy, funny animal, crime, war, western, and probably some others that I'm forgetting.

He didn't just define a single genre: he constantly defined (and re-defined) the entire comics medium, right up until his death in 1994. So in honor of his 96th birthday, we here at MTV Geek have assembled A Week Of Jack Kirby, a series of posts celebrating the life, work and inspiration of the man that Stan Lee dubbed simply 'The King'.

Jack Kirby was born and raised in the Lower East Side of New York City.  It's the same neighborhood I've lived in for the past eleven years, and I've spent many an afternoon wandering around, squinting my eyes, trying to envision what the world must have looked like in the tenement era, when young Jack (or Jacob Kurtzberg, as he was then known) walked these streets and dreamed of being an artist.

And I'm clearly not the only one.  The Jack Kirby Museum & Research Center was founded in 2005, to "promote and encourage the study, understanding, preservation and appreciation of the work of Jack Kirby".  And while the Museum has operated as a purely digital entity up until this point, publishing a number of scholarly essays and blogs about The King's life and work, and offering an extensive online library of scanned original art, they are now raising funds for a physical museum location in the Lower East Side. So, as part of our 'Week Of Jack Kirby' celebrations, I spoke to Museum trustee Randolph Hoppe about the Kirby Museum's history, and their plans for the future.
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MTVG-STheader

Jack Kirby is probably the single most important figure in the development of American comic books. His career spanned seven decades, and though he is best-known for his work on super-hero titles, he defied simple categorization and worked in nearly every style of comic: horror, science fiction, romance, comedy, fantasy, funny animal, crime, war, western, and probably some others that I'm forgetting.

He didn't just define a single genre: he constantly defined (and re-defined) the entire comics medium, right up until his death in 1994. So in honor of his 96th birthday, we here at MTV Geek have assembled A Week Of Jack Kirby, a series of posts celebrating the life, work and inspiration of the man that Stan Lee dubbed simply 'The King'.

Jack Kirby is well-renowned for his sequential work, but it sometimes goes unmentioned that he was also an unparalleled cover designer.  His covers for Marvel practically leapt off the shelf and into reader's hands, bursting with an energy and innovation that dwarfed all competitors.  I've looked at a LOT of Kirby covers in my life, and while I can't come up with an absolute ranking of his best-ever Marvel covers (my opinions change moment-to-moment, depending on which series I've read most recently), here's ten of my all-time favorites.

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JackKirby

Jack Kirby is probably the single most important figure in the development of American comic books. His career spanned seven decades, and though he is best-known for his work on super-hero titles, he defied simple categorization and worked in nearly every style of comic: horror, science fiction, romance, comedy, fantasy, funny animal, crime, war, western, and probably some others that I'm forgetting.

He didn't just define a single genre: he constantly defined (and re-defined) the entire comics medium, right up until his death in 1994. So in honor of his 96th birthday, we here at MTV Geek have assembled A Week Of Jack Kirby, a series of posts celebrating the life, work and inspiration of the man that Stan Lee dubbed simply 'The King'.

Today is Jack Kirby's 96th birthday, and more than a quarter-century after his first published work, his spirit permeates every corner of the comic industry. He possessed a seemingly unlimited imagination, creating new characters, concepts, and genres with every stroke of his pencil. And today, a truly staggering cross-section of the comics community have joined us to offer words and pictures that give an idea of what this one man, and his work, have meant to them. In fact, there were so many people contributing, we've had to break things up into several posts – for the entire series, click here.

And now, here's more Kirby love!

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MTVG-Kirby4

Jack Kirby is probably the single most important figure in the development of American comic books. His career spanned seven decades, and though he is best-known for his work on super-hero titles, he defied simple categorization and worked in nearly every style of comic: horror, science fiction, romance, comedy, fantasy, funny animal, crime, war, western, and probably some others that I'm forgetting.

He didn't just define a single genre: he constantly defined (and re-defined) the entire comics medium, right up until his death in 1994. So in honor of his 96th birthday, we here at MTV Geek have assembled A Week Of Jack Kirby, a series of posts celebrating the life, work and inspiration of the man that Stan Lee dubbed simply 'The King'.

Today is Jack Kirby's 96th birthday, and more than a quarter-century after his first published work, his spirit permeates every corner of the comic industry. He possessed a seemingly unlimited imagination, creating new characters, concepts, and genres with every stroke of his pencil. And today, a truly staggering cross-section of the comics community have joined us to offer words and pictures that give an idea of what this one man, and his work, have meant to them. In fact, there were so many people contributing, we've had to break things up among several posts – for the entire series, click here.

And now, here's more Kirby love!

Read More...

MTVG-Jack

Jack Kirby is probably the single most important figure in the development of American comic books. His career spanned seven decades, and though he is best-known for his work on super-hero titles, he defied simple categorization and worked in nearly every style of comic: horror, science fiction, romance, comedy, fantasy, funny animal, crime, war, western, and probably some others that I'm forgetting.

He didn't just define a single genre: he constantly defined (and re-defined) the entire comics medium, right up until his death in 1994. So in honor of his 96th birthday, we here at MTV Geek have assembled A Week Of Jack Kirby, a series of posts celebrating the life, work and inspiration of the man that Stan Lee dubbed simply 'The King'.

Today is Jack Kirby's 96th birthday, and more than a quarter-century after his first published work, his spirit permeates every corner of the comic industry. He possessed a seemingly unlimited imagination, creating new characters, concepts, and genres with every stroke of his pencil. And today, a truly staggering cross-section of the comics community have joined us to offer words and pictures that give an idea of what this one man, and his work, have meant to them. In fact, there were so many people contributing, we've had to break things up among several posts – for the entire series, click here.

So, without further ado, let's start the celebrations!

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ASM_2_New_Hood

By Katherine Erlikh

And it's yet another wonderful day in Nerdvana, folks; so tighten your seatbelts, and prepare yourselves - The Daily Geek is coming... oh, wait, it's already here.

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88 years young on December 28th, Stan Lee has done it all. He's been at one time or another a comic book writer, editor, publisher, and president -- as well as an actor, producer, and all-around TV personality. Lee is probably one of the biggest celebrities hailing from the comic book industry in the world, with near-universal recognition. And it is exactly that ability to cross over fandoms and touch the general populace that has helped make not only Marvel Comics a household name, but comic books as well.

Born Stanley Lieber in 1922, he grew up at the height of the Great Depression in New York City. Lee was a hard worker, and one of his first writing jobs was obituaries for a news service. He became an assistant at the new Timely Comics in the 1940s, and made his comic-book writing debut with a text piece entitled "Captain America Foils the Traitor's Revenge" in Captain America Comics #3; he signed the work "Stan Lee," hoping to reserve his real name for more literary writings. Read More...

MTV Geek wishes the prolific Keith Giffen a very happy birthday today. Where do we begin when listing his many accomplishments and contributions to comic books? His epic run on Legion of the Superheroes? The creation of the character Lobo? The side-splitting antics of Ambush Bug and the Justice League? His work on countless titles, such as Doctor Fate, Suicide Squad, 52, Doom Patrol, T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents, and XO Manowar?

Giffen started his comic book career in the 1970s, with the black-and-white series "The Sword and the Star" in Marvel Preview. He then went on to draw the Defenders, gaining a fan following in the process. He began drawing and then also writing the title Legion of the Superheroes, a run that would span the 80s and 90s, and co-created the late 80s Justice League International along with JM DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire. Since then, he has written and/or drawn literally scores of different comics, including 52, Countdown to Final Crisis, and the Marvel Annihilation event.

A Jack Kirby influence is often very present in Giffen's art. In an interview with "Kirby Collector" magazine, Giffen had this to say about the impact of Jack: "Jack was something that grew on me, like a taste for martinis. It was only after I began I realized all the work he had done and all the memories I had that were locked into him that I began to understand how important he was."

Below are a few of the many covers of comics featuring Giffen's work: Read More...

MTV Geek wishes a very happy birthday to Greg Rucka, the multiple-Eisner and Harvey-award-winning writer of such books as Queen & Country, Gotham Central, Batwoman: Detective Comics, Wonder Woman, Action Comics, Wolverine, Whiteout, and many more.

Rucka got his start writing the popular Atticus Kodiak novels, drawing on his real-life experience as an EMT to give the books their realism. He then burst onto the comics scene with the critically acclaimed Whiteout from Oni, followed by Queen & Country. It was at Oni that Rucka established what would become one of his trademarks: a focus on strong female characters. He continued that focus with comics like Gotham Central (with Ed Brubaker), Wonder Woman, and a critically lauded Batwoman run in Detective Comics with J.H. Williams III.

His latest work is the Queen & Country novel “The Last Run,” and a Captain America story in the Marvel anthology “I Am An Avenger.” Below is a cover gallery from some of his most popular series: Read More...

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