Saturday, December 21, 2013

Unpublished Gems: The Silver Surfer

Many times when you see an unpublished cover there are just some slight changes from the original published version. However on this  great John Buscema Silver Surfer cover for issue #7,  August, 1969, we see a real dramatic change for the better. Rather than having our sky-rider of the spaceways a victim of Baron Frankenstein on the unpublished version featured below, the Silver Surfer is appears victorious in his attack against the mad scientist. Other than Jack Kirby, John Buscema is the penciller most closely associated with the Silver Surfer and his work on this particular run is one of the most celebrated in the history of comics. Though the subject matter of the two covers is essentially the same with  characters and caption, the second version's composition is much stronger showcasing a larger image of our stellar hero. Studying an unpublished cover as compared to the published one gives us great insights into the artist's creative process as well as the standpoint of Marvel's editors of the time. As you can see, the creators first chose to depict a scene within the story where the Silver Surfer is about to be replicated. Fortunately there was a change of heart by someone at the "House of Ideas" and they decided to run the printed version above, though both pieces are great, I think they made the right choice on this occasion. 

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