Tuesday, September 15, 2015

An Atlas/Seaboard Cover Gallery

Many collectors fondly remember the short-lived Atlas/Seaboard comics line that debuted in late 1974 with its 23 different comic titles and five different black and white magazines. Martin Goodman's new venture launched a wide assortment of romance, western, war, mystery, horror, superhero, and romance titles offering the highest rates in the industry to bring talented creators to his new company. Other innovations for Atlas/Seaboard was the  return of artwork to artists and author rights to original character creations. These relatively luxurious conditions attracted such top names as Neal Adams, Steve Ditko, Russ Heath, John Severin, Alex Toth and Wally Wood, as well as such up-and-coming talents as Howard Chaykin and Rich Buckler. More importantly, these benefits helped initiate eventual change in the virtually completely work-for-hire industry, in which artists and writers had no royalties, rights to characters, and other rights routinely held in similar creative fields, such as book publishing and the music industry. But this progressive experiment in comics unfortunately folded in late 1975, with hardly any title surviving three issues, and just a few with four. These interesting covers and house ads, some unpublished, featured below demonstrate the little comic company that tried to take on DC and Marvel in the middle of the swinging seventies.