Sunday, June 29, 2008
After reading the fascinating "Strange And Stranger: The World Of Steve Ditko" by Blake Bell this past weekend, I have decided that I like Ditko just a little bit more than his fellow Marvel Comics legend Jack Kirby. And I'll tell you why.
10. I Love The Slightly More Kooky Types
They are always more interesting.
9. I Met Ditko
Granted, he only opened the door a sliver to take the envelope I was delivering to him. But, now I too am part of the legend.
8. He Shamelessly Let His Personal Philosophy Send His Book Off The Rails
The story in Bell's book of how Ditko let his Ayn Randian viewpoint virtually hijack Spider-Man is a must-read. See point #10.
7. He Did His Time Doing Soft-Core Fetish Art
Kirby might have had to do romance comics, but Ditko had him beat.
6. His Acid-Trip Imagery Was Better Than Kirby's
Yes Kirby had those trippy collages. But, Ditko's Dr. Strange backgrounds were hardcore.
5. He Created That Iconic Peter Parker "Spidey Half-Face" Shot
For that alone he deserves an Eisner, as well as a full pension.
4. He Refuses To Do Work That Goes Against His Ideals
Which allowed him to turn down a Batman assignment for having "supernatural elements," for example, while drawing "Chuck Norris And His Karate Kommandos" was perfectly ok.
I'll take Ditko's impossibly-jointed, flexible fingers over Kirby's squared-off hands any day.
2. Shade The Changing Man, The Creeper, Blue Beetle, Captain Atom, and The Question
No, they're not The Hulk, Thor, and the rest. They're just f**king awesome.
1. Speedball And Squirrel Girl
"Strange And Stranger: The World Of Steve Ditko" is currently available from Fantagraphics Press