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The Top 75 Most Iconic Covers in DC History – Day 8

Okay, in case you didn’t see the introduction, the concept is that each day up to and including the 23rd of November, I’ll be posting four iconic covers from DC Comics’ 75-year history. On the 23rd, you folks will get a chance to pick your Top 10 out of the 90 choices. I’ll tabulate the votes and I’ll debut the Top 75 Most Iconic Covers in DC Comics History on November 30th. In the meantime, feel free to e-mail me (bcronin@comicbookresources.com) with suggestions for covers for me to use!

Here’s the next four covers! And click here for the master list of all the covers posted so far!

35 Comments

Happy to see Wonder Woman show up! Maybe one of her in the white jumpsuit for the future.

Sadly, while she is my favorite hero, I don’t think that she has any covers that I would put in my top 10 most iconic for the whole company.

That “STOP!” on the Flash cover has always bugged me. It looks like it was drawn in with a magic marker…

I am totally not liking this iconic cover series. It is so easy to brand 1st issues, new character introduction and a great comic story as having an iconic cover, when in fact the cover is just OK, which I think is happening quite a few times.

Maybe for the next collection, there could be a “Great Cover, Bad Story” and the reverse “Bad Cover, Great Story”.

I think that was maybe addressed, annmarie. The point is not necessarily Best Cover (maybe because that’s so insanely subjective; I don’t know), but iconic, by the dictionary definition, just means the cover(s) that is most associated with the character/DC comics in people’s minds. And if you say, “quick, think of a Batman/Flash/etc cover,” first issue covers would come up a lot.

Again, that doesn’t necessarily even mean they’re good, just really recognizable. And there are lots of good, recognizable covers here, although for the first time, I can’t really see any of these making the final top ten. I’m kinda familiar with all of them, but none are the ones I’d think of first.

I love how Batman is gazing lovingly into Robin’s eyes.

Now, if Wonder Woman was punching out Hitler on the cover of her No. 1 issues, THAT would be something.

This is the weakest day for me so far. None of these will get my vote

Oops – That anonymous was me.

I never read a single issue of Titans, but I know that cover. I’ve seen the Batman cover about 200,000 times. I have no idea what Barry is talking about in that cover, and I’ve never seen the actual comic before in real life, but I feel like that image has been burned in my mind nonetheless. However, if there wasn’t a No. 1 on the Wonder Woman cover, I never would have even been able to guess why it was included. So I guess I agree with the first three, and feel sorta bad that I had no idea what Wonder Woman #1 looked like before this.

For Wonder Woman, I think her first appearance cover for Sensation Comics No. 1 may be more recognizable than WW #1.

have to go with the flash cover mostly because it was done by a legend who is long gone and that always was curious over why flash would say he would die if someone did not buy that issue. a little breaking of the fourth wall.

Tom Fitzpatrick

November 9, 2009 at 7:45 am

That Titanic cover of The New Teen Titans by George Perez gets my vote.

Not blown away by any of these but Id take Teen Titans out of the four

Hmm, I’d say that the Flash and the Titans covers are iconic to me, while the Batman and Wonder Woman are not. When picturing ‘iconic’ for various characters (Shut up, you do it to sometimes!) the Titans cover is the first of theirs that comes to mind, and the Flash is one of the first for him.

The Batman #1 cover? Historic, but not one that jumps out. The Wonder Woman #1 cover is a bit more (it’s the one Alex Ross referenced in a panel of Kingdom Come, right?) but still doesn’t have that ring of immediacy that is one of my personal benchmarks for ‘iconic’.

Teen Titans is the only one I’d agree with.

Yep, there’s better ones out there, nope, and yep.

Teen Titans by a hair over Batman, Flash finishes 3rd followed Wonder Woman who limps past the finish line.

No top 10 entries here….

When I think of historic (Golden Age) Wonder Woman, this is the cover that first pops to mind:

http://www.comics.org/issue/3288/cover/4/?style=default

It really encompasses her trailblazing nature. (1943, people! That had to be an eye-catcher.) Having said that, her first appearance in Sensation, from 1941, would also do.

When I think of modern-day Wonder Woman, there’s always Perez, of course — he did a great job redefining her, post Crisis — although I think more about his writing and interior art. What cover springs to mind? Hands-down, this gorgeous image from Brian Bolland’s kickass run of WW covers (which became a poster and, I think, also a statue):

http://www.comics.org/issue/52672/cover/4/?style=default

That Flash cover was the only one out of these that I was waiting to see.

Funny, the Titans one doesn’t feel that iconic. As “team-rushing-towards-the-reader” covers go, it feels a bit generic. I guess it would feel more iconic to me if it had some freaky angle or something to make it stand out (like Giant-Sized X-men does).

Does anyone else think it looks like Changeling is humping a green tiger?

The Titans cover has been homaged at least NINE times, it’s a no-brainer. Same with the Batman and the Flash covers.

Wonder Woman #1 is the most iconic Wonder Woman cover out there, but I’ll admit that the pickings are slim (Wonder Woman #1 is a good deal more notable than the cover for Sensation Comics #1, which is a real shame – the first cover appearance of Wonder Woman and it really doesn’t have much of a place in comic history? That’s pretty darn rough).

I wish there were more covers like the Flash one nowadays.

That Bolland cover, Rebis, would definitely make a Top Five Most Iconic Wonder Woman Covers list!

A truly iconic Wonder Woman cover should have her tied up and sitting on a missile.
Please.

That “STOP!” on the Flash cover has always bugged me. It looks like it was drawn in with a magic marker…

I know what you mean Andrew. Every time I look at my copy of that I forget it’s supposed to be that way. For the first instance the thought “that sucks… it’s all marked up” goes through my mind. Then, I suddenly think, “man that is actually pretty cool”… very pop arty. Go figure…

I just noticed, compare Robin’s thigh to the size of his kneecap on that first cover.

What the crap?!

The worst thing about the Flash cover to me isn’t the word “STOP!” although it is pretty bad I admit. The worst thing about it is how deformed and meaty the Flash’s hand is.

I must agree this is a lackluster bunch. The Titans and Batman covers are generic. That WW#1 cover makes me wonder what World War II battle consisted of American horse-mounted cavalry (the one I know about, the celebrated last charge of the 26th, they were mostly Philippino). Even the Flash cover comes from a period where I thought the magazine had lost its magic.

But of them all, if I have to choose, I’ll go with the Flash.

"O" the Humanatee!

November 9, 2009 at 11:35 pm

@chad: Carmine Infantino is still alive.

I don’t think the idea that ‘homaged a lot’ = ‘iconic’ necessarily holds. Artists don’t necessarily homage a cover because of its own composition, or its particular rendering of its subject. They can do so for a number of other reasons, including relevance to the story in their own comic, historic relevance, or simply for a joke. I suspect that, for a number of these #1 issues, they are homaged because of their historial relevance at least as much as for their iconic status.

If that’s the case, then claiming that a cover is iconic because it’s homaged isn’t necessarily different from claiming it’s iconic because it’s historic.

Having said that, I can see arguments for the Batman and Flash covers being iconic. Titans and WW are respectively generic and forgettable, I’m afraid. Having said that, I think that yesterday’s Sandman cover was iconic simply because it represented how Sandman covers generally looked.

don’t think the idea that ‘homaged a lot’ = ‘iconic’ necessarily holds. Artists don’t necessarily homage a cover because of its own composition, or its particular rendering of its subject. They can do so for a number of other reasons, including relevance to the story in their own comic, historic relevance, or simply for a joke. I suspect that, for a number of these #1 issues, they are homaged because of their historial relevance at least as much as for their iconic status.

They’re historical relevance is exactly what MAKES them iconic. Iconic does not necessarily mean great rendering or great composition. It means a whole host of things, including historical relevance, recognizability, and being homaged a lot regardless of reason. It doesn’t matter WHY a cover is homaged a lot, just the fact that it is.

If that’s the case, then claiming that a cover is iconic because it’s homaged isn’t necessarily different from claiming it’s iconic because it’s historic.

Yeah, they’re iconic because they’re historic.

The idea that ANY of these covers would be iconic if they weren’t historic is, well, not a good one.

That is a strong batch of covers.

Wonder Woman #1 is a really strong image. You gotta love a woman on horse back with a lasso leading a charge into a machine gun nest.

The Flash cover is also awesome for its early breaking of the fourth wall. That sort of weirdness really is the essence of the Flash to me.

The Batman and Robin image may be the best drawing, but I thought that it was an homage of something else.

Finally, that Teen Titans cover. The image itself has not aged very well. However, you have got to love that line-up.

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