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The Top 75 Most Iconic Covers in DC History – Day 18

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!


I have never seen that second one. Ever.

The homage cover by Neal Adams is more famous, but since folks thought All-Star #4 was the more iconic cover than All-Star #36, then I figured that the original cover should make the list (the Adams cover was so famous that the issue, which was itself a reprint, was later reprinted!!!).

If you haven’t seen that cover or variations on the theme, you haven’t seen many comics.

I haven’t seen that second one either, and I’ve seen many, many comics!

But not a lot of DC golden/silver age comics.

Looks iconic, though, so I ain’t arguin’.

That Mazzucchelli cover will be getting my vote. None of the others will

I’ve seen a lot of comics but I’ve never seen that Aquaman cover. I have seen #2 though.

as much as i went for the all star orignal cover which that was fast. got to go with the batman cover of a young bruce near the bodies of his parents the event that birthed the dark knight

The Batman cover gets my vote.

The Brainac guy should be ashamed of himself for wearing that costume.

The lettering on those 60-70’s Aquaman comics were always so fly.

That’s right, fly.

“If you haven’t seen that cover or variations on the theme, you haven’t seen many comics.”

I have not only seen many comics, I have also read a lot of books about comics. All I’m saying is that I have never seen THAT cover before, ever.

I think everyone should now be forced to open their comments with “I have seen a lot of comic book covers.”

Oooh, better yet!

Before commenting, everyone should have to state how many comic book covers they have seen. And no estimations, dammit, I need cold hard numbers!

“I see dead comic book covers.”

I have seen precisely 11,226 comic book covers in all my years on this Earth, also 468 graphic novel covers and 57 of those little dealies they print in Mexico. I also drew 12 nifty pictures of Wolverine when I was 7, and put numbers in the corners.

And I therefore say with AUTHORITY!…These all deserve to be here.

I think it’s fair to say that while all of these are iconic, Batman 404 is the only one that has a reasonable chance of making the top 10.

I’m counting, dammit, I’m counting.

And I HAVE seen that Aquaman cover before. It’s a beauty.

I have seen ALL comic book covers before, and I have never seen #2.

(Except in the poll above this post on the main page.)

Love the Cardy Aquaman cover.

Batman Year One.

The aquaman cover is not iconic, but damn if it isn’t amazing.

I know I should know this, but what’s the significance of #1 – first appearance of Braniac? It just doesn’t look that impressive or iconic to me, but I might feel differently if I understood its significance. Also, I hadn’t seen #4 before, but I like it a lot.

Yeah, first Brainiac.

Within a year, Action Comics introduced Brainiac, Supergirl and the adult Bizarro (plus Metallo).

Not bad for a year’s worth, especially when very few new characters were being introduced at the time.

Since my pick of the Batman: Year One cover is now listed, I’ll add one to yesterday’s list of most iconic covers yet to be on the list with:

Zero Hour #4.

You’ll have better luck with your other picks, Phil. ;)

DC considered the Brainiac cover iconic enough to use on the cover of the SHOWCASE PRESENTS volume that included it:


Is that Aquaman cover by Nick Cardy?


If anyone has a cleaner copy of the front cover of the DC 100-Page Super Spectacular, please drop me a line.


J’onn’s head looks really weird on the 100 page SS.

I’d like to add Wonder Woman #72 from the 1987 series, Batman #11 from the original series and of course All-Star Comics #3 for consideration in your list.

First, they are all incredible; second, the #2 cover ,give Dick Giordano as much credit as Mr. Adams on that one! Have to agree with Dan Fleming about the Aquaman cover, and have been waiting for a while for #3…

BUT actually going with #1 .

The iconic cover of Batman: Year One is the extreme spotlit close-up of Batman on the cover of the collection. Flat colors, simple rendering, turning Batman into an… icon.

The other three… nice, but not memorable.

Here’s the crux of this debate: iconic can mean:
Great design
Great story inside
Great illustration of what the character(s) is/are
mostly based on memorable covers.

Prez #1 is memorable. Aquaman… maybe the first issue with his blue suit, otherwise nothing comes to mind. Shazam? Plastic Man? Blue Beetle? Good series, but nothing which sticks in my memory. Whereas Lois Lane’s “black” issue and Jimmy Olsen’s Don Rickles guest shot are memorable (for the wrong reasons).

Hey… you gonna do something similar for MAD covers?

Yeah, I kinda figured Zero Hour #4 wasn’t going anywhere, but man, that clutched empty Flash mask? That was one striking image. :)

The 100 Page SS seems as special now as it did when I first picked it up off the rack new.

It’s the nuances and “off camera meet & greets” that are so effective here. The Top Ten reasons this is one of the greatest covers of all time:

10. The Earth-2 Wonder Woman standing center spotlight, while the Earth-1 Diana Price “The All-New Wonder Woman”, takes a back cover spot.

9. The Earth-1 and Earth-2 Batmen actually being in the same place at the same time. To be a fly on the wall.

8. Hal & Ollie palling around by Neil Adams.

7. Can’t you just imagine Captain Cold and the Mirror Master inadvertantly trying to rob the studio that’s taking this picture?

6. The Dick Grayson of Earth 2 wouldn’t have made it very far on “Project Runway”.

5. Shapshifter J’Onn J”onzz screwing with everybody by giving himself a giant head just as the photographer is snapping the picture.

4. A motorcycle-riding, six-gun shooting cowboy whose day job is a country singer known as “The Prarie Troubadour” somehow not seeming out of place with these guys.

3. Having that empty space in front of Mr. Terrific so we can see the iconic “Fair Play” logo on his abdomen.

2. A young Earth-1 Robin, hanging & banging with the big boys. I would have liked to have seen him closer to the big three, but if this were “real life”, he would have been humbled and taken his place off to the side.

1. In a room with 2 Batmen, 2 Supermen, 2 Wonder Women, The Spectre. Martian Manhunter and 2 Green Lanterns, it’s Wesley Dodds in a gas mask that looks the most bad-ass of them all.

I remember being about ten and loving the novelty of the 100 pg Super Spec, and trying to understand who all those new/old characters were.

on the other hand, part of me agrees with what Jack Kirby said about it, when someone at DC (Infantino?) held it up at the time as an example of what great comic art should be. Kirby said it was terrible, all the heroes standing in the same pose, stiff and lifeless, or something like that. He said some of them should have been flying at the reader, showing some emotion, throwing punches, etc.

I bet Kirby loved this Aquaman cover.

The Braniac cover isn’t all that impressive. But the other 3 are really great looking covers…I’d have to go with the Batman cover, as it’s the most well known.

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