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Comic Book Legends Revealed #460

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COMIC LEGEND: Jack Larson almost starred in a Jimmy Olsen spin-off from The Adventures of Superman

STATUS: True

Jack Larson starred as Jimmy Olsen on the Adventures of Superman from 1951-1958…

jacklarsonjmmyolsen1

The character, who was Superman’s friend on the show….

jacklarsonjmmyolsen

proved so popular that DC eventually gave the comic book version of Jimmy his own title!

jimmyolsen

In 1959, after taking a year off from shooting, National Comics planned on returning to filming new episodes of the Adventures of Superman in September of that year (in the gap between new episodes of the series, National Comics tried a new show using the Superman sets called Superpup, which I detailed here – it’s as insane as it sounds!).

Well, the problem was that George Reeves died before the new episodes could begin filming.

Here’s where it gets weird, though, Mort Weisinger came up with an idea – why not keep going with the show, only now have it star Jimmy Olsen!

In Jake Rossen’s book, Superman vs. Hollywood, the set-up was detailed:

Armed with funds from Kellogg’s, he coerced Larson into his office one day to propose a spin-off series featuring Jimmy Olsen. “I was stunned and upset,” Larseon remembered. “I was not going to do it, but there was some question as to whether I was contractually obligated to do it.”

The idea would be that the series would star Jimmy and occasionally would use a mixture of stock footage and stunt men filmed from behind to act as if Superman would occasionally show up to save Jimmy (if he needed saving).

Despite threats to sue Larson for contract breach, Larson refused to do the series (even temporarily retiring from acting so that they couldn’t use any other acting job he would possibly take as a breach of contract) and eventually it never came to pass.

Imagine, though, what kind of spin-off series THAT would have been!

DC tried again with a Superboy series a couple of years later (as detailed in this old Comic Book Legends Revealed) but that didn’t go any further than Superpup.

Thanks to Jake Rossen for the information!

On the next page, check out John Byrne poking a little fun at a famous Marvel artist in an issue of She-Hulk!

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75 Comments

I’ve heard the “no green covers” story myself, but the variation I’m familiar with was “green covers don’t sell.” I was friendly with some Marvel staffers in the 90s and if memory serves that’s the way I heard it.

Interesting. The Stan Lee bit happens in pretty much every big company. People do stuff a certain way, because they heard that was the way it’s done, and when you really look for the source of the rumor, most times there is no source, it’s scary.

While Byrne has grown to a bit…ah…cranky…in later years, seeing him rip on Liefeld this way was freakin’ HILARIOUS!!! Say what you will about Byrne, he at least knows how to draw people in a consistent, anatomically correct manner.

I don’t really see that X-Force spread being a swipe of Perez’s Titans. Other than using the same perspective view (which is itself slightly different), nothing about them is meaningfully similar. None of the figures are in the same (or even similar) positions or poses, and the background details are all different. At worst it might actually qualify as a legitimate homage. At best it might just be happenstance.

Dr. Bob, you’re most likely correct. It’s frequently noted in the world of fashion that green clothing sells very poorly. I imagine the color psychology of that would probably bleed over into other areas–perhaps even comic covers.

@rendmon: The X-Force/Titans swipe become more apparent if you include the previous page too…

Doesn’t She-Hulk 50 also feature a variety of style parodies? I remember a Miller one for sure.

Man, those Marvel editors dress like they work at Vogue.

I agree with you rendmon, in this case, but the Byrne bit is still pretty funny.

@rendmon: The X-Force/Titans swipe become more apparent if you include the previous page too…

It’s already pretty damn apparent, but yes, you’re right, it’s even more obvious when you add the previous pages, so I’ve done so.

That’s a pretty hot little editor! Wish my boss looked like that. Minus the temper.

In Jake Rossen’s book, Superman vs. Hollywood, the set-up was detailed:

Armed with funds from Kellogg’s, he coerced Larson into his office one day to propose a spin-off series featuring Jimmy Olsen. “I was stunned and upset,” Larseon remembered. “I was not going to do it, but there was some question as to whether I was contractually obligated to do it.”

The idea would be that the series would star Jimmy and occasionally would use a mixture of stock footage and stunt men filmed from behind to act as if Superman would occasionally show up to save Jimmy (if he needed saving).

Again, more proof of what I always say: Mort Weisinger is freaking TERRIBLE. This guy’s only motivation for anything was milking all the money he could out of a situation, good taste or sense be damned. And he’s just an awful human being on a personal level, coercing Larson as he did. To this day I still don’t think the Superman character has recovered from Weisinger’s influence on the character.

Not allowing John Byrne to mention his own name? That’s cruel.

I worked in the production bullpen at Marvel in the 90s and we were told that we couldn’t make the logos green (George Roussos was still coloring a lot of the covers but not necessarily picking all the logo colors). The reason we were told was because Stan Lee said green logos don’t sell. I was flabbergasted since Stan hadn’t actually worked there in years and years. Somehow that “Rule” was still in effect. It wasn’t until the late 90s or so when the covers were fully digital and we could easily show the editors the covers with different color logos that they forgot about that rule.

@rendmon – “nothing about them is meaningfully similar”

Not trying to be rude, but are you freakin’ kidding me? How are they not similar, a very similar background, similar poses and characters positioned in approximately the same places on both pages?

It’s not a line for line swipe, but damn if that’s not a swipe than I don’t know what is.

I’m not a huge fan of Perez (I’m in the minority on that one), his work always has a claustrophobic quality about it that makes me a little uncomfortable, but he’s about a thousand times better than Liefeld. If Liefeld were a better artist, or could have been bothered to spend more time on it, I’m sure the pages would have been even more alike.

Of course if he were a decent artist he wouldn’t have had to swipe so blatantly in the first place.

Mark Evanier once said that the best selling issue of his DNAgents series was the one that featured the bright green coved (#7 I think) He credited it to there being practically no other covers that color on the stands at the time and wondered aloud why they didn’t make every cover all green!

I don’t even think swipes are all that big of a deal. There is a long legacy of swiping that goes back nearly a century in the comics world (at one point, I bet you could flip through the various action comic strips and find at least one strip per day that swiped Hal Foster). There are very, very few comic book artists who can honestly say that they’ve never swiped a page layout in their careers. When I post the X-Force/Titans swipe, I don’t do it as some sort of shot. It’s just an example to place into context what Byrne’s parody was referencing.

Seeing Liefield’s art makes my synapses explode. Style over substance ad nausea.

I really wish I could find this, but when I was a kid I noticed that two comics I loved had an entire page that had been swiped panel-by-panel, with the same poses even though it was completely different stories with completely different characters. It was in the late 1970s, I think, and I remember one story as being a Superboy story focusing on Ma & Pa Kent and the other story being Green Lantern or something. But it might have been the same artist swiping himself. I’ve always wanted to rediscover those two comics again, but haven’t been able to retrace them, no pun intended.

I don’t think swipes are all that big of a deal either, but when it’s done to the extent that Leifeld did with the Perez stuff I think it becomes a problem.

I also think there’s a big difference between acknowledging that something’s a swipe and acting like there’s “nothing about them is meaningfully similar”. Not to pick on rendmon, that’s his opinion and of course he’s entitled to it, but if it walks like a duck and it quacks like a duck…

and if it’s green than it might just be Changeling.

Ohhh, although now that I say that, I recall that at least one of those stories was in the old Best of DC Blue Ribbon Digests. I’ll have to flip through the ones I still have and see if I can narrow it down.

Oh, I do agree that swiping to that extent should be avoided. But even then, so long as it isn’t a constant thing, I don’t mind it that much.

Oh man, John Byrne is great. Way to call him out. I don’t understand how Rob Liefield’s “art” was ever popular.

Oh, I do agree that swiping to that extent should be avoided. But even then, so long as it isn’t a constant thing, I don’t mind it that much.

What if you were the artist in question? Or to put it another way, to translate it to something more immediately relevant to you, what if someone was running a comics blog and repeatedly doing to your posts what Liefled was doing to Byrne? (This isn’t an attack by the way; I’m sincerely curious). Personally it would drive me crazy to put so much work into something only to see someone repeat it almost note for note without crediting me. Even though it doesn’t bother me in terms of reading experience, I get extremely annoyed on principle on behalf of the original artist.

I don’t know why people think it’s okay to just shrug off swiping. It worst, it’s stealing, and at best it’s just the sign of a very lazy person. You can’t come up with your own poses? It’s terrible.

And, yeah… did Renee Witterstaetter really look like that?

I don’t know why people think it’s okay to just shrug off swiping. It worst, it’s stealing, and at best it’s just the sign of a very lazy person. You can’t come up with your own poses? It’s terrible.

Agreed. Just because it’s always been done to a degree doesn’t make it somehow okay. Murder and rape have always been done to a degree as well. (And before anyone says it, NO I’m not equating swiping with rape and murder. Just using extreme examples to show that just because something has always been done in no way makes it more acceptable)

Eh, a lot of “swipe” complaints about Liefeld are just more meaningless nerdrage. By that I mean Liefeld did a “swipe” because some of you don’t like him, but (for example) George Perez did an “homage” with his Crisis #7 cover because he’s not a community approved object of hate.

interesting that legend about stan forbidding the color green at marvel when stan lee had trouble with the hulk starting out as a grey.for if stan really hated green the hulk and she -hulk and any other characters who have some green would be a differant color.

“Hey, Look, a Jim Steranko Rob Liefeld rip-off!”

Chad, is that you?

i dont see any swipe, mind you, i m blind

Another great one Brian.

This legend was linked to at John’s board and he had this to say,

“Crazy thing is, I expected those pages to be quick and easy, but they were really hard work! Everything Liefeld does is so much at odds with how I draw, I kept having to stop and stare and squint and rotate pages. Is he REALLY doing that??”

Byrne also did a very p[in-up centric She-Hulk issue in response to the perception that lots of artists were only doing pin-ups, not storytelling. I wnat to say in that case he swiped/homaged some classic pin-up artists like Vargas, but I’m not sure.

Brian, did you ever cover Byrne’s FF villain based on Neal Adams?

@Red Comet

I think the real difference is that cover homages like Crisis 7 are not only up front for all to see but they also reference famous works, so they are obvious. Also, when artists like Perez swipe from/homage others on covers or interiors, they make a note of it along with their signature.

One of the oddest swipes I ever saw was Byrne’s mid-1970s Iron Fist (#8 or so) based on the Neal Adams scenes of Vision nearly killing a skrull (Avengers #93 or so, in the early 1970s).

I can only assume he was running against a schedule. And while I’m not used to taking Byrne’s side on disputes, I also assume that it was Marvel that pressured him into it. It was odd to see an Iron Fist that had just barely recovered from an attack suddenly displaying what really looked like superstrength.

Very one-sided article.
Byrne critcisized Liefeld, but at the same time, he was one of the first to praise him.
It’s just that Byrne realized that it’s all about money and x-men (the franchise, he was involved in the past)
Ka-ching.

The joke that Byrne made not only is 20 years old, but it’s also out of context,
and with all the bad rep that Byrne gets, I don’t feel is fair to say anything.

The thing is that Byrne has a really bad rep. Whether it’s his fault or not, I don’t judge.
The thing is, a lot of you miss his style of storytelling, whether you admit it or not.

The reason I am so defensive it’s because, frankly, a lot of people will read this, and they will think:
“how petty and asshole-ish of Byrne to do that”
and that’s just not fair.
You are okay, Mr. Cronin, it’s just that, let the past be the past.

It’s really sad that people like Englehart, Byrne, Starlin, Claremont, and poor Mantlo, they are treated like… they are treated. You want my voice?
You are angry about mainstream?

How about helping them, while they are alive?
Cockrum is dead, and no one gives a …

Sorry for rambling, I just see things, and I’m disturbed, greatly disturbed, much more than I should.
And I miss a good storytelling…
Sorry.

Also, Steranko is/was a genius. I am only sad that he didn’t do much more work.
Steranko was/is a visionairy. A lot of people will miss him once he is gone.
But why not praising him while he is alive?

I am 25 years old, and I recognize his genius, I guess that all he needs is a little exposition?
Next time, make a month of Steranko, and troll him to do some work.

We will miss him once he is out.
That’s why we should provoke him to do some work.

ShadZ
February 28, 2014 at 10:09 am
@rendmon: The X-Force/Titans swipe become more apparent if you include the previous page too…

Other than a superficial resemblance in what is a pretty standard establishing shot in the first panel, there’s not much direct correlation between the two pages.

I don’t dispute that Liefeld was a shameless swiper, and it’s likely that he had the Perez pages in mind or even directly referenced them when drawing his. But I don’t think the end result of either of those pages really rise to the level of an actual swipe, which is generally interpreted as straight up copying another artists work. That’s not what Liefeld did here.

Brian Cronin
February 28, 2014 at 10:24 am
It’s already pretty damn apparent.

Not unless you’re using an incredibly loose definition of the word “swipe” it’s not.

@Sean
I’m pretty sure She-Hulk #50 had the actual artists draw those contributions.

@chakal

I’m a little mystified by your post.

Steranko is routinely cited as one of the most influential comic artist of the last 50 years. He certainly seems to get a LOT of love for the relatively small amount of work he did.

I have mixed feelings about his work, some parts of it I like, other parts, not so much.

I’ve been reading comics and books/magazines about comic book artist for 30 years and he’s always mentioned in the same breathe as Kirby, Adams, Ditko etc.

For me, the best thing about Steranko is how much he influenced Paul Gulacy and in turn Gulacy influenced Steve Rude, so without Steranko, no Rude and that would make my world a much sadder place.

Brian Cronin
February 28, 2014 at 10:24 am

It’s already pretty damn apparent[

Depends on how loose a definition of the word “swipe” you use, I suppose.

ShadZ
February 28, 2014 at 10:09 am
@rendmon: The X-Force/Titans swipe become more apparent if you include the previous page too…

Other than a superficial resemblance between what is a pretty standard establishing shot in the first panel and the fact that they both use a lot of slim, vertical panels (which were common at the time) there isn’t really a lot of direct correspondence between the two multipanel pages either pages.

I don’t dispute that Liefeld was shameless swiper, and it’s very likely he had those Perez pages in mind or even directly referenced them when he drew his. But the end result of his pages aren’t nearly similar enough to Perez’s to rise to the level of an actual swipe to me, which is generally interpreted as actually copying another artists work, if not the actual style then at least the actual poses and set ups. That’s not what Liefeld does in those pages. Referenced? Most likely. Swiped? Don’t see it.

Oh well. Different strokes.

(BTW, apologies in advance if this is a duplicate post. My browser crashed when i hit send, so I re-typed it.)

I’m a little mystified by your post.

I’m pretty sure it’s slam poetry. And I can dig it.

Brian, did you ever cover Byrne’s FF villain based on Neal Adams?

Here ya go!

http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2008/11/13/comic-book-legends-revealed-181/

I don’t know why people think it’s okay to just shrug off swiping. It worst, it’s stealing, and at best it’s just the sign of a very lazy person. You can’t come up with your own poses? It’s terrible.

Artists are always going to be inspired by other artists, especially early in their career. And especially when you’re working on a deadline, I don’t have a major problem with artists taking certain poses and/or layouts here and there. The hope is that as they develop as artists, they’ll stop doing it. As noted by others, Byrne himself did some swipes early in his career. So did Jack Kirby. Liefeld was just so famous that his swipes were a bigger deal than most (and to be fair, he was also making so much money off of his swipes that it was reasonable to have a bigger issue with him than with a typical comic book artist early in his/her career).

What if you were the artist in question? Or to put it another way, to translate it to something more immediately relevant to you, what if someone was running a comics blog and repeatedly doing to your posts what Liefled was doing to Byrne? (This isn’t an attack by the way; I’m sincerely curious). Personally it would drive me crazy to put so much work into something only to see someone repeat it almost note for note without crediting me. Even though it doesn’t bother me in terms of reading experience, I get extremely annoyed on principle on behalf of the original artist.

If it was something like Roger Cruz going through Joe Madureira’s then-fairly small catalogue and using every issue of Joe Mad in his every issue, then yeah, that’s just ridiculous. But it is not like Liefeld was taking from the same guy constantly. Like most other artists, he took poses and layouts that worked from a variety of artists (the famous examples from the time were the Titans/X-Force one, the Michael Golden G.I. Joe cover that was used as a Cable cover and the Ron Wilson Thing cover used as a Youngblood cover).

But the end result of his pages aren’t nearly similar enough to Perez’s to rise to the level of an actual swipe to me, which is generally interpreted as actually copying another artists work, if not the actual style then at least the actual poses and set ups.

Which is what Liefeld did there, he clearly used Perez’s layouts for his piece. The most common swipes are not the obvious ones but instances where an artist thinks to him or herself, “How do I draw this? Oh hey, this artist had a good approach” and then just taking that artist’s layout. Some artists also literally lightbox other artists, but you don’t have to be that obvious to still be swiping.

Speaking of swipes, my issues with Greg Land’s art is not really his swiping (although yes, on an ethical standpoint, he probably should cut it out by now) but really my problem is that he swipes poorly.

To quote John Byrne…who’d you think I was going to quote?

“Swiping is a good way to learn. It’s not a good way to make a living.”

Yeah, exactly. So if an artist is early in his/her career, I’ll forgive it. They just need to eventually stop doing it. Liefeld was still very new in his career at this point, but, of course, he was so successful that it likely rubbed other artists the wrong way more than it would with a typical young artist.

By the way, for those of you asking, yes, Renee Witterstaeter did/does look like that.

Hubba hubba!

As to the subject of Renee Witterstaetter: Lord have mercy! Send her my e-mail!!!!! I would love to work for her any day (and for free). ;-)

Does she still work as an editor for Marvel (or whatever comic publisher)?

Now I’m picturing the post-photo commenters going “ahooooga!” and stomping their feet with steam coming out of their nostrils and their eyes bulging like in a Warner Brothers cartoon.

Re: swipes-Point of order, George Perez never credited X-Men for the Crisis cover. In an interview (I believe in the Comic Buyers Guide), he said he hadn’t noticed the similarity until it was pointed out, in the wake of the Liefeld brouhaha. It was either a case of subconscious swiping, or just a similar theme resulting in the same approach, but it wasn’t intentional. or so George said…

A lot of the Liefeld heat came on two fronts; the first was the Comics Journal, the second was Peter David (though others were saying the same thing). The Comics Journal routinely had a feature where they gave a side-by-side comparison of two art pieces. I remember one of a Frank Miller Sin City piece and an earlier Jose Munoz piece (Alack Sinner, I believe). They even went further and cited dialogue, then compared to some Mickey Spillaine. Liefeld was a regular punching bag there (and he gave them a lot of ammo). Peter David entered the fray in CBG. Around the time of the Image launch, Liefeld, Erik Larson, and Todd McFarlane had been making noise about how they didn’t need writers and how they were held back by them at Marvel. They claimed that the writers had no part in creating characters they drew. Liefeld made several comments along this line about Louise Simonson. Peter David, as both a writer and friend of Weezie, came to the defense and pointed out several aspects of Cable that came solely from Louise Simonson and the editor, not Liefeld. After some more bonehead comments by Rob (my words) David presented a showcase for Liefeld’s originality, with multiple swipes. Liefeld countered that they were homages, but it was soon pointed out than no more than a third of the examples attributed the original work, compared to other artists. I believe this is when discussion of Crisis #7 came up. Soon after making the homage claim, Liefeld was again caught in a swipe of a Brent Anderson Thing cover, for a marketing piece for Liefeld’s Thing ripoff, I mean Badrock.

Liefeld was a guy who could convey a sense of action in his books (though usually with stock scenes and poses), with little regard for plot or character, which seemed to find an audience at that time. I thought his stuff wasn’t bad on Hawk and Dove, which is a testament to Karl Kessel’s inking. This was a guy who had no aspirations towards “art,” and he was able to make a good living, thanks to speculators. He doesn’t come across as the sharpest knife in the drawer, in interviews. I remember when Youngblood was being marketed, he did an interview with Comic Scene. He was telling a story about a group of friends, who were triplets. He said he asked them how that occurred and was told that it was due to one ovum that split into three (which is fairly rare, vs more than one fertilized ovum). He then said, “…so then my warped mind said ‘Well, what if the egg didn’t split?’ Would you get this giant baby? And that’s how I came up with Brama…” As I read that, I was thinking, “Normal birth, stupid! A large child isn’t conceived from a giant ovum, but due to the DNA contained within the cells. Didn’t you ever study biology?” Then I read where he remarked that he wanted to quit school to work in comics, but his parents made him finish before he could try to get a job in comics. So that answered that question. I think, in his mind, it isn’t a swipe because he only copied a pose or a layout, not the entire work. He also seemed surprised when it was pointed out to him that his little eagle design on Captain America’s mask bore more than a passing resemblance to the Nazi eagle insignia! I suppose history wasn’t a favorite subject either. I can’t fault him too much (though he is fun to poke fun at), as people lapped up his stuff, though his 15 minutes ended a lot sooner than the rest of the Image crowd.

But it is not like Liefeld was taking from the same guy constantly. Like most other artists, he took poses and layouts that worked from a variety of artists (the famous examples from the time were the Titans/X-Force one, the Michael Golden G.I. Joe cover that was used as a Cable cover and the Ron Wilson Thing cover used as a Youngblood cover).

He wasn’t taking from just one guy like Cruz was, but he definitely did go to some guys a lot more than others. There was a good page that is now unfortunately defunct called swipe of the week that collected a lot of Liefeld’s swipes, and he seemed to especially like Byrne, Perez, and of course Neal Adams. But he definitely swiped Byrne A LOT. I never realized until I found that web page how egregious it was. I also think the proportion of swipe to original contribution matters. Kirby would swipe a figure here and there maybe, but Liefeld would swipe whole page sequences as well as what was in the panels.

Superman’s Girlfriend Lois Lane #128 predates the Byrne X-Men cover…

Perez has even specifically cited a different cover as his inspiration for the Crisis cover, but he has acknowledged that it is possible that he was subconsciously influenced by Byrne’s cover.

http://art-swipes.tumblr.com/

Was fairly surprised by how many “respectable” artists are capable of some blatant swiping. Buckingham? Lapham? Cassaday? And David Mack has practically made a career off Alan Davis and Adam Hughes.

John Byrne is awesome. Nuff said about him. :)

@rendmon: the only ways someone wouldn’t see Liefeld’s swipe for what it is would be by willfully ignoring the very obvious and graphic facts or simply being too ignorant to know how comic book art and swiping work. Or perhaps a combination of both: ignorant enough that accepting the swipe is relatively easy, even more after drinking a cup or two of Kool-Aid.

“At worst it might actually qualify as a legitimate homage. At best it might just be happenstance.”

Heh… “legitimate homages” are usually signed with an “After…” providing the source (so everybody will instantly know who’s being homaged) and they’re not done all the time like he does (which simply underlines how sorely lacking he is in solid professional skills). And a “happenstance”… BWAHAHAHAHAHAH!! Again, it happens a LOT for it to be a simple coinkyndink. He HAS to swipe because he doesn’t know how to draw well enough and, one way or another, he has to get that know-how from someone who actually knows how to. It wouldn’t be so bad if he acknowledged the sources of his “homages” but I guess it would be too embarrassing and bad for his ego.

There have been numerous discussions over the CRISIS #7 cover, some tracing it as far back at the Pieta. But my favorite suspect is BATMAN #156 from 1963, “Robin Dies at Dawn.”

http://www.comicvine.com/batman-156-robin-dies-at-dawn/4000-6523/

As to what Renee Witterstaetter is up to these days, she’s a busy woman! Check out her blog:

http://witterstaetterwrites.blogspot.com/

Timothy Markin

March 1, 2014 at 6:14 am

I forgot about the Robin Dies at Dawn cover and didn’t know about the Lois Lane cover but another cover using that Crisis 7 pose is Human Fly 18 from 1978, the first time I personally ever saw that pose.
There is an installment of Dial B For Blog which covers indepth how extensive Bob Kane’s swipes were in The Case of the Chemical Syndicate, the debut of Batman in Detective Comics 27. Numerous examples were shown of different pulp magazine illustrations and the matching swipe from the story, including character poses, vehicles and buildings. Don’t forget that Commissioner Gordon’s name was also swiped from James Wildcat Gordon, a pulp adventurer. And the plot of that Tec 27 story was swiped from a Shadow story. Now over the past 75 years, Batman has transcended his pulp roots, but imagine how different our favorite Dark Knight might be if Finger and Kane hadn’t ripped off their favorite pulps.
And all this talk about less talented artists using shortcuts has just reminded me of something I’ll never forget from either an Image or a Marvel book (ironically, I forgot). An artist , who I don’t recall , used a double-truck, which is a two page spread on its side, which featured a head, some word balloons and possibly some cross hatching in the background. At the time this infuriated me since I knew this hack most likely got paid for two pages for what looked like fifteen minutes of “work”, and in the 90s, those page rates were nothing to sneeze at. Anybody recall this book? Or maybe this was just common practice back then and appeared in numerous comics.

Discussions like the above are why I like Brian’s columns. That, and the humor.

The green cover thing is weird because it was always covers like that that stood out to me, and today they are still the ones that are the most memorable to me. I loved that green.

Renee Witterstaetter is scolding Byrne for swiping another artist’s style?

She should be scolding him for wasting 4 pages on a stupid gag.
Actually it’s 5 pages if you include the scolding page itself!

the similarity between the Xforce and Titans pages vary depending on which characters you focus on.
Feral and Cable are in obviously similar poses to Starfire and Robin respectively
Whereas ShatterStar is in a completely different pose to “Wonder Chick” (sorry, that Christmas story is still strong in my memory)

Well, She-Hulk was mainly about gags so they don’t count as pages wasted…
And yes, in this or other related issue Byrne also features several half-page pin-up pics of She-Hulk which have nothing to do with the story. And gets scolded again by Witterstaetter.

And She-Hulk #50 is one of my favorite single-issues of all time.

Jason Barnett

March 5, 2014 at 9:55 am

I don’t think swiping is a big deal because I feel like there’s nothing new under the sun. I mean if you lay out the other person’s page and trace over it, just adding whatever cosmetic touches the different characters have then that’s flat stealing. Looking at a page and deciding to lay it out the same way isn’t the same thing

Coincidentally enough, I was just checking out the guest list for this weekend’s inaugural WizardWorld Sacramento con, and Ms. Witterstaetter will apparently be in attendance. The con is about three blocks from my apartment, so I will be sure to say “hi” from all of you.

@Iam Fear: “Renee Witterstaetter is scolding Byrne for swiping another artist’s style?

She should be scolding him for wasting 4 pages on a stupid gag.
Actually it’s 5 pages if you include the scolding page itself!”

You understand that the “scolding” itself is part of the joke. As his editor, she approved every page.

@chakal: “The reason I am so defensive it’s because, frankly, a lot of people will read this, and they will think:
“how petty and asshole-ish of Byrne to do that”
and that’s just not fair.
You are okay, Mr. Cronin, it’s just that, let the past be the past.”

Not one commenter has interpreted this column to make Byrne look petty. Most have admired what he did.

I remember years ago noticing that Byrne occasionally swiped his own work. There’s a panel of Colossus punching it out with Gladiator during the Dark Phoenix Saga that is a swipe of a panel of Colossus punching it out with Magneto under the antarctic volcano ~30 issues earlier. Maybe “swiped” isn’t the right word; recycled the rough pencils.

I kept my promise. Renee was a super nice lady, and immediately remembered that She-Hulk gag when I brought it up. I even had my friend snap a photo: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v75/TJCoolguy/reneewitterstaetter_zpsbf58550a.jpg

@TJCoolguy HA H! That’s awesome!!

@Nu-D Erik Larsen makes it a regular practice in Savage Dragon to “swipe” his own classic Marvel and DC work. For an example, compare the cover of Amazing Spider-Man #338 to the cover of Savage Dragon #50

ParanoidObsessive

March 11, 2014 at 9:21 am

I find it funny that, with all the talk about copying, “homages”, and even a number of Image artists getting mentioned, no one commented on the amusing irony of one of Liefeld’s Image co-founders (Jim Lee) literally having a studio named “Homage Studios”.

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