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The Great Comic Book Cover Homage Streak: Week 88

It occurs to me that it seems like many comic book covers are homages. Which is fine with me. I have no problem with it. It just made me think, though, how long could I go before I hit a week where NO new comic book was released that had a cover that was an homage to something? Let’s find out! Here is an archive of all the cover homages featured in the streak so far!

This week, we’ll go with Matt Kindt’s Star Wars: Rebel Heist #2, which is homaging this classic British propaganda poster from World War II.

Eighty-eight weeks down! Will we make it to week eighty-nine?

14 Comments

While this is better and more imaginative than most of these homage covers, I feel as if it is my duty to say that 88 weeks of homages proves the point that there is a dearth of creativity in the medium these days. Pro tip: if you are homaging a cover that has already been homaged 5 times before, you are a total hack. Please note, however, that this particular cover is not a very bad perpetrator of unoriginal homages; it just came along during my monthly cycle, and I have used it to expound upon my righteousness. I’m really rooting for this streak to end, but fear it never will.

Well at least a couple of times Brian has chosen to feature artists “homaging” their own work, which IMO barely qualifies as a homage.

If you look at it that way you could argue that the streak ended months ago (though there’s a fairly high likelihood that those had other legitimate homages that could have been used).

I could see a cool Star Wars cover homaging the “Loose Lips Sinks Ships” with Star Destroyer in flames.

OMG, I love the original. I had never seen it before.

What I love about it is the implied misogyny. All the men in this poster assume that the bombshell is too stupid to make use of the information she’s hearing. It’s not that they might assume she’s innocent, or that they might assume she’s loyal. It’s that they might assume she’s stupid and therefore harmless.

It just shows that (some) military men were living in some kind of bizarre culture-bubble where they just assumed women were inherently too stupid to understand their conversations. It means also that somehow, some of these men were able to continue through their lives maintaining that assumption; chances are the women in their lives were chuckling behind their backs.

What a weird world. My grandfather and uncles — all WW2 vets — never would have dismissed the women around them that readily. (Or at least by the time I was around them in the 1980’s they wouldn’t). But they were all middle-class Jews from NYC; they were not aristocratic British officers. Their wives/girlfriends (my grandmother and grand-aunts) were all working women — teachers and secretaries and the like — while their men went off to war. Like I said, totally different cultural worldview.

I don’t know that it’s the dearth of creativity so much as it’s a combination of two factors. First, a lot of covers seem to be created as commissions independent of the interior stories, which makes an entirely free-floating homage a safe way to have both style and content without being utterly misleading. Second, the move back to loads of variant covers tends to favor the homage, since homage appeals to the nostalgia of the sorts of collectors and longtime fans who tend to pay extra for a variant in the first place.

Not used to a bunch of guys pounding their righteousness on Fridays.. usually, they save it for Kelly’s column on Mondays….

LouReedRichards

May 30, 2014 at 9:29 am

The homage thing was kinda fun when it started, but like many, I’m beginning to wonder if it will ever finally end.

That being said, have there been any homages to any of the first 25 or so G.I. Joe covers?

I think that would probably hit my nostalgic sweet spot enough to purchase one.

I reserve the right to pound my righteousness any day of the week thank you very much.

Homages are fun. Well done or poorly done, they’re just fun. I think as an artist, sometimes you get the itch do an homage. So you scratch it. And some things get a lot of homages because they’re just so much fun to do. The Byrne/Austin DoFP cover is just a lot of fun.

Its like ice cream or candy. You don’t eat it as a meal and you have it in moderation but it’s a nice treat.

In answer to LouReedRichards question:

IDW’s “G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero” #201 was a homage to Herb Trimpe’s cover to Marvel’s “G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero” #1.

And if people aren’t enjoying the homages column, they could always – oh, I don’t know – not read it, maybe?

Travis Pelkie

May 30, 2014 at 6:27 pm

That’s crazy talk, Eric. I reserve the right to bitch about anything and everything for any reason at all, dammit! ;)

“Pounding my righteousness” is my new favorite euphemism. hee hee hee huh huh huh heh heh heh

I did a rough count and there were about 109 singles on the NCRL for the week I checked. And I counted each issue once – some of those issues had up to 5 covers. I think with those sort of numbers of covers coming out each week, that the unbroken streak isn’t a sign of a dearth of creativity. I don’t think that the number of times a comic has been homaged previously makes the homager a hack. Some homages have a reason. Many of the Justice League #1 covers are of the same or similar teams, making it a call back showing change and making standing out as being related to that group. Some funny and interesting things have been done with Action Comics #1 covers. Yeah, there are hacks. But there are hacks doing original covers, too.

Yeah, when I was doing Judging Books by Their Covers, I often featured homage covers as among the best covers of the month.

And yes, with the sheer amount of books out each week the streak just makes sense. And even then there have been plenty of weeks where there’s only been one homage cover. Heck, I think this week was one of those weeks. So there WILL come a week that this will end.

So, when Nightcrawler pounds his righteousness, does he have to use both hands?

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