Sunday, 2 February 2020

Seven Moons' Light Casts Complex Shadows

Thanks for bearing with me, gang. As some of you know, I've been mega-busy lately, putting together the first three issues of Stan & Jack for publication, as well as various corporate bits of artwork I'm doing, so both here & The Kids site have had to slightly take second place.
I'm still a little leary of continuing to post full issues of things from the Bronze Age, having come close to being legally burned a couple of times, and I have actually had thoughts of combining the two blogs in some way ( 'Great news next week, chums!' ) but let's try putting up some smaller pieces and see how that works.
Here’s sci-fi writer Samuel R. Delany teaming up with Howie Chaykin for the 2nd issue of Epic Illustrated, shortly after they did the early graphic novel Empire for Byron Preiss.
As editor Archie Goodwin said in that issue’s Overview, It’s a story that definitely isn’t your typical Marvel rip-snorting action, but actually true science fiction, as opposed to Space Opera.
Archie: ( It’s ) a subtle work of implication, exploring a moment and the events that make such a moment complex. 
It also feels like a segment in a larger tapestry, and Delany is masterful at delineating a complete world, and it’s fully rounded characters, in the story’s short running time.
As for Chaykin, he’s years ahead of the game as usual, being a one-man future of comics even at this point. No one’s better at being Howard Chaykin than he is.


  1. Well this is a pleasant surprise Pete - you're back here AND with Chaykin working on the best of Delany's efforts as a comic writer.
    My fave piece from the first year of Epic.

    I see the point you're making, but personally I'd draw less of a sharp distinction with space opera, as this seemed to have that sort of setting but a very different approach to it. Kinda like it could have been the start of a Cody Starbuck story before the last page, but Delany was more interested in the idea of the presidential clone than using it as a mcguffin for some comic book action.

    Anyway, as ever thanks for posting - you can count on a donation to any future BAOB defence fund from me ;)


  2. Thanks as alwways, Sean, like I say, so many blogs, so many comics, so little time!

  3. A rather open-ended tale, like Frank R. Stockton's "The Lady or the Tiger." There is no foregone conclusion to a story like this, only intriguing possibilities.

    As for being legally burned over a blog, I suspect that is why Mr. Door Tree's excellent Golden Age Comic books blog disappeared: he had scans of countless classic illustrators' work as well as many golden, silver, & bronze age comics stories. Not certain if the same thing happened to the Grantbridge blog or not.


    Chris A.

  4. I think that's probably the case, yes, I'll ask Joe next time I see him at a con.

  5. Vey beautiful! I got this in spanish (Epic lasted for just 3 issues here). I will dare say this is his last major work previous to "American Flagg!", because the script of the "lost" Cody Starbuck is, for my tastes, uninspired.

    But this story is great, and I remember that the DC spanish publisher during the 80s titled one of the comment sections after it.

    Manuel Ruiz

  6. Just 3 issues!!!! Wow, that sucks, Epic was fantastic.
    It might be Chaykin's last work before Flagg, you might be right. Although there was the Dominic Fortune back-up in Hulk magazine. When was that?

  7. And for a mere months, the winner is... Pete Doree!!!

    (Moon was published on Summer 80, Dominic ended in November/December 80).

    Manuel Ruiz

  8. That story title sounds like a Chinese fast food order!

    - Neil

    1. With some sweet and sour Chaykin, no doubt.

      Gene Poole

    2. Personally, even being a Marvel fan, I found Epic a shadow of Heavy Metal.

      Just like Crazy was a lame imitation of Mad & Cracked.