Rathcone part Three by Norris Burroughs   2 comments

Continuing, we will omit page ten and move on to a somewhat better constructed action scene, which looks to me to be a combination of Simon and Kirby layouts, drawings and mostly Simon finishes and inks. As I’ve said regarding this issue, the more I look at the artwork, excluding the origin and the Red Skull segment, there seems to be more of Simon’s work than I’d previously acknowledged. Even if I accept the notion that Kirby is doing the lion’s share of the initial figure work, this page in particular looks to me to have been tightened up and inked by Simon. The first panel’s three-quarter back shot of Captain America looks like his style, particularly features like the nose.

I am riffing a bit here, when I say that the second panel looks more Kirby-esque, but not so much the remainder of the page. S&K are still a bit too clever with the strangely edited panel sequential breakdowns and a profusion of directional arrows.  The general dynamic here works better than page four, although both sequences are tied together with the peculiar use of the central diagonal figure, which in this case is Captain America.

The team will soon abandon this artifice entirely.

Page twelve has a similar flavor to that of page eleven, and again feels to me to be largely the work of Simon. I sense Kirby’s presence predominantly in the more complex action shots such as the overhead three-quarter back sleeper punch panel, but I cannot be certain.

Again, if we take Simon on his word, Kirby drew most of this issue, but I have my doubts about much of it. Then there is the fact that at one point several years ago, Greg Theakston opined that Simon drew several of the figures on this page. The fact remains that so little of this work bears more than a passing resemblance to the Hurricane strip in the same issue, with its beautifully sculpted figures and relatively complex backgrounds.

Let us move on to page thirteen, where we encounter another chessboard shot, although not as nice as the previous one. There’s some pretty decent drawing here, but nothing to get very excited about. I like the figure of Cap kicking the table and a similar pose mirrored in the panel just below it, but essentially the page is adequate but somewhat dull.


I was going to finish reviewing in Rathcone part four, but frankly, I’m tired of this story. I think it’s about time we visit the Red Skull chapter and at least have some fun examining some quality Kirby mixed in with the dross.



Posted January 30, 2012 by norris burroughs in Uncategorized

2 responses to “Rathcone part Three by Norris Burroughs

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  1. I see ZERO Kirby here, Norris. No pencils, no inks. The “action” is much too mundane and stilted for Kirby to be involved in the layouts. If he had “tightened it up” he would have improved it. It he had inked it, he would have improved it. These pages are, to me, rather lame, with, IMHO, Simon trying to instill some Kirby-esque action layouts that end up needing arrows to understand. It’s no wonder you got bored with it. Me, too.


  2. That was my feeling , Jim. Thanks for the confirmation. We finally getting a little clarity here with your insights.

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