Friday, August 02, 2013

Old Jungle Saying : It´s Phantom Friday !

Boy, latelyI seem to do a lot of these theme day posts. So, Yesterday I got all caught up in pulp comic covers and it´s all because of some beautiful THE PHANTOM covers by Sal Velluto I found online.

Now since I am a big fan of Sal Velluto ( just check out his spectacular work on Christopher Priest´s BLACK PANTHER run ) and The Phantom I wondered why I have never seen these before. And as you might have noticed the language on the cover is not english.

I did a little research and apparently Sal Velluto did these covers - as well as some interior art - for the swedish edition of the Phantom comic called FANTOMEN. The publisher of these comics is Eggmont, a publisher who is also active in Germany and other parts of Europe so it might be possible that I can get a hold of these myself.

I will be posting more pictures by Sal Velluto in the near future but as I have to sift through a lot of material for these posts I can only do a short post Today. But don´t be sad, with luck there will be more stuff of this iconic pulp hero coming up and who knows ? Maybe, this month will be PHANTOM MONTH if I manage to do more posts than last month.


One of my new sections is the IT`S THAT OLD FEELING OF DEJA VUE AGAIN section where I post covers that pay homage to iconic comic covers. I always add to that section and try to find interesting examples.

Like with most of the stuff I write I´m only that knowledgeable and I also can make mistakes. So you can imagine my surprise when I found out that what I thought of as original iconic covers may have been just paying homage to covers of THE PHANTOM. Like this one below.

The famous panel from AMAZING SPIDER - MAN issue 50 has inspired many covers itself but it seems John Romita incorporated some elements of this cover below of the Ghost Who Walks. Away that is.

Or the cover to CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS 7 of which I already did a first installment and which still has a few to go. It is kind of hard to qualify because some covers may be similar but different in the composition

Like this one where there are certain similarities which one may view as coinicidences. And I´m not one to believe in coincidences.

Now you may say that it´s clearly an homage or may be influenced by this cover for BATMAN 156.

But this one was clearly done after this iconic Phantom cover which even has the red shirt on the boy and the beach in the background.

It´s a cover Sal Velluto also came back to.

And that´s not the only famous Robin cover that was derived in some form from The Phantom. Take for instance this rather harmless cover.

There can be no doubt that it was later on used by Jim Aparo - not for any of the actual covers which were done by Mike Mignola but rather - for the collected edition of the famous A DEATH IN THE FAMILY storyline ( if anybody might want to look for it online ) that ran in BATMAN 426 to 429.

This was also later on re - used as a cover for the Phantom series, this time by Paul Ryan who is currently doing the daily Phantom newspaper strip which can be seen here . And here is a link to Paul Ryan´s art website .

Another Batman related cover that drew inspiration from Lee Falk´s jungle hero is the cover for SON OF THE DEMON, a story later picked up on by Grant Morrison for his brilliant BATMAN & ROBIN series.

Here is the corresponding Phantom cover :

And that´s just the tip of the iceberg. There are literally whole generations of artists influenced by The Phantom like Frank Miller

and even Todd McFarlane. They all drew inspiration from the pulp hero.

But that´s not all. In my research I have discovered that a lot of things in comics and pop culture stem directly from the Phantom series like Dick Tracy´s look or Dr. Doom who may have had his first appearance in a Phantom comic.

Sadly I can´t go into all that right now ( yep, once again it´s time to wrap things up ) but there will be more Phantom - centric stuff in the future like more covers, influences on modern pop culture in general or the many women who have crossed the Phantom´s way like Marylin Monroe ( for real ) as well as some totally freaky outfits that can - and WILL - compete with some of the most garish costumes The Bat - Man has worn.

Now, since this post has been all about The Phantom, the video at the end of the post is of course also about The Ghost Who Walks. Since I guess that everybody has seen the movie with Billy Zane which is really better than people say here is a black and white movie from 1943. Enjoy !

New to the blog ? Everything you need to know about TALES FROM THE KRYPTONIAN : top ten posts / more posts of interest

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