Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The world´s greatest artists : Tom Palmer

The last few days I have been feeling a bit down but I just had to do a post on Tom Palmer´s 74th birthday because he´s one of my favorite inkers ever since I first saw his finishes on John Buscema in the pages of DIE RUHMREICHEN RÄCHER by the german publisher Williams Verlag.

This was an exciting time to be an Avengers fan in Germany with new heroes like the Black Panther, the Black Knight or Red Wolf joining the team. The Avengers faced off against the Masters of Evil, Arkon and even against their female members in one of the most famous - or should I say infamous ? - women´s lib stories of all times. My Holy Grail of AVENGERS collecting, issue 81, which was the first american issue of the AVENGERS I got and which featured this unknown ( to me ) hero Vision, was also inked by Tom Palmer but so far I haven´t been able to find it in any hardcover collection. It is included in volume 9 of the MARVEL MASTERWORKS but so far I haven´t found it at any comic store and at amazon they are selling it for 130 EUROS. There is an online comic shop that has volume 8 for a reasonable price but as if Marvel had a personal vendetta against me volume 8 ends with issue 79 and the issues that really interest me are 80 and up. So unless I win the lottery I don´t see me shelling out 60 bucks for volume 8 and if I really DO win the lottery it´s more likely that I will say what the heck and get volume 9, those 130 EUROS be damned.

Speaking about the Black Knight, he was also a member of the regular team when John Buscema and Tom Palmer returned to the book. And like always I came a bit late to the party but I got most of the issues from the second run because once I started reading the issues I was hooked.

Sadly only two of the storylines made it into Marvel hardcover collections although they are the two best : ASSAULT ON OLYMPUS and the legendary UNDER SIEGE. Thanks to various crossovers you can find some of the issues in the SECRET WARS II omnibus and I´m so glad that I got that when I did because this hardcover is also currently out of print and goes for horrendous prices at amazon. Now if you want to read this brilliant run most of it has been collected in trade paperbacks and there are even two Epic Collections that include a lot of stuff from the Buscema / Palmer run.

Since I will be talking more about this run in upcoming SECRET WARS II posts and my TOP TEN JOHN BUSCEMA COVERS posts - that I have to get back to one of these days - I´m not going into more detail but if you haven´t read these issues and you are reading the current issues of what passes for Avengers these days you are doing yourself a disservice. You might as well shoot yourself in the head - methaphorically speaking of course. I mean, why eat three day old leftover pizza that you put in the microwave when you can have a freshly cooked three course dinner ?

But the purpose of this post is not to bemoan the current state of the Avengers but about the great work of Tom Palmer so the last thing about the Avengers I want to mention is that while John Buscema left the book after issue 300 ( about which I have made at least three posts in my INFERNO CROSSOVER series ) Tom Palmer stayed on giving it a consistent look throughout Paul Ryan´s tenure. Who is the only artist to ever draw the main Avengers book AND the West Coast spin off at the same time.

Okay, there are a few more Avenger related series I have to include in this post. I thought about doing it in chronological order but since I can´t do Tom Palmer´s long career justice in just one small post - and I don´t want to turn this into another series of posts because I have started enough of those these last few months - and since I don´t have artwork for all the titles he has worked on I want to do kind of a best of post. And I´m going to include some of my personal favorites and one the series that has always been near and dear to my heart is THE MIGHTY THOR. 

The MARVEL MASTERWORKS haven´t caught up to the issues yet but there was a story about a camera crew going to Asgard and witnessing Ragnarok - this is the story where Roger Norvell becomes a red bearded version of Thor - where Tom Palmer teamed up once again with John Buscema. I think the ESSENTIALS stopped before they reached this point but I got all the issues in the spanish BIBLIOTECA MARVEL pocket books.

Another founding member of the Avengers was the incredible Hulk although it didn´t last very long. Tom Palmer worked with two artists on the renumbered Hulk book : John Romita Jr ( sadly I don´t have any art from these issues ) and Lee Weeks who illustrated Peter David´s swan song TEMPUS FUGIT. You can say what you want about Peter David but he left his mark on the book without any doubt. Plus he did on of the longest runs on the title and some of Today´s writers should follow his example.

Speaking of the undeservedly underrated Lee Weeks, Tom Palmer teamed up with him again in another Avengers related book, the also renumbered CAPTAIN AMERICA that started with John Cassaday´s controversial post 9 - 11 Cap storyline. They did one of the most brilliant stories of that run called Captain America Lives which can be seen as a What If ? story, something Captain America dreams about while trapped in the ice or a wibbly wobbly timey wimey adventure that is the prologue to the Avengers finding Captain America in the ice block. A great read any way you put it.

And speaking about Captain America, Tom Palmer also did a few issues of that title with comic book icon Jim Steranko and the great Gene Colan.

If one mentions Gene Colan one must also mention his most famous collaboration with Tom Palmer, THE TOMB OF DRACULA, one of THE best series Marvel Bronze Age books. And their best horror series PERIOD !

This series has great writing by Marv Wolfman and it´s especially notable that he doesn´t fall in the usual pitfall when writing a villain as the main character which is trying to make him heroic. While you can understand why Dracula acts how he does and you even begin to feel empathy for his struggles Marv never lets you forget what a despicable evil being he is to whom the only value of human life is as his next meal. There have been various formats which collect the series over the years, from trades to hardcover omnibus books but with this one you want to start with the ESSENTIALS because that´s the only way to appreciate everything Tom Palmer´s inks bring out of Gene Colan´s art. There are four ESSENTIALS out but since the main series wraps up with the third volume I never got the fourth which mainly collects the DRACULA MAGAZINE and DRACULA LIVES ! Maybe I should get it one of these days just for completists sake.

Speaking about completists, Tom Palmer also worked on two other Marvel series with Gene Colan during the Bronze Age : DAREDEVIL and DOCTOR STRANGE and you can also find these issues in the Marvel ESSENTIALS.

Speaking about Bronze Age books it doesn´t get more Bronze Age - ish ( is that a word ? ) than with the Man of Bronze, Doc Savage himself.

Today is also Harrison Ford´s 74th birthday so to honor this I wanted to include something from Tom Palmer´s work on the STAR WARS comics by Marvel and what better than the splash page from my favorite issue. And yes, this is the seven samurai in space story with the giant green rabbit. 

Speaking about birthdays and big science fiction franchises, Patrick Stewart turns 76 Today and while I don´t have any art from the STAR TREK issues Tom Palmer worked on Patrick also played Professor Charles Xavier in the X - Men movies and Tom Palmer worked on a couple of X - Men related comics beginning with the X - MEN issues by Neal Adams.

Other X - Men related books Tom Palmer worked on are NEW MUTANTS, FALLEN ANGELS ( which I really can´t recommend unless you are an absolute fan of Kerry Gamill and you need to have everything he worked on ) and MAGIK where he once again teamed up with John Buscema.

This is one mini series that is still missing from my comic collection because I waited too long. There is a hardcover that collects this but because it is also included in the third UNCANNY X - MEN omnibus I wasn´t sure which collection I should get. The omnibus was offered at amazon´s bargain books section and I thought about getting it as a birthday present for my brother but I waited too long and missing my opportunity to get it cheap and now it´s back again at 110 EUROS.

Last but not least Tom Palmer inked John Byrne on X - MEN : THE HIDDEN YEARS which I got in the much cheaper pocket books by Panini UK. The series was also collected in two trades but these cost 30 bucks each.

Speaking about John Byrne, I almost forgot that he and Tom Palmer teamed up on volume 2 of the SILVER SURFER which lasted exactly one issue. But man, what an issue ! I think it is included in an Epic Collection.

And that´s all for Today. There are of course a lot of comics by Tom Palmer I couldn´t cover in this post but I think I mentioned the most important ones as well as my favorites. If you already are a Tom Palmer fan this post might prod you to crack out he old issues and if you are a comic newbie I hope I wet your appetite enough for you to go online and seek out some of his stuff. And many happy returns to Tom Palmer.

Since I didn´t post the last two days there is quite a backlog of birthdays so let´s start with the ones for Monday, July the 11th. I always like to mention weird coincidences and one is that two people from the cast of Smallville celebrate their birthday on the same day, Michael Rosenbaum who played Lex Luthor and also does the voice of Wally West in every animated incarnation ( he turned 44 ) and Serinda Swan who played Zatanna ( she turned 32 ). Sexbomb Serinda was also on Psych, Reaper, Supernatural, Hawaii Five - O and Breakout Kings. The last series only got two seasons and only the first season is available on DVD in Germany. I caught a few episodes on tv but not all so I can´t tell you if the animated GIF below is from that series or not. That´s one of the downside if you don´t make those GIFs yourself. The upside being that the quality and size can sometimes be higher and it doesn´t take as much of your time.

Case in point : I found all the GIFs I posted here - and then some - of Lil Kim who celebrated her 42nd birthday on Monday on the internet. Now she is in the Lady Marmelade video with Christina Aguilera and Pink but her part is the only one I like besides the part with Mya which is the best.

Now I could post a video from Lip Sync Battle that ties in with that but since I need the music video of this post for something else I have to skip that. As for Lil Kim videos my favorite one is Kimnotyze ( watch out for the girl in the red bikini with the huge melons ! ) but you can find that easily on YouTube although I´m not sure if they have the version with the wardrobe malfunction where you get a good eyeful of her juicy 36Cs.

So far I haven´t included Lil Kim in my JLA movie casting series but keeping in mind her troubles with the law maybe I could put her in as a villain. And speaking about my JLA movie casting I put sexbomb Debbe Dunning who turned 50 on Monday in my JLA Redux post as Knockout.

I haven´t gotten around to do a full post on her but maybe next year I can rectify that - if I´m not too busy doing another Tom Palmer post. Sadly the cineastic zenith of Double D Debbe Dunning´s career is The Misery Brothers, where she plays a real live version of Jessica Rabbit and Home Improvement of which I have seasons six and seven on my to watch pile.

Lisa Rinna celebrated her 53rd birthday and while she can´t compete with Debbe in the Double D department her mouth is built to give men pleasure which is why she is constantly voted best lips not in porn movies. And she also openly admits that oral sex is the secret of her happy marriage.

That together with the fact that she often wears see through blouses and posed nude for the PLAYBOY might give you the idea that she´s a total sex freak and she even co - wrote a book called Big Fun Sexy Sex Book. I saw Lisa and her lucky lips first on Melrose Place where she played the sister to Wylie Coyote but she also had a role in a comic book movie. She played the Comtessa in the Nick Fury movie with the David Hasselhoff.

So now is where I cash in my chips for the music video but I just had to acknowledge Suzanne Vega´s 57th anniversary. And since it´s impossible to narrow all her great songs to just one here is a short concert video.

Last but not least we have Yul Brynner and while I know that it must have happened at some point in his past it is so weird to see him with hair.

Sorry, but I had to take a little nap because my brain stopped working and I kept dozing off while writing the post. And to make matters worse the laptop stopped responding so I had to restart it anyway. Man, if this was just a normal video section I would already be finished but since I have to cover three days it will take longer than usual. Let´s jump to Yesterday´s birthdays then and we´re starting with Michelle Rodriguez who turned 38.

Doing these sections always reminds me of things and I totally forgot that she was on Lost which might have something to do with the fact that nobody understands the finale and I tried to forget the show. Michelle has also made appearances in Avatar, S.W.A.T., the Resident Evil movies, the Machete movies but she´s best known as Lettie from Fast And Furious. Vin Diesel played Dominic Toretto who recognized Letty as a fellow car fanatic and took her under his wing when she was ten and they started screwing cars together. When Letty turned sixteen however she boobed out and when Dom got an eyeful of her big double airbags he started screwing Letty all night long. Judging from the steamy sex scenes in the movie I´m sure Vin stayed in character when they were off camera.

Michelle Rodriguez almost turned away from one of the biggest movie franchises ever but like in comics there is always a way to bring dead characters back. After Paul Walker´s tragic death the sexy latina suffered a mental breakdown which turned her into a nymphomaniac going on a sex binge during which she deflowered an underage Justin Bieber. But now she´s back on track and you can bet old Dom has things well in hand.

Sometimes it can take quite a while since bookmarking videos and the moment I can post them on the blog and this is indeed one of the first ones I bookmarked on the laptop way back when I planned on doing a post about Roger Corman´s movies among which was the original Fast and Furious. Which doesn´t have anything in common with the new movies. Anyway, while I don´t know if I will ever do a Roger Corman post I can finally use the video and any excuse to put cosplay massita Angie Griffin on the blog is okay in my book. Her husband is one of the luckiest guys on the planet because he gets to play with her 100 percent natural 41Fs.

And we stay on track with a big rack ( okay, that was a bad pun ) as Lisa Nicole Carson is one of the women where her 40DD´s enter a room long before she does. The tomato with the titanic twin torpedoes celebrated her 47th birthday and she was two of the reasons why I managed to suffer through Ally McBeal. Sometimes I don´t like reading wikipedia entries because you find out a lot of depressing stuff you really don´t want to know and I was surprised to learn that an absolute stunner like Lisa suffers from bipolar disorder. Anyway, I hope she can really revitalize her acting career like she planned to because I can´t wait to see more of her. 

It´s not easy deciding which one of the 16 candidates in the post get one of only five videos but I absolutely had to post one of german cult entertainer Götz Alsmann who had his 59th birthday. His comedy / music / talk show Zimmer Frei ( Room to lease is a show where celebrities apply for lodging ) has become cult in Germany and since I can´t look through all the videos from that show I chose one with Birgit Schrowange, one of my all time tv crushes ever since I was in school. Like Iris Berben she is one of those women who don´t seem to age and this mega MILF is still in the top ten of celebrities most german men would have sex with.

Speaking of hot tv MILFs everybody knows Cheryl Ladd who turned 65 as one of the later additions to Charlie´s Angels but I bet only a few people know that she also was the singing voice of Melody Valentine in the Josie and the Pussycats cartoon by Hanna Barbera based on the Archie comic series that was even adapted into a live action comedy in 2001 starring Rosario Dawson, Rachael Leigh Cook and Tara Reid. Coming back to Cheryl she looks amazing for her age and still rocks a whopping 35C.

Staying with cult tv shows Bill Cosby celebrated his 79th anniversary and like Letty in the Fast and Furious movies Keisha Knight Pulliam, our little Rudy Huxtable has grown up in all the right places. Now is it just me or is every countries version of Splash better than the one from Germany ? 

From what I have seen from France, Spain and America it´s just one long parade of hot celebrity sexbombs in bikinis who get wet while in Germany most female contestants are eliminated after the first two episodes. I´m not entirely sure but I would wager they don´t understand the purpose of the program. I mean how can you even think it´s fair to have the bottom contenders in a swimming contest to decide who stays ? Of course the men will win and this way you can guarantee there are no women left.

Contrarywise there are still a few women left to mention in our celebrity countdown which has finally reached the present day. Our first candidate is canadian singer - and as I was surprised to find out actress - Deborah Cox who celebrates her 42nd birthday and she has the quintessential porn name if I have ever heard one. She made her big debut on Mtv with her hit Who Do You Love in part due to her top which generously displayed her 34Cs. I remember buying the debut album but then I lost track of her. 

Since I already used up my music video of the day with Suzanne Vega I can´t post a video with her nor with Johnny Clegg who has his 63rd anniversary but maybe I can rectify that in one of my upcoming posts.

Daphne Reid turns 68 and you might know her name from lists about tv characters that were replaced without much explanation. She was brought in for Janet Hubert - Whitten who had played the role of Vivian Banks on the NBC sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel Air from 1993 to 1996. She joined the show right after the fictional character Nicky Banks was born toward the end of the third season, when Hubert - Whitten was released from her contract after a contract violation and multiple problems working with the show's star, Will Smith. Of course the real star of the show was Tatyana Ali our second candidate who boobed out in a big way when puberty hit.

Wow, Tatyana is the fifth afro american sexbomb in this post with a full dozen of Hollywood´s finest in total. I wonder if this is a new record.

Cheech Marin has done a lot in his 70 years but for me it is weird that he is referred to as the voice actor from Cars or Don Johnson´s sidekick on Nash Bridges when for people of my generation he was one half of the comedy duo of Cheech & Chong. Of course which such a large resume he has many parallels with other people from Today´s post : like Lisa Rinna he worked with David Hasselhoff, not on Nick Fury but on Ring of the Musketeers alongside Thomas Gottschalk ( that alone should tell you enough about the quality of that tv movie ), like Serinda Swan he was on Psych and like Michelle Rodriguez he did double duty on Lost and Machete.

Our oldest birthday candidate is Ernie Colon with 85 and it was a bit difficult for me to find stuff about him - mainly because I got him mixed up with Denis Cowan and auto correction insisted that I was really looking for information on colonoscopies. Ernie worked on a lot of titles but his most famous - or infamous in certain circles - is DC´s Amethyst series.

Since it was later retconned that Gemworld becomes the Sorceror´s World in the 30th century this became a Legion of Super - Heroes tie in which means that at some point I´ll have to spring for the SHOWCASE edition. Apparently there has been an animated version on DC Nation and one of the few good books of the NEW 52 was apparently Sword of Sorcery which featured Amethyst and logically was cancelled before the story ended. DC can´t have good books out there that readers like. Anyway, if you want to familiarize yourself with the series here is a video about the first issue.

Finally we are nearing the end of with french animator Rene Laloux best known for his feature films Fantastic Planet, Time Masters, on which he worked with Jean Giraud a.k.a. Moebius and Light Years with Caza.

Since I already did a post on Time Masters here is a list which also includes one of Rene Laloux´ movies and in this case adult doesn´t mean sex or nudity but graphic violence, animal cruelty and harsh language.

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


Terry Hooper-Scharf said...

Hmm. I expected a longer Tom Palmer post. He is incredible and his work with John Buscema was almost photographic. I've always rated him #1 as inker.

Hey, now that I appear to have finally sorted out all the laptop problems -we'll have to Skype!

SUBZERO said...

Yeah, first I´ll have to get on Skype which I currently am not. I´ll send you an e - mail when I´ve done that.

And I´ll definitely have more Tom Palmer AVENGERS posts since I still haven´t finished my TOP TEN JOHN BUSCEMA AVENGERS COVERS posts. So many topics, so little time.