Monday, May 24, 2010

June 1976: Marvel Comics Cover Logos!

Doug: Several weeks ago we spotlighted some of those fabulous corner boxes that appeared on the covers of Marvel Comics in 1972. We thought it might be fun to zoom ahead a few years and look at not only revisions to some of those boxes, but the font, style, and impact of the title logos. So today we'll spotlight about one-third of the books that were cover-dated June of the Bicentennial year (why June? It was the month and year ol' Dougie turned 10!). Without further ado, and in alphabetical order, away we go!!

Doug: The first thing you might notice here is that the days of the quarter comic book are certainly fleeting! Man, was I depressed when I first encountered the price increases that would become all too common in the coming years. I'd gotten in on the tail-end of the 20-cent era, so for my formative comic years, the 25-centers were really all I'd known! You'll also see the familiar Spidey figure in the corner. But what I'd like to ask our faithful readers is a matter of preference: do you like the wide webbing behind the familiar lettering, or the more complex webbing that had appeared on covers in the Silver Age?

Karen: That Spider-Man logo is perfect -one of my all-time favorites! And the webbing is just fine.

Doug: This has always been one of my favorite logos. I love the arrow in the "A", and the slight tilt to the right gives off a real dynamism that is quite appropriate for a team-oriented action title. Of the several different logos that have appeared on the Avengers covers, this one is tops.

Karen: I'm with you Doug -this is my absolute favorite logo! It just promises excitement.

Doug: I'm pretty impartial to this one. It's really no more creative than what anyone with Microsoft Office could turn out using WordArt. I do, however, like the corner box. It reminds me of some of the animated .gifs I've seen on various microheroes sites.

Doug: Now this one... this one is a classic logo. Other than Iron Man's cover logo (which we'll see a bit later), there isn't a more fitting choice of font, color scheme, or dynamism in the lettering than this effort above. The arching letters in Captain America's name give off a sense of power and protection, and the Red, White, and Blue striping is just perfect. The Falcon's logo is no slouch, either. As to the corner boxes, "recently" reimagined by Jack Kirby on his return to the book, I like the Cap figure. I don't really care for the depiction of Sam Wilson, however. While he is certainly battle-ready, I would prefer something that evokes his power of flight.

Karen: Another classic logo. There's a real sense of motion to it, and the red, white and blue- well, that's the perfect touch.

Doug: The font on "Chills" could give one the chills! Good choice -- certainly a bit creepy, and the color change from top to bottom is a nice feature. The corner box is appropriate to what probably lay inside each month -- don't know, as I never got into the horror reprint titles.

Doug: I always liked this quirky title. What a mishmash of characters! The logo and corner box are nothing to speak of, but I did like the roll call above the title -- I thought that emphasized that those people were the Champions.

Karen: What a blah logo! No imagination used on this at all.

Doug: The logo for Conan the Barbarian is really inspired. Not only does the font for "Conan" give off somewhat of a rugged, even prehistoric feel, but the choice to place "the Barbarian" in the sword is just perfect. The corner box with Conan patiently awaiting the dispensing of his next butt-kicking is somewhat plain, but not inappropriate. Solid design on this one.

Karen: Awesome. Evocative of danger and a savage quality.

Doug: I'll say this: "The Man Without Fear" is as important to the above magazine's title as "The World's Greatest Comic Magazine" is to the Fantastic Four. Even though I never say either phrase, those comics would look wrong without the catchphrase. Again, I like the italicized font, as it plays well off the motion of DD in the corner box. This one works, and consequently was used for many years.

Doug: Meh... Although I liked this book (talk about quirky!), the logo doesn't do anything special for me. I did, however, always like the little bubbles on the corner box. In some issues, there were as many as five characters spotlighted. That design evoked memories of the old Legion Roll Calls. I've always wondered why Nighthawk is not pictured with his red cape.

Doug: Lastly (for today), we have the good Doctor, Stephen Strange. The word "Strange" looks like a font that could have been used on one of Marvel's horror reprint titles. It certainly tips the reader that something out of the ordinary, even occult or evil is within these pages. So it's fitting, to be sure. As to the corner box, I don't really care for the profile nor the strange stars and beam. It looks like Doc is shooting some energy out of his eyes -- not a power I'm aware that he ever had or used. Oh, and "Master of the Mystic Arts"? Good tagline, but not required for me like "Man Without Fear" or "The World's Greatest Comic Magazine".

Karen: A suitably creepy logo for the sorceror supreme - or was he just a master of the mystic arts back then?


C.A.S. said...

ASM logo: Either webbing is fine for me; I love the logo because to me, it looks "marquee-like".

Avengers logo: IMHO, this logo just shouts "ACTION!".

nyrdyv said...

I always found those Captain America logos annoying: too difficult to read because of the colors.


Steven G. Willis

Terence Stewart said...

That Avengers logo defined Marvel's Bronze Age for me; February 1972 #96 - August 1982 #222. With the next issue they dropped the arrow from the 'A' and it never looked as good again.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Have just discovered this site and it brings back a LOT of memories!

Just seeing those logo's from - gulp! - over 30 years ago sure put a smile on my face!

Keep up the great work!

Karen said...

Thanks, oh anonymous one! We're glad you're here!

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