Thursday, August 29, 2013

So how did you spend your Jack Kirby Day?

Maybe this has been building for a while and I'm just now noticing it, but it seems there was a lot more Jack Kirby celebration this week than in the past.  This isn't timely merely because it would have been his 96th birthday.  Currently, the Kirby influence rules at the box office where movies featuring his creations are all the rage.  This is why it is important now more than ever to make sure people recognize the guy who made all this entertainment possible, the mighty creative mind and spirit that willed this into existence.  It's the least we can do as fans of his work when it looks as if his family will not share even in a small way in the billions of dollars Kirby has earned for media corporations that jerked him around.

But let's not give into bitterness.  Let's take a little look at the festivities instead and honor our favorite comic book creator!  Here goes...

Time ran a nice appreciation of Kirby online last week (avoid the comments after the first two, though), this week MTV celebrated his work and even the A.V. Club website added a "beginner's guide to the King of Comics, Jack Kirby."  I'd love to link you to those, but I'm writing this at work and I can only dare so much.

My Facebook feed lit up with Kirby messages.  The best, I think, was and is the Kirby4Heroes Hero Initiative campaign.  Run by Kirby's family, this organization posted some of his art and asked comic book readers to donate to the Hero Initiative.  The charity drive also featured something called "Wake Up and Draw," where pros woke up and drew a lot of wonderful Kirby-inspired art.

Which I admit I have not done, but I will as soon as I get home tonight.  Despite this deplorable lapse on my part, the outpouring of Kirby love was a joy to witness.  Of course, my sudden realization here is more than likely a case of confirmation bias, since I recently added a lot of pro-Kirby feeds to my social media.  It stands to reason they'd be popping on August 28th.

On this blog, just about every day is Jack Kirby Day.


Gary Chapin said...

Your Kamandi posts did a world of service for Kirby. Inspired me to check out the Ominbus editions (I was to young to "get" Kirby when the originals came out). I bought the 4 fourth world books and pre-ordered OMAC. Kamandi, sadly, has skyrocketed in price. Anyway, I am in awe, and trying to figure out the magic here. Everyone talks about him being "mythic," but that's more than just being big and spectacular -- he's also playful without being ironic. I think of the journey of the Odyssey, and can imagine the sailors going to "The Wild Area" -- a cavern under a city big enough for a high way that allows a giant, apartment building sized tank to remain hidden in perpetual mobility. Anyway, I'm writing about this, but have not place to put it (my blog is all accordion all the time). Perhaps you'd entertain a guest blog entry? Either way, I love your writing and your perspective. Thanks, Gary Chapin

Joel Bryan said...

Not to sound tit-for-tat, but I was just checking out your blog and it is fantastic! There are few things I enjoy more than blogs by people who know their subjects writing about things they love. I try to do that here, but frequently fall short. Gonna get better, I swear it!

Anyway, thanks for the praise and the comment. I couldn't agree more. Playful without being ironic, the comparison to the Odyssey. I think that's exactly how Kirby tapped into myth and legend, used them for ingredients and it all just bubbled and stewed inside him and he dished it up in delicious monthly servings.

I hate that about Kamandi's price, though!

Anyway... I would be HONORED to have a guest blog entry from you. I've always wanted someone to offer, but I didn't want to ask. So yeah, please do it and I'll happily run it here. Do you need my email address?

And thanks again! It's been a pretty good comic book weekend for reasons I'll blog about later and your comment was a part of that.

Gary Chapin said...

My e-mail is Contact me there.