May 11, 2010

Simon & Kirby Romance

Some Simon and Kirby Romance comics for sale on eBay with great covers. The condition ain't so great especially on the first one (to say the least), and I realize there are better scans of these books available all over the internet, plus many of you have seen this artwork before -- but I think it's fun from a nostalgic point of view to pretend I'm at a flea market digging through stacks of old comics looking for something new. To me, looking at these old books brings back a lot of memories from when I used to read old comics -- now I look at pristine scans on my computer.

I love the composition of this one.

The triangle of girls all focused on the smiling jock. Redhead causing trouble, black-haired vixen (who looks a lot like Marlene Dietrich) scheming, and the cute brunette. Nice colors, sky blue background, the red of the letter man's jersey pops off the page and pulls your eye to him along with the triumvirate of teenage girls. I don't see a number on this cover so I'm guessing based on the cover date it's Young Romance #4 (1948). Cover: Kirby Pencils/Simon inks.

Strange all green background on this one, it does focus your your attention on the silhouette of the couple, but all that great background detail gets lost in the mix. Kirby pencils, and Simon inks. Young Romance # 7 (1948).

I'm amazed by the extensive dialogue on these old 1940s covers. I guess readers liked having some idea of what the story was about so wanted lots of chatter on the cover; maybe readers expected plenty of captions on Romance covers since they are mainly text-driven on the inside; or possibly the artists simply needed to fill that blank space with something, and lots of talk did the trick? Either way, I'm reading this stuff for the first time. I love this guy fell in love with the girl from her snapshot -- just like people falling in love looking at each other's avatars on the internet. I wonder what happened to Fred?

Young Romance # 8 (1948). Kirby/Simon art.
I'd rather know what the people in the background are thinking, they all seem to have a mischievous look on their faces. Not sure why that wonderfully rendered phonograph in the foreground is obscured in brown. Seems like it would make for a nice part of the overall composition as opposed to an obstacle in the foreground.

More vapid dialogue but another wonderful Kirby composition. Young Romance # 12 (1949). Kirby/Simon art.
Great how the characters lead you down the page from top-left to bottom-right. The girl in red looks cuter to me, so I'm with Al, I'm sticking with Marge. Guess I'll have to read the book one day to see if I made the right decision -- if I can ever afford these old Simon/Kirby books, they average about 100 dollars or more apiece on eBay. I wonder if collectors purchase them to store in plastic bags and file away on a shelf somewhere, or read them.