Splash page from OMAC #1, "A Startling Look Into ...The World That's Coming!"
by Jack Kirby, Cover date Sept., 1974, DC Comics
Bleeding Cool | Do Anything 004 by Warren Ellis
Jack Kirby didn’t get to be an intellectual. That’s a label others stick on you. When Jack told Will Eisner, as recorded in Eisner’s book SHOP TALK, of the time in his career when he “began to intellectualise,” you can almost literally hear Eisner’s condescension come off the page. Art Spiegelman, struggling to say anything of import about Kirby in a conversation with Gary Groth, calls his work “dimwitted.” ...
Somewhere in the back of Jack Kirby’s severed robotic head, the old Philip K Dick subroutines assert themselves for a moment, and the thing’s misty eyes project a Phildickian alternate world where Jack Kirby became the progenitor of a two-fisted Jewish intellectual line. This altered timewave surfs me to late 2008, where Douglas Rushkoff, having now taken boxing lessons and been blooded in streetfights, beats the shit out of two muggers on a Brooklyn street corner and writes about the experience in his next book LIFE INC., a long and involved consideration of the social contract and the pleasing efficacy of stamping on someone’s balls. On his wall is a picture of Jack Kirby in a fine suit with an expensive and most importantly elegant cigar in his hand, a cigar like a Fifties rocketship....
Can you imagine a Jack Kirby-designed Skylab? Even a Jack Kirby-designed car? Would he see that stories can be told through the design of things? That there is fiction in architecture, and narrative in design?
Mark Evanier, assistant, longtime friend and biographer to Jack Kirby: “…(it was) hard to realize that he was a brilliant man and a much deeper thinker than you had to be to draw super-heroes and super-villains punching each other across the page… I increasingly find myself wishing Jack had been granted a venue where he could have done more than Marvel Comics, regardless of what company published him.”