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#1207328 - Wed Jan 15 2014 08:29 PM Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America
The first photos I've ever seen of the Marvel office staff are in MARVEL TALES 1 (Sept 1964), then only about 20 staffers, including secretaries and assistants.
The photos in full size:
page 1
page 2

The next set of photos I saw were in FANTASTIC FOUR ANNUAL 7, Dec 1969, and the staff shown there total 41, and that includes some 1964 staffers who were missing from the first set who still worked for Marvel at that time.




This set I found are the only ones I know of from the intervening 10 years, from a 1975 convention brochure.

The only others I've seen were in issues of FOOM (a Marvel fan-publication) and from Marvel calendars of the late 70's.

Marvel, as I understand it from accounts of it, was an unglamorous crackerbox of an office until in the Shooter years they moved to a more spacious setting. That has taken on a larger-than-life mystique in fandom accounts of what it was like to work there.

Some other places I've seen photos of Marvel staff from the 80's-forward are in issues of EPIC ILLUSTRATED, HULK magazine, BIZARRE ADVENTURES, direct-only titles and MARVEL AGE, COMICS JOURNAL and other fan magazines.

And the blogs I pulled some of these from.

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#1207329 - Wed Jan 15 2014 08:33 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America
I like this impromptu photo of editor/artist John Romita Sr. at work, circa 1975 (as the covers on the paste-up make clear):






Some more behind the scenes photos of Don McGregor and others in the Marvel offices in the same period:
http://scottedelman.livejournal.com/302451.html

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#1207330 - Wed Jan 15 2014 08:52 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


And who doesn't love the ever-foxy Flo Steinberg, former secretary for the Marvel offices (1964-1968) under Stan Lee, who came back for another stint over two decades later in the 1990's.

Jon B. Cooke devoted the better part of a whole issue of COMIC BOOK ARTIST (issue 18, Dec 2002) to her, with an extensive interview of her (and more photos) from her time at Marvel, and her life outside of Marvel.

She also published a one-issue BIG APPLE COMIX underground anthology, with work by Neal Adams, Ralph Reese and Wally Wood, among others.


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#1207331 - Wed Jan 15 2014 09:05 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

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#1207333 - Wed Jan 15 2014 09:43 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


Here's a blog that shows all 3 sets of photos from 1964, 1969 and 1975 in my opening post.


The 1964 images (while the originals are pretty muddy) reproduce worse than the originals, while the latter two sets are far more clear.

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#1207334 - Wed Jan 15 2014 09:56 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America





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#1207335 - Wed Jan 15 2014 10:00 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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Posts: 18400
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From the 1969 photos, writer Gary Friedrich looks just like the Meathead!



(For you young'uns, that's actor Rob Reiner, from his role opposite Carroll O'Connor in the All in the Family sitcom.)




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#1207338 - Wed Jan 15 2014 11:21 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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And saving the best for last...





...former Marvel production staffer and sometimes artist Eliot Brown offers a treasure-trove of photos from his tenure at Marvel, ranging from his start in 1979 on up into the early/mid 1980's.

It gives a good feel for what it was like to work in the Marvel offices. And has photos from both their 575 Madison Avenue and 387 Park Avenue South addresses.

I especially enjoyed the "Wack Off competition", with photos of many of the Marvel staffers from the period I enjoyed their work most, including Frank Miller, Bob Layton, Jim Shooter, Bill Sienkiewicz, Dave Cockrum, Dennis O'Neil, Ralph Macchio, Mark Gruenwald, Ann Nocenti, Ed Hannigan, and many lesser-known stars in the Marvel firmament.


What I know Eliot Brown for most is something he did for Marvel's "assistant editors' month" (when the regular Marvel editors were at San Diego Con in 1983, and assistant editors took over all Marvel's titles for that month) and Eliot Brown did a one-page "Editori-Al" type credits page for Michael Golden's X-MEN ANNUAL 7 (1983). That definitely evokes an image of Marvel being a very fun place to work.


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#1207339 - Thu Jan 16 2014 06:44 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
the G-man
Offline Officially "too old for this shit"

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 Quote:
I especially enjoyed the "Wack Off competition"



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#1207340 - Thu Jan 16 2014 09:14 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: the G-man]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America
If you looked at the photos, it's playfully named , and not at all what it sounds like.

Among the wackers are Dennis O'Neil, Bob Layton, Jim Shooter, Michael Hobson, Mike Carlin, Archie Goodwin, Al Milgrom, Mark Gruenwald, John Romita Sr., Bill Sienkiewicz and Frank Miller.

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#1207341 - Thu Jan 16 2014 09:48 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Son of Mxy
Offline Son of Anarchist

Registered: Thu Mar 04 2004
Posts: 17777
they are wacking and crying


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#1207342 - Thu Jan 16 2014 09:52 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Son of Mxy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America
There was no shortage of attractive women in the Marvel offices.

Plenty of wack material!

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#1207343 - Thu Jan 16 2014 09:54 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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Although for the sake of these photos, at least, they limited themselves to paddle-ball.
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#1207344 - Thu Jan 16 2014 10:05 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


A nice wraparound cover that expanded from the Fumetti-features inside KA-ZAR in 1982. A nice shot of Manhattan, along with an art overlay by Ron Frenz and Armando Gil, the last issue of a fantastic one-year run.

There were plenty of photo-features inside the books of that period, particularly in KA-ZAR, that in the direct-only issues pretty much monthly gave behind the scenes views of Louise Jones-Simonson, Bruce Jones (no relation), Brent Anderson, Armando Gil, Chris Claremont, Dennis O'Neil, Ron Frenz, and other staffers to frequent the Marvel offices.

I also love the "Editori-Al" editorial cartoons of Milgrom parodying himself and other Marvel staffers in MARVEL FANFARE, WARLOCK SPECIAL EDITION, and other titles that Milgrom edited.

Goodwin did similar editorials in the Epic Comics he edited.

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#1207345 - Thu Jan 16 2014 10:16 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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A Wikipedia listing for Flo Steinberg.

 Quote:

MARVEL COMICS IN THE SILVER AGE

In the career-girl fashion of that era, Steinberg spent some months living at a YWCA and job-hunting through employment agencies. "After a couple of interviews, I was sent to this publishing company called Magazine Management. There I met a fellow by the name of Stan Lee, who was looking for what they called then a 'gal Friday'.... Stan had a one-man office on a huge floor of other offices, which housed the many parts of the magazine division.... Magazine Management published Marvel Comics as well as a lot of men's magazines, movie magazines, crossword puzzle books, romance magazines, confession magazines, detective magazines.... Each department took turns, one day a week, covering the switchboard...when the regular operator took her lunch break".[2]

Marvel's only staffers at that time were Lee and Steinberg herself, with the rest of the work handled freelance. De facto production manager Sol Brodsky "would come in and set up an extra little drawing board where he would do the paste-ups and mechanicals for the ads". She recalled that the "first real Bullpen" — the roomful of artists at drawing boards making corrections, preparing art for printing, and, as envisioned later within Marvel's letter pages and "Bullpen Bulletins", a mythologized clubhouse in which the likes of Lee, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Don Heck and others would be found kibitzing — was created when Marvel moved downtown a few buildings from 655 Madison Avenue to 635 Madison Avenue (with Magazine Management at 625, the formal address found in the comics' indicia). "Stan finally had his own office. There was a big space with windows where I was, and Sol Brodsky, now on staff, had his own desk".[3] Among the first Bullpen staffers, Steinberg recalled, were Marie Severin and Morrie Kuramoto, followed by John Verpoorten and Herb Trimpe.

Artist Jim Mooney once recalled,
  • She was wonderful! You’d go to DC and it was a business-like thing and I'd come out of there and I'd feel, 'Oh, God, I need a drink'. [laughter] I'd go to Marvel and I'd come in and Flo would say, 'Hello, Jim! Oh, I'll call Stan right away! Stan!!! Jim Mooney is here!!!' And I'd think, 'Oh my God, who am I? I'm a celebrity'. [laughter] She was great. It wasn't just me, believe me, it was everybody and anybody, but I still felt, well, it was really just me.[4]


The all-purpose Steinberg — given the sobriquet "Fabulous Flo", in the manner of many other Marvel Comics endearments — said that she

  • ...became so overwhelmed with the fan mail and the Merry Marvel Marching Society fan club that Stan started. There was just so much work! I need extra help and had gotten this wonderful letter from a college girl in Virginia by the name of Linda Fite. She came up and was hired to help me out, though she eventually went on to do writing and production work.[3]


Steinberg became exposed to the underground comix scene after meeting and becoming friends with Trina Robbins, who had come to the Marvel offices to interview Lee for the Los Angeles Free Press alternative newspaper. Through her, Steinberg became acquainted with contributors to the New York City alternative paper the East Village Other, and met such underground cartoonists as Kim Deitch, Art Spiegelman, and Spain Rodriguez.

Journalist Robin Green, who succeeded Steinberg at Marvel in 1968, wrote in Rolling Stone:

  • It was three years ago that I went to work at Marvel Comics. I replaced Flo, whose place I really couldn't take. Fabulous Flo Steinberg, as she was known to her public, was as much an institution in Marvel's Second Golden Age as Editor Stan (The Man) Lee himself. She joined Marvel just after Stan had revolutionized the comic industry by giving his characters dimension, character, and personality, and just as Marvel was catching on big.[5]




LATER CAREER

Steinberg left Marvel in 1968. "I was just tired. The last years were so long because the fan mail was overwhelming. Bags of it would come in, and all the letters had to be acknowledged".[6] The position itself, even after five years, was not particularly well-paid, and Steinberg quit after not receiving a $5 raise.[7] Marie Severin, recalling the day of Steinberg's going-away party, observed in 2002: "I think the stupidest thing Marvel ever did was not give her a raise when she asked for it because she would have been such an asset to have around later because she's so honest and decisive. ... I was thinking, 'What the hell is the problem with these people? She's a personality. She knows what she's doing. She handles the fans right. She's loyal to the company. Why the hell won't they give her a decent raise? Dummies.'"[8]





Editor-publisher Steinberg's Big Apple Comix (Sept. 1975). Cover art by Wally Wood.
Steinberg went to work for the American Petroleum Industry, leaving when that trade group relocated to Washington, D.C..[citation needed] A "Marvel Bullpen Bulletins" page in Marvel comics cover-dated February 1969 and necessarily written two to three months earlier noted that she "has a great new job at Rockefeller Center".[9] She moved to San Francisco, California, in the early 1970s, and later to Oregon before returning to New York City to help run Captain Company, the mail-order division of the horror-comics magazine firm, Warren Publishing.[10]

She spoke at a 1974 New York Comic Art Convention panel on the role of women in comics, alongside Marie Severin, Jean Thomas (sometime-collaborator of then-husband Roy Thomas) and fan representative Irene Vartanoff.[11]





A fictionalized Steinberg was portrayed as part of an alternate-reality Fantastic Four alongside Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Sol Brodsky in Marvel Comics' What If #11 (Oct. 1978). Art by Kirby and unspecified inker
[12]

In 1975, Steinberg published Big Apple Comix, a seminal link between underground comix and modern-day independent comics, with contributors including such mainstream talents as Neal Adams, Archie Goodwin, Denny O'Neil, Al Williamson, and Wally Wood.[13][14] Critic Ken Jones, in a 1986 retrospective review, suggested that Big Apple Comix and [Mark Evanier's] High Adventure may have been "the first true alternative comics".[15]

In the 1990s, Steinberg returned to work for Marvel as a proofreader, succeeding Jack Abel.





A nice insight into early Marvel!

She was a big part of the fun, friendly Bullpen image Marvel projected to their readership.

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#1207346 - Thu Jan 16 2014 10:20 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

Flo Steinberg in her own words, from COMICS INTERVIEW !


Although much more space is given to her in COMIC BOOK ARTIST 18.

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#1207351 - Thu Jan 16 2014 12:07 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Son of Mxy]
Lothar of The Hill People
Offline brother from another mother

Registered: Sun Feb 10 2002
Posts: 19042
Loc: Way back in the woods.
 Originally Posted By: Son of Mxy
they are wacking and crying

That's what comic fans do.

Don't make old people mad.We don't like being old in the first place so it doesn't take much to piss us off!

“I'm about to do something very clever and a tiny bit against the rules of the universe. It's important that
I'm properly dressed.” Doctor Who

If you’re Gonna fight, fight like you're the third monkey on the ramp to Noah's Ark… and brother, it's startin' to rain.”
― Christopher Woods,

I can tell by the position of the sun in the sky, that is time for us to go. Until next time, I am Lothar of the Hill People!

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#1208511 - Mon Mar 03 2014 01:31 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Lothar of The Hill People]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America




This early 1980's Shooter era photo of Marvel staffers.
Left to right: Christie Scheele, Tom DeFalco, Carmela Merlo, Roger Stern, John Byrne, Mark Gruenwald, and Belinda Glass and at the back, Jim Shooter (who stood on a cinder block for comedic effect).

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#1208512 - Mon Mar 03 2014 02:17 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Son of Mxy
Offline Son of Anarchist

Registered: Thu Mar 04 2004
Posts: 17777
it looks like a photo still from a retro porn movie. That's the part before the orgy starts.


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#1208523 - Mon Mar 03 2014 09:50 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Son of Mxy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


Would you really want to see these people naked?

You have no idea the darkness you are summoning.

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#1208526 - Mon Mar 03 2014 02:11 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Son of Mxy
Offline Son of Anarchist

Registered: Thu Mar 04 2004
Posts: 17777
Belinda Glass looks like a MILF. At the time.

Shooter's not half bad either. I barely knew her.


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#1208527 - Mon Mar 03 2014 02:53 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Son of Mxy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


Shooter's pose makes him look like Lurch.

Though playfully and deliberately.

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#1211167 - Fri Apr 11 2014 10:47 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

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Posts: 18400
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Defalco or Gruenwald could be Ron Jeremy.

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#1211196 - Sun Apr 13 2014 07:29 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
the G-man
Offline Officially "too old for this shit"

Registered: Fri May 16 2003
Posts: 43437
Loc: the right
 Originally Posted By: Wonder Boy




This early 1980's Shooter era photo of Marvel staffers.
Left to right: Christie Scheele, Tom DeFalco, Carmela Merlo, Roger Stern, John Byrne, Mark Gruenwald, and Belinda Glass and at the back, Jim Shooter (who stood on a cinder block for comedic effect).

I'm betting that pic is from Stern and Merlo's wedding. Merlo, by the way, wasn't a Marvel staffer, but a Cornell Chemistry instructor

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#1211566 - Tue Apr 15 2014 10:57 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: the G-man]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
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Thanks for the correction, G-man.

Given that's your hometown, there a chance you know that without reading Roger Stern's listing!
I assumed that not all of them were Marvel staffers, but that some were there just by relation to Marvel staffers. Christie Scheele is the only girl in the photo I recognize as a Marvel staffer.

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#1214163 - Thu Sep 18 2014 09:05 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America





Jim Shooter, from sometime during his reign as Editor-in-Chief at Marvel (Jan 1978-Feb 1987)

He seemed to deliberately cultivate an image of himself as an imperious boss. But as demonstrated by many of the fun projects he oversaw (FANTASTIC FOUR ROAST, MARVEL FUMETTI book, HOWARD THE DUCK magazine 5 that portrays him firing Marv Wolfman, similar photos and behind-the-scenes in HULK magazine and Marvel Bullpen bulletin pages) it seems like he had a fun side too.

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#1214164 - Thu Sep 18 2014 09:08 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


The odd men out in the 1960's Marvel bullpen, Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko.



A particularly rare photo of the notoriously reclusive Ditko, who doesn't appear in the 1964 and 1969 Marvel photos above. I never saw a photo of Ditko until the days of the internet.

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#1223992 - Mon Aug 14 2017 08:03 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


I just came across a treasure-trove of about 100 photos from the 1982 San Diego Comic Con, of a huge swath of comics creators of the time, and many famous, Golden/Silver Age comic book and/or comic strip creators, some of them in the years just before they died.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/alan-light/1118684224/in/photostream/

By all appearances, all taken by Alan Light.

Including:

Cat Yronwode
Dean Mullaney
Joe Staton
CC Beck
Denis Kitchen
Max Collins
Terry Beatty
Carl Barks
Walter Lantz (Woody Woodpecker)
Milt Caniff
Sergio Aragones
Bill Woggon (Katy Keene)
Frank Miller
Stan Lynde (Rick O'Shay)
Jan Duursema
Trina Robbins
Carol Kalish (Marvel's early 1980's marketing director)
Jo Duffy
Lee Marrs
Dori Seda
George DiCaprio (underground comics writer, and Leonardo Dicaprtio's dad!)
Clay Geerdes
Kim Deitch
Robert Williams
Dan O'Neill
Bud Plant
Len Wein
Marv Wolfman
Chris Claremont
Steve Englehart
Archie Goodwin
Hank Ketcham (Dennis the Menace)
Shel Dorf (founder of San Diego Comic Con, in 1971 if I recall)
Nestor Redondo
Gary Groth
Robert Overstreet
Steve Schanes (Pacific Comics)
Reed Waller (Omaha the Cat Dancer)
Jim Shooter
Leonard Starr
Burne Hogarth
And Saba
Dave Stevens
Wayne Truman
Melinda Gebbie
Carol Lay
Walter Koenig
Scott Shaw
Mark Evanier
Jack Kirby

Among others...a great snapshot in time.

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#1225090 - Mon Feb 12 2018 11:23 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America




I thought this photo was hilarious.
Alan Moore and David Gibbons putting the knife to a WATCHMEN cake!




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#1225093 - Tue Feb 13 2018 12:56 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
the G-man
Offline Officially "too old for this shit"

Registered: Fri May 16 2003
Posts: 43437
Loc: the right
 Originally Posted By: Wonder Boy





Jim Shooter, from sometime during his reign as Editor-in-Chief at Marvel (Jan 1978-Feb 1987)

He seemed to deliberately cultivate an image of himself as an imperious boss. But as demonstrated by many of the fun projects he oversaw (FANTASTIC FOUR ROAST, MARVEL FUMETTI book, HOWARD THE DUCK magazine 5 that portrays him firing Marv Wolfman, similar photos and behind-the-scenes in HULK magazine and Marvel Bullpen bulletin pages) it seems like he had a fun side too.


Shooter was one of the nicest guys I ever met in the field. I think a lot of the antipathy towards him stems from the fact he was more a "D.C." style editor, very hands on,like Julie Schwartz.

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#1225097 - Wed Feb 14 2018 12:32 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: the G-man]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

It's interesting that Julius Schwartz also cultivated an image as an imperious crabby boss. See JLA 123-124 as an example of that, where he and writers Bates and Maggin are portrayed in the story, and Schwartz is portrayed yelling at and berating Bates and Maggin for their storytelling.
I met Schwartz at San Diego Comic Con in 1987, and he likewise was a very nice guy in person. And also like Shooter, he was also a very big guy, well over 6 feet tall. I met him and Karen Berger at the same time.

I never met Shooter, I've only seen print interviews of him. Needless to say, I have a good opinion of Shooter's tenure at Marvel. He gave a much needed editorial unification to a Marvel that (1978) was unraveling.

I think the hostility toward Shooter came from guys like Marv Wolfman and Roy Thomas, who each had a line of books within the company that were their own separate empires, as writer/editors. And Shooter took that away from them.
Shooter's complaint was that the CONAN and TOMB OF DRACULA comics and magazines had stagnated and needed a new direction. In both cases, I agree, that every few years, you need to open a new direction, to stimulate new readership that drops off over a long run.

The one title I disagreed with, that Shooter regarded as stagnating, was MASTER OF KUNG FU under Moench and Gene Day in 1981-1982 that I think was undergoing a creative renaissance, and I think was at a new peak in quality. But I can also see that it was revisiting a lot of stories that had been done in the Moench/Gulacy run 5 to 7 years prior, such as a re-match between Shang Chi and the Tiger, or between Shang Chi and Fu Manchu.

From the time Shooter was writing ADVENTURE COMICS/Legion in the mid/late 1960's, he showed that he had an exceptional business sense, and a finger on the pulse of what his readership wanted. Sales figures demonstrate that.
And it was precisely at the time Thomas left SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN that I began reading, with issue 60, the last issue Thomas scripted, a one-issue story that I'm sure Shooter pushed for, and the issue after that Michael Fleisher became the regular writer, all one-issue stories after.
As compared to the Thomas run, that for years had been smotheringly long adaptation after adaptation of L. Sprague De Camp Conan novels. The new direction is what got me on board. For about 100 SSOC issues beginning at that point, it was mostly one-issue stories.
As soon as Thomas came back in 1993, the book went back to lengthy multi-issue stories again. And the magazine died shortly after that began.



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#1226022 - Thu Jun 14 2018 06:14 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America
Here's a Mark Evanier column about the very first San Diego Comic Con (1970) and his friendship and Con attendance with a friend named Mark Hanerfeld. Who was an assistant editor for Joe Orlando at DC from 1971 into the mid 1970's.

Who, a surprise to me, with a photo of Hanerfeld from the 1970's period linked above, was the visual inspiration for HOUSE OF SECRETS host character Abel.



It must have been gratifying to be splendidly rendered by the likes of Wrightson and Kaluta.
He appears on the opening intro splash page of HOUSE OF SECRETS 92, the issue that introduced SWAMP THING. And as I said in the Wrightson (R.I.P.) topic, the interior story used photo-reference for its primary characters of Michael Kaluta, Louise Jones, and Wrightson himself.




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#1226442 - Thu Jul 26 2018 07:03 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America



An early 1960's photo of Vince Colletta (left), with Stan Lee (right).

I recall Jim Shooter in an early 1980's Bullpen Bulletins page interview of Colletta joking that when they ran two pages of Marvel staff photos (MARVEL TALES ANNUAL 1, Sept 1964) moms wrote in and complained because he looked like a mobster, he was scaring the kids!





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#1226443 - Thu Jul 26 2018 07:32 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


I found the issue where Shooter interviewed Colletta and they said this. In AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 240, or other issues with the same May 1983 cover date.

 Quote:

SHOOTER: Has anyone ever told you that you look like a Mafia boss?

COLLETTA: Back when Stan Lee was doing your job he once printed photos of all the artists in the comics one month, After he saw how my picture came out he called me up and asked me to come back and get another picture taken. He thought I looked too much like a gangster. He didn't want me to scare the kids... or their parents.

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#1226444 - Fri Jul 27 2018 11:20 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
the G-man
Offline Officially "too old for this shit"

Registered: Fri May 16 2003
Posts: 43437
Loc: the right
 Originally Posted By: Wonder Boy




An early 1960's photo with Vince Colletta (left), with Stan Lee (right).


Pre-toupee and mustache Stan always reminds me of Carl Reiner as "Alan Brady" on the old "Dick VanDyke Show"

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#1226449 - Fri Jul 27 2018 08:28 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: the G-man]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America



That's precisely the era.
Who knew Carl Reiner would give us "the meathead" Rob Reiner? At least as ultra-liberal as his character on All In The Family.

I used to love the Dick Van Dyke show.

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#1226720 - Sun Sep 09 2018 09:47 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

Fantastic Four documentary (Jack Kirby art)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2WYVuU68h_M

A one-hour documentary on the FANTASTIC FOUR, its creation and evolution under Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, and its continuation under other hands after Kirby and Lee's departure. Not only photos, but conversations with Stan Lee, John Romita Sr., Joe Sinnott, Rich Buckler, George Perez, Len Wein, Marv Wolfman, Bill Sienkiewicz (I'd almost forgotten that he had about a 1-year run around 1980-1981), editor Ralph Macchio, Steve Englehart, Walt Simonson, Chris Claremont, Mark Waid, Karl Kesel, Adam Kubert, editor Tom Brevoort, Alex Ross, and Jim Lee. Spanning 45 years of history and creative teams on the FF series.

And great insight into not only what these guys look like, but also into the creative process, and the personalities and the struggles of continuing such a focal point of comics history. Guys like Romita Sr., Perez, Wein and Wolfman were simultaneously thrilled to be working on such a flagship book, but also intimidated with the responsibility. I was struck by Perez's comments about not for a long time fully knowing what he was doing completely, but over several years learning the finer points of storytelling on the job.






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#1226815 - Fri Sep 21 2018 03:26 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
tuvwxy575640
Offline 25+ posts

Registered: Mon Jul 31 2017
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#1226823 - Sun Sep 23 2018 02:20 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: tuvwxy575640]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America




Martin Goodman, the man and the power behind Stan Lee, who hired Lee and directed Stan's editorial direction for over two decades, before Lee diverged in his signature style with Marvel in the early/mid 1960's.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Goodman_(publisher)

He was Stan Lee's uncle, and hired Stan Lee to replace Simon and Kirby as the editor at Timely when they moved to DC in 1942. Goodman (as Lee also tells in ORIGINS OF MARVEL COMICS) during a session of golf, suggested in 1961 that DC's new JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA title was selling very well, and suggested Lee come up with a similar superhero team book for Marvel. Resulting in FANTASTIC FOUR 1 a few months later, in Nov 1961.

Pretty wild, how Goodman started his early adult life as a hobo, then took a job in publishing, and then became an entrepreneur/publisher of pulps and then comics in the 1930's and 1940's.
And apparently had a good instinct for following the trends from the 1930's to 1972 when he largely left publishing.
And his failed effort to re-enter comics with Seaboard/Atlas in 1974-1975, to compete with Marvel, the company he originally founded and then sold in 1968. There was something of a grudge involved in his founding Seaboard/Atlas.

A window into the wider world of publishing that comics were a part of.

Will Eisner was also an entrepreneur in the late 1930's, who straddled the worlds of pulp magazines and the emerging comic book field, who quickly became rich with Eisner/Eiger studios, packaging ready-made complete new comics to pulp magazine publishers who wanted to enter the comics field.
And then, with some risk in 1940, but already wealthy from Eisner/Eiger, leaving the safety of that venture to publish THE SPIRIT newspaper syndicated strip and its comics section to major newspapers nationwide.

But Goodman's publishing ranged from pulps to comics to trendy celebrity magazines to men's magazines. He apparently got out of comics when (even though it was on a temporary boost with Silver Age Marvel in 1968) he could see that comics sales and distribution were on a general downward spiral.



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#1226824 - Sun Sep 23 2018 04:43 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America
ABOUT VINCE COLLETTA, column by Mark Evanier

Continuing on inker Vince Colletta, Mark Evanier on a number of occasions has railed on Colletta for his damage to Jack Kirby's pencils. Evanier previously in other editorials said even on Colletta's best-regarded inks over Kirby in the Mid 1960's, Colletta would erase backgrounds or turn detailed backgrounds into silhouettes to eliminate detail he would otherwise have to ink.

And incredibly, after all that, When Kirby moved to DC in 1970, Colletta was continued as Kirby's inker. Interesting how Colletta (not too surprisingly) was savaged by every major penciller. And how even editor/artists like Romita Sr., Orlando, and Infantino would not allow their own work to be inked by Colletta. But then infantino, who personally negotiated Kirby's move to DC in 1970, assigned Colletta to ink all Kirby's work!


Also discussed by Evanier is Colletta's instant shut-out from inking assignments at Marvel after Jim Shooter's firing. Evanier's link of Colletta's scathing letter to Marvel's 1987 editorial staff is expired, but here it is at another link, both Colletta's handwritten letter, and transcribed. Less impressive when seen from the perspective that he was handing in incomplete work for others to finish, and relying on his influence with Shooter to get away with it.



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#1226826 - Sun Sep 23 2018 05:04 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America



That Colletta letter reminds me of another resignation letter by Dave Cockrum to Marvel in 1979, that some prankster in the Marvel Bullpen turned into butler Jarvis' resignation letter in IRON MAN 127, after an alcoholic Tony Stark verbally abused Jarvis.

https://www.cbr.com/comic-book-urban-legends-revealed-46/

I find it really hard to believe that substituting Cockrum's resignation letter was a mistake.


There are a few other stories from that era, such as Frank Brunner's resignation in 1976, Craig Russell's in 1976, and a Jim Starlin interview in COMIC BOOK ARTIST where he describes, in the same 1976-1978 period, the mocking signs with paste-up art on Jack Kirby stories (i.e., "The stupidest story ever written!!" and so forth) where he lamented the very bad treatment he observed, behind Kirby's back, of an aging creator who was arguably the greatest proponent in building the industry they were all employed in.

All these things combined make me think that even in the peak years where Marvel created some of the stories I love most, there were some really mean people working there.



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#1226837 - Mon Sep 24 2018 10:15 AM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
the G-man
Offline Officially "too old for this shit"

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I still remember that time DC actually has the audacity to let Colletta ink Marshall Rogers of all people
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#1226838 - Mon Sep 24 2018 06:48 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: the G-man]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America
 Originally Posted By: the G-man
I still remember that time DC actually [had] the audacity to let Colletta ink Marshall Rogers of all people


A few issues of Englehart/Rogers MISTER MIRACLE 20-21, and at least one issue of WORLD'S FINEST (a 10-page "bottled city of Kandor" story) issue 259, as I recall. By Colletta standards, those were actually some decent inking jobs.
And at that time, Colletta was art director at DC and actually got Rogers his first DC assignments. So on the plus side, having Colletta ink his work got Rogers in the door and working professionally, at which point he rose rapidly.
Looking back at a list of Rogers' work, the overwhelming majority of it was inked by Terry Austin, the very best inker you could ask for.

The article I linked made me realize that the occasional "good" Colletta ink job (such as inking over Grell on WARLORD 26 and 27, or on Kirby's JIMMY OLSEN run over Kirby) could be because it was not actually Colletta, but one of his many assistants.

I always thought as a 1970's / 1980's artist at Marvel or DC, it would be fun to have one issue inked by Colletta.
ONE !
Because that would be enjoying having your work inked by a well-known Silver Age quintessential inker (like Frank Springer, Frank Giacoia, Joe Geilla, Joe Sinnott, or Murphy Anderson). It would be a way of imagining yourself in the shoes of someone like Jack Kirby, Gil Kane or Jim Steranko, sharing one of their inkers from their most famous period. Frankly most of these guys would not be my first choice, but it would be fun for one issue to see your work through the prism of a Silver Age inker.

I know John Byrne was furious that Colletta inked his story for SPECTACULAR SPIDERMAN 58 in 1981, and demanded that Colletta never be assigned to ink his work again. That was to be the first of a series collaborating with Roger Stern, and ended up being just the one issue, perhaps precisely because he quit the series because of it. But again, for one issue, I wouldn't mind it.




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#1226844 - Tue Sep 25 2018 09:29 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
the G-man
Offline Officially "too old for this shit"

Registered: Fri May 16 2003
Posts: 43437
Loc: the right
 Quote:
I know John Byrne was furious that Colletta inked his story for SPECTACULAR SPIDERMAN 58 in 1981, and demanded that Colletta never be assigned to ink his work again.


I can see way Bryne was furious. Colletta practically redrew it, and not for the better:
https://comics.ha.com/itm/original-comic...121635-14012.s#


It looks like a "Spidey Super Story"

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#1226849 - Wed Sep 26 2018 04:49 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: the G-man]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America



Or to paraphrase the same perspective, it looks like a typical Vince Colletta ink job.

I think what would bother me most as the penciller is that Byrne's work is left unrecognizable, in inked form it's 100% recognizablle Colletta and 0% Byrne.

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#1227354 - Sun Oct 14 2018 03:35 PM Re: Marvel bullpen, photos, creators, and behind-the-scenes stories [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America




Dennis O'Neil in his prime in the early 1970's, in the era he was doing his best work on DETECTIVE COMICS, BATMAN, GREEN LANTERN, SUPERMAN, WONDER WOMAN, JLA, WEIRD WORLDS, THE SHADOW, JUSTICE INC., and other great work at DC.

O'Neil left DC in 1980 to work for Marvel (he was insulted that the Superman movie adaptation was never even offered to him, and left as a result as soon as his contract ended), and at Marvel he edited BIZARRE ADVENTURES, DAREDEVIL (teaching a lot about plotting and writing to Frank Miller), MASTER OF KUNG FU, MOON KNIGHT, SPIDER-WOMAN, POWER MAN/IRON FIST, and ALPHA FLIGHT, from 1980-1985.
All of which were among Marvel's best titles at the time he edited them.

O'Neil also scripted AMAZING SPIDERMAN, IRON MAN (the only run I didn't like). And DAREDEVIL during the run from when Miller left in 1982, until Miller returned and did the DAREDEVIL: "Born Again" storyline in 226-233.

O'Neil then went back to DC and edited the Batman line of titles from 1986 until his retirement. During that time, he also wrote THE QUESTION and AZRAEL series, along with a Batman story here and there.


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