Thinking about the latest twists in the Thor saga, I thought about the Silver Age Thor so I was wondering--

  • when Odin deposited the newly created Don Blake in front of that medical college, did he think up a complete backstory for the guy, with paperwork and creditials? I know it was the 60s but you still had to have a college diploma to be a doctor!
  • Was it ever confirmed exactly what kind of doctor Blake was? He appeared to be a general practioner (gp) until he had to do complicated surgery.
  • Did Odin ever worry about Don Blake getting, well, killed somehow?
  • How long did it take for Thor's persona/memories to come back? In his first appearance, it was Blake transformed into Thor but soon, Thor's personality took over. It really was very similar to Bruce Banner and the Hulk.
  • Mjolnir was charmed that none but Thor could hold it but it wasn't super-heavy or else Thor would be crashing through the floor, among other things. But if he placed it inside a car, say, could you drive away with it, theoritically?
  • Did Thor truly love Jane Foster or was it Don Blake's emotions?
  • Did Thor have access to Don Blake's knowledge because sometimes the Thunder God seemed confused by technology/modern times?
  • And was Odin Thor's greatest foe or was there meaning to the All-Father's seeming madness?

 

 

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...or just another part of THE PLAN

Andy

P.S. In the Avengers movie it occurred to me that Thor could just pin down the Hulk with his hammer as you described, but he didn't. Would have been a cool idea though.

I recently read an article by Jack Kirby's son, Neal, that asserted that Kirby's plan all along was incorporate the Norse pantheon into Thor. The relevant excerpt:

I remember standing over the drawing board as Dad created a truly cosmic hero — it was a brand new character but I was confused when I heard his name. Thor? The story was “The Stone Men from Saturn.” My first reaction, before opening my mouth, was “Why the hell is a Norse god fighting rock-pile aliens?” Dad explained the whole origin story to me and how he would work in the entire pantheon of Norse deities in the future.

Now, I have never been too interested in the debate over whether Kirby or Stan Lee deserves more credit -- comics are a collaborative medium, after all -- so I don't know how much of this is actual memory or how much may be back-piecing certain memories with what later unfolded. Still, you could see a pathway here where Kirby may have been interested in doing Norse pantheon stories, and Lee merely wanted a Superman clone (complete with the silly Clark-Lois-Superman love triangle replicated with Don-Jane-Thor.) But I think, eventually, what you saw in Thor was cosmic Kirby at his best.

Complete article here: http://herocomplex.latimes.com/2012/04/09/growing-up-kirby-the-marv...

...What about Larry Leiber ? What do you think his imput/influence was ??? ( The movie gives him co-credit ,with Jack . )

the_original_b_dog said:

I recently read an article by Jack Kirby's son, Neal, that asserted that Kirby's plan all along was incorporate the Norse pantheon into Thor. The relevant excerpt:

I remember standing over the drawing board as Dad created a truly cosmic hero — it was a brand new character but I was confused when I heard his name. Thor? The story was “The Stone Men from Saturn.” My first reaction, before opening my mouth, was “Why the hell is a Norse god fighting rock-pile aliens?” Dad explained the whole origin story to me and how he would work in the entire pantheon of Norse deities in the future.

Now, I have never been too interested in the debate over whether Kirby or Stan Lee deserves more credit -- comics are a collaborative medium, after all -- so I don't know how much of this is actual memory or how much may be back-piecing certain memories with what later unfolded. Still, you could see a pathway here where Kirby may have been interested in doing Norse pantheon stories, and Lee merely wanted a Superman clone (complete with the silly Clark-Lois-Superman love triangle replicated with Don-Jane-Thor.) But I think, eventually, what you saw in Thor was cosmic Kirby at his best.

Complete article here: http://herocomplex.latimes.com/2012/04/09/growing-up-kirby-the-marv...

According to Lieber in this interview he always worked full-script with Kirby. It doesn't follow Kirby had no plot input because the plots provided by Lee may have incorporated his ideas.

 

When I discussed this with Henry once I argued that Kirby can't have changed Lieber's scripts because then the dialogue would have had to be rewritten to accomodate his changes. But the argument doesn't establish the point because it could be Kirby was filling in the dialogue in pencil for the letterer, which I understand comics artists often used to have to do. I argued that the pages from an unused early Hulk story show Kirby didn't do this - I've also seen an unused Avengers page without any dialogue - but this argument fails as it may be he did have to do it in his work with Lieber but didn't in his work with Lee.

This interview with Lieber conducted by Roy Thomas also has some discussion of his early Silver Age Marvel work, including his role in making up names.

...I have thought thst the . Um . " cornball/Fifties/very early SA/DC-alike " aspects of the early Thor stories might be at least in part credited to Larry'sinfluence ' I suppose-? I mean . I like 'em myself , some...What some might call old-fazhioned .

Luke Blanchard said:

This interview with Lieber conducted by Roy Thomas also has some discussion of his early Silver Age Marvel work, including his role in making up names.

On Fantastic Four Lee and Kirby were apparently working Marvel-style from the start. (A plot by Lee for the origin part of the first issue survives.) Lee was very good at dialogue, so each could bring his own touch to the work. According to the GCD Lieber scripted the first nine Thor stories from Lee plots, and R. Berns the next five from Lee plots. R. Berns was Robert Bernstein, who also wrote for the Superman titles.

 

As noted a Lee plot credit need not mean the artist had no plot input. Kirby may have also contributed to stories he didn't draw by providing covers for those stories before they were drawn. I can't confirm that covers were produced before stories at Marvel in this period but it seems likely in some cases. (For example, in the case of the cover of Journey into Mystery #97, as it was based on the cover of Tales of Suspense #7.)

 it could be Kirby was filling in the dialogue in pencil for the letterer, which I understand comics artists often used to have to do.

I've got some SA Marvel artwork, and it seems to vary, no doubt based on how much plot Stan actually provided. It seems that the artist would take whatever Stan provided and lay it out, and he'd provide notes in the margins about what was going on in each panel, especially if its apparent it's specific dialogue of some kind, like someone staring off the panel or two people looking at each other. 

No doubt, Stan would use that as a guideline, and I imagine he sometimes copied it verbatim, used it as a guide for what to write or wrote something entirely different if he had an idea he liked better about how it would go. As he handled each bit of dialogue, he ticked it with a marker (mine have circular dots next to each penciled note).

I imagine that the stories done from full scripts would have much less of that. There are definite pros and cons to both approaches, depending on the individuals involved. Hopefully, they could agree on which approach worked best for their pairing.

For instance, I've got a Marie Severin page from NBE #3, scripted by Gary Friedrich, in which the margins are just covered in blue-penciled notes. No doubt she was writing jokes for her art as she went and had to explain them. Then Friedrich apparently edited the notes in pencil, adding comments so he'd know what to write for dialogue. On one of them, it says, "Sol--What is Marie doing here?"

I think the original art notes sometimes were probably as much fun to read as the story!

-- MSA

Neal Adams said in this interview that when he did his first issue of Thor with Lee the latter objected to his leaving space for copy. Apparently he wanted to do all the deciding as to what the copy should be and where it should go, but that was at the end of the Silver Age, of course.

 

In this interview John Romita speaks of putting in a preliminary version of the lettering when doing "The Diary of a Nurse" for DC. In the 70s/80s Kirby used to fill in the dialogue on the pages he wrote himself. I don't know what he did in those comics he drew in the period that had writing credited to others.

When I looked at the credits on Essential Thor Volume1, it becomes apparent that it was not considered as a top tier "Marvel" book. Stan only plotted it from its beginning with Larry Lieber writing #83-91 and Robert Bernstien #92-96. With #97, Lee takes over scripting the series.

Kirby drew #83-89, #93 (Radioactive Man), #97 (Lava Man) [both revisited in The Avengers], then takes over with #102. Joe Sinnott drew #91-92 and #94-96 admirably as does Don Heck with #98-101. #90 with Al Hartley art is Thor's Silver Age nadir, looking like a bad coloring book.

From diverse hands, Thor became Stan and Jack's second signature work after Fantastic Four.

What issue of JIM did Thor start using "thou" and "thee"? Was it a gradual process or did it happen between issues?

I'd have to go back and look, but it was surprisingly late in the run, well after Stan and Jack had begun their great collaboration.

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