Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Fire and Water: Bill Everett, the Sub-Mariner, and the Birth of Marvel ComicsFire and Water: Bill Everett, the Sub-Mariner, and the Birth of Marvel Comics by Blake Bell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A long overdue book examining the life and art of Bill Everett, comic book writer artist who virtually invented Marvel Comics with his character the Sub-Mariner. Interesting fact, Peter Pan is mentioned as an influence on the Sub-Mariner's look. He was also influenced by the book A Dweller on Two Planets , supposedly written by an Atlantean via psychic medium Frederick S. Oliver.

Everett's early work at Centaur Comics is briefly discussed, as is his post-war work doing horror comics and ultimately a return to superheroes.

Everett had a tragic life of alcoholism, and was never appreciated for his brilliance while alive. He had a brief revival in his career towards the end of his life, but by then the damage he had done to himself was too much, and he died too young.

Great book, great info, with gorgeous illustrations. I could have used more reprints of his art, including a complete sequence that really demonstrated Everett's storytelling ability, but I can't complain about such a well research and rewarding book.

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