By Gabriel Neeb
Escaping from the unspeakable hellscape that’s post-Brexit Britain*, web commentator Leonard Sultana (Twitter: @englishmansdcc) journeyed to San Diego to sing the praises of the character Marvelm-, er, Miracleman to the residents of America!
Okay, I’m solely kidding. But on the afternoon of July 21, Leonard did current a panel about how superior the character of Miracleman is, known as “The Age of Miracleman.”
Leonard was purported to be joined by author Donny Cates, nonetheless, Mr. Cates was unable to attend the conference. Also, whereas relaying this unlucky information, Leonard additionally stated it was extremely unlikely Miracleman author Neil Gaiman can be in attendance.
The panel was initially meant to be Leonard holding up a web page of Miracleman artwork and proclaiming, “ISN’T THIS INCREDIBLE?!” whereas Donny nodded in settlement.
As it stands, the panel solely had too few of those moments and plenty of of them concerned pages by the late artist Garry Leach. And these panels had been unimaginable.
As a end result, Leonard continued the panel by describing Miracleman because the band that’s unsung however everyone seems to be conscious of. To this, Leonard started with a historical past lesson about Miracleman’s unusual historical past, excluding the quite a few authorized battles (which have their very own documentaries on YouTube).
Miracleman started in 1940. Fawcett Comics printed Captain Marvel and that character would quickly outsell Superman within the US and UK. In 1945, a regulation prohibited the import of US comics, and Fawcett misplaced a lawsuit filed by DC (then referred to as National Periodical Publications) they usually needed to stop publishing Captain Marvel.
1954 comes round and Mick Angelo begins publishing Captain Marvel tales and simply modifications the title to Marvelman, introducing a Marvelman Family in 1956. This continues till 1961 when Angelo’s firm folded.
Then got here 1982 and the start of Warrior within the UK. At the advice of author Steve Moore, writer Dez Skinn employed some neophyte named Alan Moore (Steve Moore: “Alan would give his eyeteeth to pitch the strip”) to write down Marvelman tales. Beginning in March 1982, Alan Moore and Garry Leach start the primary of their eight points, ceasing solely as a result of Leach was creating pages TOO intricate for the required tempo of publishing.
At this level Leonard stopped to inform the viewers there can be a tribute panel to Leach on Friday, 22 July at 10 am.
In August 1984, Moore’s run ends on a cliffhanger after a dispute between Dez Skinn and Moore.
Soon although, Eclipse Comics within the United States begins publishing Moore’s tales, main Moore to begin writing new tales ending with Eclipse’s difficulty #16.
June 1990, Neil Gaiman takes over. Now, Moore felt he was handing Gaiman a “poisoned chalice” of a collection as Moore had ended his run of Miracleman (because it needed to be known as within the US for copyright causes). Gaiman was undeterred and started plans for 3 storylines: The Golden Age, The Silver Age, and The Dark Age.
Gaiman get by way of difficulty #24 earlier than Eclipse imploded in 1994 (#25 having been accomplished however by no means printed).
This started the “Age of Limbo” as Leonard described it, the place Todd MacFarlane supposedly purchased the rights to Eclipse’s property… which could have included Miracleman… till sufficient lawsuits had been misplaced by MacFarlane and it was discovered he had NO rights to the characters or tales.
Which brings us to now, the place the ultimate Miracleman story, The Dark Age, is ready to be printed in late 2022 by way of Marvel Comics.
Leonard’s love of Miracleman was evident regardless that he proclaimed himself to not be a full-blown Miracleman professional. It is his hope that this character and tales are given their correct due within the comics pantheon we’re all now celebrating.
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