One of the incidental characters mentioned in the cast list is Jack Kirby (played by Michael Parks of Then Came Bronson fame) as the artist who creates all the storyboards and production art for the ersatz film that is going to be shot in Iran. Don't blink or you'll miss both Parks and his credit line.
Of course, all of us who know and love comics realize that Jack Kirby was arguably the greatest talent that the medium has ever seen. He wasn't the best in the business at drawing exotic women, so as a kid I was much more a fan of Kubert and Williamson and Wood and Leonard Starr. Jack still influenced me as much as anyone over the course of my career. His frames were always alive with energy, the storytelling impeccable, and like Eisner and Jack Davis, the work was just FUN. His comics were always entertaining.
At Marvel/Atlas Kirby wound up doing all the science fiction/outer space stories which usually featured any assortment of creatures. I was always more a fan of mood and mystery, so Steve Ditko was the grabber for me. But while I never really tried to emulator Ditko, I was always looking at KIrby's work for new solutions in both the art and storytelling. Unfortunately one of the realities at the comic companies, was that if a penciller was paid a high rate, he was then assigned an inker with a low rate. And the economics of the business often lead to pencillers asking for less qualified inkers to increase their own page rate. Consequently, we didn't always see the best in the business finishing Jack's work, often by his own choice.
At the end of Argo, when the explanation is given how this story was classified for a number of years, we learn what happened to the characters over time and how they were eventually given credit for their parts in this incredible event. But one is missing:
Jack Kirby: Creator of Captain America and the majority of characters in the Marvel Universe, for which he has never been acknowledged. While most of the artists working in the industry had there artwork returned to them starting the the l970's, Jack work, now worth millions, was never returned because he refused to sign off on his part in creating the material. Here's a man who has had as much impact on American culture as Walt Disney, and virtually no one outside of comics knows his name. Meanwhile, the other half of the creative team has made millions and has his name plastered virtually everywhere.
At the academy awards there was even a chorus line of the actors who played many of the characters created by Jack. Kafka would have loved this. The KGB would have been jealous of the thoroughness of our ability to rewrite history. For me, that was the irony of Argo. There still is a great American hero who has yet to receive the honors due him and to take his place in the history of entertainment.
|(While the version of New Gods that I did was never well received, it still was a lot of fun to do. But then Jack Kirby is a tough act to follow.)|
|(Finally...here's Steve, Tim and myself in my studio. )|
(As soon as I mange to figure out how to download the photos I took of them from my Furshlugginer Samsung tablet I'll post them here.)