More greatness from the brush of Steve Ditko! Here we have a full set of original art along with a fine scan of the original printing of I Am the Living Ghost, from Tales of Suspense 15, again from 1959! The so-called Marvel age of comics was yet undreamed of. Before Spider-man was even a tingle in their collective senses, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko crafted this classic tale of the undead! There’s some sweet Ditko suspense on offer here, Especially on pages 2 and 3 as the protagonist makes his way through the dim-lit castle.
The illustrations below are lovely and open, again with that Ditko trademark clarity and simplicity. Note how clean the original art is here. No stray white- out to be found. Like the images came out from his subconscious and straight onto the Bristol board precisely as he intended. There’s something so refined in his approach, like a crafted haiku, not a line wasted. There’s no excessive clutter or unnecessary detail to distract the eye, We’re lead from panel to panel in a considered and effective manner.
Enough! Delay no longer.
The Story awaits……. Please Scroll away!
Excellent slow build here. The protagonist slowly enters from wide shot to full figure, then mid-shot, finally to close up looking back over his shoulder. Nice left to right flow, leading the eye down the page, then an abrupt directional shift as his eyes lead you back to where he came from. No movement lines are necessary here to convey that he’s startled.
Top panel the hero escapes running right to left against the previously established flow of panels. Gargoyle close-up in panel 2 leads the eye to the final reveal.
Marvel Masterwork reprinting. Excellent clarity in the linework, those dyes in the original printing sure swamped the drawing.
Marvel Masterworks, The Atlas Era, Tales of Suspense, vol 2.
“WHAT’S THAT?” ONE PERFECT PANEL, that’s what. Gnawing tension, a paranoid looking protagonist, that sweet noirish lighting. It’s all Ditko! A simple pick for the panel of the day.