Going into 1975, Kirby was becoming increasingly unhappy at DC. Changes in editorial and their quick trigger fingers left Kirby feeling unwanted in his role as a one-man operation. On top of that, he could see that DC was struggling financially. So when October’s “Bullpen Bulletin” announced, “The King is back! ’Nuff Said!” it wasn’t the shocking announcement his move from Marvel to DC had been.
For the next few months, new Kirby work appeared at both Marvel and DC (ending with his pencils—and only pencils, no writing—for Kamandi #40). One of the first things Kirby drew upon his return to Marvel was the cover to Giant-Size Conan #5, inked by Joe Sinnot—the only time he would ever draw the barbarian for publication. Of course, John Romita redrew Conan’s face.
This Aurora model kit came up in a discussion I had at NYCC, and I thought it was appropriate for the season. I'd never heard of this one, but it's freaking fantastic. The ad comes from an issue of Creepy. “Harmless fun” for the whole family!
1973 ended with the cancellation of Mister Miracle, and 1974 led off with the cancellation of The Demon, leaving Kirby with only one monthly book. But OMAC, a bimonthly, launched in the fall, with Sandman, another bimonthly (this time written by Joe Simon), not far behind. And 1974 closed with Kirby taking over Our Fighting Forces (featuring the Losers)—another bimonthly—with issue #151. Meanwhile, Marvel not only (re)printed twice as many Kirby covers as DC, but reprinted more Kirby interior pages than DC printed new Kirby pages. Here’s Kamandi #16 (Apr. 1974), inked by D. Bruce Berry.
In 1973, Kirby was writing and drawing two monthlies (Kamandi and The Demon) and one bi-monthly (Mister Miracle), but despite doing covers for every one of those books, Marvel still managed to publish more Kirby covers (reprints) than DC. Here’s Kamandi #8, inked by Mike Royer, featuring the familiar faces of the most recent (at the time) U.S. presidents—the story inside would add Eisenhower and Lincoln to the mix.
@Pants I did a search because it was bugging me, and my first appearance on the show was Episode 154 back in 2006. It was funny because our booth that year backed up to a storage room for chairs, which was great for when we needed to take care of our then-one-year-old. But it also provided us a relatively quiet room to do the interview in. I had just heard about the show a couple of weeks prior from my buddy George Khoury, but I hadn't started listening yet. But of course I started listening right after we got home from the show. Good times!