Godzilla 3 (October 1977)

Tony DeZuniga’s inks help a lot, but even he can’t make what should be an awesome page–Hercules toppling Godzilla–work. Not with that Trimpe perspective. This issue, Moench and Trimpe do let Godzilla destroy an American landmark–the Golden Gate Bridge. I guess someone at Marvel decided it could go, while the Space Needle in the last issue got to stay. Hercules also knocks the SHIELD helicarrier (or one of them) out of the sky in an apparent fit of rage. Oh, I forgot–the Champions guest-star in this issue and their presence (except Black Widow’s) breathes some life into Godzilla. Instead of … Continue reading Godzilla 3 (October 1977)

Godzilla 2 (September 1977)

Trimpe’s got a shot right between Godzilla’s legs (on the second or third page too!). It feels kind of dirty. Moench goes on to expand on the Marvel 616 version of Godzilla–turns out the ocean floor held a lot of other monsters (including giant flying birds). The nuclear blast opening the crevice for Godzilla opened the crevice for them too. Including a giant bird. In the ocean. Did anyone read Moench’s script before it went to Trimpe? Or was Marvel still doing it the other way, vice versa? Trimpe’s got some amazingly bad work in this issue, including a giant … Continue reading Godzilla 2 (September 1977)

Godzilla 1 (August 1977)

Given the goofiness of the seventies Godzilla movies, Herb Trimpe might be the perfect choice for this comic book. I mean, his name’s almost spelled tripe, which is a good description of his artwork. While there are a handful of iconic panels (small ones), Trimpe can’t even maintain perspective on a guy putting out his hand, much less a giant monster. And let’s not get started on Trimpe’s characterization of Japanese people. His only reference materials seem to be early forties spy thrillers. The one guy even has the coke-bottle glasses. As for Doug Moench’s story, there isn’t much of … Continue reading Godzilla 1 (August 1977)

Astonishing Tales 7 (August 1971)

If Herb Trimpe spent as much time on his figures as he did on the shading lines, his Ka-Zar story might not have been hideously ugly. It’s actually passable–ambitious at times even–until the dinosaurs show up. Trimpe can’t draw dinosaurs. Roy Thomas scripts the story, which is an extended chase and fight scene. The narration’s weak and the dialogue’s weak. Ka-Zar is annoying with his Tarzan speaking, but he also lacks any personality. Sure, he’s got a sabertooth tiger for a sidekick… but it doesn’t make either compelling. And Thomas’s conclusion is inept. Then Gerry Conway and Gene Colan do … Continue reading Astonishing Tales 7 (August 1971)

Planet of the Apes 28 (January 1977)

Moench’s conclusion to his Battle adaptation isn’t exactly strong, but it’s better than I expected. The shooting script apparently had some ambiguity and Moench embraces it. As for Virgil Redondo’s artwork, it continues to be serviceable. What’s most impressive about this installment is how Moench paces the action and the expository sections. He does fast forward a little, but not through anything special. For the original story—again with Trimpe, this time with Redondo’s inks (the inks help a tiny bit)—Moench comes to another conclusion of sorts. He gets a really affecting moment out of a brainwashed teenage orangoutang. Moench has … Continue reading Planet of the Apes 28 (January 1977)

Planet of the Apes 27 (December 1976)

There’s a letter from the editor this issue explaining all the improvements Moench is making in the Battle adaptation are actually from the shooting script and not Moench’s invention. I guess it’s fitting this chapter of the adaptation is the worst. There’s nothing Moench can do… it’s just a bad script and movie. But Virgil Redondo, who isn’t great, is a lot better on the art chores than the adaptation’s had in a while. Far less impressive, as far as serviceable art goes, is Trimpe on the original story. He has another magical landscape where the top of a tree … Continue reading Planet of the Apes 27 (December 1976)

Planet of the Apes 26 (November 1976)

All of the art is bad. takes over the original story. His apes are slightly better than his humans. His many-eyed alien might be the best. There’s a scene where it appears a Viking ship (this story introduces apes living like Vikings) is floating on air, because Trimpe doesn’t work the perspective on the scenery to show it’s on water. Still, Moench has really shaken up the character relationships–some expectedly, some surprisingly. I’m hopeful for the writing anyway. As for the Battle adaptation, it’s a little better. Not the art, of course. Marvel didn’t even want to pay Sonny Trinidad, … Continue reading Planet of the Apes 26 (November 1976)

Planet of the Apes 21 (June 1976)

This issue isn’t just easily the worst one, so far, of Planet of the Apes, it’s bad. Moench runs into two big problems. I won’t even bother mentioning how Herb Trimpe is not of the artistic caliber the series usually has illustrating. No, Moench instead finds a big old issue with each of his stories, the original one and the adaptation. In the original one, he continues his tale of the time traveller in search of the lost astronauts from the first movie. Only Moench apparently wasn’t allowed to use any of the original apes (much less the humans) so … Continue reading Planet of the Apes 21 (June 1976)

Robocop 11 (January 1991)

According to the letter pages, Robocop is going through an editorial shift with this issue and the next ones. Way from Grant’s sci-fi based future and into… well, they don’t exactly say. This issue almost seems like a direct sequel to the first movie, only with a giant robot running around with a guy’s brainwaves in it trying to kill Robocop. The Alex Trimpe slash Herb Trimpe artwork is pretty nasty. Robocop’s enormous and goofy looking. Skolnick tries to make the comic serious, with Robocop and partner Lewis obsessing over Robocop’s transformation from man to machine and lots of thought … Continue reading Robocop 11 (January 1991)