13 CLASSIC MARVEL COVERS That Used Comic Strips to Catch the Reader’s Eye

An appetizer before the main course…


You’ve heard of Doctors Without Borders. How about Comics Without Covers? Now, I am not talking about coverless comics, I am talking about covers that feature sequential comic panels tied to a story inside. You saw a version of that with my column the other day about Secret Six. That series’ first cover was three panels that led into the following interior page.

It’s actually been a practice (but rarely used) in various ways since the Golden Age. Archie Comics did it a lot, but just to do a comedy situation on the cover. However, starting in the 1950s, Atlas Comics perfected the notion on a number of its titles and it leaked over onto a few 1963 Marvel covers. Gold Key also tried the experiment on several covers of The Flintstones and Walt Disney’s Donald Duck.

Here are 13 examples from Atlas/Marvel:

1. Men’s Adventures #28 (July 1954)

Carl Burgos art

2. World of Suspense #8 (July 1957)

Richard Doxsee art

3. Tales of Suspense #23 (Nov. 1961)

Jack Kirby pencils, Steve Ditko inks

4. Strange Tales #92 (Jan. 1962)

Kirby pencils, Dick Ayers inks

5. Tales to Astonish #28 (Feb. 1962)

Kirby pencils, Ayers inks

6. Journey Into Mystery #79 (Apr. 1962)

Kirby pencils, Ayers inks

7. Strange Tales #96 (May 1962)

Kirby pencils, Ayers inks

8. Rawhide Kid #28 (June 1962)

Kirby pencils, Ayers inks

9. Tales of Suspense #34 (Oct. 1962)

Kirby pencils, Ditko inks

10. Tales of Suspense #39 (Mar. 1963)

Kirby pencils, Don Heck inks

11. Tales to Astonish #43 (May 1963)

Kirby pencils, Sol Brodsky inks

12. Two-Gun Kid #63 (May 1963)

Kirby pencils, Ayers inks

13. The Amazing Spider-Man #4 (Sept. 1963)

Ditko art


— SECRET SIX: The Groovy Artwork That Defined the Cult-Fave Series. Click here.

— 13 GREAT COMICS SERIES Launched by DC’s SHOWCASE. Click here.

PETER BOSCH’s first book, American TV Comic Books: 1940s-1980s – From the Small Screen to the Printed Pagehas just been published by TwoMorrows. He has written articles and conducted celebrity interviews for various magazines and newspapers. Peter lives in Hollywood.

Author: Dan Greenfield

Share This Post On


  1. These are awsome covers ! Love Ayers inks on Kirby. Ditko’s inks of Kirby were really good as well. Wish Kirby and Ditko did more work together.

    Post a Reply

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: