When legends meet.
It’s NEAL ADAMS MONTH here at 13th Dimension, and we’re featuring daily commentary by Adams on his variant-cover project for DC Comics. Each of his 27 variants is a twist on one of his famous covers from the past. He provided the pencils, and the inks and colors were handled by some of the biggest names in the business like Frank Miller and Jim Lee.
For the full NEAL ADAMS MONTH INDEX of stories — click here.
For yesterday’s in-depth history of Green Lantern #85 — aka the “Speedy’s a junkie” issue — and the modern version, Batman/Superman #29, click here.
Today, Adams is joined by none other than Walt Simonson, the guest inker on the cover of Batman #49 — due out 2/10. It’s a straightforward spin on Deadman #1.
This is an interesting choice. Before trade paperbacks and hardcovers were a regular thing, DC in the ’80s would reprint popular stories on more durable stock but with new (or at least altered) covers. Hence, the Deadman series, which reprinted Adams’ work on the cult fave from 10-15 years before.
Here’s Adams. (And for Walt Simonson’s take, click here.)
Dan Greenfield: All right. So next, we come to Batman #49 and Deadman #1, the Deadman reprint issue.
Neal Adams: … So all I really did was replace Deadman with Batman.
Dan: And this is Walt Simonson (on inks).
Neal: Yeah! Isn’t that nice?
Dan: Did you talk to any of these guys when this was happening?
Neal: Not at all. Not one word.
Dan: Did you have any input or did everything just come…?
Neal: I didn’t want to! I mean, where’s my fun? I’m supposed to get fun out of this, too! To see these guys go ahead and to think their thoughts and to go through whatever that process is that they go through without somebody coming into the room and saying, “Oh, by the way…” and then screwing up their own head — let them go through the process and then make their own decisions. I like that so much better. And I look at the result.
I’ve got all these covers and they all went through different processes to get there. …
(For example,) P. Craig Russell, the Sgt. Rock one… he made decisions on what he was gonna do in that process for that cover. In another cover, he might make another process. Or if we had a conversation, I might have not gotten that cover. I might’ve gotten something totally different.
So my being out of it is the best thing. I’m just the source material.
You can also find more on Neal Adams at his website, here.