BRONZE AGE BONANZA: Our new feature begins in earnest…

Welcome to BRONZE AGE BONANZA — our new monthly series that looks at the greatest covers of the Bronze Age — exactly 50 years later. For more info on this feature, click here.

OK, now we can get down to business.

This is our first real installment of BRONZE AGE BONANZA, and it’s an interesting start: We’re still obviously in a transition period from the Silver Age and the top choice should surprise nobody.

But it’s the rest of the list where things get surprising — especially when you see how much DC dominates the month. (By the way, don’t forget: These entries are based on sale dates and not official publication dates.)


13. The Adventures of Jerry Lewis #117, DC. Jerry Lewis was still such a big star that his comic was still going — 117 issues strong — in 1970. That’s remarkable to consider 50 years later. This is one of the best-known covers of the series thanks to the appearance by Wonder Woman.

Bob Oksner

12. Time For Love #15, Charlton. I don’t know who the artist is here — if you know, say so in the comments — but I dig this cover nonetheless. It reminds me of print ads of the era — and the illustrations you’d see on fashion-pattern packages. Time for swinging, indeed. It was 1970, baby!

11. X-Men #66, Marvel. I’m a big fan of Marie Severin’s but this isn’t one of her best. I’ve included it, though, because this was the final issue of new material in X-Men until everything was All-New, All-Different come 1975.

Marie Severin pencils, Sam Grainger inks

10. Boris Karloff Tales of Mystery #29, Gold Key. I am a sucker for A) George Wilson’s painted covers; B) hairy, tentacled, cycloptic sea monsters; C) the idea that Boris Karloff headlined a comic in 1970. Three ingredients for pure awesome.

George Wilson

9. Green Lantern #75, DC. It’s a cool Gil Kane cover on its own but it’s especially noteworthy by being the final issue before the seismic Green Lantern  #76 — co-starring Green Arrow — one of the first landmarks of the Bronze Age.

Gil Kane

8. Strange Adventures #223, DC. A Planet of the Apes-ish/Logan’s Run-ish dessicated landscape will get me every time. They were pretty pessimistic about the ’90s, weren’t they?

Murphy Anderson

7. Aquaman #50, DC. Nick Cardy did a lot of memorable Aquaman covers, of course, and this is one of them. It’s creepy and eerie and bona fide scary. Plus, I love the idea that Deadman ended up being a back-up in this series.

Nick Cardy

6. Teen Titans #26, DC. Another Cardy classic. Wonder Girl is wrong, naturally. The Titans’ costumeless era wouldn’t last very long, thank goodness.


5. Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen #127, DC. I gotta tell you I was seriously tempted to put this at #1 because, my lord, this is primo Jimmy Olsen. Superman’s being a total asshat and Jimmy is in yet another incredibly unlikely scenario. But it makes you want to read it, doesn’t it?

Curt Swan pencils, Murphy Anderson inks

4. The Silver Surfer #14, Marvel. I seem to remember this being a wall book at the comics kiosk I used to hang out at in the now-defunct U.S. #1 Flea Market in New Brunswick, N.J., when I was in my early teens. Probably why it’s stayed with me all these years. That and the fact that it’s the first time the Surfer met Spidey. (By the way, Marvel has released this as a Facsimile Edition. I think I need to track one down.)

John Buscema pencils, John Romita inks

3. Our Fighting Forces #124, DC. There have been a lot of great war comics artists over the decades. But for my money, nobody beats Joe Kubert at showing the tension, terror and lethal unfairness of combat.

Joe Kubert

2. Creepy #32, Warren. One of Frank Frazetta’s best-known images, dubbed NightStalker. Totally lives up to the mag’s title.

Frank Frazetta

1. Detective Comics #397, DC. You should probably get used to this. Neal Adams is going to be the #1 pick a lot in BRONZE AGE BONANZA. Especially his work on Batman and Detective — which also topped the list in our prelude. But that says less about my inherent bias and more about why Adams is comics’ greatest living artist. (Click here for Adams’ commentary on the issue.)

Neal Adams


— The TOP 13 COVERS of FEBRUARY 1970 — RANKED. Click here.

— BRONZE AGE BONZANA: The 1970 INDEX. Click here.

Sources: Mike’s Amazing World of Comics and the Grand Comics Database.

Author: Dan Greenfield

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  1. Dan, you know I love your website and it’s probably my favorite comic-based site of them all, but this, this may be some of your finest work! Haha. I can’t wait to dive into these posts month-after-month. So much fun. Bronze Age for life!

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  2. Cool idea for a recurring topic!! It’s always good to see some love for Gold Key painted covers. I am tempted to make a case for Little Dot 129 as well…

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  3. RE: that “Time For Love” #15 cover, I think the artist is Mike Kaluta!

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    • I don’t think it’s Kaluta – looks like Dick Giordano, who had been working at Charlton until he moved to DC. GCD says the cover uses interior work, and it’s very much like the SHOWCASE Jonny Double cover that has Jack Sparling centrepiece surrounded by Giordano work.

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  4. I prefer the Severin/Grainger X-Men cover to the Silver Surfer one personally. The SS cover is very “by the numbers” whereas the X-Men cover was very involving to me as a kid, and I love Grainger’s inks over Severin. Very slick with a nice texture to it. I’d also rate the Cardy covers higher than the SS cover though.

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