Monday, September 16, 2013

Groove's Faves: "Keeper of the Eternal Flame!" by Maggin, Swan, and Anderson

Greetings, Groove-ophiles! Let's kick this week off with a fave Groovy Age Superman tale by the dream-team of Elliot S! Maggin, Curt Swan, and Murphy Anderson! "Keeper of the Eternal Flame!" is an all-time fave 'cause Maggin, Swan, and Anderson were able to cram so much cool into a mere 15-and-a-half pages! Superman showed off his powers in so many ways: taming bears, finding hidden villages, and of course, fighting an epic battle with a pretty far-out new superdude, Valdemar the Viking Keeper of the Eternal Flame! On top of it all, Maggin's Superman (and Clark Kent) displays the swagger, smarts, and sense of humor we knew and loved from the George Reeves Adventures of Superman TV show. The Swanderson art was gor-ge-ous, especially when illustrating the fantasy elements  of this classic tale from Superman #260 (November 1973). Oh, and doesn't that Nick Cardy cover just knock you out?


  1. Great post, Groove! I like those old Superman comics. Supes has a lotta trouble from Viking types and a couple of different incarnations of at least one Norse god in particular. Nice to see him solve a problem by basically being a nice guy.
    Great art by Curt Swan and another great cover by Nick Cardy. Did that guy ever draw a bad cover??

  2. Thank you VERY much, Groove. Now I wanna see Supes go up against Star Sapphire in the next ish!

  3. Is it certain that Cardy drew the cover? The hands and poses sure look like the work of someone else to me.

    1. My first thought on seeing this cover was that it had been inked by someone other than Cardy. At first I was thinking Adams, but on closer inspection - especially of the right arm throwing the sword - it looks to me like Dick Giordano's work.

  4. According to Grand Comics Database, who based their credits on editor Julie Schwartz's records, the cover is by Cardy. It certainly looks like Cardy to me, especially Superman's boots and the whole Valdemar figure. It is very possible someone else did touch-ups, though...

  5. 'Dream-team' indeed!!!
    This team is my definitive Superman team.
    As a kid, I began collecting comics about the time Dennis O'Neil wrote the 'Kryptonite Nevermore' storyline. I didn't know who Nick Cardy was, but his covers hooked me on Superman. Curt Swan did the rest. Stories back in early Bronze Age strayed away from the Mort Weisenger self-referencing 'Superman family/mythology' style, into a more self-contained (aside from Dennis O'Neil stint), intriguing stories that reflected editor Julius Schwartz sensibilities of his awesome Sci-Fi anthologies era: time-travel and historically misplaced people (like our Viking friend here), strange aliens, weird unexplained situations, etc.

    Schwartz edited early Bronze Age Superman era is definitively one of my top 3 comic book run of all time. Thanks for bringing back magic memories Groove!



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