Monday, March 2, 2015

Metal Mondays: "The 'X' Effect" by Conway and Simonson

It's a warm spring day in May, 1976. You hit the local convenience store, step up to the spinner rack, and hope to find something really cool. Would a bunch of colorful robots (including one who looks like he's getting his guts squeezed out!) in a free-for-all illustrated by Walt Simonson grab your attention? Of course it would, you're breathing, aren't ya? Thirty cents and a penny or two for tax later, you're digging Metal Men #47, written by Gerry Conway with even more amazing art by Wild-n-Woolly Walt! (Notice he's not coloring or lettering this ish--according to the letter's page, they handed those chores off to make sure Uncle Walt could get his art in on time...) Okay, I know it's just the first of March, and 2015 is nothing like 1976, but hey, comic mags are a type of time machine, aren't they? Take a trip back in time, Groove-ophiles, but watch out for..."The 'X' Effect!"


  1. Not to give Conway's writing the short-shrift, but I just have to gush about Simonson's art. He really went to town with these Metal Men stories (but then again, he always seems to do that with just about everything).
    Just scrolling down the page and looking at the thumbnails without even expanding them is enough - you can just see the images and action bursting from them. Ba-Doom! indeed. Also, I'm wondering if that sound-effect on the second page is another one of those little tributes to beloved Batman artist Dick Sprang...

  2. -Hey, look there! A Cadmium robot!
    -You sure it's not a Titanium one, Phil ?
    -Why, yes! I can spot a Cadmium robot when I see one, man!

    The more I see Metal Men, the more I like 'em. Simonson's style is recognizable, but I think in this early works you can also spot Infantino's influence.

    1. :P being able to eyeball a Cadmium robot at a distance was probably a *bit* of a gaff, based on the fact that 'Cadmium Red' is a popular colour used by artists worldwide & coupled with a possible assumption that the element/metal Cadmium itself is red in colour (judging from the rose-tinted robot baddie) :) Cadmium is actually silver-ish, while 'Cadmium Red' comes from Cadmium Selenide ;)

  3. Ahh the Metal Men. So bonkers a project it should have been shelved (crazy times!)......but so out there it works magnificently. Genius!

  4. The X Effect series does a pretty solid job of summarizing the nostalgic vibe of mid-1970s action comics to a tee.

  5. Walts run on this series HAS to be collected at some point.....just AWESOME stuff! It is MY Metal Men.............



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Special thanks to Mike's Amazing World of Comics and Grand Comics Database for being such fantastic resources for covers, dates, creator info, etc. Thou art treasures true!

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