Monday, January 16, 2017

Marvel-ous Mondays: "The Sun God!" by Conway, Smith, and Grainger

Greetings, Groove-ophiles! Here's yet another sample of Barry (not-yet-Windsor-) Smith growing as an artist by leaps and bounds--but not on Conan the Barbarian! While everyone knows about Barry's legendary run on REH's greatest barbarian, Bashful Barry's Ka-Zar work in Astonishing Tales seems to have flown totally under the radar. Well, here's your reminder, baby! Written by Gerry Conway and inked by Sam Grainger, from Astonishing Tales #4 (November 1970) here comes..."The Sun God!"
Cover art by John Buscema and Joe Sinnott


  1. Why have we not seen a collection of Ka-zar stories is a mystery to me. He's been revived a few times in the age of reprints but I'm not familiar. It's too bad no Essential came out and I can only hope an Epic volume will arrive, which like the Hulk and Silver Surfer gather up his early adventures in X-Men, DD, Spidey, and into Astonishing Tales. Glad to see my "Not-Yet-Windsor" appellation is catching on.

    Rip Off

  2. Man, I really need to read these Ka-Zar stories you've been posting. They just seem like the perfect type of comic, fun, adventurous, and exciting.

  3. Been meaning to leave a comment to thank you for these Ka-Zar posts, Groove.

    I remember those stories so well from the early issues of the British Marvel Planet of the Apes weekly (along with the film adaptations and Gil Kane's Gullivar Jones - what a comic!)
    Of course that was in black and white, and I have to say in this case the colour makes for quite a difference. Theres something trippy about it - the use of yellow on the splash for instance - that doesn't seem like the work of a standard issue early 70s comic book colourist... any idea if Smith did it himself?


  4. It was a great fantasy series up to the very end where it was allegedly halted to make room for Marvel's new Tarzan comic. Can I put in a request for the wonderful run by Moench and Mayerik that closed out the series?

    1. I recently bought all those back issues,so great! But so frustrating that it was cancelled mid arc to make way for some new 'spectacular' book, which I'm sure time has forgotten.

  5. Always loved the way he drew noses

  6. The transitional Barry Smith in Astonishing Tales:on the cusp of greatness before becoming the Raphaelite marvel that he is today. It is obvious he is giving his all in these stories, immensely aided by the inks of Sam Grainger.



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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!

Note to "The Man": All images are presumed copyright by the respective copyright holders and are presented here as fair use under applicable laws, man! If you hold the copyright to a work I've posted and would like me to remove it, just drop me an e-mail and it's gone, baby, gone.

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