Saturday, December 5, 2009

Please, Doc, call me Winter...

If you grew up in the late 60s through the 70s like Yours Truly, and you were given to frequenting the paperback book section of your favorite drugstore, tobacconist or news dealer, then you were well acquainted with the multitudinous titles in Bantam's re-issues of Lester Dent's Doc Savage novels. Published in pulp magazine form from 1933 to 1949, the 181 novels were reprinted in paperback, beginning in 1966, with masterful covers by James Bama. The artist may be best known for his superlative depictions of the American West, but his Savage covers defined the look of Man-as-Super-Man for over a generation. Add the distinctive undulating title font, and the result was catnip for fans of classic superhero action and bizarre villainy. I didn't start buying them until about 1976 or so, and I didn't complete my collection until about ten years or so ago, thanks to the miracle that is eBay.

But this is not a Doc Savage appreciation post - believe me, that will come someday. No, this is a tribute to the marvelous work of Keith "Kez" Wilson, who has created a veritable alternate universe of fantasy Doc covers, all using Bantam's unmistakable designs (even down to the spines and back covers!), and allowing The Man of Bronze to breathe the same air as some of pop culture's most famous fictional creations. The result is a gallery of sheer delights, the true scope of which can be seen here, but being that this is the Christmas season, here's the one that really made me chuckle. And, needless to say, what I wouldn't give to read this (and buy it for a mere $1.75!)....

3 comments:

rogue evolent said...

Senski, thanks for this great post and update on the marvelous work of "Kez" Wilson!!! I had recently posted over on my blog a Doc cover he did with the Bumble (and the one with the Giant Turkey for Thanksgiving was cool too) but had not seen the one you've just blogged! Thanks pal.
r/e

senski said...

Thanks, r/e!

cerebus660 said...

Hey, Senski! Thanks for highlighting Mr. Wilson's artwork - I'd never heard of him before. Fantastic stuff!