The Comic Book Greats... And Some Other Dudes!
May 20, 2011 9:36 AM   Subscribe

In 1992, comic book titan Stan Lee produced and hosted an interview/chalk talk-type video series featuring some of the biggest names of the day and all-time greats: Todd McFarlane! Rob Liefeld! Sergio Aragones! Harvey Kurtzman and Jack Davis! John Romita and John Romita! Will Eisner! Bob Kane! Whilce Portacio! Jim Lee! Be amazed as Todd, Rob, Whilce, and Jim create a comic book! Be astounded as Rob and Todd, ably assisted by Smilin' Stan, create a comic book character right before your eyes!
posted by Alvy Ampersand (21 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite
Bonus: Frank Quitely does it digitally. And without Stan.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 9:36 AM on May 20, 2011 [1 favorite]

Watch Stan Lee hog the credit for Liefeld and McFarlane's creation right before your eyes!

I kid Mr. Lee. He's great and this post is great.

posted by Trurl at 9:40 AM on May 20, 2011

Seeing the name "Rob Liefeld" near the phrase "all-time greats" made me throw up a little in my mouth. Bad enough that I have to grudgingly allow for the fact that I can't argue against him being one of the "biggest names of the day".
posted by Tknophobia at 9:51 AM on May 20, 2011 [4 favorites]

"And here's a belt with some pouches on it..."

"You haven't drawn any feet Rob."

posted by longbaugh at 9:53 AM on May 20, 2011 [6 favorites]


MCFARLANE: We gotta add chains. The kids like chains.
LEE: He's rough, but not violent.
LIEFELD: Along those lines already, he's got the -- the biggest shoulder pads ever in existence. And a chest plate. You want to put some chains on him? Aw, that's cool.
LEE: I wish there was some way we could prove to the audience that you were adlibbing this right now.
posted by Shepherd at 9:54 AM on May 20, 2011 [5 favorites]

In the words of the great Chris Sims:

"...Stan imposes a two-minute deadline and starts egging Liefeld on to add more and more spikes to his wristbands, shoulder-pads, and any other available surface. Say what you want about the dude's costume designs, but come on, folks: The guy who wrote "This Man, This Monster" says to add spikes, you add spikes."
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 10:06 AM on May 20, 2011 [2 favorites]

Hunh, I thought I linked to the playlist for each episode, but the sidebar on the vids is showing suggested videos, not episode chapters. Todd McFarlane, Rob Liefeld, Sergio Aragones, Harvey Kurtzman & Jack Davis, The Romitas, Will Eisner, Bob Kane, Whilce Portacio, Jim Lee, Create a Comic Book, Create a Character.
Stupid YouTube.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:10 AM on May 20, 2011

"DTMFA!":AskMeFi relationship threads::"Rob Liefeld can't draw feet!":MeFi comic book threads
posted by BitterOldPunk at 10:18 AM on May 20, 2011 [1 favorite]

Liefeld, dump the motherfuckin' feet/pouches/spikes already!
posted by basicchannel at 10:23 AM on May 20, 2011

So that's what Rob Liefeld looks like.
posted by fuq at 10:40 AM on May 20, 2011

There are only two autographs I've ever sought out in my life, because I generally think that seeking out someone's signature is a little silly.

Sergio Aragones was one of the exception.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 10:50 AM on May 20, 2011 [1 favorite]

posted by scaryblackdeath at 10:50 AM on May 20, 2011

"DTMFA!":AskMeFi relationship threads::"Rob Liefeld can't draw feet!":MeFi comic book threads

I think it's more that he doesn't draw feet wherever possible, and when he does it supports the theory that he has no idea what feet actually look like.
posted by Grangousier at 11:37 AM on May 20, 2011

I love trotting out this old chestnut. It's not just feet that confound Mr. Liefield.
posted by ged at 11:44 AM on May 20, 2011

Great post! This is going to eat up my day. It's easy to dump on Rob Liefield, and I mostly agree with the criticism, but he has his own style and he developed it when he was very young. JRJR was pretty crappy too when this was filmed, but he became better over time. Unfortunately didn't see that kind of evolution with Liefield.
posted by Locobot at 1:39 PM on May 20, 2011

I still have a few of these on VHS. The Bob Kane video is great if only for his (sometimes) barely disguised bitterness. I loved the Kurtzman/Davis video. And is there a greater guy in comics than Sergio Aragones?
posted by causticgnostic at 1:56 PM on May 20, 2011 [1 favorite]

Think I'll watch the Bob Kane one first. He's one of the few credit hogs more egregious than Stan Lee.
posted by EatTheWeak at 4:12 PM on May 20, 2011

Imagine trying to put a happy face on some of that '90s stuff!

KID: Hey Mr Comic Shop Guy, why does this guy have 85 teeth?
ME: Uh, it artistic license... it's just Liefeld's style...
KID: Why is this woman's spine hinged in three places?
ME: ...Uh... Maybe Rob never met an actual human female?
KID: Why does Captain America have Triple-Ds?
posted by Ron Thanagar at 7:13 PM on May 20, 2011

Awesome start to a long weekend - thanks Alvy!
posted by not_that_epiphanius at 7:33 PM on May 20, 2011

Damn if that's not a masonic handshake b/w Stan and Sergio at 1:18 or so. Fun? Wow!
posted by not_that_epiphanius at 7:40 PM on May 20, 2011

Well, I'm the old guy here so I found it a treat to meet two of my heroes, Kurtzman and Davis. Giants. Try to find "Jungle Book" if you can. It's art is so vigorous, so full of energy, so masterful in composition... it should be required reading for comics people. And it's funny.

And, maybe next to Frazetta, has anyone's style been more aped than Davis?

(Goddam I wish Stan Lee was a better interviewer, though, and sad to see Harvey didn't look well. He must have died soon after. Viva Annie Fanny.)
posted by Trochanter at 9:43 PM on May 21, 2011

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