Friday, September 14, 2012

MORE Off-Model Madness! Batman Melts! DC Comics Embarrassment!

Back again with another look at the pulse-impeding phenomenon called "off-model madness!" This was an eye-irritating (but fairly common) occurrence in the days before today's committee-approved style guides and artwork used in merchandising. How did such artistic atrocities even occur at all then? Usually a poorly-paid and put-upon staff artist at the toy or book firm would take ink brush in hand and badly copy an existing image of the character, then fit said drawing on the product, resulting in some less-than-terrific products stinking up store shelves! Click below to enlarge these mind-melting examples, from the (only in the) 1970s!

Above: Poor Batman. As drawn (on the right) by jocular Jim Aparo on this 1975 DETECTIVE COMICS cover, he's strong, commanding, and lithe. But, on the pitiful box art for the "Batmobile," he's melty, weak, and wearing the wrong colors. Fail!

Above: The two image below the toy show Neal Adams' masterful early-70s rendition of the 
Masked Manhunter, and its many extra uses on covers, and elsewhere! However, the above "Socker Boppers" knock-off toy uses a shaky tracing done by some poor slob who probably never held a pencil in his life! Fail!

Above: Lest you feel such aesthetic-bruising horrors only occurred in the "anything goes" 70s, cast your orbs upon this 60s wreck, produced during the mania of the mid-60s BATMAN TV craze! And--Batman using a gun?! Just plain fail!

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