Today, August 28, 2017, would have been Jack “King” Kirby’s 100th birthday. Though the legendary creator died in 1994, his legacy lives on in just about any facet of comics you can think of.
He and Stan Lee practically built the Marvel Universe by hand, creating the Fantastic Four and the X-Men and the Avengers and each member thereof.
When Kirby went to DC in the early Seventies, he was given practically free reign to create pretty much anything he wanted. With his gleefully over-the-top scripts and wonderfully distinct pencils, Kirby seemingly put every idea he had on the page, just to see what would stick. He could have done anything he wanted with the DC Universe, so instead he created the Fourth World. Darkseid. Orion. Mister Miracle. Big Barda. Granny Goodness. All Kirby; all great.
Kirby’s creations and popularity have been constants for decades, so it’s strange to say he’s having a resurgence, but… he kind of is. Mister Miracle is back in the spotlight with one of the best issues of the year. The Kamandi Challenge has seen our favorite creators try to one-up each other by going as crazy (and as Kirby) as they can. Bug! is the perfect book that the Allreds didn’t actually create. Even DC’s films are delving into his creations, what with Steppenwolf leading a host of Parademons against the Justice League this November.
So to celebrate, go out. Create something. If it seems silly, perfect; the point is it’s yours.
Happy birthday, Jack. Thanks for everything.