Friday, April 7, 2017

Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #34: The Hart Amos cover

Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #34 features a Hart Amos cover for the lead story The Luckiest Boy in the World!, which originally appeared in the U.S issue Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #24 cover-dated October-November 1957. In the original issue The Luckiest Boy in the World! was not the lead story as it would be in the Australian issue so Amos was charged with coming up with an appropriate cover image.

To do this he adapted a panel from the story:

As you can see, Amos closely reproduces the staging of the original image, including the model of the car, but I like how he modifies Jimmy's walk from a step to a strut, which emphasises his boldness in the context of the story. And I also like the annoyed expression on Superman's face as he arrives to save Jimmy - the inclusion of Superman serves as a synopsis of the story in a single image more fully than the original single panel. The urban background is omitted by Amos, but this also works for the cover, leaving room for the various text requirements, and making it suitably abstracted.

Even the modified text in the speech balloon works. In the original, Jimmy is overconfident that something will save him, and is surprised when Superman saves him, expecting some other magic or chance to intervene on his behalf. In the cover version we see that Superman knows Jimmy's lucky turban won't help him and appears annoyed and frustrated at Jimmy's blind faith. The reader senses that this has happened before.

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