An Interesting Corner of Comicbook History

This letter was published in #3 of The Forever People by Jack Kirby concerning issue #1. I thought you would be interested in the comment, the style, and the sender.

Dear Editor:

Just to add a few words to the already awesome mound of praise (one might term it a “mountain of judgment,” had one a way with clever nomenclature) surely deluging you, my compliments on the first issue of Jack Kirby’s The Forever People. In recent memory only Deadman, Enemy Ace and Bat Lash seem to match this strip for innovation and success. Which probably means — if we are use as yardstick, the commercial failures of these high-water marks of quality continuity — The Forever People is too good for the average comic audience.

Its power and inventiveness display the Kirby charisma at its peak. Every panel is a stunner. Potentially, it appears to be the richest vein of story material National has unearthed in years. One hopes Kirby will be given total free rein, that he will be allowed to ride his dreams wherever they take him, for the journey is a special one, and we get visionaries like Kirby only once in a generation, if we’re terribly lucky. To constrain him, force him to fetter himself with the rules and rags of previous comics experience, would be to dull the edge of his imagination.

After the many false starts of National efforts in the past five years, at last it seems you’ve struck the main route. That it should be Kirby — at the top of his form — that worked point-scout, is not surprising. He has long been master of the form, and in The Forever People, it seems he’s found his metier.

Best wishes and prayers for a long, long life for The Forever People. Till now, all the flack bushwack about this being the Golden Age of Comics has fallen tinnily on us; but with Kirby in the saddle and The Forever People casting its wondrous glow, you now have leave to bang the drums.

Harlan Ellison
Sherman Oaks, Calif.