Atom & Hawkman #45, November 1969

Staggeringly brilliant cover to this final issue of Atom & Hawkman by Hawkman’s premier artist, Joe Kubert. Other artists drew the character in the Golden Age before Joe got his hands on him, and many followed his revival in the Silver Age, such as Murphy Anderson and Dick Dillin, but Kubert stands head and shoulders above them all. He may not have liked drawing super-heroes very much, preferring instead the more down-to-earth adventures of Sgt Rock or Tarzan, but the few he did, he did superbly.

As for the book itself, the merging of titles, so familiar to British readers (“Great news for all children inside!”), was unusual in US comics. With both Atom and Hawkman’s individual books losing sales, Julie Schwartz decided to try a little experiment and brought the pair together in a single book. More often than not the characters appeared in separate short stories, but sometimes there’d be team-ups. Ultimately, however, it was not a success, and the merged title went the way of all flesh.

Kubert is supposedly hard at work on a new Hawkman project, and I’m sure it’ll be worth the wait.

©2009 DC Comics