Mary’s Dad

FCA Marc Swayze Tribute CoverNow that it’s a new month, I’ve got clear­ance to reveal the last two of those images I teased you with pre­vi­ous­ly. These will both be appear­ing in the FCA por­tion of the upcom­ing August cov­er-dat­ed issue of Roy Thomas’ Alter Ego (avail­able start­ing in July, so you don’t have to wait all that long!).

First up is my FCA cov­er, done as a trib­ute to Gold­en Age artist Marc Swayze. While the orig­i­nal order to give Bil­ly Batson/Captain Mar­vel a sis­ter may have come down from the Faw­cett front office, the job fell to Mr. Swayze to bring her to life. He designed Mary and drew at least her first cou­ple of appear­ances, before being moved on to oth­er jobs. So I think it could be argued that Marc Swayze deserves the title of Mary Marvel’s hon­orary father.

This FCA issue is appear­ing in the month which would’ve been Mr. Swayze’s 100th birth­day. Though he didn’t quite make that mile­stone, it’s still a worth­while moment to pause and give trib­ute. FCA read­ers know Mr. Swayze had a long-run­ning col­umn there, enti­tled “We Didn’t Know…It Was the Gold­en Age!” Writ­ten in a very appeal­ing­ly gra­cious and hum­ble style, the read­er got the priv­i­lege of look­ing in on snap­shots of rem­i­nis­cence tak­en at dif­fer­ent moments in Mr. Swayze’s life. It wasn’t all about the comics; this man lived a very full and rich life. Hence my inscrip­tion. He and his con­tri­bu­tions to FCA will be missed.

I was huge­ly hon­ored to be asked to do this trib­ute cov­er, and want­ed to be sure to do right by Mr. Swayze. FCA Edi­tor P.C. Hamer­linck and I bat­ted a num­ber of ideas back and forth before we set­tled on a con­cept we both liked and felt was fit­ting. My first incli­na­tion of course was to try to just flat-out mim­ic Mr. Swayze’s style, make it look like maybe he drew it him­self. But P.C. made it clear that wasn’t what he want­ed. He was after my ver­sion of Mr. Swayze’s Mary. I hope I’ve done them both justice.

Binder Column HeaderThe sec­ond image (at left) is a head­er for a new reg­u­lar col­umn debut­ing in FCA the same month. You can see the title there in the art. This col­umn will fea­ture the writ­ing and rem­i­nis­cences of writer Otto Binder, a cre­ative dynamo who had an enor­mous hand in shap­ing not only Cap­tain Mar­vel and the Mar­vel Fam­i­ly for Faw­cett, but he lat­er made huge con­tri­bu­tions to Superman’s mythol­o­gy as well! And that’s real­ly just the tip of the ice­berg. I’m look­ing for­ward to read­ing these columns and find­ing out what he has to say.

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4 Responses to Mary’s Dad

  1. John G. Pierce says:

    Your usu­al out­stand­ing job, Mark. Not only does Mary look great, appro­pri­ate­ly Swayze-ish but orig­i­nal simul­ta­ne­ous­ly (I don’t know how you do it, but you do it!), but that tome she is read­ing is one we’d all love to own.

    • Mark says:

      John, thanks for stop­ping by! I’m very glad you like this one. Like you, I too would love to get the chance to read a bio/au­to-bio of Mr. Swayze’s life. Per­haps some­one will be able to assem­ble and pub­lish some­thing like that one day!

  2. Lyle Dodd says:

    Very nice. Almost dream like. As always you do the orig­i­nal char­ac­ter justice!

    • Mark says:

      Thanks, man! Mr. Swayze had a way of draw­ing Mary that made her look light, grace­ful, and per­haps dream-like. So it’s good if I’ve been able to cap­ture a lit­tle of that quality.

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