Hey, everybody! It’s another comic cover recreation/reinterpretation. This time, it’s the cover of issue #1 of Archie Comics’ Darling Romance. You can see the original cover here.
I’ve personally never been all that big a collector of romance comics, though the best of them have had some really great artists. An interesting bit of history: the guys who pioneered the genre? None other than Joe Simon and Jack Kirby! Those who are only familiar with the more two-fisted, action-packed side of their work might be surprised to hear this, but it’s true. They launched the first romance comic, Young Romance, in 1947. And in the wake of its sales success, many other publishers followed suit with their own romance titles.
Simon and Kirby’s work in this genre is unsurprisingly energetic and lively. Many of the stories go places one wouldn’t typically expect a romance comic story to go. If you get the chance to see some of these stories for yourself, it’s worth the time. I’m told it can be hard to track down the original comics, but thankfully, there are reprints available in books like Young Romance: the Best of Simon & Kirby’s Romance Comics, and it looks as though there might be other sources on the way too.
Maybe I should talk a little bit about this Darling Romance cover. I know nothing at all about this comic, but the cover image spoke to me. I thought it would be fun to take the original photo cover and do a drawing instead, push the model’s looks even more in the direction of Bettie Page. Also, I felt like giving the whole thing a pulpier, harder-edged look. Just for fun. 🙂