Behind the Badge Again

Fake Comic Cover for Red Hot Comics #17, with Big Bang Comics' the Badge and His RookiesI explained last time how, when Big Bang Comics did a cou­ple issues focused on the fic­ti­tious his­to­ry of the com­pa­ny (mim­ic­k­ing Ster­anko’s His­to­ry of Comics vol­umes), they need­ed a whole bunch of fake cov­ers to pull it off and make it all feel believ­able. Here’s anoth­er one from the bunch I generated.

I drew this back then, inked (I believe) by Jeff Mey­er. And now for the first time, appear­ing in col­or! It’s fun to final­ly see this real­ized in this form, after hav­ing it exist only in black and white for all these years.

I’m not exact­ly sure where the idea for this cov­er came from. Per­haps I was think­ing about Simon & Kir­by’s kick-off run of Cap­tain Amer­i­ca, which seemed to draw a lot of inspi­ra­tion from the “weird men­ace” genre of pulps (an ingre­di­ent I’m sur­prised that most peo­ple don’t seem to pick up on). I kin­da wish I could read “The Vam­pire of Var­ney Street!”

I had fun doing this. Hope you enjoy it!

8 thoughts on “Behind the Badge Again

  1. Lyle A Dodd

    For me, the suc­cess of these cov­ers can be found in the fact that I want to read the sto­ry that they rep­re­sent, even though that sto­ry does­n’t exist.
    The oth­er thought that cross­es my mind is that this cov­er would nev­er make it in a post code envi­ron­ment, until the sev­en­ties when vam­pires were “okay” again. This par­tic­u­lar cov­er, I’m guess­ing, is meant to rep­re­sent the time peri­od after the war but prob­a­bly before the ear­ly 50’s.
    The best part is the sense of excite­ment and fun that you deliv­er on these projects, and this cov­er has both of those qualities.

    1. Mark Post author

      Glad you like it.
      I believe I was actu­al­ly inspired by a lot of the “weird men­ace” pulp genre-type char­ac­ters that Simon & Kir­by did in their kick­off run of Cap­tain Amer­i­ca. You’re right that after the Code came in, a sto­ry like this would not have been pos­si­ble until the Comics Code was revised in the ear­ly ’70s for the first time.

  2. joe musich

    The col­or­ing cer­tain­ly com­pletes an undone task and brings your inspi­ra­tion to more com­plete exis­tence. I would cer­tain­ly like to see these and oth­er Big Bang char­ac­ters be ani­mat­ed, I can­not imag­ine a good rea­son why they could not be. Except some­one to put up the dough to do it. There is already a sort of Bat­man ’66 spin on the char­ac­ters. It hard­ly mat­ters that the cur­rent gen­er­a­tion may not get the ref­er­ence. In fact, it might be bet­ter that that group does not. At any rate, thanks Mark for the re-creation.

    1. Mark Post author

      Glad you like it, Joe.
      So far as I know, there was nev­er an attempt to do an actu­al Big Bang car­toon. But I did do a few ani­mat­ed style mod­els (à la Bat­man: The Ani­mat­ed Series style) of the Knight Watch­man and some oth­er char­ac­ters from that strip. I even did a fake cov­er in that style, which may show up online at some point if I get a chance to col­or it finally.
      Now while there was­n’t a car­toon, there was a live action pilot made with some of the char­ac­ters some years back!

  3. Jeffrey M

    Hi Mark,

    I did ink these two “Red Hot” cov­ers (this post and last). Fair­ly cer­tain I *did­n’t* ink the “Venus” cov­er, though, which is a shame, because HG Peter is one of my all time favorite Gold­en Age artists.

    Did you get my email a while back?

    Hope all is well.

    1. Mark Post author

      Jeff! Good to hear from you!

      I could’ve sworn the Venus one was one of your ink jobs, but I did­n’t go back and check the cred­its in the the Big Bang His­to­ry issue it appeared in. I will have to do that. Like I think I men­tioned in one of these posts, I was sur­prised to find I pen­ciled so many fake cov­ers for that project. And I think you inked the lion’s share of them.

      I did not receive an email from you! Some­times weird things hap­pen with my ISP clas­si­fy­ing stuff as spam or junk when it isn’t. But we’ll see what can be done to rec­ti­fy that.

      1. Jeffrey M

        I can re-send the mes­sage — noth­ing top secret, just say­ing hel­lo and catch­ing up.

        Enjoy­ing the blog, espe­cial­ly the process posts, which are always interesting.

        1. Mark Post author

          You’ve got mail!
          Glad you’re enjoy­ing the posts; I find it inter­est­ing when oth­er artists post about their process­es, or their thoughts as to why they did what they did. So it’s good to know that it’s enjoy­able when I do that here.


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