Kirby & Lee: Stuf’ Said examines the genesis of the Marvel Comics Universe
Now shipping is TwoMorrows Publishing’s groundbreaking oral history, Kirby & Lee: Stuf’ Said. This new full-color book explores the creation of the Marvel Comics Universe through its creators’ own words, in chronological order, from fanzine, magazine, radio, and television interviews, to paint a clear picture of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s relationship—why it succeeded, where it deteriorated, and when it eventually failed.
Serving as the 75th issue of the acclaimed Jack Kirby Collector magazine, this book-size edition is researched, written, designed, and edited by TwoMorrows publisher John Morrow. His decades of experience as a comics historian led to him being called as an Expert Witness in the landmark copyright case Kirby v. Marvel Characters, Inc., and being asked to participate in the Amicus Brief presented to the US Supreme Court, encouraging it to hear the case before it was finally settled out of court in 2014—just days before the Justices were to announce if they would rule on it. As a result of that case, Kirby and Lee are now acknowledged as co-creators of most of the Marvel Comics super-heroes which are breaking box office records in films such as Avengers: Infinity War. However, that settlement didn’t determine who did what in their 1960s creation spree, so this book gives both Stan Lee and Jack Kirby their say, compares their recollections, and tackles the question, “Who really created the Marvel Comics Universe?”.
Titled as a riff on Stan Lee’s “Nuff Said” catchphrase, Stuf’ Said was completed just days before Lee’s recent passing, and gives the most comprehensive and enlightening account of the duo’s relationship ever undertaken. Also included are recollections from reclusive Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko, Wallace Wood, John Romita Sr., and other mainstays from the 1960s Marvel Bullpen who worked with both Kirby and Lee. Rounding out this book is a study of the pair’s careers after they parted ways as collaborators, including Kirby’s difficulties at Marvel Comics in the 1970s, his last hurrah with Lee on the 1978 Silver Surfer Graphic Novel, and his exhausting battle to get back his original art—and creator credit—from Marvel in the 1980s, prior to his death in 1994.
Author/researcher John Morrow proclaims, “It is the single publication I’ve personally produced in my 25 years running TwoMorrows Publishing, that I am most proud of. When you see the ridiculous amount of research that went into chronologically documenting the quotes of Kirby, Stan Lee, Steve Ditko, and other Marvel Bullpenners, Ihope—no, I know you will love this book, if you have any interest in the evolution of Kirby and Lee’s relationship, and the creation of the Marvel Universe.” Morrow developed a novel typographic treatment to help readers follow this dense oral history, including color-coding Stan Lee’s extensive quotes in red, Jack Kirby’s in blue, and others’ recollections likewise set apart from the narrative text. The graphic result is being heralded as “an amazing feat of design, organization, and presentation”.
Readers are praising it as a landmark in comics journalism, with one early reviewer calling it a “crowning achievement—the research is impeccable.” Another says it’s “a model of readability and deep research“, and still others consider it “a masterful job at giving an intense inside peek in a uniquely linear and super entertaining way…“; “very even-handed with [its] praise and criticism of Lee and Kirby“; and “the most thorough and entertaining piece of super-detective work I’ve ever seen.“
The book is currently the #1 New Release on Amazon in Comics and Graphic Novel Literary Criticism, with an average review of 4.5 out of 5 stars. This full-color trade paperback is 160 pages long, and retails for $24.95. It is available now in both print and digital editions, through TwoMorrows’ website (www.twomorrows.com), comic and bookstores through Diamond Comic/Book Distributors, and at Amazon.com.