Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 4

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NUMBER OF PAGES

256

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ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED

November 2013

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“Ditko’s talent jumps off the page and one of the benefits of reading the stories in chronological order is seeing his art evolve and improve.” – Pedro Cabezuelo, Rue Morgue

Five years before Steve Ditko began work on his now legendary co-creations for Marvel Comics, the Amazing Spider-Man and Doctor Strange, he was producing some of his best work in near anonymity for Charlton Comics. Like its predecessors,
Impossible Tales: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 4 features over 200 meticulously restored full-color pages of Ditko in his early prime — stories that have never seen a proper reprinting until now, thrilling stories of suspense, mystery, haunted houses, and unsuspecting victims all delineated in Ditko’s wildly idiosyncratic, masterful style.

This fourth volume ranks as the best in the
Steve Ditko Archives series to date thanks in large part to the inspiration Ditko took from comics derived from the classic host-narrated radio shows, which gave an extra oomph to his creepy yarns. Moreover, comics such as This Magazine Is Haunted and Tales of the Mysterious Traveler bore witness to a veritable explosion in Ditko’s ingenuity in terms of manipulating the traditional comic-book page layout.

This new level of excellence also manifested itself in his work on other books, such as
Mysteries of Unexplored Worlds, Out of This World, Strange Suspense Stories, and Unusual Tales, all of which are amply represented in this volume.

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REVIEWS

Booklist

•Literary review magazine

“These already display Ditko’’s distinctively cockeyed style and his characteristically powerful compositions.” – Gordon Flagg

Comic Book Resources

•Comics website

“It’s fascinating to see [Ditko's] nascent style coalescing as he tackles a variety of material, already starting to work out the design genius that would mark much of his work, including – especially! – Dr. Strange and Spider-Man, for the next 20 years.” – Steven Grant

Under the Radar

•Online magazine

“His grasp at relaying natural character depth and dramatic heft is evident. His zealous work as the exemplar artist for Charlton Comics showcases his ever-blossoming abilities at setting scenes in stark relief to multi-hued characters.” – Kyle Lemmon