Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Swamped by Colletta

If you want all your pencillers' work homogenized into near indistinguishability, you could hire Vince Colletta to ink them. In proto-Marvel's Love Romances, My Own Romance, and Teen-Age Romance in 1960-61, Dick Giordano has a good number of stories—some signed and many not—inked by Colletta. As distinctive as Giordano's work should be, you have to work hard to find him under the inks, and when you figure that he's the main penciller for Colletta on this run of issues, you might start seeing him where he's not.

Among the possibilities, I can follow Matt Baker's style under Colletta's inks if I work hard at it; I believe, though, he's gone from these titles just before Giordano comes on board. Odin only knows what Colletta's own pencils might look like, if indeed he's doing any at this point. The Who's Who has Hy Eisman ghost-pencilling for Colletta on Marvel romances in the early Sixties, but no one (least of all me) has found him there yet.

LOve Romances 94 Too Shy for Love

One story attributed to Giordano/Colletta is "Too Shy for Love" (Love Romances 94, July/61). The actual penciller I see is an Atlas/Marvel anthology book regular who inks himself (and signs himself) on stories in 87 and 95.

Consider the male figure in the first panel of each of the first two tiers above; those show Paul Reinman's typical quirk of the head best. I can tell myself I see his style in the minister in the third tier and the main character, Ruth, in the first panel of the final tier. And I don't see any signs of Dick Giordano—but that's no thanks to Colletta!


  1. Hi Martin,

    When you mentioned other artists besides Giordano and Baker I looked at the art before I read any further and recognized Reinman's figures; the stance of the man in panel one and the couple in panel 3 in particular.

    You do have to look very closely to distinguish a penciller under Colletta inking. I've struggled with ID's from time to time, including some of his work at Charlton.

  2. Nick, I've started looking at the DC romances from about ten years after this, which I know you've studied, and I can see that there's a great deal of close looking required there too.

  3. Martin,

    I wish I had more issues to study more closely. I look forward to your findings.