Thank you two times, John Morrow. Initially, for having the courage to publish the first book to feature the notorious Vince Colletta.The Thin Black Line, while not nearly as comprehensive as THE MOST BEAUTIFUL WOMEN IN COMICS and not even close on the number and quality of images, presented a balanced view of the oft-maligned artist. Readers expressed surprise at how many positive comments from both professionals and fans were contained in the book. The author, Robert Bryant, went to great lengths to uncover rare admirers of Vinnie the artist and the man. Undoubtedly, Kirby purists had a bad taste in their mouths as the majority of these people have “learned” to hate Colletta. Morrow could have pandered to the Kirby crowd by exercising editorial control over Bryant’s manuscript but didn’t do so.
The cover of Morrow Publishing’s new book, Dingbat Love, contains Jack Kirby pencils that were inked by Vince Colletta and Kirby Klub fan favorite Mike Royer. The cover of this publication is responsible for the second THANK YOU, JOHN! The three-panel wrap shows an example of Jack’s pencils on the left, a Vinnie-inked image in the center and Royer’s inks on the right. The chief reason that Mike’s work is preferred by aficionados of all things Kirby is that he faithfully inked every line that Jack laid onto paper. Colletta, on the other hand, both added to and subtracted from Kirby’s pencils according to his own artistic sensibilities and time constraints. While any hard core Kirby fan considers this heresy, thanks to the cover of Dingbat Love, it is likely obvious to anyone how much more accomplished and nuanced is the center panel inked by Vince Colletta. The Kirby pencils on the left are primal. The woman is more scary than she is attractive. Colletta’s delineation is exquisite in its attention to detail. The woman, as are all of Vinnie’s girls, is stunning. Royer’s example basically consists of thick lines and blobs of India ink. Enjoy Vinnie’s art and, by all means, pick up a copy of Dingbat Love if, for nothing else, to view Colletta’s elegant inking of the story Soul Love.