Monday, September 12, 2016

366 Days with J. Jonah Jameson, Day 256: Today in Comics History

One of the greatest Amazing Spider-Man Annuals ever published is 1981's #15. It might even possibly be considered the greatest, and I'm saying that even as a huge fan of ASMA #1, with its full-page Ditko fight-sequences. Nor (nor!) do I say this simply because it's written by the great Denny "There Is No Hope in Crime Alley" O'Neil. Or even that the wonderful art is done by pre-Crisis Frank Miller and Klaus Janson. Yea unto you, as Stan Lee woulda toldja, it is not e'en because, as the cover clearly shows us, it's a story about the Spectacular Spider-Man battling the Pernicious Punisher while the Dastardly Doctor Octopus drinks his Sinister Starbucks.

Cover of Amazing Spider-Man Annual (1964 series) #15 (1981), pencils by Frank Miller, inks by Klaus Janson

It's not even because it takes place Today in Comics History, thirty-five years to the day:

No, it's because (as you may have guessed from the subject of this post), it's the single greatest story about J. Jonah Jameson choosing what will run on the Daily Bugle's front page.

Page from Amazing Spider-Man Annual (1964 series) #15 (1981), script by Denny O'Neil, breakdowns by Frank Miller, finishes by Klaus Janson, colors by Bob Sharen, letters by Jim Novak

Luckily for Peter Parker, Spider-Man's Press Agent, an even more newsworthy story comes in: that Peter Parker shoots photographs using such ultra-highspeed film he can capture the gaseous track a bullet makes through the atmosphere! Kodak stocks are about to go through the roof. They'll never go out of business!

But that's knocked off the front page only shortly later by the kissably soft lips of The Punisher! (see The Kissably Soft Lips of the Punisher #16, August 1979: "Kill me Baby, One More Time!")

Well, things can't get much worse than that in New York City...oh.

But, thanks to a little Spider-Mannin', all's well that ends well, and Jameson finally gets to use that photograph of him taken by his dentist, Doctor Frederick von Doom (no relation), D.D.S.

So, back to the drawing board for the final edition, I guess. That's our Jonah!


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