By Jim Beard
A comic book hero does not exist on words alone—he must have art!
Consider the Sentry: When Marvel made the momentous decision to open the case files on the Golden Guardian's greatest and to this point unknown adventures, they called upon a precise arrangement of artists to serve. The result: a Silver Age like you've never seen before.
THE AGE OF THE SENTRY delivers a powerful one-two punch in each of its six issues, beginning on September 17, evidenced by the intense preparation done by lead artist Nick Dragotta.
"I went back and really submersed myself in the artists of the Silver Age," shares Dragotta. "Most of the artists from that era are my favorites, so it was great! There's a lot to learn from [Jack] Kirby, [Alex] Toth, [Steve] Ditko, [Carmine] Infantino, [Don] Heck, [Wayne] Boring, [Curt] Swan, etc, etc.
"But in order to really put yourself in a 'retro' mood you must smoke a pipe and wear a robe when drawing."
Dragotta, whose art provides continuity throughout all six issues of AGE OF THE SENTRY, felt "right at home doing the 'retro' style."
Preview art by
"Doing 'retro' comics is all about solid anatomy and most importantly clear concise storytelling," the artist explains. "You've got to learn the rules before you can break them. It can be difficult because you can't hide behind your style [or] mistakes, but as long as you're consistent it will work."
Artist Ramon Rosanas, whose work appears in issues #1 and 4, agrees:
"This [Silver Age] style flows easily in me," he expresses. "Though I always have to have correct positioning and expression lines it is easier than contemporary art. Over the time I have dedicated to comics, I did my utmost to acquire a good level of anatomy and perspectives.
"In the last 10 years I have been working in illustration, advertising and graphic humor. However, I feel like a comic book artist deep down and I always wanted to return to it. I showed my work to [editor] Mark Paniccia, and he proposed that I take up my classical comic line again and to adapt it to the 'retro' way. And I'm really happy because I could do it."
The enthusiastic Michael Cho, on deck for issue #2, really got into the spirit of the project.
"I'm always in a 'retro' mood," Cho notes. "But to get extra-retro, I just bust out my gigantic collection of Essential Marvels and read them under a blanket with a flashlight. If I really need a kick, I break the seal on my Mylar-packed Hostess Cupcakes and eat 'em while listening to the Merry Marvel Marching Society record. That usually does the trick.
"My natural style when I draw super heroes is already kind of Silver Age. To me, it isn't a matter of consciously trying to be 'retro,' but rather trying to keep to the sprit of fun and excitement that those 60's era Marvel comics had. And those comics had a cosmic-ray-injected amount of fun!"
Thus endeth Part 2 of our look at the incredible line-up of talent on THE AGE OF THE SENTRY! Stay tuned for Part 3 tommorow, True Believers—but first check out Part 1 and take a free sneak peek at AGE OF THE SENTRY courtesy of Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited!