Last month an ebay auction caught my eye titled: "Hunger Dog Stats from Jack Kirby." It turned out that Jeremy Kirby, Jack Kirby's grandson, was selling 15 pages of not stats, but Jack Kirby's own photocopies. Jack Kirby in the 1970's purchased a photocopier for his home. He would photocopy all his artwork pages in pencil form before sending out for inking. In most cases the 2-page spreads were not photocopied. He would then meticulously store them in manilla folders, jotting down the title and issue number on the outside of the envelope.
Back to the auction, so I was lucky to win it making them available to this site and the Kirby Museum for viewing and research. The Kirby Museum is building a photocopy digital archive.
What makes these copies unique is that they were never recorded in the inventory of existing photocopies. In addition, they were most like not taken on Kirby's 11x17 home photocopier since they are full size to the large art Kirby did on this issue, 14 x 20 inches. Another indication of their uniqueness is Kirby's hand writing on 2 of the pages. The writing indicates dialog that differs from the dialog in the copy's panel. His handwriting was the published version.
A Little History
Hunger Dogs, published in 1985, was Jack Kirby's conclusion to the cancelled New Gods series from 1971-1973. It was a combination of part of a story from On the Road to Armagetto, inked by Mike Royer, and new story and pages to complete the DC Graphic Novel, The Hunger Dogs. The new pages of the story were inked by D. Bruce Berry. Dealing with the different inking styles, Greg Theakston retouched/reinked the pages to add consistency. The results were not ideal. The inking so drastically altered the pencils that any resemblance to Kirby's original intention was diminished. That is until now.
Below are 2 pages included as comparisons on WiK. I plan to add 2 more that match up with original art pages from the archive and plan to add to this article with a slideshow of all the pages so stay tuned!