Friday, January 7, 2011

Time Warp :
- The Modern Marvel Calendars

Happy New Year - 2011, Sanctum Dwellers!

In this, the first post of the new year, I thought it appropriate to blog about calendars.
Actually, this is really just an updated add-on to an old post from this time in 2009 wherein I showcased all of the various Marvel Calendars - from 1975 - to the "present"... well... at least the ones that featured Doctor Strange or any of my "6-Dimensions" interests.

The original series can be found at the following links:
(Part I : the "CLASSIC" calendar series can be seen - HERE)
(Part II : the "MODERN" calendar series can be seen - HERE)
(Part III : the 1980 Doctor Strange calendar - in its entirety - can be seen - HERE)

Anyway, this entry is just to post an added entry into the "Part II - MODERN" portion of that series
(yes, the added entry will also be added to that post directly, as well.)

Here, I present, what appears to have been the "last" (or at least most recent) appearance of Doctor Strange in a Marvel Calendar.

# 1 in the Special Edition series.
(a Borders Books exclusive).

Cover art by Alex Ross

This is a nifty calendar with pop-up images for each month.
By pop-up, I mean, like children's books... when the page is opened, the artwork has been diecut and assembled in such a way that it unfolds and literally is raised up off the surface of the page... it "pops" up off the page.

With a glitzy, holofoil cover, reprinting an old painting by Alex Ross (originally done for Wizard magazine cover, then later turned into posters and whatnot) Doctor Strange missed being on the wraparound cover by mere inches.

I shall explain.

The original image, used for Wizard Magazine #42 (March 1995), Dr. Strange was seen at the far right.

click to embiggen
However, when the image was used the the 2008 Calendar cover, first, it was flipped (reversing the direction of the image) and then the very end of it was cut off the back of the cover to make it fit the dimensions of the cover - thus once again showing no respect for Doctor Strange.

I didn't bother taking a pic of the calendar's back cover because of that.

However, Doc DOES make the interior - by the barest of margins.

While he is absent from any of the actual monthly pop-up images, he is seen (barely) in the first page (double-page spread) pop-up that showcases the previous few months of the prior year (2007).

This image, a collage of sorts, utilizing various static pose illustrations for Marvel's licensed works, was also used for a Marvel Universe poster.

Doc is seen Waaaaaaaay in the back.
Can't see him?
See Spider-Man?
Look to Spidey's right (his left) at the Human Torch and Mr. Fantastic.
See the space between their heads?
Follow that space all the way up to the last row of heroes.
That's Doc flying with his arms and cloak outstretched.

The artwork used is the same seen in several licensed articles of that timeframe (2006 - 2008).
You can best see it on this t-shirt that I featured in another old series of posts (that dealt with my ever expanding Dr. Strange apparel collection) - HERE.

For your benefit, I will re-post that image here.

The artwork, by Steve Rude, was among some of the character designs that he had drawn for use with licensed ancillary products.

This pose was used for a few other items, a small representation of which is in a giant Marvel Universe group poster (as mentioned in the Calendar summary), also the Doctor Strange "Battle Dice" figure, as well as the promotional poster for the Marvel Legends "Galactus Series" assortment.
An excellent piece of work (as are ALL of Steve Rude's works) this design seems to be "last year's model" and has seemingly been discontinued from Marvel's licensing, replaced by similarly over-airbrushed samples like the other characters in the calendar /poster image.

That brings us up to date on Doc's appearances in Marvel's calendar assortments.
Happily, he was treated MUCH better in years gone by, and we hope that he will again one day.

"Tamam Shud!"


giantsizegeek said...

I just bought the DC Comics 75th Anniversary calendar at Borders. This is also a pop-up calendar, an exclusive as well. It's kind of cool, though hard to see the actual calendar dates.

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