Creators speak out about Kirby vs. Marvel decision…
Above photo: The comics legend, Jack Kirby.
Several comic book creators have spoken out about the recent court ruling between the Jack Kirby family and Marvel/Disney.
Stephen Bissette calls for a boycott of Marvel:
I don’t question the legal logic Marvel’s attorneys made, and the court decision reflects. However, nothing is being said about the conditions under which Kirby signed, and was pressured to sign, the contracts presented. I don’t think "extortion" is too unfair a word to use, particularly in the very public case of the Marvel artwork "return" contracts.
I suggest, for starters, simply pulling the plug on all individual support for any and all Kirby-derived Marvel ANYTHING (comics, movies, videogames, merchandizing).
D.J. Coffman writes:
And the Kirby Estate loses to Marvel. So much for Marvel doing the right thing.
Colleen Doran takes a close look at the court papers:
The expert opinions of Mark Evanier and John Morrow on behalf of Kirby were roundly dismissed as hearsay.
And John Byrne says:
Difference being Siegel and Shuster were able to show EXACTLY that, that Superman had been created independently and SOLD to National Periodicals, and was not a "work made for hire".
Everything Kirby did for Marvel falls squarely within the latter category.
Work-for-hire was a sucky system, but it was the only game in town, for most people. It was also not a secret, and, perhaps most significantly, it was how Kirby ran his own company, in the 1950s.