Jack Kirby is a comic book legend that worked with Stan Lee back in the early Marvel days. He came up with some of the worlds most famous comic book characters such as The Fantastic Four, X-Men, Hulk, Thor, Iron Man and several more. He also did some great artwork for Captain America. It's amazing to see where his work is at now, it’s blowing up in some great live-action movies and other animated projects.
During the 1980’s Kirby worked for a animation studio called Ruby-Spears Production, and while he was there he created several more characters and ideas for potential shows. These are characters that have never seen the light of day. Now, the studio founders, Joe Ruby and Ken Spears, have partnered up with Sid and Marty Krofft, the longtime children’s entertainment producers (H. R. Pufnstuf, Land of the Lost). They plan on reviving these lost Kirby characters in as many forms as possible.
I honestly don’t think this is going to work out for them the way they want it to. These people see how big comic book films have become, and how they are now part pop culture. What I don’t think they realize, is most of these successful comic book adapted films and series are a big hit because there is a huge built in market already. No one has ever heard of or seen any of these new characters, and outside comic book geeks, most people don’t even know who Jack Kirby is.
But, they hope to sell some of these characters and ideas to some big Hollywood players. As much as I love Kirby’s past well known work, I’m not really sure the projects that they have in mind will spark excitement. Some of the projects include titles such as Roxie’s Raiders, an Indiana Jones-style serial about a female adventurer and her allies; Golden Shield, about an ancient Mayan hero seeking to save earth in the apocalyptic year 2012; and The Gargoids, about scientists who gain superpowers after being infected by an alien virus.
You would think if these projects were any good the studio would have moved forward with developing them back in the 80’s. Now after not doing anything with them while Kirby was alive and working for them , they call this work “a treasure.” And are looking to make a buck off something they already turned down. Weak sauce.
Here is a collection of artwork from the unproduced projects that you can check out below. Look ‘em over and tell us what you think? Are these projects something that you would want to see brought to life?