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Author Topic: primary sources for Siegel and/or Schuster and other stuff  (Read 6186 times)
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MildManneredReporter
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« on: March 19, 2005, 03:34:07 AM »

I'm currently writing a history of Siegel and Schuster for a writing history course. While this site and some other Superman sites are useful in that they have numerous interviews and the like, the internet is almost useless due to millions of fan sites getting in the way of a decent search. I need primary sources, letters to the editor at DC, letters between Siegel and Schuster etc etc.

Where did Les Daniels get all of his information? His sources at the end of the book are paltry at best--in fact I have a hard time believing that it's anywhere near a full list.

Is there a biography of Siegel? nothing showing on Amazon ...

If anyone knows of any primary sources for Siegel/Schuster ... I'll somehow found a way across the internet to kiss you. Ok ... well maybe just shake your hand.

TIA
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2005, 04:01:38 AM »

You need to get: Men Of Tomorrow: Geeks, Gangsters, and the Birth of the Comic Book
by Gerard Jones
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2005, 07:31:00 AM »

Yes, read that book.

I suspect that a  lot of the material in books sanctioned by DC like the Daniels book come from 2 sources: the author's own lifetime collection of fanzines and comics-related material and the personnel and files at DC.  I am not aware of the location of the papers of the estates of Siegel and Shuster, etc but I would guess a lot of it is still with the families.

Check out the resources here:

http://www.english.ufl.edu/comics/scholars/bibs.html
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« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2005, 03:02:41 PM »

It's obvious that Daniels is toeing the party line and has a strong slant from DC in his book.

I remember back when Jerry Siegel was working as a writer for DC the second time - I think this was in the 1960s IIRC - and he was under strict orders from some editor at DC that if anyone ever asked him point blank whether or not he (co-)created Superman, or was involved in the creation of the character, he had to reply "no" or he'd be fired.  I think at the time, they were trying to pass off someone else as the creator.  No idea who, though.

I don't think this sort of stuff is in any book.  You have to hunt down the people who were there.
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« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2005, 03:54:40 PM »

can't thank you all enough, will definitely check out that book, link, etc. mentioned above. and if you have any other ideas please let me know --- i linked up my IM and i think my email is available in my profile.

For the class I just have to write a chapter --- I'm going to focus on possible influences (Gladiator, the other crappy comic strips like in the Cleveland Plain Dealer such as Lil Abner etc). But for the overall book I'd like to just tell Siegel and Schuster's story. I was thinking a few months ago before I started writing, "Who the heck created superman." Answering that was easy but it just seemed totally ridiculous that I, and hardly anyone else, really knows. It's almost esoteric and it shouldn't be.

anyway, thanks ya'll. very helpful.
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« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2005, 05:44:30 AM »

You might also want to check out Superman at Fifty: The Persistence of a Legend.  It has an interesting essay on the early days of Siegel and Shuster.  Ebay might have a cheap copy.  The book is well worth having.

Also check Ebay for the issue of Time Magazinethat came out in 1988 around the time of Superman's fiftieth anniversary.  You might be able to find a copy of the article at the local library depending on how they keep their periodicals.

If you are looking for a good article on Philip Wylie's Gladiator check out Roy Thomas' magazine Alter Ego # 37 from June 2004.  You can probably still get the issue directly from TwoMorrows at their website http://www.twomorrows.com
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« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2005, 07:18:44 AM »

The first time I became aware of Siegel & Shuster was in a publication called Screen Thrills Illustrated published by Warren circa 1963.  There was no byline or created by creds on the comics at all.

Soon thereafter TV began running the Flesicher cartoons and saw that they had a" Created by Jerome Siegel & Joe Shuster" cred and wondered why that wasnt on the TV show, comics or anything else.
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« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2005, 08:30:49 PM »

I remember that Amazing Heroes ran a large issue on the occasion of the 50th anniversary.

The Comics Journal has posted a recent article on the lawsuit, with some history:
http://www.tcj.com/263/n_marketable.html

And as for influences, let's not forget the pulp magazine heroes like Doc Savage and the comic strip hero Capt Easy (and Wash Tubbs) by cartoonist Roy Crane, a big influence on the style of Shuster.
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