Back in the mid 1970s Jack Kirby was wrapping up a fruitful but ultimately frustrating stint at National (DC) with a whirlwind of one-shots, pitches, and half-hearted concepts that probably should have stayed on the drawing board. Unfortunately this was the mid 1970s which meant they'd print damn near anything, even comics about evil snake-obsessed crimelords who share central nervous systems with their twin brothers!
Everybody knows Kirby is the King, but Kobra is not one of his Klassier Komics. This comic has the distinct look of something that was pitched as an afterthought and developed from a pile of sketches somebody fished out of the reject bin and disguised with reams and reams of extraneous dialog. I know 70s comics are wordy, but KOBRA is like, loggoreahriffic. And the titular Kobra? He's a super-villian whose main power is dripping contempt all over the place. Let's watch!
That's how to get the best work out of your employees -remind them that they're out of their league, and that you're just exploiting them for your own amusement.
Is Kobra capable of speaking without insulting or demeaning others? Minature wooly mammoths, robots from outer space, it's all grist for Kobra's contempt mill. And they say Superman is a dick.
Yes. Kobra insults you AFTER YOU'RE DEAD.
After fifteen years of innovative, groundbreaking work in the comics field, changing the face of the medium forever with his unique vision, here we see Kirby right back where he was in 1960, grinding out the spectacle of giant monsters scaring men in hats. Eeeyaaa. Eeeyaaa indeed.
Purple space robot's mission is to destroy Jason Burr, the square-jawed, blow-dried, 25 year old college studet who "gets off on life, can you dig it?" I do not blame Purple Space Robot at all.
GIANT HAND? UNNHH! Completely unnecessary captions give this comic all the excitement of a Whitman coloring book.
Searing pain, fingers of fire, vice-like grips... tired cliches are just one of this comic's many attractions.
You know what IS funny? The little clown car our heroes have squeezed their blowdried, giant-lapelled 1970s bodies into.
If you Katch Kobra on a bad day, you might just feel the searing sting of his venom spray. So temper your words with wisdom! Or just cram them into dialog balloons like makin' sausages, whatever!
By Nulla Pambu! Blow-dry Man lures Kobra by inflicting third-degree burns upon himself, and the dramatic confrontation is, as befits the presence of Kobra, full of contempt and sarcasm.
One way to trap a snake-themed crime lord/cult leader is to drop a washing machine on his head. Be quick about it, however, or he'll use his snake motif to slither out of the way, all the while delivering withering insults!
And as our comic ends we break the fourth wall and bend the laws of time and space to portray Kobra actually FINISHING HIS OWN COMIC BOOK CAPTIONS. This is a degree of self-awareness and post-modernistic irony that one doesn't usually find in comics about insulting snake-men. Be on the lookout for KOBRA #2 on sale in January!
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