GASPAR SALADINO in HUMAN TORCH & HUMAN FLY

All images © Marvel. From THE HUMAN TORCH #1, Sept 1974

Here are two Marvel titles beginning with the same word but otherwise unconnected. THE HUMAN TORCH was an eight issue series reprinting Human Torch solo stories from STRANGE TALES and elsewhere. Gaspar Saladino lettered half the covers, beginning with the first issue, above. He was a good choice, as his flaming letters were always well done. I will look at THE HUMAN FLY later.

From THE HUMAN TORCH #2, Nov 1974

Gaspar also designed the flaming logo, and here his blurb fits well below it.

From THE HUMAN TORCH #3, Jan 1975

The large 2 in the top caption is typical of what Saladino often did at DC Comics, where reprints were also common.

From THE HUMAN TORCH #7, Sept 1975

For some reason, Marvel’s production people loved to create these black cover blurbs by reversing the lettering and/or filling black around open lettering. I think it was a particularly bad choice here on a sunny, fire-lit cover, and it makes Gaspar’s FIRE in the lower caption hard to read. It also hides the banner shape of the upper caption.

From THE HUMAN FLY #6, Feb 1978

This series based on a real stunt-man ran 19 issues in 1977-79. Gaspar lettered the first page of several issues and one cover. At the time, Marvel often hired Saladino to add his skill and talent to the first page of stories otherwise lettered by others, and the lettering style of the other pages is generally quite different. This dynamic, creative title is a good example of what he could bring to a book.

From THE HUMAN FLY #10, June 1978

The texture and coloring on this title makes it a bit hard to read, but it still works okay.

From THE HUMAN FLY #15, Nov 1978

This busy page has less room for lettering than most, but Saladino does his best through careful overlapping.

From THE HUMAN FLY #19, March 1979

Gaspar only lettered the final cover, his clever joining of the two H’s is the kind of creative touch he was known for.

From THE HUMAN FLY #19, March 1979

He also lettered the first page inside where his title is much larger and more dynamic, with brush lettering on HIGHWIRE.

To sum up, I found Saladino lettering on these five covers:

HUMAN TORCH: 1-3, 7

HUMAN FLY: 19

Gaspar also lettered the first page of these issues: HUMAN FLY 6, 10, 15, 19, four in all. Other articles in this series are on the COMICS CREATION page of my blog.

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