Continuing my chronological look at the lettering of Gaspar Saladino for this popular Marvel title, this time covering 1977 to 1981. I like the top blurb on this cover, and the bottom one has a creative approach to STONE MEN.
In the first balloon, look for Gaspar’s wide letter S with a horizontal center stroke. That letter is perhaps the most variable of the alphabet, since it combines curves in two directions.
The last of Gaspar’s page one lettering on this series has an interesting title using lower case.
The lettering on this cover shares a lot of similarities between Saladino and Danny Crespi, but it’s just angular enough, especially WHO in the round caption, to tip it toward Gaspar.
Gaspar’s style of banner caption borders, like the one at the bottom here, was distinctive, as was the larger first letter in that caption.
Thicker and rougher outlines were added to the open letters in the caption and the first balloon border here for emphasis.
I don’t know the release date of this Annual, but summer is a good guess. Three effective caption styles work well together here.
Drama and excitement are added by these captions. TV in the arrow is cleverly placed.
Part of the job of a cover is to make readers want to find how how this scene happened, and what happens next. The lettering helps on both counts here.
Gaspar’s unusual style choice for CELESTIALS gives it an appropriate science-fiction flavor.
Usually a jagged balloon tail is reserved for something electrical, but here it’s just adding volume and emphasis, and I think works fine.
Marvel’s habit of reversing captions makes this one harder to identify, but I think it’s by Saladino because of the angular shapes. At least this time they also reversed the lines of the banner so it makes sense.
This subject suggested Germanic lettering to Gaspar, and it works well.
On many Marvel titles, Gaspar’s work ended in 1979, but on some it continues into the early 1980s. The letter shapes in WRECKING CREW and the W in WASTE both indicate his work.
In addition to the top blurb, I think Saladino also lettered the billboard, which is still readable despite the leg in front of it.
The rough outlines and texture in the open letters of DREAM DEMON are typical of Gaspar.
Snow-capped letters in this caption show Saladino’s creative approach.
This banner uses two frequently-seen Saladino styles.
This bottom blurb is too small, but still effective, with Gaspar’s touch on the open letters.
All this lettering is very Saladino.
The word MONSTER here is diagnostic. Jim Novak was also lettering covers by this time, and often imitating Gaspar’s styles, but I’m sure this is not by him.
To sum up, I found Saladino lettering on these covers: 208-209, 214, 217, 220, 230, 240, 244-246, 253, 255-256, 263, 267, 273, 275-276, 283-285, 297, 304-305, 307-308, 310, 312-313, Annuals 7, 9. That’s 31 in all. Below are the details of his story lettering:
#212: page 1 only
#243: page 1 only
#245: page 1 only
#247: page 1 only
#249: page 1 only
#251-253: page 1 only on each
#257: page 1 only
That’s 28 pages in all. Other articles in this series and more you might enjoy are on the COMICS CREATION page of my blog.