Here are a few more unearthed pages, some from the "lost second issue" of Megaton Man, others rejected from #6.
What are interesting from a technical perspective is the diversity of techniques employed on these pages. Some are on Strathmore single-ply Bristol board (plate or smooth finish, good for inking, and regular finish, a more toothy surface better for penciling) and most are inked with a sable brush, but pen and even Rapidograph is used. There's white and black Zip-A-Tone, white out (usually Steig's White, which came in a jar, a fixture in late-twentieth-century commercial art and cartooning studios), Avery label patches, and patches made with wax, Scotch tape, and good, old-fashioned Avery labels. There is also ample use of press type (rub-down lettering).
A number of pages are composed almost entirely of panels cut from other pages (see part one, indicating I was trying to edit my comics like a film. Such radical surgery in the analog world was impractical, and I soon gave up the practice; it was inefficient and only prolonged my increasingly crushing deadlines.
More interesting is why I rejected these pages only to later rework many of the ideas in later issues. Indeed, there are numerous concepts I never adequately explored in the published Megaton Man comics, and evidence of even more unexplored narrative ideas in these rejected pages. Readers of my ongoing currrent prose series, The Ms. Megaton Man Maxi-Series, who may suspect I'm retconning the original Megaton Man universe left and right, may be surprised to see so many latent ideas in these pages that I'm still exploring in prose.
Some of these images are striking. Among the most noteworthy may be the image of a toppling skyscraper, prefiguring the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center by 17 years or so. Another is the sequence showing Stella Starlight, pregnant with Megaton Man's love child (accompanied by a latter-day hippy character called Captain Androgynous), a scene I included in Megaton Man #9 (Kitchen Sink Press, April 1986). The published version showed Stella in street clothes, minus the Captain, although here she appears as the Earth Mother, the persona she would become in my self-published Bizarre Heroes series (Fiasco Comics Inc., 1994-1996).
Why I scrapped what appear to my eye as perfectly good pages owes more to narrative difficulties rather than quality. Some of the artwork here is more detailed and arguably better than the work that later saw print. The sometimes convoluted storyline, imbricated with dream sequences, fantasies, and too many parodies and inside jokes to shake a stick at made the "lost second issue" more than unwieldy, although it provided ample ideas to explore in following issues and subsequent decades.
|The Arms of Krupp attempt to assassinate Megaton Man, but end up taking out a skyscraper; shades of Osama Bin Laden and the destruction of Minoru Yamasiki's Twin Towers. This scene was reworked for Megaton Man #6.|
|Stella Starlight as a pregnant Earth Mother, along with Captain Androgynous. This scene was reworked for Megaton Man #9.|
|With Pammy in Ann Arbor, Megaton Man must become his own controversial columnist. I wish I had explored this theme further, although this kind of subtle satire wasn't as popular as all-out spoof fight scenes. See Megaton Man #6.|
|A hand-lettered letters page following Megaton Man Meets the Uncategorizable X+Thems #1 that I thought better of and left unfinished, presumably for Pteranoman #1 (Kitchen Sink Press, August 1990).|
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