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2001 A Space Odyssey

2001: A Space Odyssey


The Marvel Comic series 2001: A Space Odyssey lasted for ten issues, between December 1976 and September 1977. All issues featured art by the renowned Jack Kirby.

One of the oddest of Marvel's tabloid-sized Treasury Editions was Kirby's adaptation of the film of the same name, directed by Stanley Kubrick. Although much of the cosmic gee-whiz factor surrounding the sci-fi epic had evaporated by the time the comic came out in the mid-70's, there was still enough grandeur in the artist's pages to translate pretty well to a newer, younger audience.

In this, the ongoing regular-sized comic series, the giant black Monoliths from the film are again spreading their enigmatic influence throughout the cosmos, influencing and advancing various alien races from apelike primitives to space-faring civilizations.

It didn't quite work as a regular comic book, certainly not as a Marvel comic book, but at least Kirby (and his frequent inker Mike Royer) did a creditable job, and certainly one in the quintessentially Kirbyesqe, mythological style.

One lasting note from the series was the introduction of the character Mister Machine (not the walking red 1960's toy invented by Marvin Glass Associates) in #8; he would go on after the cancellation of this series to be the robotic Marvel superhero known as Machine Man.