A Look At Older Homage and Cover Swipes


The root of homage is homo-, the Latin root meaning “man.” In medieval times, a king's male subject could officially become the king's “man” by publicly announcing allegiance to the monarch in a formal ceremony. In that ritual, known as homage, the subject knelt and placed his hands between those of his lord, symbolically surrendering himself and putting himself at the lord's disposal and under his jurisdiction. A bond was thus forged between the two; the vassal's part was to revere and serve his lord, and the lord's role was to protect the vassal and his family. Over time, homage was extended from the ceremony to the acts of duty and respect done for the lord, and eventually to any respectful act or tribute.


**One item of note, this article is not to debate a cover swipe vs a homage. It is to celebrate both. That argument can be had in another time or space.


Greetings from the desert fellow CBSI members. In today’s piece we are going to look at the history of cover swipes / homage covers, including some of the very first ones made and the source material. There are many of us in this group that are big fans of these, yet where did they derive from? And furthermore, what are some of the early ones worthy of note? All that and more, so sit back and enjoy!

One of the first of record in which a homage was used is Action Comics # 8. This was a N.C. Wyeth painting piece originally. Some of his notable work includes the covers of Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island



Here’s another one using Action Comics # 6 and a Black Terror Headliners page. Clearly the intent was there



The next one of note is by artist Bob Kane. His issue # 33 and # 54 are clearly from the same reused art



Another example is Alan Campbell clearly just swiping Wallace Wood's Spirit cover for Space Western #43



Our Fighting Forces #48 vs. Flash #123



All Star # 42 to JLA # 6. Was this a swipe or coincidence? That’s for you to decide…



House of Mystery # 1 definitely shows a nod to a Weird Tales cover from 1933



This ones a definite homage: Superman # 147 and Adventure Comics # 247



These next two are not quite as known, but nevertheless are great ones

Thanks Ben C!


Bomber # 4 and Sensation # 13



Detective Comics # 8 and Atomic Comics # 1



Here is one that is more well known being Bob Kane’s masterpiece Tec # 31 and Neal Adams’ Batman # 227



There is also the FF # 1 and # 126 clear homage to this amazing cover



A few more that are deep cuts…

Voodoo # 2 and Prize Comics # 46



How about some horror?

Dark Mysteries and Mysterious Adventures



Yet a few more for good measure! Horrific # 2 and Bombers # 3



This horror goes way back. Beware # 6 and Adventures into Darkness # 10



Here is one to debate with many falling on both sides. Nevertheless, it’s a perfect time to show some great art! The Haunt of Fear # 5 and This Magazine is Haunted # 18



This is an awesome one for you Sci Fi fans and War collectors:

Wings Comics # 94 and Captain Science # 3



One for you mystery fans…

Shocking Mystery Cases # 51 & Suspense Comics # 9



Let’s have a look at some Kirby art, and others related

One of the earliest and best swipes of a Kirby character was the cover of Blue Beetle #26, Oct 1943. This was swiped from the splash page of the Manhunter story in Adventure Comics #73, April 1942.



Jack’s gorgeous cover to Foxhole #1 was copied from a war reporter’s painting.



Joe Simon elevated swiping to an artform. Whenever he felt the need to punch up a cover or panel, he would insert a swipe of a Jack Kirby figure. It made no difference if the styles were similar, or not. Many covers credited to Kirby are actually Simon constructs with Kirby swipes added in, especially on Harvey titles”



Another example…



I will leave you with a few more fun ones that don’t pop up everyday…

Weird Science Fantasy # 27 & Archie # 646



Donald Duck Adventures # 11 & Mad # 1



These are some cool covers right? This piece is meant to go hand and hand with Mike Morello’s Cover Tunes where he looked more at new and Modern material. Please see the bookend to this available here.


I hope you enjoyed this trip down old school lane and can appreciate the history of art and comics. So many times we see store variants that are swipes and forget where these came from years ago. Not to get too preachy, but without these there are no Modern comics or variants. Honor those who came before you! If there’s any other from this era you know of, please share! This is always a group effort.

Talk soon,


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