Thursday, December 10, 2015

Classic Cover Comparison: Star Wars #25 and Krieg der Sterne #7 and Clásicos del Cine #312

When you look at foreign comic covers that are based on U.S. covers, there are usually small differences.  The obvious differences are the title and text being translated into the foreign language.  Sometimes this requires the movement of text boxes or word balloons to accommodate the translation.  Another obvious difference is the dressing.  Dressing can include: the price, cover date, publisher, and issue number.  Less obvious can be color differences.  These can usually be spotted by a side-by-side comparison of the foreign and U.S. comic.  Another subtle difference can be how the cover art is reduced and trimmed.  Sometimes a foreign cover is reduced and trimmed so less of the original image is retained, but sometimes it can be trimmed so even more of the art is seen.  Many times, this is dictated by the dimensions of the foreign edition, which don't always match the dimensions of a U.S. comic.

The Krieg der Sterne title by German publisher Egmont Ehapa was published in a large, magazine-sized format.  The aspect ratio of the format dictates a wider image than a U.S. comic.  For this reason, extra trimming is done on the top and/or the bottom of the cover image.  On the other hand, Editorial Novaro used dimensions slightly smaller the U.S. comics but retains a similar aspect ratio with their avestruz format.  For the Clásicos del Cine issues that are published in the avestruz format, they reduced the image more to retain more of the image lost in the bleed on the U.S. covers.  It is for this reason, I'm a huge fan of Editorial Novaro's Star Wars issues; you get to see more of the art than is shown on the U.S. cover even accounting for the standard deviations found in the trimming process.

On the cover for Star Wars #25, you can see three TIE Fighters in front of the gas giant Yavin.

Star Wars #25a - Marvel Comics, U.S. (July 1979)
The cover to Krieg der Sterne #7 contains the same cover with less of Yavin shown since the publisher chose to trim the top of the image.  To accommodate the title moving down on the image, two of the three TIE Fighters are removed.  Luke Skywalker's blaster fire is extended and curves down slightly, giving the appearance that Luke is shooting directly at the TIE instead of over it.

Krieg der Sterne #7a - Egmont Ehapa, Germany (April 1981)
contains Star Wars #25 - 27
On the cover to Clásicos del Cine #312 are four TIE Fighters.  More of the outcrop behind Luke is shown and we can see the back of Princess Leia's helmet, which is cut off in the U.S. edition.  I'm guessing the original artwork has four TIE Fighters.

Clásicos del Cine #312a - Editorial Novaro, Mexico (June 1980?)
contains Star Wars #25 and 26
Another interesting point about the two foreign covers shown above; the cover artists, Carmine Infantino and Bob Wiacek, had their signatures removed from the image.
Side-by-side comparison

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