Friday, July 22, 2011

Let's Rap with Cap! - 1941

With Captain America: The First Avenger hitting theaters today, this seemed like the perfect time to post this vintage(?) photo!

I put the (?) after vintage because, while the photo looks pretty authentic, I have my doubts this is real: the kid is reading Captain America #2, cover dated April 1941. I can't imagine any kid could be that into Cap after just two appearances, not to mention the costume being really, really good--a little too good.

Of course, this pic could have been taken just a few years later, and the kid was reading a (by then) older issue of Captain America. Who knows, and I guess who cares? Its a great photo anyway!


norm said...

I remember this pic from Larry Ivie's Monsters and Heroes magazine. It was included in an article about early comicons and was supposedly taken in New York, in 1964.

Norm "Six Finger" Watson

aquaman said...

I doubt that this is an authentic picture from even the 60's. The kid is wearing a lycra suit, which in 1964 would have been almost impossible. Lycra fabric was only invented in 1958 and was not readily available for the public at stores for a very long time. In 1968, the medal-winning French Olympic ski team became the first high-profile sports personalities to wear ski suits with LYCRA® fiber – a trend that soon spread to other sports. By 1972 Olympic swimmers swore by the sleek, lightweight suits with LYCRA® fiber. In the 70's it was a specialty fabric at best used in things like jeans. The 80's is when it was becoming more easily available and used in underwear and hosiery. So 1960's Lycra body suit on a kid? Highly unlikely!

aquaman said...

The shield also gives the pic looks like it is the one marketed by Marvel in the 90's.

C. Elam said...

I like that we live in an age where an innocuous photo like this gets labeled a modern-day hoax despite having seen print in 1969 (and possibly earlier).

This is a 1960s convention photo, though I am unsure which con. The kid is David Armstrong. Howard Chaykin mentions this photo in one of his interviews, which you can read right here. As Norm mentions, it saw print in Monsters and Heroes #5 (July 1969) in an article which also shows Marv Wolfman and Len Wein in costumes (NoMan and Black Terror, respectively).

So yes, this photo is 100% legit, but no, it's not from the 1940s.

aquaman said...

My mistake on this one! I was sure the costume looked wrong for the 60's! I found a copy of Monsters and Hero's #5 and there is the pic! And yes it is Dave Armstrong. I am still surprised about the costume. I work in the profession and was sure (as well as some so workers) that there was no way to do that with what looks like spandex back then. Well we are all wrong. The good thing, I now have a copy of this mag and there is a great article about the Comic cons in it! Great to see where it all started. The costumes pictured are actually on par with today's
works! So again, my mistake here. and nice history lesson!

Captain Blog said...

Modern fans have the conceit that they are the first to cosplay. Not so! There were lots of great costumes being made in the 60's when fandom was getting started. I believe there is another pic of this fellow in a copy of Voice of Comicdom which was "Fandom's only newspaper" back in the day.
It would behoove you to check out some old fanzines to see these and other pix from when comic fandom began to blossom.
Or you could check out my old blog:
Tell 'em the Captain sent ya!