1st Issue Special
|1st Issue Special|
1st Issue Special #1 (April 1975).
Art by Jack Kirby and D. Bruce Berry
|Publication date||April 1975–April 1976|
|Number of issues||13|
Writer Gerry Conway explained the series' origin: "1st Issue Special was a peculiar book concept based on [publisher] Carmine Infantino’s observation that first issues of titles often sold better than subsequent issues. Carmine’s brainstorm: a monthly series of nothing but first issues. It sounds like a joke, but he was dead serious."
Only one of the characters received an ongoing series, Mike Grell's The Warlord which first appeared in issue #8 (November 1975). Issues #1 featuring Atlas, #5 Manhunter, and #6 (Dingbats of Danger Street) featured art and story by Jack Kirby.
A number of issues featured existing DC characters: issue #3, Metamorpho, written by the character's creator Bob Haney, issue #7, the Creeper, illustrated by the character's creator Steve Ditko, issue #9, the Golden Age character Doctor Fate, and issue #13, the New Gods.
Issue #12 featured a new Starman character which would later be used in James Robinson's 1990s series focused on the character Jack Knight. The character was a supporting player in Justice League: Cry for Justice in 2010.
Some stories which had been intended for publication in 1st Issue Special appeared in other titles instead. A Batgirl and Robin team-up was published in Batman Family #1 (September–October 1975) and a Green Arrow and Black Canary story was kept in inventory until it was published as a backup feature in Green Lantern #100 (January 1978).
List of stories and credits
|Issue #||Date||Featured Character - "Story Title"||Writer||Artists|
|1||April 1975||"Atlas The Great"||Jack Kirby||Jack Kirby and D. Bruce Berry|
|2||May 1975||Green Team: Boy Millionaires||Joe Simon||Jerry Grandenetti|
|3||June 1975||Metamorpho, The Element Man:
"The Freak And The Billion-Dollar Phantom."
|Bob Haney||Ramona Fradon|
|4||July 1975||Lady Cop:
|Robert Kanigher||John Rosenberger and Vince Colletta|
|5||August 1975||Manhunter||Jack Kirby||Jack Kirby and D. Bruce Berry|
|6||September 1979||Dingbats of Danger Street||Jack Kirby||Jack Kirby and Mike Royer|
|7||October 1975||The Creeper:
"Menace of The Human Fire-Fly."
|Michael Fleisher||Steve Ditko and Mike Royer|
|8||November 1975||The Warlord:
"Land of Fear"
|9||December 1975||Doctor Fate:
"The Mummy That Time Forgot"
|Martin Pasko||Walt Simonson|
|Joe Simon||Jerry Grandenetti and Creig Flessel|
|11||February 1976||Codename: Assassin||Gerry Conway and Steve Skeates||The Redondo Studio and Al Milgrom|
|12||March 1976||Starman||Gerry Conway||Mike Vosburg and Mike Royer|
|13||April 1976||New Gods:
"Lest Night Fall Forever."
|Gerry Conway and Denny O'Neil||Mike Vosburg|
- The Jack Kirby Omnibus Volume 2 includes Atlas story from 1st Issue Special #1, Manhunter story from #5, and Dingbats of Danger Street story from #6, 624 pages, May 2013, ISBN 978-1401238339
- Showcase Presents: The Great Disaster featuring the Atomic Knights includes Atlas story from 1st Issue Special #1, 576 pages, June 2014, ISBN 978-1401242909
- The Creeper by Steve Ditko includes the Creeper story from 1st Issue Special #7, 288 pages, April 2010, ISBN 978-1401225919
- The Warlord: The Savage Empire includes the Warlord story from 1st Issue Special #8, 240 pages, November 1991, ISBN 978-1563890246
- Showcase Presents: Warlord includes the Warlord story from 1st Issue Special #8, 528 pages, September 2009, ISBN 978-1401224738
- The Art of Walter Simonson includes Doctor Fate story from 1st Issue Special #9, 208 pages, June 1989, ISBN 0930289412
- 1st Issue Special at the Grand Comics Database
- Harvey, Allan (February 2010). "Apokolips Then: Or, Suppose they Finished a War and Nobody Came". Back Issue!. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing (38): 54–58.
- McAvennie, Michael; Dolan, Hannah, ed. (2010). "1970s". DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. London, United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. p. 165. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9.
Writer/artist Mike Grell elevated the sword-and-sorcery genre to new heights with the Warlord.
- McAvennie "1970s" in Dolan, p. 162: "Debuting with Atlas the Great, writer and artist Jack Kirby didn't shrug at the chance to put his spin on the well-known hero."
- McAvennie "1970s" in Dolan, p. 164: "Though 1st Issue Special was primarily DC's forum to introduce new characters and storylines, editor Jack Kirby used the series as an opportunity to revamp the Manhunter, whom he and writer Joe Simon had made famous in the 1940s."
- Abramowitz, Jack (April 2014). "1st Issue Special It Was No Showcase (But It Was Never Meant To Be)". Back Issue!. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing (71): 40–47.
- Wells, John (October 24, 1997), "'Lost' DC: 1971–1975", Comics Buyer's Guide, Iola, Wisconsin (1249), p. 125