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Joe Maneely

MANEELY, JOE - Apache Kid #16 large cover, rare Atlas art, 1955

Media Type: Pen and Ink
Art Type: Cover
Artists: Joe Maneely All

Joseph Maneely, February 18, 1926 – June 7, 1958) was an American comic book artist best known for his work at Marvel Comics' 1950s predecessor, Atlas Comics, where he co-created the Marvel characters the Black Knight, the Ringo Kid, the Yellow Claw, and Jimmy Woo. For one of the biggest artists of 1950s Marvel - very few covers or other Atlas art examples have survived!! Maneely worked at Atlas with Steve Ditko and John Romita, Sr. Writer/editor Stan Lee commented that, "Joe Maneely to me would have been the next Jack Kirby. He also could draw anything, make anything look exciting, and I actually think he was even faster than Jack." Talented and well-respected, he died in a commuter-train accident shortly before Marvel's ascendancy into a commercial and pop-cultural conglomerate. The Apache Kid (Alan Krandal) debuted as the cover feature, drawn by a young John Buscema, of Two-Gun Western #5 (cover-dated Nov. 1950). The writer co-creator is unknown. He received his own title the following month, premiering as The Apache Kid #53 (Dec. 1950, picking up the numbering from Reno Browne, Hollywood's Greatest Cowgirl)[2] and then running as Apache Kid #2-19 (Feb. 1951 - Jan. 1952; Dec. 1954 - April 1956). Stories also ran in the omnibus titles Two-Gun Western #5-9 (Nov. 1950 - Aug. 1951) and Wild Western #15-22 (April 1951 - June 1952). After that initial Buscema story and at least two by Joe Maneely (who would also do many of the later covers), the bulk of the book's run would be penciled and inked by future Silver Age X-Men artist Werner Roth. The character returned in Apache Skies (2002), a four-issue miniseries starring the Rawhide Kid and two persons called the Apache Kid: Dazii Aloysius Kare, and his wife, Rosa. This was a sequel to the miniseries Blaze of Glory (2000), which specifically retconned that the naively clean-cut Marvel Western stories of years past were merely dime novel fictions of the characters' actual lives. Fictional character biography: Caucasian child Alan Krandal was raised by Apache chief Red Hawk and his wife after being orphaned. When grown, he took on a "civilian" identity as cowboy Aloysius Kare, changing to his warpaint outfit to fight outlaws both white and Native American, and generally protect both groups of people. Captain Bill Gregory of the nearby fort was his "white brother" who also respected the elder Red Hawk's counsel. Unlike many other Western comics of the 1950s, Apache Kid generally presented the indigenous Americans in the same light as Caucasians, and made distinctions among the various tribes. Apache Kid First Appearance: Two Gun Western v1 #5 (November 1950). Appearances: Two Gun Western v1 #5-14, Apache Kid #1(#53)-#19, Wild Western #15-22, 39, Western Gunfighters #2-33. Years Active: 1870s-? The Kid is actually an Anglo named Alan Krandal. Krandal was raised by Red Hawk, the chief of a group of Apaches; the Kid loves Red Hawk "like a father." (The Kid was also raised by a nameless white woman, who presumably was Red Hawk's wife.) In his civilian guise the Kid is Aloysius Kare, a "wandering cowpoke," "saddle tramp," and occasional scout, but when evil threatens Krandal puts on war paint and a pseudo-Apache outfit (white pants, moccasins, no shirt--see the cover of the image on this site for what I mean) and becomes the Apache Kid, riding his horse Nightwind and fighting the bad guys, whether white, Apache, or other Native American group. The Kid is widely respected; even a band of enemy Sioux say of him that "We have heard of him! He is a warrior of honor, respected by both redmen and white!" The Kid is in love with White Swan, the niece of Red Hawk. Red Hawk knows that Krandal is the Apache Kid; the only white man trusted with that knowledge is Captain Bill Gregory, the leader of a fort/stockade that Aloysius Kare is a sometimes-habitué at, who Krandal refers to as "my white brother." Gregory also treats Red Hawk with respect; on more than one occasion Gregory calls in both the Kid and Red Hawk for consultation. (There's also Mary, at the fort, who has feelings for the Apache Kid.) Aloysius Kare's horse is sometimes called Nightwind and sometimes called Careless. Note: The Apache Kid stories were in some ways surprisingly progressive for their time and place; the writers were seemingly making an honest attempt to present the "Indians" in a positive light, with the Apache Kid uttering phrases like "Indians fight only for their way of life." Too, the writers were careful to draw distinctions between native peoples, so that the reader rarely sees "Indians" fighting against the white man, but instead sees tribes of Apache or Sioux fighting against the honkies or even against each other.

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