17 January 2010

Meet The 'Smokers Of The Marvel Universe'

Nick Fury's enjoyed his stogies since Jack and Stan first put one between his teeth, but for the most part, smoking superheroes 'Flame On' rather not 'Light Up.'  (The one guy who lights up consistently -- Wolverine -- almost doesn't count: his mutant healing powers overrule his chain-smoking habits easily. Of course, that didn't stop the AMA from taking aim at him, either.)  But  while the premise of illustrator and teacher Chris Schweizer's Smokers of the Marvel Universe is so simple, it's one that captures one of  herodom's  unspoken taboos.  Schweizer chose his subjects well, too.  Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four and the X-Men's Professor Xavier are both perfect candidates for enjoying  the occasional Cuban, and as a hero of the 40's, we'd find it hard to imagine that Captain America's never met Joe Camel. 

You gotta love the caricatures here, too. Schweizer's nails these guys on the head, and their smoking 'guns' become accents to their characters instead of the focus.  Having published his comics work with Oni Press, Top Shelf, Image Comics, and others, most of it geared towards younger readers, we haven't found superheroes to be Schweizer's preferred subjects.  Still, we'd love to see him tackle the heroes on the DC Comics side of things.  Smoking's even more prohibited under Superman's sun, and if anyone's up the challenge, Schweitzer undoubtedly the one. [Check out Chris Schweitzer's blog to see all the Smokers of the Marvel Universe HERE.]

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