Let’s keep in mind – I have never been a fan of Rob Liefeld. Even at his height of popularity I found his artwork trite and his storytelling pretty much non-existent. The fact that he has become a punch line, basically, the Nickleback of the comic world, is well earned in my opinion and it really has everything to do with his lack of talent and massive ego. The fact that he doesn’t think he has done anything to merit such a reputation should indicate to everyone out there just how much of an ego-maniac he is. Take for example when he was kicked out of Image and fired from Marvel – what did he do? Basically he threw the biggest FU to Marvel by “acquiring” the rights to an early Kirby creation called “The Fighting American”. From inception, he was a rip-off of Captain America and everyone knew it.
The fact that courts ruled in Liefeld’s favor did not help distinguish the differences between the two characters. What it did do was inflate Liefeld’s ego to push the originality out the door and toe the line of decency by adding another rip-off to the fray. A purple, angry, “hulking” powerhouse called Smash. It’s as bad as it sounds. The page above is exactly how issue #1 ends – the page below is how the second issue begins.
That’s right. Basically, there is no rhyme or reason given on how this Hulk clone just showed up to the fight. It’s all explained with a simple, and ridiculous line from the female Bucky:
The purple thing “just appeared”? It just appeared? That’s some classic Liefeld storytelling right there – and you know who the writer is? Your friend and mine, of course, Jeph “Is he the worst writer of all time, or what?” Loeb. Things continue getting worse as the comic continues but don’t take my word for it – take a look yourself:
Every one got that? Smash gets bigger the madder he gets and nothing can smash Smash. In a New York accent. Liefeld was obviously looking to piss Marvel off for firing him – he also was trying to run it in their faces how he can take simple ideas and with a small change make it his own. But his ideas and characters, much like the man himself, I theorize, are soulless. Cheap copies with nothing to back it up.
I will be addressing his run on the “Reborn” Avengers and Captain America later on – but in my preparation for those reviews I came across these gems in a $1 box (where they are still over-priced) and couldn’t help but share.