More than three decades after his death, Golden Age cartoonist Fletcher Hanks has developed a bit of a cult following, bolstered significantly by Fantagraphics Books’ archive collections I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets! and You Shall Die By Your Own Evil Creation! The former features on its cover the delightfully named Stardust the Super Wizard, an alien who comes to Earth determined to fight crime using a vast array of powers — among them, near-invulnerability, flight, super-strength, “retarding rays” and the ability to alter his size and shape — that tended to change as the story required.
Stardust, who lapsed into the public domain, has made appearances in Image Comics’ Next Issue Project, Savage Dragon and, in reimagined form, a couple of webcomics. But the Super Wizard isn’t quite finished yet: Jarez Zichek has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund “a hand-painted metal figurine of one of the most bizarre and unique super heroes of the Golden Age of Comics!”
Zichek is basing the figurine on one of the more bizarre Stardust stories — and in the world of Fletcher Hanks, “bizarre” is relative — in which the hero “uses a transforming ray to enlarge the head of the evil ‘Master-Mind’ De Structo, which consumes the villain’s body. Stardust then whisks De Structo into space and hurls the terrified criminal into a space pocket inhabited by a ‘giant headless headhunter.’ The monster catches De Structo, places him upon its shoulders and absorbs him into its body. Comics don’t get much weirder than this!”
He’s looking to raise $6,700 to fund a limited production run of the figurine, which is 4.28 inches tall, including the resin base. It will come in a smartly designed box (below). There aren’t really any additional “incentives,” per se: $25 gets you a figurine; $61 gets you two, sent by priority male; and so on. With 28 days to go, Zichek is $843 toward his goal.