Comic Legends: The Racy Wolverine Cover That Got Past Marvel Editorial

Welcome to Comic Book Legends Revealed! This is the six hundred and sixtieth week where we examine comic book legends and whether they are true or false.

As always, there will be three different posts for each legend this week!


Esad Ribic secretly made a racy Wolverine cover.



The sixth issue of the Wolverine ongoing that launched in 2003 was a great issue. Written by Greg Rucka and drawn by Darick Robertson and Tom Palmer, it showed Wolverine sharing a drink with his old friend, Nightcrawler, in the wake of the traumatic experience that Wolverine went through in the opening arc of Rucka and Robertson’s series.

It’s a touching examination of the power of friendship. Top notch work from Rucka and Robertson.

Here’s the funny thing, though. Check out the cover by superstar comic book painter Esab Ribic (who drew Secret Wars in 2015), who had only begun to work for Marvel in 2001 when he filled in for Paul Smith on the back-end of Joe Casey’s X-Men: Children of the Atom.

Recently, I did a list about 15 comic book covers that surprisingly made it past the censors. This cover would definitely belong along those other covers featured.

Now, you might say, “Okay, Brian, I get it, the beer bottle is an erection. However, are you sure you’re not just reading into this cover?”

That’s a fair question to ask. A couple of years back, Allie from Maxmioffed posted the cover image in question and wrote, “Kurt’s clearly naked

Logan’s glaring at his dick

Classic porn cover poses

@Esad Ribic explain yourself please”

The great Jill Pantozzi then re-posted it and added, “when what when”

Greg Rucka then re-posted Jill’s re-post and added the following, “Also please note the placement of the beer bottle.

I once was at a show where I asked Esad about this cover.

Esad is a big, cheerful, man with a wicked sense of humor.

He just looked at me.

And then he smiled.

And the smile got bigger.

And bigger.

And he said, “And nobody at Marvel noticed!”

And then he couldn’t stop laughing.”

That’s hilarious.

So, yeah, it was intentional. That’s awesome. I love that Axel Alonso (editor on the series) approved the cover.

Thanks to my pal Jude D. for suggesting this one! Rich Johnston wrote about this in the past.

Check out some legends from Legends Revealed:

Why Were There No Spaceballs Action Figures?

What Surprising Character on Friends Was Originally Going to Have a Kid?

Was Cinderella’s Castle at Disney World Designed to Have a Secret Apartment Inside for Walt Disney?

Was Neil Young Sued By His Own Record Label for Not Making “Commercial” Music?

Check back Saturday for part 2 of this week’s legends!

And remember, if you have a legend that you’re curious about, drop me a line at either or!