The Mego Comic Book Connection
Thanks to Mego,the 70's were a Superhero licensing "boom", at one point during this period, the comic publishers were making more money from merchandising than from publishing the comic books themselves. This boom found comics companies were rather unprepared. Their licensing departments were usually one person or handled by a secretary and with so many products needing packaging artowork, they had to resort to tracing much of it from existing comics.
Anyone who collects Super Hero toys from beyond 1979 will easily source the packaging art, it will likely be from the style guide the licensor provides. For a Mego collector however, the task to find the origins of the packaging artwork takes you back to the roots themselves, the comics!
BIG thanks go to Yoshi for providing the brunt of this info and who didn't want to be credited.
Mego Batman Box Art is not based on an issue of Batman
The Art for the Batman box surfaced originally in 1967 on a mail away poster series
(drawn by Carmine Infantino) In what would be the first of Batman's style guide artwork, it ended up on literally dozens of products for not only Mego but manufacturers such as AHI and Polistil. Thanks to Chris Franklin for this great bit of information.
Scowling Mego Batman (Detective Comics June 1972)
Hard to notice but here is the Neal Adams Batman head from the mego DC Hero cards copyrighted 1977. This lends creedance to the thought that Adams didn't intentionally design these cards.
Mego 12" Batman box
features the same Infantino art as the 8" version AND a poorly rendered swipe of a classic Jim Aparo cover (Detective Comics 443).
Mego Robin Box Art Batman November 1964
I always wondered what Robin was doing and now, I still kind of wonder. (Carmine Infantino)
Mego Joker Box Art was also based on the same Poster art as Batman.
were drawn by Carmine Infantino and the first to captilize on the newly created style guide artwork. This image was featured on everything from Pepsi glasses to playing cards to parachute figures. Thanks to Chris Franklin for this great bit of information.
Mego Penguin Box Art was also based on the Poster art as Batman, Riddler and Joker.
(We used the Lily Ledy box to spice things up) These Posters
(drawn by Carmine Infantino) were just the first to captilize on the newly created style guide artwork. If companies made or decided to use Penguin on a product in the 1970's, this artwork came into play 90% of the time. This infamous shot was used on pencil cases, pepsi glasses and corgi cars. Mego cut the Umbrella out of the scene (similiar to what they did with the Green Goblins Glider). Thanks to Chris Franklin for this great bit of information.
Mr Fantastic Card Art (Fantastic Four November 1975)
Here's another header portrait taken straight from the comics, this time it was used in the Marvel Mego cards dated 1979.
Mego Mighty Thor
It's been heavily altered but most agree this Thor cover art is what was used for the Asgardian's Mego box art.(thanks to Clem for this one)
Mego Green Goblin Box (Amazing Spiderman #40)
Not a cover shot but a classic piece of Romita art nonetheless, notice how Mego removed the bat glider from the packaging Spiderman Collector Message Boards
Mego Lizard Box (Amazing Spiderman #45)
Not a cover shot but a classic piece of Romita art nonetheless, notice how Mego used an image of the Lizard lying down! A special thankyou goes to the guys at Spiderman Collector Message Boards
Iron Man Box Art (Iron Man July 1973)
Slightly altered but nonetheless, it's Mego Iron Man in a classic pose
Captain America Box Art (Tales of Suspense 59)
Mego picked a classic cover to represent the Captain America packaging. (thanks to Clem for the tip)
Falcon Card Art (Captain America 170)
This was a tough one to find, the art was also used as a Marvel Stamp (remember those?) Big props to Reggie for discovering this.
Mego Riddler Box Art (Batman July 1969)
There is no mistaken where the Mego Riddler artwork came from, however the Riddler image was also sold as a poster on it's own.
Mego Batgirl Box Art (Batman Jan 1967)
For some reason her body got reversed on the mego Packaging but other than that not much was done with Carmine Infantinos design.
Green Arrow Box Art (Superfriends character sheet)
Alex Toth's wonderful animation sketch of the Green Arrow was the perfect thing for his Mego window box.
Mr. Fantastic Box Art (Fantastic Four Feb 1967)
King Kirby himself had a hand in the creation of the Fantastic Four box.
Incredible Hulk (Aurora Comic Scenes Hulk Model 1967)
Herb Trimpe drew this awesome comic for the Aurora rerelease of their popular model kits (now called comic scenes) Mego got the benefit of that artwork.....
Catwoman didn't wear her pirate duds for long but it took a keen eye to find the issue where Mego took the image from. Issue number 210 of Batman provides the answers. Many thinks to Mike for providing this very cool information.
Supergirl Look in the top corner, you'll see a slightly altered version of the mego image.