Alex Toth illustrates the 30-page “Villain! Villain! Who’s Got the Villain?”, with script by Elliot S! Maggin and inks by Terry Austin. This is an odd one for many reasons. For the diehards out there, the first complaint will be that this is essentially a World’s Finest story (It has Superman AND Batman!) in a Superman solo title. For the Toth fanatics it’s a schizoid combo of Toth styles through the years, from the rigid 50s through the cartoon designing 60s and 70s, to quite a share of his later years looseness, with a few examples of genuine experimentation and inovation also on display. Although many parts of it seem phoned in, it’s still a fascinating conversation.
The backup story from veteran Superman family artist Curt Swan (with plot and script help from Cary Bates and Elliot Maggin) is one of the later examples to be found of the ‘artist enters the story’ shorts that got pretty common somewhere between the 1950s and early 1970s. This is also a fairly rare example of Curt Swan inking his own work in the 1980s (we could be wrong here) He lays down an interesting line that wavers between the slick and the crude.
Cover art by Gil Kane
44 page full color comic book
DC Comics, 1983