I'm curious as to when Steranko did this work. I thought it looked familiar. Check out this link.http://www.war-ofthe-worlds.co.uk/cv/west1.htm
Good question (I've always been told to say that when you find yourself struggl'n with a question). Steranko's art here graced the March 1979 issue of Mediascene, and the nice cover of West magazine insert you link to has cut off the year, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say Doug Wildey's art probably came first. Coupla reasons for my reasoning--Steranko published some of Wildey's adaptation in Mediascene, and Jim Steranko is a master of taking artwork and making it more "market" ready (I guess clean and ad-like is sorta what I'm saying), and finally, the Bradbury Martians have almost a collective look from his descriptors (Ray was also an artist), so in one sense, Doug and Jim are having a go at the same climatic moment (the arrival of Earthlings on Mars) and coming up with artistic twins. And how about that Warner Bros Marvin the Martian? At his height, he coulda been in the scene and we just can't see him
I agree with your assessment. It just struck me as odd that someone as creative as Jim would "swipe" another's work. I'm going with homage. By the way, I have a copy of that magazine. Found it used as packing material will working in a Chicago warehouse. One mans trash . . .