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#1224378 - Mon Oct 16 2017 11:06 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: Wonder Boy]
the G-man
Online   ass-kicky Officially "too old for this shit"

Registered: Fri May 16 2003
Posts: 43438
Loc: the right
 Originally Posted By: Wonder Boy


Abel was trashed by Groth and Ellison in a 1980 interview in COMICS JOURNAL 53. Michael Fleischer sued Groth and Ellison for their comments about him in the interview, but I felt Jack Abel, Don Heck and writer Gerry Conway were the ones who were thoroughly trashed as talentless hacks.


IIRC the issue was that Groth and Ellison stated Fleischer was mentally ill which is arguably defamation, whereas calling someone a "hack" would typically be viewed as a matter of opinion or taste. Also, it should be noted, Fleischer lost his lawsuit, which tends to show any claim by Abel, Heck or Conway would have failed as well. So its a good think Abel didn't waste his money suing.

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#1224392 - Sun Oct 22 2017 08:16 AM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: the G-man]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

Well, hey, G-man, you're the lawyer, so you'd know better than me.

The irony is, Ellison was praising Michael Fleischer, saying "He's crazy as a bedbug!", for his twisted stories in the Spectre series (ADVENTURE 430-440) and WEIRD WESTERN, and JONAH HEX. Ellison was saying he's crazy in the way Robert E. Howard was crazy, with a maniacally detailed violent imagination that made his stories good.

But as it turned out, Fleischer was seeing a psychiatrist 3 days a week and arguably was truly crazy, or at least mentally unstable. Fleischer sued, saying the interview hurt his professional reputation and had hurt his income. But in the years of the lawsuit, Fleischer's income actually doubled! So the interview obviously didn't hurt his professional writing career.

The Fleischer suit lasted from 1980-1987, before finally coming to trial. The COMICS JOURNAL cover-featured it in issue 115, and transcribed much of the testimony in that issue. With a really nice wraparound cover by Don Simpson.

Groth/Fantagraphics published a six-issue benefit book titled ANYTHING GOES in 1986-1987 to raise money for their legal fees. In the span of the series, they published some remarkably good material, particularly "Pictopia" by Alan Moore and Don Simpson, as well as Journey/Wolverine McCallister story, and a Flaming Carrot story, among other fun pieces by Crumb, Spiegelman, Howard Cruse, Mike Hoffman and others.

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#1225208 - Sat Mar 03 2018 02:25 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

Another artist I knew from the 1970's that I had no idea went back to the early 40's is Art Saaf.

I knew him as the guy who drew Supergirl in the early 70's ADVENTURE COMICS issues.

And then in her own 10-issue SUPERGIRL series in 1972-1974. I'm surprised how much issue 1 is selling for! These were fun but unspectacular issues. I enjoyed them as much for the Zatanna backups as for the Saaf lead stories.

When I was reading early 1940's issues of PLANET COMICS, I saw features with Saaf art, and some particularly nice good girl art. He was a peer of Murphy Anderson on the Fiction House titles.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Art_Saaf



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#1225942 - Fri Jun 01 2018 04:43 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America




Curt Swan is another:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curt_Swan

 Quote:
Curt Swan, whose Swedish grandmother had shortened the original family name of Swanson, was the youngest of five children. Father John Swan worked for the railroads; mother Leontine Jessie Hanson[2] had worked in a local hospital.[citation needed] As a boy, Swan's given name – Douglas – was shortened to "Doug," and, disliking the phonetic similarity to "Dog," Swan thereafter reversed the order of his given names and went by "Curtis Douglas," rather than "Douglas Curtis."[3]

Having enlisted in Minnesota's National Guard's 135th Regiment, 34th Division in 1940, Swan was sent to Europe when the "federalized" division was shipped initially to Northern Ireland and Scotland. While his comrades in the 34th eventually went into combat in North Africa and Italy, Swan spent most of World War II working as an artist for the G.I. magazine Stars and Stripes. While at Stars and Stripes, Swan met writer France Herron, who eventually directed him to DC Comics.[4]

During this period Swan married the former Helene Brickley, who he had met at a dance at Fort Dix, New Jersey, and who was stationed near him in Paris in 1944 as a Red Cross worker; they were married in Paris on April 1945.[5] Shortly after returning to civilian life in 1945 he moved from Minnesota to New Jersey and began working for DC Comics.[6] Apart from a few months of night classes at the Pratt Institute under the G.I. Bill, Swan was an entirely self-taught artist.[7] After a stint on Boy Commandos he began to just pencil pages, leaving the inking to others.


Initially, Swan drew many different features, including "Tommy Tomorrow" and "Gangbusters",[6] but slowly he began gravitating towards the Superman line of books. His first job pencilling the iconic character was for Superman #51 (March–April 1948).[8][9] Many comics of the 1940s and 1950s lacked contributor credits, but research shows that Swan began pencilling the Superboy series with its fifth issue in 1949.[10] He drew the first comics meeting of Superman and Batman in Superman #76 (May–June 1952).[11] The two heroes began teaming on a regular basis in World's Finest Comics #71 (July–Aug. 1954) in a story which was also drawn by Swan.[12] Swan always felt that his breakthrough came when he was assigned the art duties on Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen, in 1954.[13]

Swan didn't take to line editor Mort Weisinger's controlling style. Swan discussed this period in an interview: "I was getting terrible migraine headaches and had these verbal battles with Mort. So it was emotional, physical. It just drained me and I thought I'd better get out of here before I go whacko." After leaving comics for the advertising world in 1951, Swan soon returned, for National's higher paychecks. And as biographer Zeno notes, "The headaches went away after [Swan] gained Weisinger's respect by standing up to him."[13]

Around 1954, Swan unsuccessfully pitched an original comic strip for newspaper syndication. Called Yellow Hair, it was about a blond boy raised by Native Americans.[14] A couple of years later, starting with the episode of June 18, 1956, Swan drew the Superman daily newspaper comic strip, which he continued on until November 12, 1960.[15]

In the view of comics historian Les Daniels, Swan became the definitive artist of Superman in the early 1960s with a "new look" to the character that replaced Wayne Boring's version.[16] The Composite Superman was co-created by Swan and Edmond Hamilton in World's Finest Comics #142 (June 1964).[17] Swan and writer Jim Shooter crafted the story "Superman's Race With the Flash!" in Superman #199 (Aug. 1967) which featured the first race between the Flash and Superman, two characters known for their super-speed powers.[18] Over the years, Swan was a remarkably consistent and prolific artist, often illustrating two or more titles per month. Swan remained as artist of Superman when Julius Schwartz became the editor of the title with issue #233 (Jan. 1971), and writer Denny O'Neil streamlined the Superman mythos, starting with the elimination of Kryptonite.[19] Among Swan's contributions to the Superman mythos, he and writer Cary Bates co-created the supervillains Terra-Man[20] and the 1970s version of the Toyman[21] as well as the superhero Vartox.[22] Writer Martin Pasko and Swan created the Master Jailer character in Superman #331(January 1979).[23]


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#1225943 - Fri Jun 01 2018 04:50 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America


This part saddened me about Curt Swan:

 Quote:
After DC's 1985 12-issue limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths and with the impending 1986 revision of Superman by writer/artist John Byrne, Swan was released from his duties on the Superman comics. Critic Wallace Harrington summed up Swan's dismissal this way:

 Quote:

. . . the most striking thing that DC did was to completely turn their back on the one man that had defined Superman for three decades. . . . They closed the door and turned out the lights on the creator that had defined their whole line. With no real thanks, no pomp nor circumstance, DC simply relieved Curt of his artistic duties on Superman. Curt Swan who had drawn Superman in Action, Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, Superman, and World's Finest, and drew Superboy in Adventure Comics, who was the quintessential Superman artist of the 1960s, '70s and '80s. He became was just another victim of the 1980's implosion. Gone.[24]


Swan's last work as regular artist on Superman was the non-canonical 1986 story "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?", written by Alan Moore.[25]


I always got the impression from DC's discussion of the "Last Superman Story" that Swan wanted to retire and cut back. But according to this, he was leveraged out. With the one exception of Neal Adams, I never liked any other artist on Superman as much. Swan also did most of the Legion stories in ADVENTURE COMICS with Jim Shooter, that I know Beardguy here is a huge fan of.

The last story by Swan I read was a SUPERMAN: EARTH STEALERS one-shot he did in collaboration with John Byrne.

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#1225959 - Mon Jun 04 2018 05:37 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: Wonder Boy]
allan1
Offline I'm just sayin'

Registered: Fri Jul 20 2001
Posts: 10539
Loc: Shippensburg,Pennsylvania
Hmmm... I hadn't heard anything negative about Swan being replaced before. DC made a big deal about Byrne taking over and I remember the PC pic of Swan handing Byrne a pencil signaling his passing the art duties on to him. Of course there's a lot of behind-the scenes stuff that went/goes on that readers have very little to go on other than what we're told.

It's a dog eat dog world & I'm wearing milkbone underwear.

I can get you a toe.

1,999,999+ points.

Damn you and your lemonade!!

Booooooooooooooobs.

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#1225963 - Tue Jun 05 2018 03:27 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: allan1]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

This was the first for me as well, that I saw Swan's exit from the Superman titles in 1986 was anything but voluntary.


Regardless, he's a great artist, and his legacy as one of DC's great artists lives on. Swan, Anderson, Infantino, Gil Kane, Joe Kubert, Julius Schartz, Kurt Schaffengerger, Jim Mooney, and certainly John Broome and Gardner Fox, all I'm sure had their disappointments working for DC. Some took a harder hit to their careers than others. Infantino in particular was managing editor and publisher of DC up till early 1976, when he was abruptly thrown out and struggled for a while to even find work as a penciller again, whereas he had up till then essentially been the Stan Lee at DC. Infantino is responsible for most of the titles I look back on as my absolute favorites from 1967-1976. I'm glad I got to tell him that at a convention in 2012, before he died.

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#1225969 - Wed Jun 06 2018 01:39 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

I just mentioned Carmine Infantino in passing, and somewhere I read that he was the most prominent penciller of the Silver Age, even over Jack Kirby. Perhaps because of his launch of the FLASH (first appearing in SHOWCASE) that defined the very beginning of the Silver Age in 1956. As well as his Adam Strange run in MYSTERY IN SPACE (1959-1964) and BATMAN run after that (1964-1968). Some of the most popular and definitive titles of the Silver Age.

I also became aware through the 52-page and 100-page issues of the early 1970's that Infantino was another artist who went back to the very beginning of comics, in Golden Age reprints of Flash, Black Canary, Johnny Thunder, plus other later reprints of crime stories, detective stories, science fiction stories and "Detective Chimp" stories up through the 1950's, and well as reprints of his Silver Age work.
It was something of a surprise that this prolific artist who largely defined the Siver Age also went all the way back to the Golden Age.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carmine_Infantino

And that he started in comics when he was barely a teenager! This was a guy who was born to do comics.

Reading Infantino's Wikipedia profile also reveals that Frank Giacoia (one I associate most with being a 1960's/1970's Marvel inker) is another artist whose career spans back to the Golden Age.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Giacoia

And artist Joe Kubert as well started when Infantino did, also a very young teenager when he began drawing comics.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Kubert

All these artists, and Jack Kirby as well, are ones that when reading reprints of their work, I barely could connect they were the same guys who did the new work I was buying in the 1970's, the style of their work was so different than the previous decades. I think partly because they were laborer apprentices when they started out, and gradually became fully formed artists and grandmasters of the comics medium.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Kirby




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#1227342 - Fri Oct 12 2018 05:58 PM Re: Comics Artists in the 1970's you might not know go back to the Golden Age [Re: Wonder Boy]
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 18400
Loc: A glorious bold new America

Dick Dillin is another who, like Novick, was not credited in his 1960's DC work until around 1969. And (like Novick whose credits began when he started runs on BATMAN and DETECTIVE) Dillin picked up the assignment of JUSTICE LEAGUE with issue 65, and could have similarly been mistaken (he certainly was by me!) for a new talent entering the field at that time. (Dillin actually started working for DC in 1952.)
There was a story in SUPERMAN 249 that introduced Terra-Man (a cowboy Western villain who oddly came from space), and the story was pencilled by Dillin and Inked by Adams. I mistook this to be a later-published first Dillin story for DC, where Adams had inked Dillin to help him enter the field, as Adams had for many other 70's artists entering the field, such as Rich Buckler, Ralph Reese, Al Weiss, Larry Hama and many others. I think it was Llance who set me straight and told me that Dillin was a Golden Age artist whose work went way further back than late 60's JLA and SUPERMAN.

Sadly, Dillin died rather suddenly of a heart attack in 1980. His immediate fill-in replacement was new-to-DC George Perez, who did parts 2 and 3 of the JLA/JSA/New Gods crossover story that Dillin did the first part of before his heart attack. He was only 51.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Dillin





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