Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas from Daredevil and Paul Smith!

Merry Christmas from Daredevil and Paul Smith!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Happy 60th Birthday Michael Golden

born on Oct 1st 1955, has been one of the most influential comic artists of the last 40 years.

Here we see Michael Golden with a Marvel house add that he drew in the early 80's. 

Monday, September 28, 2015

Jaime Hernandez' Locas vs. Locos

Love and Rockets was one of my favorite comics in the 80's and Jaime's Locas was my favorite part of Love and Rockets. In it Jaime would create stories that were like amazing jewelry by coming up with a simple plot thread on which he would string his myriad of precious gems of characters on. Impetuous Hopey, sweet Maggie, head strong Terry, crazy Izzy. Each of Jaime's crazy characters are a perfect example of people that we have met, or friends that we know, in all their wacky, endearing glory.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Happy 60th Birthday Charles Burns!

Charles Burns, born September 27, 1955, has been amazing us with his work for over 35 years!
The artist as a young punk rocker. 
Burns got his start in the pages of Art Spiegelman's Raw Magazine. His first important work for RAW would be the cover of RAW #4, which featured a die-cut cover. 

This is Burn's ingenious cover for Raw Magazine #4. The first picture is the outside cover. The second picture is the inside cover. Di cut holes were cut in the cover where the color inside cover would show through. 
Burns characters live in a wacky world turned on it's head. One of Burns early works was El Borba, a giant luchador detective, serialized in the pages of Heavy Metal Magazine. Here we see his story from Heavy Metal Magazine, Aug 1983, titled Dead Meat. 

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Happy birthday Winsor McCay!

Winsor McCay
 born September 26, 1871, was a pioneer of the comic strip. 
He was one of the first comic creators and one of the greatest ever to work in the medium.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Special 200th post!

This is the 
200th blog post
I've done for the 
Great Comic Book Heroes. 
Working on this blog has been an amazing ride.

Scott McCloud speaks about the vast world of comics in his classic Understanding Comics. 
I started writing the Great Comic Book Heroes in January 2011, about 4 and a half years ago because I was looking for a more rewarding way to spend my time and I wanted to get into my passion of Comics more deeply and maybe give something back to the Comics Community that gave me so much.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Crepax' the Man From Harlem

The Jazz Age masterpiece

The Man From Harlem, by Italian master Guido Crepax, is a tribute to the Jazz Age with it's inspired music, brutal crime and deplorable racism of the time. 

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Happy 106th birthday Basil Wolverton!

the mad genius of
Basil Wolverton 
(July 9, 1909 – December 31, 1978)
was one of the most original and greatest of the Golden Age comic creators most famous for his weird horror stories of the 50's.

Here Basil is with some of his comics. 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Happy 80th birthday Billy Graham!

Billy Graham, born July 1, 1935 - died 1999, was an African-American comic-book artist best known for his work on the Marvel Comics series Luke Cage, Hero for Hire, and the Jungle Action feature, "Black Panther".

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Happy 74th Birthday Neal Adams!

Neal Adams
born June 6, 1941
is Mr. 70's. He was the most significant creator of the 70's
 virtually representing the whole of that Bronze Age of comics.
Neal Adams with some of the most popular characters that he worked on like Batman, the Spectre, Green Arrow, and Deadman

Monday, May 25, 2015

Happy 66th birthday Barry Windsor-Smith!

Barry Windsor-Smith (born Barry Smith in London, on 25 May 1949),

You can see how much Barry Windsor Smith (depicted in a self portrait in the center) matured as an artist in these two Daredevil covers he drew 16 years apart, one done at the beginning of his career in May 1969 and the other done in his mature style in April 1985. Notice the flowing anatomy on the right and the beautiful colors vs the ridged anatomy on the left.

Barry Windsor Smith official site

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Happy 31st birthday Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a phenomenon that happens very rarely. It's the story of a pair of amateur comic fans making good on their dreams to get rich and famous through making comics. It's also the story of the independent comics movement in the 80's and 90's.

Peter Laird and Kevin Eastman stand with some of the merchandise of their phenomenally popular Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Happy 55th Birthday Chester Brown!

Happy 55th Birthday 
Chester Brown 
born on May 16th, 1960

Chester Brown was one of the 80's greatest Alternative Comics creators.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Square Comix by Ian McMurray

I'm sure many of you have not heard of Ian McMurry but I'm sure you will in the near future. Ian is an amazing new talent that you should keep an eye on.
Self portrait of Ian (center) on the cover of his book, Alone in Kyoto

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy 110th Birthday Alex Schomburg!

Alex Schomburg 
born May 10, 1905 – died April 7, 1998

He was the preeminent World War II cover artist defining the look of all comic book covers of the time with his illustrations on most of Timely's (Marvel's) comics as well as many of Nedor's.

The great comic artist, Alex Schomburg created some of the most iconic covers of the Golden Age of comics like this 1942 cover of All Winners #7 with it's incredibly dynamic action of Timely's three main characters fighting the Japs.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Ultron, the ultimate Avengers adversary!

Ultron, the sentient, evil robot, is one of the Avengers greatest nemesis. He has deep ties to the Avengers with his being created by Hank Pym and in turn, creating the Vision. He has continued to plague them over the years giving us some of the most kick ass Avengers stories ever written.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Frank Santoro's Pompeii

Frank Santoro's Pompeii is definitely different than any comics I've ever seen.

On the cover of Pompeii, Frank Santoro sets the theme of the book not only by showing 3 of the main characters in the book but also by the way he divides the page which is how every page in the book is divided. 

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Crisis on Infinite Earths 30th anniversary!

The Quintessential Copper Age book!

Alex Ross painted this incredible picture based on Perez pencils for a new edition of Crisis on Infinite Earths
There may be better 80's comics than Crisis on Infinite Earths but if you had to choose one comic that summed up the whole of the 80's comics, you couldn't do better than this. Crisis on Infinite Earths is the quintessential 80's book with it's exhaustive and comprehensive depiction of the whole of the DC Universe.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Happy 89th birthday Gil Kane!

Gil Kane (April 6, 1926 – January 31, 2000), is the legendary creator who was instrumental in bringing about the Silver Age of comics with his art work on the new Green Lantern (in DC Showcase #22, Sep. 1959) and the Atom (in DC Showcase #34, Sep 1961).

Self portrait of Gil Kane with his Atom colored by yours truly. 

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Happy April Fools with the clowns of comics!

Bring on the clowns!

Of coarse everyone knows the clown prince of crime, but there are many other clown themed heroes and villains throughout comics history.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Gilbert Hernandez' "Space Case"

Gilbert Hernandez's 
Heartbreak Soup 
is one rich stew that you will not soon forget!

In a world filled with superhero comics Gilbert Hernandez' Heartbreak Soup is special. It has the audacity to depict simple people dealing with everyday issues, issues that we all feel at some point and can relate to; issues about peoples insecurities, past traumas, world injustices and even feelings of being very small and insignificant as in the case with this Heartbreak Soup, Space Case, which comes from Ten Years of Love and Rockets, Sep. 1992.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Matt Kindt's Black Widow

Independent comics creator Matt Kindt who has lately had a big hit with his Mind MGMT did a cool piece for Marvel MAX' Strange Tales, Black Widow story.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Happy 74th birthday Captain America!

Joe Simon and Jack Kirby's Captain America is one of the first political comics ever created. Captain America Comics #1 (cover dated March 1941) pissed off a lot of people by having Cap punch out Hitler. The pro Nazi American's (yes, we did have them before the war) were incensed and even sent Timely Comics death threats.

Captain America has always been a special character ever since his first appearance in Captain America #1, March, 1941. 74 years ago. He speaks to the American spirit in all of us. He stands for the freedom and equality of all people no matter the race, gender, religion or sexual orientation. Whenever someone is trying to oppress another, he will be there to defend their rights to freedom.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Kent Williams' expressionistic Batman Black and White

Kent Williams is not a common name in comics but he is no stranger to art. In Batman Black and White he brings a vibrant, new aesthetic to comics with his scratchy, edgy line work. It's raw and it's dynamite. 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Happy 93rd Birthday Shigeru Mizuki, creater of GeGeGe no Kitaro!

Shigeru Mizuki, March 8, 1922 (age 92) is a fascinating mangaka (maker of manga or comics) who is most well-known for his yōkai, which is a sub genera of manga that is about Japanese spirits and ghost from folk traditions.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Happy 98th Birthday Will Eisner!

Happy birthday
Will Eisner 
(March 6, 1917 – January 3, 2005)

Will Eisner is the great old man of comics. He started out at the birth of comics, in the late 30's as a young, enthusiastic comic creator hopeful. Eisner grew up in Brooklyn with a painter father who had difficulty bringing in enough money to feed his family. This instilled in young Eisner a valuation for art and the impetus to work hard. In the late 30's he would start a "packaging" shop with Jerry Iger where they would make the contents of a whole comic and sell it to a publisher.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

the Avengers origin by Walt Simonson!

Have you ever wondered how the Avengers first got together? Well here is the story as told by the ever energetic Walt Simonson. His art is so lively that it virtually explodes off of the page. It's a constant joy and here in this little gem from Avengers #300, Feb 1989, he retells the classic Lee/Kirby tale from Avengers #1, Sep 1963. It's a long forgotten little piece that is well worth remembering.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

the Joker in Gotham Central

The Joker is a touchy subject because no one seems to understand this character. 
One person who understood him is Ed Brubaker in his 
Gotham Central. 

I think that Bill Finger nailed it when he first created the Joker but it seems that he has been misunderstood since. Ed Brubaker has managed to to capture the essence of Finger's Joker in his Gotham Central and made it his own.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Charles Burns' Marriage Made In Hell from RAW Magazine #6,

Charles Burns has gotten a lot of attention in recent years for his Black Hole and his Xed Out trilogy but before he did these great works he was twisting pop culture on it's head with works like...

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Mike Mignola's Swamp Thing Annual pages

In the late 80's Mike Mignola transformed his art to a stunning degree. He went from a work horse struggling to put out monthly books to a premier artist that garnered the prestige format that had become so popular at the time. He was creating breath taking work with strong contrasts and stunning compositions.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Happy 67th Birthday Art Spiegelman!

In the early 80's Art Spiegelman and his wife Francoise Mouly decided to put out a very new and experimental magazine that would contain all of the awesome new comics that they were discovering over seas in Mouly's homeland of France as well as all the great new comic artists Spiegelman was meeting while teaching at New York's School of Visual Arts. They would call this new magazine RAW Magazine and among the new and experimental works that they would publish in it was Art's own story of his dad and his struggles surviving German concentration camps of WWII, a work that he would call Maus

 Happy Birthday 
Art Spiegelman!
(born February 15, 1948)

Monday, February 9, 2015

Happy 86th Birthday Frank Frazetta!

Frank Frazetta is one of the greatest practitioners of the comic arts to have ever lived. His stunning draftsmanship is so perfect as to almost look inhuman. In all of his work, no matter the genre, from funny animal to romance, there is this barbarian aesthetic that peeks it’s head which eventually manifested itself into a career of illustrating Conan paperbacks and other barbarian paintings which were so revered that they spurred a whole genre of painting all it’s own.

Frank Frazetta
(February 9, 1928 – May 10, 2010)
A giant of the Golden Age of Comics!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Happy 58th birthday Gilberto Hernandez!

Gilberto Hernández 
born February 1, 1957, creator of 
Heartbreak Soup

Gilbert is here with 3 of his most popular creations, Luba, the local theater owner and bañadora or bath giver of the fictional village of Palomar, Chelo, the sheriff of Palomar and a competitor bañadora, and Tonantizin, the local hot girl.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Happy 58th Birthday Frank Miller!

If there had to be one face to represent the Copper Age of comics (the 80's) I'd pick Frank Miller to be it. When he came on the comics scene in the late 70's he brought something that was genuinely unique, and the work he did over that decade were some of the greatest moments in comics history.

Frank Miller, who was born on January 27, 1957 and will be 58 this year, is surrounded by some of his greatest works of the 80's; Elektra  and Daredevil, Batman and Robin (Carrie Kelley) from the Dark Knight Returns, and Ronin.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Happy 109th birthday Robert E. Howard!

The Great Comic Book Heroes usually writes about comics but today we are going to celebrate the birthday of the great writer, Robert E. Howard, who is considered to be the father of Sword and Sorcery with his work on such stuff as Solomon Kane, King Kull and Conan!

Happy Birthday
Robert E. Howard!
(January 22, 1906 – June 11, 1936)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Happy 121st Birthday Harold Gray! The creator of Little Orphan Annie!

Harold Gray
(January 20, 1894 – May 9, 1968)
the creator of 

Harold Gray created Little Orphan Annie in 1924 and for the next 44 years he would thrill millions of readers on a daily bases with Annie and her plucky, never-say-die attitude. Little Orphan Annie would hit it’s peak in the 30’s Depression Era America and become an cultural icon, embodying the optimism and hardwork ethic of American’s everywhere.

Friday, January 16, 2015

the primordial FIRST WORLD of Jamie Chase!

Come see the wild and weird primordial dawn of man in 
Jamie Chase' 
First World!

Jamie Chase's First World is unique in the world of comics these days. It is a throwback to a long gone time in comics when there was a love for powerful jungle lords and when ferocious T Rexes clashed with sharp horned Triceratops.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Happy 152nd birthday R. F. Outcault!

Happy Birthday
Richard Felton Outcault
born January 14, 1863, died September 25, 1928,
the father of the American comic strip.

Here Outcault is next to his most famous creations of the Yellow Kid, Buster Brown and Tige.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year with Alan Moore and Tom Strong!

The Great Comic Book Heroes 
ushers in 2015 with Tom Strong's Timekeeper and the 
Tower at Time's End!
The Timekeeper and the Tower at Time's End was presented in Tom Strong #13, July, 2001 and was created by Alan Moore, Chris Sprouce, Russ Heath, Kyle Baker and Pete Poplaski.