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Patrick A. Reed

52 Years Ago Today: Here Comes ‘Daredevil’ #1, Eventually

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Ideas were flying fast and furious at Marvel at the start of 1964. Lee and Kirby had introduced The Brotherhood Of Evil Mutants in X-Men #4, unleashed the first proper Hulk Vs. Thing battle in Fantastic Four #25, and revived Golden-Age icon Captain America in Avengers #4, while Lee and artist Don Heck had given readers Black Widow's first appearance in Tales Of Suspense #52.

So when the first issue of a new title went on sale on February 4th, it seemed like the next logical step in the Marvel's expansion. The company had been running house ads trumpeting the book for a couple months, and the cover loudly declared itself to be in their best tradition of greatness and innovation. But the truth is that Daredevil's genesis was difficult, and #1 was arriving a full six months after it was originally slated.

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Twenty-Four Years Ago Today: The Start Of The Image Comics Revolution

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At the dawn of 1992, comic books were booming. Tim Burton's Batman had kicked off a new wave of big-budget film adaptations. Superhero products could be found in nearly every aisle of every department store and supermarket. New comic shops were springing up in shopping centers and malls, publishers were seeing their highest sales figures in years, and new companies were making names for themselves as serious players. And Marvel Comics was the unquestioned big fish in the pool, with their stock booming in the six short months since they'd gone public, and an unparalleled creative stable.

But big changes were afoot. In December of 1991, Todd McFarlane, Rob Liefeld, and Jim Lee, Marvel's three biggest artists, informed publisher Terry Stewart that the company's policies toward talent were unfair, that creators were not being appropriately rewarded for their work, and that they were leaving, effective immediately. In the month thereafter, they joined forces with a few more like-minded artists from Marvel's top-selling titles, worked out a deal with small publisher Malibu Comics for production and distribution, and decided on the title for their new company --- recycling a name that Liefeld had originally intended for an aborted self-publishing venture. On February 1st, 1992, a press release was sent out announcing the formation of Image Comics.

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Marvelous In Every Moment: A Tribute To Sal Buscema

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If you're a fan of classic Marvel, Sal Buscema is most likely responsible for many of your favorite comic book memories. He was one of Marvel's most prolific and versatile artists through the '70s and '80s, working on some of the most famous sagas of the era, while also taking on a number of lesser-known (yet no less wonderful) assignments.

At one time or another, he drew pretty much every major Marvel title, including Avengers, Fantastic Four, Thor, Marvel Team-Up, Sub-Mariner, Daredevil, Nova, Eternals, Marvel Two-In-One, New Mutants, Iron Man, X-Men, Marvel Spotlight, Ghost Rider, Ms. Marvel, Marvel Premiere, Howard The Duck, Master Of Kung Fu, and all three major Spider-Man series (Amazing, Spectacular, and Web Of). He pencilled defining tales of Captain America and The Defenders, and a ten-year run on Incredible Hulk. And he's also a skilled inker, whose collaborations with other artists, most notably his brother John Buscema, resulted in some of the most memorable books of the Bronze Age.

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The Polymath: Celebrating The Many Careers Of Jules Feiffer

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Comic creator. Playwright. Historian. Screenwriter. Political commentator. Novelist. Illustrator. Educator. Cartoonist. Jules Feiffer has worn all these hats and more over his storied career, and in the process, become one of the most influential, versatile, and celebrated figures that the comics medium has ever known.

He's won an Oscar, a Pulitzer, an Obie, and received numerous lifetime achievement awards. He's written acclaimed R-rated movies, produced one of the first proper graphic novels, authored a long-running and hugely popular comic strip, and provided the art for one of the true classics of children's literature. His 1965 book The Great Comic Book Heroes pioneered the concept of reprinting classic comic book stories in a high-quality format, and is generally acknowledged as the first major historical work about the comic book industry. And he still produces vital and groundbreaking work today, some seventy years after taking on his first professional comics job.

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Defining The Marvel Style: A Tribute To The Great John Romita

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When listing the great living legends of comics, there are few who loom larger than John Romita Sr. He's the man who defined the look of Marvel Comics for generations of readers, serving as the company's in-house art director, drawing hundreds of comics and designing many of the company's most famous characters.

John Romita was born in Brooklyn, New York, on January 24 1930, and showed a keen interest in drawing from an early age. He attended high school at the School Of Industrial Art on 79th Street in Manhattan, and after graduating in 1947 took on commercial art jobs for a year before breaking into the comics industry in 1949 with a story in Eastern Color's Famous Funnies.

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Never Standing Still: Celebrating The Career of Ann Nocenti

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Since she entered the industry in the early '80s, Ann Nocenti has been a mainstay of the comics world, known for her distinctive voice, keen ear for dialogue, and her knack for constantly incorporating fresh ideas into her stories, and pushing her work in new directions. From Spider-Woman to Daredevil to Catwoman to Klarion, she's worked on many of the medium's most memorable characters, broken down boundaries, been nominated for the industry's highest honors, and written some of the finest stories of the last four decades.

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Filed Under: , , Category: Anniversaries, Marvel

ComicsAlliance Gift Guide: Art Books To Buy For Someone Who Still Has Room On Their Bookshelf

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The holiday season is upon us, and with that comes gifts! It’s always lovely to receive something special from someone you love, but there’s also a particular pleasure that comes in giving a really well chosen gift and knowing that it’s truly appreciated. Sometimes it really is better to give than to receive! In that spirit, ComicsAlliance is here to inspire you with some great ideas for gifts to buy for your friends and family. Each gift guide is tailored to a particular personality type or special interests, and this time we're looking at gifts for people who love great art and also own industrial-strength shelves.

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Filed Under: Category: Art, Galleries

Celebrating the Life and Work of E.C. Segar, Creator of Popeye

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On December 8th, 1894, Elzie Crisler Segar was born in the tiny town of Chester, Illinois. The youngest of eight children, Segar showed artistic skill from a young age. He spent his teenage years working various jobs (sign painter, house painter, vaudeville musician, movie projectionist), and after enrolling in a correspondence course in cartooning, he began writing and drawing the licensed strip Charlie Chaplin's Comic Capers for the Chicago Herald in 1916. He hopped crosstown to William Hearst's Chicago Evening American in 1918, where he created a new strip called Looping The Loop and contributed illustrations to the sports section.

In the fall of 1919, he relocated to New York City, began working for King Features Syndicate, and on December 19th, launched the strip that would (eventually) bring him immortality: Thimble Theatre.

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61 Years Ago Today: The Comics Code Authority Changed The Face of Comics

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The Comics Code Seal of Approval, adopted on this day on 1954 by the Comics Magazine Association of America, is an instantly recognizable image to generations of comic readers. Its modest black-and-white brand adorned the covers of countless mainstream comic books for the better part of six decades, assuring buyers that the contents of their favorite title had met with some not-entirely-clear standards of suitability, and serving as a lingering reminder of an era when comics has been considered a serious threat to society.

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Born 89 Years Ago Today: Gene Colan, the Virtuoso of Figurework and the Man Who Defined Daredevil

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Nobody drew like Gene Colan. That might sound like the sort of hyperbole one expects to read in a tribute piece, but in this case, it's true – Gene Colan was a total original, whose work looked nothing like any other comic artist's before or since.

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