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celebrating comics history

Feliz Cumpleaños, Sergio: A Birthday Tribute To Cartoonist Sergio Aragonés

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Sergio Aragones was born in Spain in 1937, moved to Mexico with his family in the early 1940s, and after attending the University Of Mexico, settled in the United States in 1962. His cartoons first appeared in Mad Magazine at the end of that year, and he quickly became one of the publication's most popular contributors. In the years since, he's become well-known to comic readers as the co-creator and writer of DC Comics' western hero Bat Lash and a contributor to countless other titles (including Plop!, Fanboy, The Mighty Magnor, The Simpsons, and Actions Speak); he's continued his association with Mad (appearing in 452 of the 453 issues published since his debut); he's produced a number of bestselling paperback books; and, of course, he continues to produce comics telling the stories of his best-known creation, the bumbling barbarian with a weakness for cheese dip, the inimitable Groo The Wanderer.

To mark the occasion of his birthday (September 6), we've reached out to a few of our favorite modern-day creators to join us in paying tribute to Sergio and celebrating his life and work.

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Jack Kirby: A ‘King-Sized’ 97th Birthday Tribute Spectacular, Part Two!

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Jack Kirby is very probably the single most influential figure in the history of American comics. He produced countless stories in a career that spanned seven decades, inventing and re-inventing genres and styles every step of the way. He inspired generations of artists and writers; created and co-created thousands of characters; defined the visual vocabulary of superheroes; and believed in the potential of comics to be both entertainment and art, long before most people imagined these stories would be remembered past the four weeks that they sat on newsstands.

This week would have been Kirby’s 97th birthday, so to celebrate, we asked some of our favorite creators and other comic pros to contribute their impressions of his characters, life, and legacy – and the response has been overwhelming. Yesterday, we posted the first set of these all-star tributes, and here's the second, even more expansive selection!

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Jack Kirby: A ‘King-Sized’ 97th Birthday Tribute Spectacular, Part One!

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Jack Kirby is very arguably the single most influential figure in the history of American comics. He produced countless stories in a career that spanned seven decades, inventing and re-inventing genres and styles every step of the way. He inspired generations of artists and writers; created and co-created thousands of characters; defined the visual vocabulary of superheroes; and believed in the potential of comics to be both entertainment and art, long before most people imagined these stories would be remembered past the four weeks that they sat on newsstands.

Today would have been Kirby’s 97th birthday, and to mark the occasion we’ve assembled a series of posts commemorating the life and work of the man known to American comics fans as “The King.” For this piece, we asked some of our favorite creators and other comics pros to celebrate Jack Kirby with their impressions of his characters, life, and legacy – and we got so many responses, we'll have another installment of all-star tributes tomorrow!

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Wizards, Lizards And Other Figments Of Fancy: A Birthday Tribute To Vaughn Bode [NSFW]

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Vaughn Bodé is one of the few comics creators whose work transcends genre and style – his art can't be compared to anything but itself, and can really only be described and categorized as "Vaughn Bodé style". In his brief career, he redefined the very idea of what a cartoonist could be, pioneering a drawing style that inspired and confounded, blending and distorting fantasy tropes with every pen stroke. His stories were filled with spaced-out hallucinations and a direct, earthy sensuality, and established him as a guru of graphic storytelling and the first proper rock star of the comics field.

To mark the occasion of his birthday, ComicsAlliance reached out to a handful of our favorite modern-day artists to offer their takes on Bodé – his characters, his style, his feeling, and his inspiration.

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The Joe Shuster Centennial: A Tribute To Superman’s Co-Creator On What Would Have Been His 100th Birthday

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To celebrate the centennial anniversary of Superman co-creator Joe Shuster's birth, some of the men and women who've benefited from his tremendous artistic influence have paid homage to and shared their impressions of Shuster's work, his legacy, and his signature character.

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Shazam! Comics Alliance And Friends Celebrate The Birthday Of C.C. Beck, Creator Of The Original Captain Marvel

"Marvel Family Feud" by Kenny Keil
"Marvel Family Feud" by Kenny Keil

C.C. Beck was born on June 8, 1910, attended art school in Chicago, and started his career in pulp magazines with Fawcett Publications in the early 1930s. When the popularity of pulps began to fade, he moved over work on Fawcett's line of comics – and in 1939 he co-created a character that originally bore the name "Captain Thunder", but was re-dubbed Captain Marvel shortly before the release of his first adventure. In that initial story, young newsboy Billy Batson meets a great wizard, and is given the power to transform into "The World's Mightiest Mortal" when he says one magic word...Shazam!

Today, one day after what would have been his 104th birthday, w've reached out to a few of today's best comics creators to ask for their thoughts and impressions on Beck and his creations.

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Celebrating ‘Tintin’ On Creator Hergé’s 107th Birthday! [Art]

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Though he's hardly a household name here in the United States, even among the majority of comics fans, Hergé is a serious contender for the title of "all-time most influential comic artist". He created the globe-trotting boy reporter Tintin in 1929, and until his death in 1983, spun an ever-expanding saga that found the the intrepid lad and his supporting cast exploring the deep sea, landing on the moon, tangling with a yeti, and doing battle with an endless assortment of thieves, scoundrels, and ne'er-do-wells.

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