Tag Archives: mark millar

70 Aspects of Batman: 34

JOHN ROMITA JR.

From Wikipedia:

John Salvatore Romita, Jr. (born August 17, 1956) is an American comic book artist best known for his extensive work for Marvel Comics from the 1970s to the 2000s.

Romita was born in New York City, the son of John Romita, Sr., co-creator of several notable Spider-Man stories in the 1960s and 1970s.

He began his career at Marvel UK, doing sketches for covers of reprints. His American debut was with a six page story entitled “Chaos at the Coffee Bean!” in The Amazing Spider-Man Annual #11 (1977).

Romita’s early popularity began with his run on Iron Man with writer David Michelinie and artist Bob Layton which began in 1978. In the early 1980s, he had his first regular run on the Amazing Spider-Man series and also was the artist for the launch of the Dazzler series. Working with writer Roger Stern on Amazing Spider-Man, he co created the character Hobgoblin. From 1983 to 1986 he had a run on the popular Uncanny X-Men with Dan Green and author Chris Claremont which was well-received. He would return for a second well-received run on Uncanny X-Men in 1993.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Romita enjoyed an extended stint on Daredevil with writer Ann Nocenti and Eisner Award-winning inker Al Williamson, noted for its creation of long-running Daredevil nemesis Typhoid Mary. His work on Daredevil was well-received, with Romita Jr. further refining his style.

Romita later collaborated with Frank Miller on a Daredevil origin story entitled Daredevil: The Man Without Fear, a revisiting of the character’s origin. He worked on a host of Marvel titles during the 1990s, including The Punisher War Zone, the Hulk, the Cable mini-series, The Mighty Thor, a return to Iron Man for the second Armor Wars written by John Byrne, and the Punisher/Batman cross-over. Klaus Janson was a frequent inker.

In the 2000s, Romita had a well-received return to The Amazing Spider-Man with writer J. Michael Straczynski. He drew Marvel’s Wolverine with author Mark Millar as part of the character’s thirtieth-anniversary celebration. In 2004, Romita’s creator-owned project The Gray Area was published by Image Comics. Romita’s art has since appeared in Black Panther, The Sentry and Ultimate Vision, a backup story featured in the Ultimate line, written by author Mark Millar.

In 2006, Romita collaborated with writer Neil Gaiman on the reinterpretation of Jack Kirby‘s The Eternals in the form of a seven-issue limited series. Romita worked with Greg Pak on the five issue main comic of Marvel’s 2007 crossover event, World War Hulk.

In 2008, Romita again returned to Amazing Spider-Man. He is also collaborating once more with Mark Millar, for a creator-owned series, Kick-Ass, published by Marvel’s Icon imprint. The Filming of the Movie: Kick-Ass, began in September 2008. Romita, one of the producers, made his directorial debut by directing an animated flashback sequence in the film.

Romita is the regular artist for Avengers, which relaunched the franchise in May 2010.

John Romita Jr. may be the best pure superhero artist working in comics today. Over the course of his over 30 year career he has worked almost exclusively for Marvel Comics, so any images of characters from other companies by him. Fortunately, in the mid-90s before Marvel and DC became parts of huge conglomerates and were still open to crossovers, Romita Jr. drew a Batman/Punisher one-shot. For a reader used to Romita’s work only appearing in Marvel comics, seeing the denizens of Gotham City drawn in his style creates a certain cognitive dissonance…but once the brain adjusts, it’s a great visual experience. To date, apart from a sketch or two, Romita Jr. hasn’t drawn Batman since, which is a shame as his style has become more stripped down and direct as time’s gone on…kind of like this sketch below, done years after the one-shot:

I love this sequence from Batman/Punisher…it’s a well drawn sequence that flows and says a lot about the characters portrayed in it:

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70 Aspects Of Batman: 16

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TONY HARRIS

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From Wikipedia:

Tony Harris (born 1969) is an American comic book artist. He is most famous for Starman, winner of the 1997 Eisner for best serialized story, Iron Man, and currently Ex Machina, winner of the 2005 Eisner for best new series.

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Harris debuted in the comics in 1989 and rose to prominence in 1994 with the publication of DC comics’ Starman. Co-created with James Robinson, Starman led the two to critical acclaim and eventually a Will Eisner comic industry award for the Sand and Stars story arc.
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Current projects include Ex Machina with Brian K. Vaughan, published by Wildstorm Comics and War Heroes with Mark Millar, published by Image Comics.

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As I mentioned in the earlier 70 AOB post about Mike Mignola, Starman is one of my favorite comic series. Tony Harris’ artwork is a big part of why I love it. His earlier style was dark and angular…it makes sense that he began his career in horror comics. This style instantly set Starman apart from the rest of the superhero comics published at DC in the mid-90s. Harris co-created the world of Starman Jack Knight with writer James Robinson, and was the regular artist on the book until #45. Toward the end of his run, he had the chance to depict Batman in his distinctive manner, as can be seen above in this painted cover.

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But to date, Harris’ most notable work on the Dark Knight can be found in JSA: The Liberty Files, an Elseworlds story that plunges Batman, Superman and various JSA characters into a World War II espionage scenario. This series, from the early 2000s, showcases Tony Harris’ evolved style, where the formerly jutting angles have become curved.

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It’s a good read, I suggest tracking it down if you can.

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70 Aspects Of Batman: 10

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J.G. JONES

From Wikipedia:

J. G. Jones is an American comic book artist. Jones is best known for his work as cover artist on various comic book series, including a stint on Brian K. Vaughan‘s Y: The Last Man (Vertigo Comics), and, for DC Comics, the six-issue limited series Villains United written by Gail Simone, as well as all 52 covers for the maxi-series 52.

Jones’ interior art credits include: “Wonder Woman: The Hiketeia” (pencils only) written by Greg Rucka, Mark Millar‘s Wanted and Grant Morrison‘s (pencils and inks) published by Marvel Boy published by Marvel.

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J.G. Jones also provided covers for Wonder Woman over a lengthy amount of time, included the two Bat-centric ones pictured above. Below is one of his 52 covers featuring Bruce Wayne, actually the only one as that series was all about how the DC Universe handled the absence of Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman over the course of a year.

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Recently, Jones reunited with his Marvel Boy collaborator Grant Morrison on the DC’s huge Final Crisis miniseries, handling both cover and interior duties (until deadline issues forced him to utilize fill-in artists starting with issue #4). Final Crisis featured pretty much every active DC Universe character, including Batman. It also featured…

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….Batman’s “death”. Spoiler.

But of course, Batman’s not dead. But the DCU thinks he is, so currently (as explained in the previous Frank Quitely post) Dick Grayson has taken up the mantle of the Bat. Jones has provided variant covers for all of the Batman titles for the month of June, two of which can be seen below.

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JONES!!!

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