Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Joe Kubert passed away on August 12th, and so the search for the greatest living comic book artist begins anew.  I'm stunned and saddened by the loss of this man we always thought would be with us.

I had the good fortune to meet and interview Joe Kubert several times in the past few years.  Here are links to those previous writings:

Joe Kubert talks about Robin Moore and "Tales of the Green Berets."

What might have been...Kubert's "Terry & the Pirates."

What also might have been...Kubert's "Superman vs. Muhammad Ali."

Convention encounters:

Mid-Ohio Con, October 2008

C2E2, April 2012

A couple of years ago he won the Milton Caniff Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Cartoonists Society.  I asked Joe about Caniff, who he loved as a kid and later got to know as a professional.

Kubert on Caniff:
There were three idols with whom every guy who started at the same time as I did were their acolytes: Caniff, Foster and Raymond. Caniff was the guy who enabled people like myself to recognize and adapt and adopt a little bit of his style. I believe that we’re all influenced by everything and everyone that we see and/or admire. Whether we realize it or not, we’re influenced by them. I sure as hell was. I was completely conscious of the fact that at one time or another I was sure influence by Milt, by Milt’s stuff. What that did, because he worked with such incredible, bold strokes with the brush, I found that doing the stuff with that kind of a style – simplifying the art – enabled me to get it done a hell of a lot faster, as you know.  If you can still maintain the kind of quality that you’re looking for, and find a way to get it done a little faster, that was quite an achievement. So, for some time I think Milt’s influence showed very clearly on a lot of the stuff I did.

Personally, as a kid I passed over Kubert's work.  It wasn't the clean line of a Byrne or Perez, which I was attracted to.  Thankfully, in my maturity I'd grown to appreciate the skill and technique of artists like Severin and Kubert.  I'm glad I got to briefly know this man who was very generous with his time. He was a man humble in the face of well-deserved praise, unwilling to rest on his body of work, always excited about the latest project.  Joe Kubert was the living history of comics.

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