Comics Spotlight on: Dick Giordano

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Happy Comic Release day!

I was going to do a normal review this week but decided I couldn’t let the death of Dick Giordano pass without notice. Mr. Giordano died at the age of 77 on Saturday, March 27th, after a life dedicated to working in comics.

I grew up reading Batman comics inked or penciled by him. At the time, I was unaware a long career that started before I was born. All I knew is that he created very dynamic action scenes and he drew the best hair in the business.

But he was so much more than that.

Dick Giordano & friends, from the gallery on his websiteDick Giordano & friends, from the gallery on his website
Dick Giordano & friends, from the gallery on his website

He began his career as a freelance artist in 1951, rising to Editor-in-Chief at Charlton Comics by 1965. While there, he revamped many of the company’s surperheroes, the best know of which is likely The Blue Beetle. He also hired a number of young artists and writers who went on to have long and memorable careers, including Jim Aparo and Denny O’Neil.

In the mid-1970s, when I first started reading comics, Giordano was doing freelance art for Batman stories. I didn’t know of his career at Charlton or his time as a DC comics editor. I just knew I loved his art. Even when he was the inker over someone else’s pencils, his style still came through.

As talented as he was as an artist, Giordano’s legacy is most evident in his second stint as an editor at DC Comics. As Executive Editorial Director at DC in the 1980s, he was the one behind the publication of Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns and Alan Moore’s Watchmen. Both works are often cited as the best stories ever produced by DC.

For more information, the Dick Giordano website is still up and running. The New York Times published an obituary on March 31 but a more comprehensive story of his life and legacy can be found this article at Newsarama.com.

I think I’ll go read Crisis on Infinite Earths and enjoy his work again.

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