Gene Colan remembered: Champion of fear and the off-beat


Gene Colan passed away on June 23, 2011. He was 84.

A comic book legend whose art garnered many awards, he’s best-known for pencilling the entire run of Marvel’s Tomb of Dracula and most issues of the cult hit series Howard the Duck, co-created and written by Steve Gerber.

He is fondly remembered.

“Gene worked on almost every major Marvel book at one point,” comics historian Mark Evanier said. “His characters were more than just costumes, they had credibility. Readers would connect with a Gene Colan character instantly.” – NY Daily News

“Gene Colan was like no other artist of his generation. His ability to create dramatic, multi-valued tonal illustrations using straight india ink and board was unparalleled. The comics industry has lost one of its true visionaries.”
Jim Lee, DC Comics Co-Publisher

“Gene Colan was one of the great draftsmen in the industry and his work is a fond part of some of my best comic book memories.”
Dan DiDio, DC Comics Co-Publisher

(Source: DC Comics blog)

Working under the pseudonym “Adam Austin,” Colan once again impressed Marvel’s editor-in-chief Stan Lee as an artist with an eye for moody atmosphere and who expressed his own style in his work. Lee quickly assigned him to pencil the Sub-Mariner strip in TALES TO ASTONISH and then the Iron Man feature in TALES OF SUSPENSE. Fans began to identify Colan as a stand-out illustrator and Marvel gave him free reign to tackle such major headlining characters as Captain America, Daredevil and Doctor Strange. It was on DAREDEVIL, beginning in 1966, that the artist accomplished an incredible run of over 80 consecutive issues, a landmark in Silver Age comics. –  Marvel.com

Enjoy these covers to a few series finales pencilled by Colan.

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