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mygif

I read both lists (didnt really checked the comments on the other post) and id like to ask… why no Garth Ennis?

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mygif

Hooray for Tezuka and Byrne!

Not sure about Takahashi but your argument holds water, her work pretty much launched the US manga industry into what it is today (in Eurpoe manga was already widely read and translated and her works aren’t nearly as popular as some other manga-ka like Kurumada or Toriyama or especially Go Nagai).

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mygif

“This is the “it wasn’t Jack Kirby who killed off Gwen Stacy” argument.”

It wasn’t Stan Lee, either. Gerry Conway did the story, Gil Kane did the art, and Stan Lee swears that he doesn’t remember even signing off on the idea. (Of course, he also freely admits he’s got a terrible memory…)

And I’d just like to say that I love all the love that’s given to Roy Thomas on both these lists; he’s an absolute champion, with a career spanning decades and covering most of Marvel and DC’s major characters (and he’s the guy who invented the “Hulk smash!” dialogue for the Hulk…) He does not always get the credit he deserves for a legendary career. Glad to see both of you are smart enough to notice what a great job he’s done.

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mygif

Still no Jack Kirby at all on the list, which is a damn crying shame. He influenced Grant Morrison’s work (the sheer number of ideas that come out of his writing is the same as Kirby), Paul Dini, and others. He may not have killed Gwen Stacy (and as John points out above, neither did Lee), but he helped co-create and co-write about 90% of the Marvel Universe. And most definitely had a co-writer hand in the Fantastic Four, the comic that put Marvel on the map. He sure as hell deserves to be on there before Morrison.

Glad to see Gould on this list, though. I’m trying to think if Richard Outcault, who basically invented the panel-by-panel comic strip, should be on the list.

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mygif

To be honest, I wasn’t even thinking about manga at all in the previous list of writers. Mostly because outside of Tezuka, I have no idea which manga writers have influenced others.

And that is the point of this list, the most influential writers over the most “important”-or to be more honest with each other, “my favorites.” As much as I enjoy Kurt Busiek, Dan Slott, and Warren Ellis, I’d be hard pressed to say they’re all that influential, at least not yet. I have the same reaction to Grant Morrison, but I don’t really like most of his comics, so maybe I’m not the best judge of whether or not he could be considered influential.

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mygif

“To be honest, I wasn’t even thinking about manga at all in the previous list of writers. Mostly because outside of Tezuka, I have no idea which manga writers have influenced others”

Outside of Tezuka the most cited influence are usually Go Nagai, Shotaro Ishinomori, Ryoko Ikeda, Leiji Matsumoto, Fujio F. Fujiko and these days most modern manga-ka site Akira Toriyama (One Piece’s Eichiro Oda and BLEACH’s tite Kubo have said Toriyama as an influence, Kubo also cites Saint Seiya creator Masami Kurumada also).

On a separate note… is there ever ONE definitive Archie writer that stands out above the others?

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mygif

Thanks for the nod to Sim. Let the re-revisionism start now.

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mygif

nobody really apes his storytelling style or “does it like in Sandman.”

I think you’re wrong about this. See: Books of Magic (and all the spinoffs), Lucifer, that one comic by JM Straczynski that I can’t remember the title of but that had “Sandman knockoff” written all over it, not to mention all the many, many, many spinoffs from Sandman itself — The House of Secrets, Thessaly, The Dead Boy Detectives, The Dreaming, Sandman Mystery Chronicles et cetera ad nauseam; seriously, there was a time when Sandman spinoffs were basically keeping Vertigo afloat.

And this is without mentioning all the times I’ve picked up some unmemorable indie fantasy comic and put it down again because the writer was clearly trying to be Neil Gaiman and failing.

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mygif

i started to point out that manga and european creators weren’t represented, then i looked at the scope again. mainstream creators. of american comics.

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mygif

Yeah, I took my cue from the A.V. Club article on that. I probably should have made that clear on my list, but then again, I am American, so I naturally assume that when we are talking about something, we are only talking about America. (I am not even positive this “rest of the world” exists; do you have Jon & Kate there, too?)

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mygif

With all due respect: Herge can’t be called an “imitator” of Barks, as his career predates his by a couple of decades.Indeed, Herge deserves a spot here for being the guy that introduced the idea of doing RESEARCH for a comic strip, instead of just making stuff up.

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mygif

Also, it would have made my head hurt too much to have comic *book* writers fight with comic *strip* writers for space. But MGK is made of far sterner stuff than I, and that is why it’s his name at the top of the website.

J.H.: John L. Goldwater created the Archie bunch, and yeah, he should possibly be either on the list or almost on it.

ThatNickGuy: I have tried to defend my lack of Kirby on the other post.

John Seavey: Time was, I didn’t think Roy Thomas did anything but have an alarm clock in his brain that periodicallly rang to say “TIME FOR A GOLDEN AGE REVIVAL!!” But I gained a new respect and genuine appreciation for Roy the Boy after reading this post, so all glories to be Pillock:
http://circumstantial.blogspot.com/2006/02/crisis-on-infinite-roys-part-2.html

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mygif

Instead of Bill Gaines who did very little “writing” I think you need to include Harvey Kurtzman, who deserves credit for MAD.

Harvey was also considered the “Godfather of underground” and hired and influenced a lot of the early underground greats, including Robert Crumb.

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ps238principal said on August 11th, 2009 at 12:19 pm

Neil Gaiman. Neil, Neil, Neil. I’m going to voice what might be an unpopular opinion, but I think Mr. Gaiman’s best days are behind him. His stories have gotten quite repetitive, centering usually around the same thing (the core concept being that our dreams and imaginations shape reality, with the corollary to that idea being that our minds shape the Gods). I loved “The Sandman,” “The Books of Magic,” and “Good Omens,” (though that latter work is made great more from Terry Pratchett’s contributions, I think) but I’ve not heard him say anything new in a long while.

And as Katherine Farmer says above, Gaiman has inspired a lot… of very bad comics. You see this in every comic with brooding angels and random immortals or characters from biblical texts, all made worse because it meshes with the “half demon ninja” tropes from people watching entirely too much anime.

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mygif

mygif
Katherine Farmar said on August 11th, 2009 at 11:28 am edit

nobody really apes his storytelling style or “does it like in Sandman.”

I think you’re wrong about this. See: Books of Magic (and all the spinoffs), Lucifer, that one comic by JM Straczynski that I can’t remember the title of but that had “Sandman knockoff” written all over it, not to mention all the many, many, many spinoffs from Sandman itself — The House of Secrets, Thessaly, The Dead Boy Detectives, The Dreaming, Sandman Mystery Chronicles et cetera ad nauseam; seriously, there was a time when Sandman spinoffs were basically keeping Vertigo afloat.

But that’s not influencing a new work; that’s trying to keep an old one “alive.” Not quite the same thing.

i started to point out that manga and european creators weren’t represented, then i looked at the scope again. mainstream creators. of american comics.

I think the scope for artists – who tend to be more obviously inspired by artist X – is less obvious than the scope for writers. You can trace shitloads of American comics writing back to Tezuka and the other elders of manga; art, though, that’s different unless it’s Joe Mad or similar.

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mygif

On a separate note… is there ever ONE definitive Archie writer that stands out above the others?

There are two:
– Bob Montana, who created the characters, wrote/drew most of the early stories and wrote/drew the newspaper comic strip until his death in 1975. After his death John Goldwater, the publisher, started to claim he had created the character, but this is like me claiming credit for creating the meal I ordered in a restaurant.

– Frank Doyle, who was their head writer from 1951 through the mid-’80s, wrote 10,000 stories, and has influenced nearly all non-superhero comics in a quiet way. (Sorry for repeating myself from the last thread.)

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mygif

(Slaps forhead) Tezuka! Of course!

I didn’t know Kanigher created Poison Ivy, either…wasn’t she created in the 40s? Was Kanigher writing back then?

Yeah, no offense to Justin, but I agree with this list a lot more. :)

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mygif

Poison Ivy dates to the mid-1960s; Kanigher’s career as a writer was in its prime from the late 1940s through the late 1960s.

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mygif

On the other hand, it seems like it’s been more than fifteen years since anybody wrote Batman as anything other than Grant Morrison’s version of Batman most of the time (for good or ill).

With the exception of JL/JLU Batman, is there any animated version of Batman that’s really like Morrison’s?

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mygif

I thought the current super-competent Batman was a result of the brief stint when Starlin was writing. I mean Batman was so badass that the US governemtn came to him to stop the KGBeast… and you couple that with how Giffen & Dematties portrayed him as master strategist then they are just as responsible. Then there is Miller, Year One pretty much showed that even at the early stages, Batman was going to be a FORCE to be reckoned with. Giving Morrison credit for the modern Batman is kind of outlandish.

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mygif

Am kicking myself for not thinking of Tezuka and Schulz. I am ashamed.

And speaking of Tezuka, why no mention of Ode To Kirihito, MW, and Phoenix, easily his best works?

Also, bonus points to Takahashi for all four of her aforementioned hits being the EXACT SAME FUCKING STORY with the only difference being aliens, regular life and magic respectively.

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mygif

Bah. Byrne’s Krypton is an adoption and enshrinement of the colorless and sterile Krypton of the movies. What is a more interesting place and a more tragic loss, the Krypton of John Barry, Richard Donner and John Byrne, or the Krypton of Jerry Siegel, Edmond Hamilton, and Mort Weisinger?

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Tenken347 said on August 11th, 2009 at 3:56 pm

That was really the point of Byrne’s Krypton – that it was a sterile, unpleasant place, and that there was little tragedy in its loss. It was a rejection of Superman’s Kryptonian heritage, and a way of deepening his ties to his adopted home. Which, by the way, is completely separate from Donner’s treatment of the subject. Donner never wants you to forget that Superman comes from somewhere else, and that Jor El is his for-real father. Which is why young Clark spends substantial time being instructed by Jor El’s hologram, and why Pa Kent is killed like 20 minutes into the film.

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mygif

I believe Byrne also came up with “evil capitalist Luthor”, which fits the character so well I was genuinely amazed when I learned he had once been a goofy mad scientist.

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mygif

Seriously, though.
Why Akane Tendo?

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mygif

Schulz counted George Herriman (Krazy Kat), Roy Crane (Wash Tubbs), Elzie C. Segar (Thimble Theater) and Percy Crosby (Skippy).

Do we count them, as well?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Kanigher Has he been counted yet?

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mygif

Before Morrison said that “With time to prepare, Batman can beat anybody.” crap in Wizard, the Caped Crusader was written with some plausible limits and he didn’t spend half his time thinking up ways to kill the rest of the JLA. After that Wizard interview, suddenly Batman knew “the essential elements of over 127 martial arts”, he became this brilliant reverse engineer who is good at practically everything, and his gadgets became completely over the top (he has a glove that makes boom tubes, for crying out loud). He also became obsessed with watching the watchmen… even though he hypocritically acts like a supervillain sometimes just because some people think it’s cool when he tries to kill Superman or builds illegal spy satellites to advance some crappy Geoff Johns story.

Batman spent a few years after that interview doing things like threatening to fire nukes at Darkseid and defeating all sorts of superstrong, superfast superheroes in totally cheesy ways.

At this point, the other superheroes should be trying to get Batman arrested so he isn’t a threat to them any more. And you can blame that on guys like Johns and Mark Waid treating that Morrison quote like it was canon.

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mygif

:( OK, Never mind that last link.

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mygif

A nitpick for Dumas: the involvement of Batman with Brother Eye was actually Greg Rucka’s doing, was it not?

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mygif

Completely missing are the great European cartoonists: Herge, Goscinny/Uderzo, Franquin, Greg, all of which are worth a dozen Roy Thomases or Byrnes.

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mygif

Kanigher also wrote Rex the Wonder Dog….

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mygif

….And Alex Toth drew them. Wrap your mind around that one.

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mygif

I think the scope for artists – who tend to be more obviously inspired by artist X – is less obvious than the scope for writers. You can trace shitloads of American comics writing back to Tezuka and the other elders of manga; art, though, that’s different unless it’s Joe Mad or similar.

a lot of the creators from the middle part of the last century had heavy ties to europe. there’s a famous picture of rene goscinny and harvey kurtzman together in new york from when they were roommates.

consider herge or hugo pratt. yes, the visual stuff is distinctive, but the stories themselves are very powerful.

realistically, i think your best bet is to clarify your scope.

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mygif

also – moebius, lewis trondheim and walt kelly.

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ps238principal said on August 11th, 2009 at 7:54 pm

Where’s Peyo? :)

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mygif

Adolf was terrible! Ok, in an absolute sense, it was mediocre, but c’mon, it’s lesser Tezuka by a long shot before we even get into the justified rape and ought to have been left off the list in favor of Phoenix.

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mygif

once more i state that harvey kurtzman should be on the list, since he came up with something that was influential to numeorus writers. he placed superheros in the real world. he was the first to do tha. it was in a superman parody entitled “superduperman” which alan moore credits as an influence

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a72aqEwjYOg&feature=related

not to mention being the forerunner to the underground and alternative comic scene

and once more i state that jim starlin’s cosmic marvel stories are the basis for all cosmic marvel stories now. its just other writers playing in his sandbox

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mygif

[…] Christopher Bird Barely a day old at the time of this list’s writing, Christopher Bird’s “Far Superior and In No Way Derivative Top 21 Most Influential Comics Writers” list has already inspired at least one T21L. It could be argued that Bird’s list was itself a […]

mygif

@John Hefner:

You’re right. That was Rucka. Sorry.

Devin Grayson wrote something where Batman had contingency plans for taking out pretty much everybody who had ever been in the JLA, including Green Arrow.

When you’re coming up with convoluted “protocols” for defeating Green Arrow, that should be the point where you turn yourself in because you suddenly realized that you’re officially a supervillain now.

Also… How much prep-time should Batman need to defeat Green Arrow? The secret plan should be something like:

Step One: Insult his chili.

Step Two: Kick him in the face.

A lot of bad, bad writing has happened because of stuff Morrison said about Batman. It got to the point where it made it hard for me to understand why anybody would want to read his solo books. You know, the ones where he actually fights bad guys instead of somehow defeating Captain Marvel off-panel. And where he sometimes has a hard time fighting another person who is good at martial arts. After a guy has defeated Darkseid two or three times, David Cain doesn’t seem like much of a threat.

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mygif

About the nigh-unbeatability of Batman: I always say screw line-wide consistency and treat JLA Batman and Solo Batman as two slightly different characters. Either that, or you fanwank that away with “Err, the high-stakes nature of Justice League cases stimulates Batman’s adrenaline and challenges his brain to the point where he’s able to step up his game to defeat gods and monsters,” but I don’t even like to do that much work.

(I have a similar inclination to say that Thor should be written in Avengers with the faux-Shakespearean dialogue because it sets him apart from the rest of the team, but in a solo book where he appears with other gods they should all just talk normally because it gets really stilted if everyone‘s dropping “thee”s and “thou”s.)

Basically, once upon a time there was the argument that Batman wasn’t powerful enough to deserve a spot on the JLA, and in trying to correct that perception, everybody may have gotten a bit carried away.

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mygif

@Justin Zyduck, my argument for JLA!Batman and Gotham!Batman isn’t so much a change in character as it is him avoiding the escalation of war. Batman could whip out any number of tools and stomp any threat in Gotham, but as soon as bad guys know he’s got That Thing, they start building Anti-That Thing tactics: they bring in more guns, hire more metas, etc. Batman stays his course as a means of damage control, not because he lacks the ability.

That’s been my theory ever since The Scifi Closet.

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mygif

That’s an interesting idea. But I’d much rather just see Batman portrayed as never having That Thing in the first place, rather than having far better gear that he refuses to use against actual supervillains for unclear reasons.

When Batman’s gear was only supposed to be a little better than what a government operative might have, he made a lot more sense to me.

Now, I can’t help thinking that Batman deliberately handicaps himself so he can rationalize beating the crap out of people. I don’t like thinking of Batman as a sadist who would rather get his hands dirty instead of inventing a painless stun ray or something.

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mygif

I had never noticed the parallels between Batman and post-S.H.I.E.L.D. Nick Fury before.

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