Robot 6

The ‘Tuskas of the world did their work with little to no clout, power or say-so’

Spurred by the death last week of longtime Iron Man artist George Tuska, Mark Evanier considers how the comics industry was different for creators of his generation:

Spotlight Comics #1

Spotlight Comics #1

One of the many ways it was different — and I’m going to leave Kirby aside here because he was always in his own special category — is that the George Tuskas of the world did their work with little to no clout, power or say-so in what they created or what happened to it.

If work was available at Timely Comics and nowhere else, they worked for Timely Comics. If the available work was on romance comics, they drew romance comics. If the editor wanted them to pencil, they pencilled. If the editor wanted them to ink, they inked. If the editor wanted them to pencil and for the work to be inked by someone really bad…well, it was inked by someone really bad. A competent artist today has a lot more ability to say, “Gee, I don’t want to draw that strip” or “I don’t feel I can work with that writer.”

It’s a good, thoughtful piece, and a nice companion to Evanier’s obituary for the 93-year-old artist.

Tom Spurgeon, Paul Kupperberg, Evan Dorkin, Johnny Bacardi and 20th Century Danny Boy also have solid obituaries and appreciations.

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