Today would have been Gene Colan’s 87th birthday.  In celebration, I’m posting some of my all-time favorite Gene Colan images.  

I’m soooo thrilled with this commission Gene did for me. It proudly hangs on my wall and will likely go to my grave with me.
Gene did a memorable run on Batman and Detective comics in the 1980’s, but I don’t think anything he did in those books can hold a candle to this stunning commission he did 20 years later in 2002.
Another character Gene will always be associated with…Dracula! Gene used Jack Palance as a reference when he created his take on the character. That influence is clearly seen here.
Another great example of Gene’s Dracula, again with the Jack Palance drac.
Gene may not have been known as a “cover” guy, his strength was in story telling, but he put out more than a few gems in his career. Case in point: Iron Man #1. One of the most famous covers in Marvel history. This beauty was even commemorated on a US postage stamp!
Another stunning cover by Gene. This was only three issues into his legendary run on the Daredevil title. You think he wanted to announce his arrival?
Gene’s talents were not limited to men in tights either. Check out these beauties…I contend NO ONE working in comics history has ever drawn better children. Gene some how captured childhood innocence like no one else.
Happy Birthday Gene…your boundless talent has guaranteed your immortality.

 

Send me your favorite Gene Colan images and I’ll gladly add them to this tribute page!

 

A gorgeous commission submitted by Alex Johnson from his collection.

 

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  1. Mike Pascale
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4 Comments

  1. Beautiful sentiments and even more beautiful examples, Craig!!

    Thanks a lot for remembering and posting these.

    I came across some Gene mags at a sale this week and was tickled pink. One had an interview with him from 1988, and he had said that he had chosen Palance as a model *before* the actor was cast as Dracula in the video film! Gene saw him the year earlier in The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

    Gene will always be immortal! Not just thru his work and the Internet, but in all the artists, writers, filmmakers and fans whom he influenced.

  2. Yes, I should have mentioned that. Gene “cast” Jack in the role of Dracula a full two years before he actually played the part in a made for TV movie! Makes you wonder if the filmmakers were influenced by Tomb of Dracula, or if they just had the same taste as Gene.

  3. Gene was a master of light and shadow, but more than that…he was a master of emotion, expression and vitality! His characters surged off the paper with boundless feats of incredible strength and energy…and wide-eyed, impressionable young kids like me could never, ever, get enough! We loved your work and the glimpse behind the veil of humanity you pulled back so gently for us to take a peek…but in the end, Gene, we loved the heart and soul you poured into everything you drew. Your work is a testiment to your life and the enduring legacy we’ll cherish forever! Happy Birthday my friend…ripose in pace.

  4. More than Frank Miller or anyone since, Gene is Daredevil to me. From the “Mike Murdock” era to the run he did with Gerry Conway & Tom Palmer, they remain my favorites of his work, even more than Howard or Dracula. Gene will live on forever in the memories of his fans.

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