Saturday, 24 October 2015

Murphy Anderson

Well, we just lost the mighty Murphy Anderson as well. It's like Stan once said: 'If you wanna interview the guys who started it all, you'd better be quick!' and that's sadly true.
Nobody here needs me to tell 'em how great Murphy Anderson was, how his inks had a pristine sheen unequalled by anyone in the business, or how his and Curt Swan's Superman is the gold standard all other creative teams are judged by:

But I will anyway. How great was Murphy Anderson? He was so great that, when I was a little kid, I had no idea who he and Curt Swan were. What I did know was that, in some issues, Superman looked better than he did in others. I was the same with Nick Cardy and lots of people were the same with Carl Barks. Suddenly, our characters looked much more interesting visually, and that's not a conscious thought, but as a little kid you're responding to something that just grabs you. That's a truly great artist.

I'm tempted, of course, to post some classic Swanderson Supes by way of tribute, just like everybody else, but I've put up some before, and I've got lots I wanna post again, so howabout one of Murphy's favourites? Mike Kaluta tells a story about how he got to do Carson Of Venus for DC back in the Bronze Age: Apparently, editor Joe Orlando mentioned to Mike that DC was then in the process of getting the rights to all of Edgar Rice Burroughs' characters and asked Mike, hot off The Shadow, which one he'd like to do.
Kaluta, natch, jumped at the chance to draw John Carter, only to be told: 'No, no. Murphy Anderson has wanted to do that since he was a kid.'
So here's Murphy and that gentleman from Virginia, with all the episodes they got to do ( along with a second issue insert from Gray Morrow, but I can't see anyone minding that too much )


  1. Lovely tribute to one of the last true comic book legends - like most folk I was a massive fan as a kid of the Swan / Anderson Superman comics - loved his Hawkman, Atom and Adam Strange work as well - I hadn't seen this strip before very nice indeed.

  2. I loved his John Carter and remember being so disappointed when I got Weird Worlds #4 and he wasn't the artist. You could really tell that it was a labor of love for him.

  3. I like all he other adaptations, but I think this is my favourite, just because it feels appropriately pulpy, like it could've run alongside Raymond's Flash Gordon.