Friday, August 6, 2010

Famous First Fridays: Jerry Bingham's Debut

What's happening, Groove-ophiles! Today's Famous First post focuses on the dazzling debut of Jerry Bingham. A lot of ya may not remember Bingham since he left comics in the 1990s and turned his artistic focus on animation, film, paperback covers, advertising, etc. He is still working away today, and you really should bop on over to his website (after ya read this post, natch) and check out his pulse-pounding paintings. The dude is awesome! In the comics world during the late '70s through the '90s, Jerry was quite prolific. You could find his art at just about every publisher during that time. He drew everything from Marvel-Two-In-One to Marvel Team-Up, to Black Panther, Iron Man, Warp, V, Warlord, Beowulf, to his masterpiece, Batman: Son of the Demon. Yep, with co-creator Mike W. Barr, t'was Bingham's powerful art that picked up the story of Batman's marriage (read more about that here) and gave us the birth of Damian Wayne, today's Robin.

But we're here to see how it all began, aren't we, Groove-ophiles? Well, the story goes that Dan Adkins, former Wally Wood assistant and comicbook talent scout par excellence, helped young Bingham land this first gig in which he illustrates a moving and melancholy masterpiece featuring Green Arrow and his former side-kick Speedy. Gerry Conway's tale is a good one, building on the legendary and ground-breaking Denny O'Neil/Neal Adams "Speedy's On Drugs" storyline from Green Lantern/Green Arrow #s 85-86 (May-July 1971). Bingham, ably inked by the mega-talented Bob Layton, hit the ground running. Like many of his contemporaries, he was obviously inspired by Neal Adams, but his own style was developing page by page. His storytelling chops are quite strong which makes it hard to believe we're looking at a new artist's debut--but we are! Kick back and pull out the Kleenex, Groove-ophiles! From World's Finest #251 (March 1978) here comes "No Home For the Hero"!

1 comment:

  1. Jerry is one of my Facebook friends and he is quite the cool guy....not snobby in any way at all. One in a while he'll even post a reply to a comment on my wall. What's cooler than that?



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