Murphy C. Anderson, Jr. (July 9, 1926 – October 22, 2015) was an American comics artist, known as one of the premier inkers of his era, who worked for companies such as DC Comics for over fifty years, starting in the Golden Age of Comic Books in the 1940s. He worked on such characters as Hawkman, Batgirl, Zatanna, the Spectre, and Superman, as well as on the Buck Rogers daily syndicated newspaper comic strip. Anderson also contributed for many years to PS, the preventive maintenance comics magazine of the U.S. Army.
Anderson in the 2010s.
|Born||July 9, 1926|
Asheville, North Carolina
|Died|| October 22, 2015 (aged 89) |
Somerset, New Jersey
|Awards||Alley Award 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965|
Inkpot Award, 1984
Jack Kirby Hall of Fame, 1988
Inkwell Awards Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame (2013)
Murphy Anderson was born on July 9, 1926, in Asheville, North Carolina, and while in grade school moved with his family to Greensboro, North Carolina. After graduating high school in 1943, he briefly attended the University of North Carolina before moving to New York City seeking work in the comics industry, and was hired by Jack Byrne as a staff artist at the comic-book publisher Fiction House. His first confirmed credit is the two-and-two-thirds-page nonfiction aviation featurette "Jet Propulsion" in Wings Comics #48 (cover-dated Aug. 1944), and his first fiction feature was an eight-page "Suicide Smith and the Air Commanders" story in Wings Comics #50 (Oct. 1944). By the following month he was the regular artist on the Planet Comics features "Life on Other Worlds" and "Star Pirate". Anderson continued doing comics work, as well as illustrations for science-fiction pulp magazines, during his stateside postings while serving in the United States Navy from 1944 to 1945.
From 1947 to 1949, Anderson was the artist on the Buck Rogers comic-book series. During the 1950s, Anderson worked for several publishers including Pines Comics, St. John Publications, Ziff Davis, DC Comics, and Atlas Comics, that decade's predecessor of Marvel Comics.
Anderson succeeded artist and co-creator Carmine Infantino on the superhero feature "Captain Comet" beginning with the story "The Girl from the Diamond Planet" in Strange Adventures #12 (cover-dated Sept. 1951). Years later, Anderson and writer John Broome created the feature "Atomic Knights" in Strange Adventures #117 (June 1960), which Anderson later described as his favorite assignment. Anderson and writer Gardner Fox launched the Hawkman series in May 1964 and introduced the Zatanna character in issue #4 (Nov. 1964). Comics historian Les Daniels noted that "Hawkman really took off when artist Murphy Anderson took over...Anderson came into his own with his elegantly ornamental version of the Winged Wonder." The Spectre was revived by Fox and Anderson in Showcase #60 (Feb. 1966) and was given his own series in December 1967. In the 1960s Anderson proposed that comics pages be drawn at 10x15 inches rather than the prevailing standard of 12x18 inches, which allowed two pages to be photographed at the same time, and this subsequently became the industry standard.
Anderson designed the costume of Adam Strange. With his frequent collaborator, penciler Curt Swan, the pair's artwork on Superman and Action Comics in the 1970s came to be called "Swanderson" by fans. He often hid his initials somewhere within the stories he inked. In the early 1970s, DC assigned Anderson, among other artists, to redraw the heads of Jack Kirby's renditions of Superman and Jimmy Olsen, fearing Kirby's versions were too different from the established images of the characters. In 1972, he drew Wonder Woman for the cover of the first issue of Ms. Magazine. In 1973, he established Murphy Anderson Visual Concepts, which provided color separations and lettering for comic books.
Anderson and his wife of 67 years, Helen, had two daughters, Sophie and Mary, and a son, Murphy III. Anderson died in Somerset, New Jersey on October 22, 2015, at the age of 89, of heart failure.
Anderson's accolades include the 1962 Alley Award for "Best Inker"; a 1963 Alley for "Artist Preferred on Justice League of America"; 1964 Alleys for "Best Inking Artist" and for "Best Comic Book Cover" (Detective Comics #329, with penciler Carmine Infantino); 1965 Alleys for, again, "Best Inking Artist" and "Best Comic Book Cover" (The Brave and the Bold #61), as well as for "Best Novel" (an untitled story in Showcase #55, with writer Gardner Fox).
Anderson received an Inkpot Award in 1984 and was inducted into the Jack Kirby Hall of Fame in 1998 the Will Eisner Hall of Fame in 1999, and the Inkwell Awards Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame in 2013.
Comics work as full artist (pencils and inks, except where noted) includes:
'The Rise of the Atomic Knights', ushered in by scribe John Broome and illustrator Murphy Anderson, transported fans to a post-World War III Earth ravaged by atomic radiation.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
The Atomic Knights were developed by John Broome and artist Murphy Anderson, both of whom considered it their favorite assignment.
The term 'Swanderson' aptly described the seamless melding of Curt's pencils with Murphy Anderson's inks.
Jack [Kirby] drew Superman and Jimmy Olsen his way, and Murphy Anderson did the adjustments. Sometimes, Anderson would re-pencil and then [Vince] Colletta would ink the entire page. More often, Colletta would ink the pages and leave the Olsen and Superman drawings for Anderson to finish.
| Hawkman artist
| Superboy inker
| Action Comics inker
| Superman inker
| Action Comics Weekly inker
Notable events of 1996 in comics. See also list of years in comics.2015 in comics
Notable events of 2015 in comics. See also List of years in comics.
This is a list of comics-related events in 2015. It includes any relevant comics-related events, deaths of notable comics-related people, conventions and first issues by title. For an overview of the year in Japanese comics, see 2015 in manga.Adam Strange
Adam Strange is a science fiction superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by editor Julius Schwartz with a costume designed by Murphy Anderson, he first appeared in Showcase #17 (November 1958).
Adam Strange makes his live action debut in the television series Krypton, portrayed by Shaun Sipos.Alley Award
The Alley Award was an American series of comic book fan awards, first presented in 1962 for comics published in 1961. Officially organized under the aegis of the Academy of Comic Book Arts and Sciences, the award shared close ties with the fanzine Alter Ego magazine. The Alley is the first known comic book fan award.The Alley Awards were tallied yearly for comic books produced during the previous year. The Alley statuette was initially sculpted by Academy member Ron Foss out of redwood, from which "plaster duplications" were made to be handed out to the various winners.Amazo
Amazo () is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character first appeared in The Brave and the Bold #30 (June 1960) and was created by Gardner Fox and Mike Sekowsky. Debuting in the Silver Age of Comic Books, the character has appeared in comic books and other DC Comics-related products, including animated television series, trading cards and video games.Atomic Knight
Atomic Knight is a DC Comics superhero and was briefly a member of the Outsiders team. He is sometimes depicted as one of a group of Atomic Knights, which first appeared in Strange Adventures #117 (June 1960) and ran quarterly in that monthly comic up through #160 (January 1964).Columbia Features
Columbia Features was a syndication service that operated from 1953 to 1994. Originally located in New York City, The syndicate specialized in comic strips based on licensed characters such as Smokey the Bear, Bat Masterson, and Nero Wolfe.
Notable Columbia Features comic strip creators included Murphy Anderson, Otto Binder, Henry Boltinoff, Jerry Grandenetti, France Herron, Fran Matera, Mike Roy, and Don Sherwood. Irene Corbally Kuhn, a pioneering female journalist, was a columnist for Columbia Features in the 1970s.DC Cosmic Cards
DC Cosmic Cards is a card set made by Impel/SkyBox in 1992. In a format similar to the earlier Marvel Universe Cards, the set featured biographies of DC characters from the Silver Age, teams, crossovers and events.
Artists for this series included Murphy Anderson, M. D. Bright, Paris Cullins, Dick Giordano, Carmine Infantino, Gil Kane, Joe Kubert, Steve Leialoha, Shawn McManus, Martin Nodell, Jerry Ordway, Joe Orlando, Howard Post, P. Craig Russell, Tom Sutton and Trevor Von Eeden.Holograms for the series were drawn by Walt Simonson.Faceless Hunters
The Faceless Hunters are an alien race in the DC Comics universe that first appeared in Strange Adventures #124, (January 1961). They were created by Gardner Fox and Mike Sekowsky. The Faceless Hunters hail from Klaramar, the word Klar-a-mar breaks down into "clear of imperfection". Klar is the German language term for "clear", and "mar" can mean either blemish or imperfection.Inker
The inker (sometimes credited as the finisher or embellisher) is one of the two line artists in traditional comic book production.
The penciller creates a drawing, the inker outlines, interprets, finalizes, retraces this drawing by using a pencil, pen or a brush. Inking was necessary in the traditional printing process as presses could not reproduce pencilled drawings. "Inking" of text is usually handled by another specialist, the letterer,
the application of colors by the colorist.As the last hand in the production chain before the colorist, the inker has the final word on the look of the page, and can help control a story's mood, pace, and readability. A good inker can salvage shaky pencils, while a bad one can obliterate great draftsmanship and/or muddy good storytelling.Lion-Mane
Lion-Mane is the name of 4 characters in DC Comics.Mystery in Space
Mystery in Space is the name of two science fiction American comic book series published by DC Comics, and of a standalone Vertigo anthology released in 2012. The first series ran for 110 issues from 1951 to 1966, with a further seven issues continuing the numbering during a 1980s revival of the title. An eight-issue limited series began in 2006.
Together with Strange Adventures, Mystery In Space was one of DC Comics' major science fiction anthology series. It won a number of awards, including the 1962 Alley Award for "Best Book-Length Story" and the 1963 Alley Award for "Comic Displaying Best Interior Color Work". The title featured short science fiction stories and a number of continuing series, most written by many of the best-known comics and science fiction writers of the day, including John Broome, Gardner Fox, Jack Schiff, Otto Binder, and Edmond Hamilton. The artwork featured a considerable number of the 1950s and 1960s finest comics artists such as Carmine Infantino, Murphy Anderson, Gil Kane, Alex Toth, Bernard Sachs, Frank Frazetta, and Virgil Finlay.Psycho-Pirate
The Psycho-Pirate is the name of two DC Comics supervillains, dating back to the Golden Age of Comics.
Bob Frazer portrayed the character for his live-action debut during The CW's 2018 Arrowverse crossover Elseworlds.Sardath
Sardath is a science fiction character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by editor Julius Schwartz and Murphy Anderson, he first appeared in Showcase #17 (November 1958).Showcase (comics)
Showcase is a comic anthology series published by DC Comics. The general theme of the series was to feature new and minor characters as a way to gauge reader interest in them, without the difficulty and risk of featuring untested characters in their own ongoing titles. Showcase is regarded as the most successful of such tryout series, having been published continuously for well over a decade, launching numerous popular titles, and maintaining a considerable readership of its own. The series ran from March–April 1956 to September 1970, suspending publication with issue #93, and then was revived for eleven issues from August 1977 to September 1978.Shrike (comics)
Shrike is the name of multiple fictional characters appearing in publications from DC Comics.Treasure Chest (comics)
Treasure Chest (full name for most of its run: Treasure Chest of Fun & Fact) was a Catholic-oriented comic book series created by Dayton, Ohio publisher George A. Pflaum and distributed in parochial schools from 1946 to 1972.
Its inspirational stories of sports and folk heroes, saints, school kids, Catholic living, history, science and similar topics were drawn by artists that included such prominent figures as EC's Reed Crandall, Graham Ingels and Joe Orlando, Marvel Comics' Joe Sinnott, and DC Comics' Murphy Anderson and Jim Mooney. Other features included literary adaptations and such typical comics fare as funny animal humor strips.TwoMorrows Publishing
TwoMorrows Publishing is a publisher of magazines about comic books, founded in 1994 by John and Pam Morrow out of their small advertising agency in Raleigh, North Carolina. Its products also include books and DVDs.Zatanna
Zatanna Zatara () is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. The character was created by Gardner Fox and Murphy Anderson, and first appeared in Hawkman #4 (November 1964).
Zatanna is both a stage magician and an actual magician, like her father Giovanni "John" Zatara. As such she has many of her father's powers relating to magic, typically controlled by speaking the words of her incantations spelled backwards.
She is known for her involvement with the Justice League, her retconned childhood association with Batman, and her crossing of the Vertigo line with characters such as romantic partner John Constantine.