Nicholas Viscardi (October 20, 1920 – November 3, 2013), known professionally as Nick Cardy and Nick Cardi, was an American comics artist best known for his DC Comics work on Aquaman, the Teen Titans and other major characters. Cardy was inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame in 2005.
Nick Cardy at the 2008 New York Comic Con.
October 20, 1920
New York City, New York
|Died||November 3, 2013 (aged 93)|
|Awards||Inkpot Award, 1998|
Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame, 2005
Nick Cardy was born Nicholas Viscardi on October 20, 1920 in New York City. He began drawing when he was very young, telling one interviewer that some painting he had done for his school were "published in the [New York] Herald-Tribune or one of those early papers. The teachers wanted one on sports. It was a 4 × 8 panel. ... So that was published and quite a bit of the stuff was published. ... " He also provided artwork for the Boys Club of America, and attended the Art Students League of New York, studying life drawing.
As did many early comics professionals, Cardy entered the comics field working for Eisner & Iger, a company founded by Will Eisner and Jerry Iger, that was one of a handful of comic book "packagers" creating comics on demand for publishers testing the waters of the emerging medium. Joining the studio circa 1940, he worked on Fight Comics, Jungle Comics, Kaanga Comics, and Wings for Fiction House Publications. He wrote and drew the four-page backup feature "Lady Luck" in Will Eisner's 16-page, newspaper Sunday-supplement comic book colloquially called "The Spirit Section", from the May 18, 1941 strip through February 22, 1942. Though his Lady Luck stories were credited under the house pseudonym Ford Davis, Viscardi would subtly work in the initials "NV" somewhere into each tale. He used both his birth name and the pen name "Nick Cardy" concurrently for a time, he eventually adopted Nick Cardy for his comic-book work.
Cardy recalled of his start at Eisner & Iger that he worked alongside
... Lou Fine, George Tuska, [and] Charlie Sultan. Bob Powell came in later when I was doing "Lady Luck" [after Eisner had split from Iger to concentrate on 'The Spirit Section']. He was sitting behind me. He would help a kid around the block – tell a newcomer to take it easy and that sort of thing. When I worked on 'Lady Luck', Will Eisner had rented an apartment at [the Manhattan complex] Tudor City. ... He had one room where he worked, and the other room took up all the rest of the paraphernalia. I sat next to Will's door, Bob Powell sat next to me; Tex Blaisdell used to come in, and Chuck Cuidera (who was doing Blackhawk) was there. ... It was a learning experience. Watching Lou Fine work – his work was like a fine painting; it took a long time to do it but it was a brilliant piece of work. In my opinion, for drawing, you couldn't beat Lou Fine; he was terrific. I think Will Eisner had a coarser line but his work was more dramatic and he told a better story.
Cardy did World War II military service from 1943 to 1945, earning two Purple Hearts for wounds suffered as a tank driver in the armored cavalry. He began his Army career with the 66th Infantry Division, during which time he won a competition to design its patch, creating its snarling black panther logo. His art talent led to his being assigned an office job at division headquarters. This lasted, Cardy recalled in an interview, because a general who had seen Cardy's cartoons in an Officers Club had Cardy assigned to his own corps. As the artist tells it, the only opening was for a corporal in the motor pool, so Private Cardy was promoted and assigned to that duty. This, he said, led in turn, upon his being shipped to the European theater, to Cardy's assignment as an assistant tank driver for the Third Armored Division, under General Courtney Hodges. Later, between the end of the war and his discharge, Cardy said he worked for the Army's Information and Education office in France. Cardy documented his time in the military in a series of intricate sketches and watercolors.
Back in civilian life, Cardy begin doing advertising art as well as covers for crossword puzzle magazines and other periodicals. In 1950, he began drawing the black-and-white daily Tarzan comic strip of writer-artist Burne Hogarth. From 1952 to 1953, Cardy assisted Warren Tufts on Tufts' comic strip Casey Ruggles.
In 1950, Cardy began his decades-long association with DC Comics, starting with the comic book Gang Busters, based on the dramatic radio show. He began developing his breakout reputation with Tomahawk, his most prominent series at the time, which starred a white American colonist fighting the British undercover as an Iroquois Indian during the American Revolutionary War.
From 1962–1968, he drew the first 39 issues of Aquaman, whose character had previously starred in a backup feature in Adventure Comics, and all its covers through the final issue (#56, April 1971). He recalled that, "Ramona Fradon had been drawing the character but was moving on for some reason. I remember being in [editor] Murray's [Boltinoff] office with Ramona during the transition. ... Anyway, they must have liked my work because when the character got his own series, they made me the artist". Among the Aquaman stories which Cardy drew were issue #18 which featured the wedding of Aquaman and Mera and #23 which saw the birth of the couple's son. Aquagirl was introduced in issue #33 (June 1967) by Cardy and writer Bob Haney.
Cardy first drew the Teen Titans in The Brave and the Bold #60 (July 1965), wherein the superhero sidekicks Robin, Kid Flash, and Aqualad were joined by Wonder Woman's younger sister Wonder Girl in her first appearance. After next being featured in Showcase #59 (Dec. 1965), the team was spun off into their own series with Teen Titans #1 (Feb. 1966). From 1966–73, Cardy penciled or inked – sometimes both – all 43 issues of the series. Neal Adams was called upon to rewrite and redraw a Cardy-drawn Teen Titans story which had been written by Len Wein and Marv Wolfman. The story, titled "Titans Fit the Battle of Jericho!", would have introduced DC's first African American superhero but was rejected by publisher Carmine Infantino. The revised story appeared in Teen Titans #20 (March–April 1969). New members of the team, psychic Lilith Clay and Mal Duncan, were created by Cardy and writer Robert Kanigher. In 1968–69, Cardy drew the fondly remembered but short-lived, quirky Western series Bat Lash, about an expert gunslinger who was nonetheless a dandy, and who, in a nod to the 1960s counterculture, wore a flower in his hat. Cardy during this time also assisted artist Al Plastino, a childhood friend, on the Batman comic strip.
Cardy became the primary DC cover artist from the early to mid-1970s.
A popular but apocryphal anecdote, told by DC editor Julius Schwartz, concerned Cardy being fired by DC editorial director Carmine Infantino for not following a cover layout, only to be rehired moments later when Schwartz praised the errant cover art. Cardy said in 2005,
[A]t one of the conventions ... I said, 'You know, Carmine, Julie Schwartz wrote something in [his autobiography] that I don't remember at all and it doesn't sound like you at all'. And I told him the incident ... and he said, 'That's crazy. You know I always loved your work. Gee, you were one of the best artists in the business. The guy's crazy'. So I said, 'Okay, come on'. We went over to Julie Schwartz's table and we told him what our problem was. And Carmine and I said, 'We don't remember the incident'. So Julie said, 'Well, it's a good story, anyway'. [laughs] And that was it. He let it go at that. [laughs] He just made it up."
Cardy left the comics industry in the mid-1970s for the more lucrative field of commercial art. There, under the name Nick Cardi, he did magazine art and ad illustrations, including movie advertising art (though not necessarily the "one-sheet" posters) for films including The Street Fighter (1974), The Night They Robbed Big Bertha's (1975), Neil Simon's California Suite (1978), Stanley Donen's Movie Movie (1978), Martin Ritt's Casey's Shadow (1978), and Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now (1979).
In 1996, Cardy was one of the many creators who contributed to the Superman: The Wedding Album one-shot wherein the title character married Lois Lane. Other late-career comics work included a one-page illustration for Wonder Woman vol. 2 #120 (April 1997), the cover of Silver Age: Teen Titans #1 (July 2000), two pages for Titans #25 (March 2001), and the cover of Teen Titans Lost Annual #1 (March 2008).
Following his World War II discharge from the U.S. Army, Cardy met and married Ruth Houghby. In 1955 they had a son, Peter, who died in 2001. The couple remained married through 1969. Cardy died of congestive heart failure in Florida on November 3, 2013.
Viscardi also earned two Purple Hearts for wounds suffered as a tank driver while serving with the 3rd Armored Division in WWII. He also designed the patch for the 66th Infantry Division after winning a competition.
The hero need convincing by his best pal, Aqualad, in the prose of writer Jack Miller enhanced by the artistic genius of Nick Cardy.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
| Aquaman artist
| Teen Titans artist
]Ant (DC Comics)
The Ant is a fictional superhero published by DC Comics. He started out as an opponent of the Teen Titans but ended up as their ally. The Ant first appeared in Teen Titans (vol. 1) #5 (September 1966), and was created by Bob Haney and Nick Cardy.Awesome Threesome
The Awesome Threesome is the name of a DC Comics supervillain group.Bat Lash
Bartholomew "Bat" Aloysius Lash is a fictional Western character in the DC Universe. A self-professed pacifist, self-professed ladies' man, and gambler, Bat Lash's adventures have been published by DC Comics since 1968.Black Manta
Black Manta (David Hyde) is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by Bob Haney and Nick Cardy, the character was introduced in Aquaman #35 (September 1967) as a ruthless and murderous underwater-based mercenary, and has since endured as the archenemy of the superhero Aquaman.The character has been substantially adapted from the comics into various forms of media, including several cartoon television series, animated movies, and video games. Black Manta made his live-action cinematic debut in the 2018 DC Extended Universe film Aquaman, portrayed by actor Yahya Abdul-Mateen II.Bob Haney
Robert G. Haney (March 15, 1926 – November 25, 2004) was an American comic book writer, best known for his work for DC Comics. He co-created the Teen Titans as well as characters such as Metamorpho, Eclipso, Cain, and the Super-Sons.Fisherman (comics)
The Fisherman is a name used by a number of different comic book supervillains in DC Comics.Ghosts (comics)
Ghosts is a horror comics anthology series published by DC Comics for 112 issues from September–October 1971 to May 1982. Its tagline was "True Tales of the Weird and Supernatural" (December 1978), changed to "New Tales of the Weird and Supernatural," as of #75 (April 1979), and dropped after #104 (September 1981).Girls' Romances
Girls' Romances was a romance comic anthology published by DC Comics in the United States. Debuting with a Feb.,/Mar. 1950 cover-date, it ran for 160 issues, ending with the Oct. 1971 issue. (The final issue came out on October 3, 1971 and sold for $0.25.)Mike Sekowsky was a regular artist on the book from 1952 to the end of its run. Other artists on the title included Gene Colan, Lee Elias, Gil Kane, Win Mortimer, Bob Oksner, John Romita, Sr., John Rosenberger, Art Saaf, Jack Sparling, Alex Toth, and George Tuska. Nick Cardy drew many covers.
Pop artist Roy Lichtenstein based many of his works on panels from Girls' Romances, including In the Car (sometimes called Driving) (1963), We Rose Up Slowly (1964), and Sleeping Girl (1964).J. David Spurlock
Jess David Spurlock (born November 18, 1959) is an author, illustrator, editor, and artist's-rights advocate best known as the founder of Vanguard Productions, a publisher of art books, graphic novels, and prints.Lady Luck (comics)
Lady Luck is a fictional, American comic-strip and comic book crime fighter and adventuress created and designed in 1940 by Will Eisner with artist Chuck Mazoujian. Through 1946, she starred in a namesake, four-page weekly feature published in a Sunday-newspaper comic-book insert colloquially called "The Spirit Section". The feature, which ran through November 3, 1946, with one months-long interruption, was reprinted in comic books published by Quality Comics. A revamped version of the character debuted in 2013 in DC Comics's Phantom Stranger comic.List of comic book supervillain debuts
The following is a list of first appearances of fictional supervillains and teams in American comic books.
For a list of comic book superhero debuts, see List of superhero debuts.Mera (comics)
Mera () is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Created by Jack Miller and Nick Cardy, the character first appeared in Aquaman #11 (September 1963) as a queen of the sea.
Originally portrayed as a supporting character to her husband, the superhero Aquaman, modern writers have traditionally emphasised Mera's own superhuman physical strength and magical power to control water, portraying her as a powerful superhero in her own right. In recent years, Mera has even featured as a member of DC Comics' flagship superhero team, the Justice League. Mera's storylines have also portrayed mental breakdown faced with crippling loss and explored her attempts at coping with lasting anger and rage.
In the feature films of the DC Extended Universe, actress Amber Heard portrayed Mera in Justice League, and reprised the role in Aquaman.Ocean Master
Ocean Master (Orm Marius) is a fictional supervillain and in some cases an Antihero appearing in comic books published by DC Comics. Created by Bob Haney and Nick Cardy, the character first appeared in Aquaman #29 (September 1966). He is an enemy of his half-brother Arthur Curry, otherwise known as Aquaman, and is commonly depicted as an adversary of the Justice League, the superhero team that his brother is a founding member of.
The character has been substantially adapted from the comics into various forms of media, including the Justice League cartoon television series, the animated movie Justice League: Throne of Atlantis, and several DC-related video games. Orm made his live-action debut in the 2018 DC Extended Universe film Aquaman, portrayed by actor Patrick Wilson.Renée Witterstaetter
Renée Witterstaetter, sometimes credited as Eva Renee Witterstaetter, is an American comic book colorist, editor, producer, and writer. She has worked on comics such as the Avengers, Spider-Man, She-Hulk, and Superman. She is best known for her work as an editor with John Byrne on the Marvel Comics series The Sensational She-Hulk. Witterstaetter was also featured as a fourth wall breaking character in the same series.Scavenger (comics)
The Scavenger is the name of two DC Comics supervillains with no known connections with each other. The first Scavenger was Peter Mortimer, an Aquaman villain who debuted in Aquaman vol. 1 #37 (January 1968), and was created by Bob Haney and Nick Cardy. He is re-introduced in the New 52 series Aquaman by writer Geoff Johns and artist Paul Pelletier.The second Scavenger first appeared in Superboy #2 (March 1994), and was created by Karl Kesel and Tom Grummett.Teen Titans
The Teen Titans, also known as the New Teen Titans or simply the Titans, are a fictional superhero team appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics, often in an eponymous monthly series. As the group's name suggests, its members are teenage superheroes, many of whom have acted as sidekicks to DC's premiere superheroes in the Justice League. First appearing in 1964 in The Brave and the Bold #54, the team was founded by Kid Flash (Wally West), Robin (Dick Grayson), and Aqualad (Garth), with the team adopting the name Teen Titans in issue 60 following the addition of Wonder Girl (Donna Troy) to its ranks.Over the decades, DC has cancelled and relaunched Teen Titans many times, and a variety of characters have been featured heroes in its pages. Significant early additions to the initial quartet of Titans were Green Arrow's sidekick, Speedy (Roy Harper), Aquagirl, Bumblebee, Hawk and Dove, and three heroes who did not wear costumes: boxer Mal Duncan, psychic Lilith, and caveman Gnarrk. The series became a genuine hit for the first time however during its 1980s revival as The New Teen Titans under writer Marv Wolfman and artist George Pérez. This run depicted the original Titans now as young adults and introduced new characters Cyborg, Starfire and Raven, as well as the former Doom Patrol member Beast Boy (then known as Changeling), who would all become enduring fan-favorites. A high point for the series both critically and commercially was its famous "The Judas Contract" storyline, in which the team is betrayed by its member Terra to its archenemy Deathstroke.
Stories in the 2000s introduced a radically different Teen Titans team made up of newer DC Comics sidekicks such as the new Robin (Tim Drake), Wonder Girl (Cassie Sandsmark), and Kid Flash (Bart Allen), as well as Superboy (Kon-El), some of whom had previously featured in the similar title Young Justice. Later prominent additions from this era included Miss Martian, Ravager (Rose Wilson), Supergirl (Kara Zor-El), and Blue Beetle (Jaime Reyes). Concurrently, DC also published Titans, which featured some of the original and 1980s members now as adults, led by Dick Grayson in his adult persona of Nightwing. Later, a new run following DC's The New 52 reboot in 2011 introduced new characters to the founding roster, including Solstice, Bunker (Miguel Jose Barragan) and Skitter (Celine Patterson), although this new volume proved commercially and critically disappointing for DC. In 2016, DC used the Titans Hunt and DC Rebirth storylines to re-establish the group's original founding members and history, reuniting these classic heroes as the Titans, while introducing a new generation of Teen Titans led by new Robin (Damian Wayne) featuring the new Aqualad (Jackson Hyde) and Kid Flash (Wally West II).
The Teen Titans have been adapted to other media numerous times, and have enjoyed a higher profile since Cartoon Network's light-hearted Teen Titans animated television series in the early-mid 2000s, as well as its DC Nation spin-off Teen Titans Go!. A live-action Teen Titans series was in development for the network TNT before moving production to DC's in-house web television service DC Universe. Its characters and stories were also adapted into the 2010s animated series Young Justice. Within DC Comics, the Teen Titans have been an influential group of characters taking prominent roles in all of the publisher's major company-wide crossover stories. Many villains who face the Titans have since taken on a larger role within the publisher's fictional universe, such as Deathstroke, the demon Trigon, and the evil organization H.I.V.E.The Superman Family
The Superman Family was an American comic book series published by DC Comics from 1974 to 1982 featuring supporting characters in the Superman comics. The term "Superman Family" is often used to refer to the extended cast of characters of comics books associated with Superman. A similarly titled series Superman Family Adventures was launched in 2012.The Unexpected
The Unexpected was a fantasy-horror comics anthology series, a continuation of Tales of the Unexpected, published by DC Comics. It ran 118 issues, from #105 (February–March 1968) to #222 (May 1982). It is not to be confused with The Unexpected published by DC Comics in 2018.The Witching Hour (DC Comics)
The Witching Hour was an American comic book horror anthology published by DC Comics from 1969 to 1978.