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CREATOR PROFILE: John Byrne

Banes at 12:00AM, April 28, 2016
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JOHN BYRNE

When I first became seriously interested in comics, John Byrne was at the top of my favorite artist list. He drew many of the classic “new” X-Men books, and was the artist on that series when it first became massively popular. The stories Byrne drew (and co-plotted along with writer Chris Claremont) are the ones that are being adapted to the movies these days.

His work on X-Men was amazing (or uncanny), with bold lines, great storytelling clarity, and charming facial expressions. He created the Canadian team called Alpha Flight, who first appeared in the X-Men and later moved over to their own series.



I followed that book not because they were Canadian like me, but because John Byrne's art was so captivating. Alpha Flight's first twenty or so issues are still some of my favorite comics ever.

I was thrilled when Byrne moved over to the Hulk, my favorite character (though I didn't really like what he did with the character, and his run only lasted four or five issues), but maybe it was just a stepping stone to my other favorite Byrne work (along with Alpha Flight): The Sensational She-Hulk.



John Byrne turned the Hulk's cousin into a sassy, funny character (and series). Shulkie also gained the power of knowing she was in a comic book. That made for some really fun, unique moments (I'm pretty sure this iteration of She Hulk predated Deadpool, the other fourth-wall destroyer.

Of course, Byrne did other stuff. A legendary run on Fantastic Four, and Wonder Woman, and a stint on Superman (he draws Superman better than anyone). I read his more mature work in “John Byrne's Next Men”. Pretty cool story.

One other thing I remember about the guy is how opinionated he was, and how engaged he was with his readers. There were some fairly vicious back-and-forths between Byrne and his readers, and between JB and other comic creators. This stuff found expression mostly in the letters pages of various comics, in the days before the Internet.

I don't think my interest in comics would have lasted so far into my teenage years without John Byrne. Cheers to you, sir!

Among his many other honors, John Byrne was inducted into the Will Eisner Hall of Fame in 2015.

And deservedly so!

Bye for now!

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anonymous?

WyrmgaardComics at 10:30AM, June 17, 2016

So much of the style of western comics owes a lot to this guy. Loved his early to mid work. Still prefer his versions of the X-men, FF and Avengers to most who've come since.

phinmagic at 6:31PM, May 1, 2016

Everyone always says what a jerk he is. Once, early in my carteer, he was a guest at Pittsburgh Comicon, where I was also set up. It was slow and I went up to his tabke, just to say thanks for being and inspiration and a big hero of mine. He graciously thane me and asked if I had anything for him to sign. I told him I didn't, so he reached into his bag, pulled out two issues of FF and signed and gave them to me. I learned much about art and storytelling and also how to be gracious to fans as well, from the man. Class act.

Z74 at 10:17PM, April 30, 2016

He is one of my favorites as well . We are probably showing our age here !

Ironscarf at 6:44AM, April 28, 2016

The She Hulk stuff was great fun! I also had quite a few issues of something called West Coast Avengers. I bought that on the strength of the title, hoping they'd be a bunch hippies, but no such luck. I kept reading though, thanks to Byrne's art and writing. On a site note, one of my biggest inspirations is John M. Burns, but if I try to tell anyone that they just go "Oh yeah, John Byrne is awesome!".

KimLuster at 4:37AM, April 28, 2016

As I've mentioned before, I didn't read superhero comics much at all, but I did sort of have 'ear to the wall' about what was going on... And one of the catchphrases I remember is "Every Thing John Byrne touches turns to gold!"

plymayer at 1:39AM, April 28, 2016

One of my most favorites. I have a Space:1999 comic somewhere where he was the artist. Over the years he has influenced my art in so many ways. She Hulk has never been done better before of after Byrne. When I draw the Tin Woodsman, not only am I inspired by W.W.Denslow's original images (http://thewizardofoz.info/pics/wizard_title_page.jpg) but of course by John Bryne's ideas of Iron Man from the early 1990s (http://www.byrnerobotics.com/forum/uploads/PeterMartin/2010-01-20_151943_new_coke_iron_man.jpg)

jerrie at 12:24AM, April 28, 2016

John Byrne is my all time favorite comic artist


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