Although comics are such a cool, welcoming place that sometimes it seems no one ever goes away, that isn’t true. People drop in and out all the time. Two recent blog posts track down some of the most missed MIAs.

Yap Samaria Page.jpg

At Comics Comics, the indie side of things gets covered with Frank Santoro and friends recalling Guang Yap, (above) Joel Orff, Jeff Nicholson among others. The long comments thread brings out many other memories and ideas of Things That Are Best Left Forgotten:

This is sort of off topic – but related. Thinking about Guang Yap got me thinking about Aircel comics. When Barry Blair died last year, I thought there would be some obit that would explain Aircel Comics and Blair’s career in detail. And then no real substantial obit appeared. Maybe I just missed it. All I know was that Blair died of a brain aneurysm. So I emailed my Canadian friends and asked around. No one really knew anything. It kinda seemed like no one wanted to talk about Blair. No one was saying they weren’t talking. But really, no one was talking.

Meanwhile, I found practically all the Aircel comics ever published. They were all stashed in the ten for a dollar box at a warehouse in Pittsburgh, PA. I bought like over a hundred comics. All Aircel. The sheer volume of titles published by this small Canadian organization was astonishing. Most of it is crap but there were some real gems in the stash too. Guang Yap was really good. He started out at Aircel and went on to draw at Marvel. Love me some Dragonring. There were so many titles – so much to look at. And cheap! I doubt any of it is future Art Out of Time material but it is interesting. Even if only for historical reasons. And airbrush coloring.

Today at Robot 6, Chris Arrant brings up Brian K. Vaughan, John Cassaday, and Damian Scott (below), among others who have drifted away from comics.


What do you think, Beatsters? Who do you wish would burst back onto the scene?


  1. Christopher Priest! I want to read new Christopher Priest comics!

    Also: STERANKO!

    Also, artists Steve Skroce (his Spider-Man is probably my favorite of the 1990s) and German Garcia (did X-MEN and SUPERMAN with Joe Kelly).

  2. Guy Davis is all over the BPRD comics and elsewhere.

    And wasn’t Tom Grummett penciling X-Men Forever until fairly recently?

  3. Johnny – Yeates is doing an Edgar Rice Burroughs OGN with Dark Horse next year, The Outlaw Prince. From layouts by Michael Wm. Kaluta!

  4. I was disappointed when my friend and comic creator Kimo Temperance aka Bruce Brown received little notice of his passing from Cancer last year. He wrote Brit for Image and had back up stories in Detective Comics and Gotham Knights. He was a solid writer. There was brief mention of his passing and I read nothing from Image or Robert Kirkman commenting on him.

  5. John Cassaday still draws tons of covers. If he counts in this discussion, I wish Adam Hughes and J. Scott Campbell would draw the interior pages of a comic again some time before I die.

  6. And Thomas Yeates did several amazing Myths & Legends graphic novels for Graphic Universe a couple of years ago — Odysseus, Perseus, King Arthur, Lancelot, Robin Hood, William Tell, Atalanta. He’s been keeping busy.

  7. Yeah, Jason brings up a good point. There are a number of creators who only do covers now, no interior work. Cassaday would be an obvious example. J. Scott Campbell is another.

    A guilty pleasure, but I always enjoyed the work of Stephen Platt. Wish we could lure him back to do some interior work.

  8. Glad to find you more comics, Rob S.

    To pick up one of your other suggestions, does anyone know what the status of Castle Waiting and Linda Medley is these days? I read some item over at Bleeding Cool that suggested she’d had a falling out with Fantagraphics, and it’s been a while since the last issue came out.

  9. J O’Barr. I miss his work. Keep getting tantalized about upcoming things that never seem to manifest themselves.

    WARLOCK 5 was one of my favorite books out of the 80s, by the by. Utterly nonsensical popculture mashup but always delivered a buck’s worth of value.

  10. Devin Grayson. I would buy anything she’d write, but since her Nightwing run ended, aside from one Girl Comics story, I’ve seen nada out of her. It makes me sad.

  11. I don’t know the staus of these men – I only know I miss their work:

    ER Cruz (Best Shadow Ever!), Noly Panaligan, Gerry Talaoc…

    I could also go for a Gene Day tribute book… ditto Ernie Colon…

  12. Paul freaking Chadwick. I’m willing to wait for quality, but come on!! I need some CONCRETE!!!!

    Dorkin is another guy too long MIA. just not into Beasts of Burden. I miss his art

  13. Gerry Talaoc did a painting (over Rufus Dayglo’s pencils) for Tank Girl : Hairy Heroes from Image last summer. It was a “pull-out poster”, spread across the inside front & back covers.

  14. D. Curtis Johnson.
    I know a lot of people are mad at him right now, but I enjoyed James Hudnall’s ESPers.
    Len Strazewski.
    Scott McCloud (I know he’s working on something, but it’s been a while.)

  15. I’m sure that he hasn’t been gone as long as some of the other people mentioned, but I miss Frank Quitely (on interiors). I’m pretty sure the most recent thing he did was a short segment in Batman 700, and I know he’s been having back problems, but does anyone have any news on when he’ll be better?

  16. Al Columbia will be at the Fantagraphics table at the MoCCA festival in April. At least, according to the festival website. So, you know, he’s out there, and apparently visible to humans.

  17. They may have done something recently that I didn’t catch, but off the top of my head I’ve lost track of and miss work from Pat Broderick, Paris Cullins, Luke McDonnell, Paul Guinan, and John Francis Moore.

  18. How about artists who draw attractive, more traditional comics like Kerry Gammill, Jerome Moore, Gordon Purcell and Paris Cullins?

  19. @Todd: agreed on Hudnall. His ultra-right wing politics are not my cup of tea, but back in the day he was one of my favorites writers. ESPers (and it’s follow up at Marvel called Interface) was absolutely fantastic.

    I also miss Walt Simonson and Tim Truman doing interior art.

  20. Jon Totleben (though I understand why we don’t)

    Vincent Locke

    Liam Sharp

    Stephen Platt (seconded)

    Geoff Darrow

    Keu Cha

    Glenn Fabry

    Jeff Matsuda

    Chris Weston (not The Twelve)

  21. Nate – Gordon Purcell is another artist who did a graphic novel for young readers for Graphic Universe (Trojan Horse). There was a sudden booming expansion in opportunities to do kids’ books, and I know several artists and authors who found it less hectic, a chance for a change in tone, a new market in which to get a foothold… a chance to do books they could show their kid’s second grade class. That market has contracted somewhat, but it’s still there.

    Lannie – There are things about the full scope of his work that make me too uneasy to want to discuss. At least not online. In any case, it was still sad to think one day, “say, what’s he up to?” then discover he had died just that week.

  22. I’ll second the request for more Frank Cho, especially more Liberty Meadows. Ditto for Linda Medley’s Castle Waiting. It HAS been a while since a new issue, hasn’t it?

    And, how about Martin Wagner and Hepcats?

    I did Retroviews of Henry Vogel and Mark Propst’s Aristocratic Xtraterrestrial Time-Traveling Thieves for CBG #1676 and would like to see that series continue.

    And then there’s Reid Fleming, World’s Toughest Milkman. There was a short-lived revival, but nothing new in several years.

  23. @Carol – I understand that it’s an uncomfortable topic. However, there’s a strong precedent or looking the other way on the kind of thing that he was doing allows similar situations to occur in the future. It is sad that he is gone, as it is when anyone dies, but it’s also sad that he will never be held accountable for his choices, or if you’re on the other side of the fence, be allowed to defend himself.

  24. @rich: Bernie Wrightson has been drawing The Ghoul and Doc Macabre for Steve Niles and IDW and it is, as always, a treat for the eyes.

  25. I love these threads because you find out what people are up to!

    Al Columbia had a great book come out in 2009 — PIM AND FRANCIE — which was worth the wait. Given his working methods that qualifies as busy as hell for him.

    Columbia is like David Mazzucchelli in his pre-Polyp period — people were always asking about both of them as if they were Amelia Earhart, but they were both always out and about, just working slowly or quietly.

  26. @ Larkin

    Well then, that’s great news! Never heard of either series, but then I don’t follow the comics news that much. And I don’t keep trakc of everything coming out, either. I’ll be sure to check them out.

  27. Frank Cho is working on his own title :
    from his website (quote)
    “50 Girls 50″ is a new book that I’m writing and designing with Doug Murray.

    It’s a rip-roaring space adventure of an all female crew explorers.
    Think “Star Trek” and “Quantum Leap” with a healthy dose of Wally Wood space girls.

    This is the initial design of the main space suit. I’m still tweaking and having fun. More designs are on the way.

    Look for a major announcement next month from Image Comics (end quote)

    June 2011 is the first issue from Image.

  28. Just picking from a few comments above:

    Frank Cho has also just completed a five issue run on New Ultimates, HB’s out soon.

    Dale Keown did a neat Pitt/ Darkness mini last year, that was collected recently.

    Martin Wagner…heh, pops up now and then on the Hepcats mailing list, he put up a few new pages of Hepcats a couple of years back with the intention of completeing Snowblind and had a go at selling sketches but flaked out a bit (not being nasty, I’m sure he’d admit as much) and not much heard recently.

    Personally the guy I really miss art-wise is Aron Weisenfeld, who was an awesome artist but just couldn’t handle the deadlines. He’s doing some gorgeous fine-art now tho’!

    Also writing-wise Micah Wright, who writes for games now. His Stormwatch stuff was great.

  29. i really miss andersen gabrych’s batgirl. wish they would get him to write a book featuring cassandra cain. and why can’t dc give andreyko any consistent work.

  30. I’ll second the Marc Hempel suggestion and suggest his once upon a time comic compatriot Mark Wheatley.

    And while I know Bob Burden is writing a new Mysterman comic, I miss the Flaming Carrot.