Suspended Animation: Neal Adams

Friday, April 27th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Comics legend Neal Adams has raised the standards of comic book art, the hackles of comic book publishers, and improved the lot of comics professionals in a career than spans more than four decades.

Born in 1941, Adams established himself as a comics master without ever exclusively focusing on a single comic book or strip title for more than a handful of years. In addition, his internal fight with publishers and syndicates to regain ownership, win compensation for reprinted work, and to increase pay for comics creators has improved the working situation for thousands of comics professionals.

Primarily an artist, Neal Adams brought a heightened reality to comics in the 1960s and ‘70s in titles like Deadman and Green Lantern/ Green Arrow.

This was partially done through his dedication to correct perspective and anatomy.

In addition, his close attention to human expression and body language in
his characters “raised the bar” for artists in an industry too long known
for speed instead of accurate visual detail. By doing so, he also influenced
a realistic depth in comics scripts that continues to influence both comics
artists and writers today.

Samples of Adams’ extensive comic book work include: DC--Batman (1970-77), Deadman (1967-68/70), Green Lantern (1970-72), Green Lantern/Green Arrow (1970/ 72-73); Marvel--Avengers (1971-72), Conan (1974/76/80), Epic Illustrated (1981), Thor (1970), and many more. His company, Continuity Associates, produced many comics titles including Crusty Bunkers.

Neal Adams’ strip work includes: Bat Masterson (1959), Ben Casey (1962-66), Big Ben Bolt (1978), Juliet Jones (1966), Peter Scratch (1966) Rip Kirby (1968) and Secret Agent Corrigan (1967).

He has also produced advertising art, magazine, book and record album covers, theatrical designs, posters and storyboards. Adams’ awards include the ACBA Shazam, Fandom’s Alley, and Fandom’s Goethe.

The work of Neal Adams is highly recommended. MV

Some older comics are expensive or difficult to locate. Price guides or comics dealers help. Comics shops, conventions, mail order companies and trade journals are good sources. Prices vary; shop around.