The comic community was rocked on Sunday by the news of an industry legend’s death. Joe Kubert passed away on August 12th due to multiple myeloma – a form of cancer that destroys bone marrow.
His work in the comic field is outstanding. Contributing to numerous titles in his overwhelming career, he is most famous for his work on Sgt Rock, for which he was still contributing right up to 2009. He dabbled with other comic companies, but was most well-known for his work at DC comics where he contributed his penciling talents to Hawkman and JLA among others.
DC Comics had this to say about the comic legend which can be found on http://www.wired.com
We are saddened to learn of the death of our colleague and friend Joe Kubert. An absolute legend in the industry, his legacy will live on through his remarkable talent, with his sons and with the many artists who have passed through the storied halls of his celebrated school. An important member of the DC Comics family, Joe made an indelible mark on the entire DC Comics universe including his renowned and award-winning work on iconic characters such as Sgt. Rock, Enemy Ace, Hawkman and most recently Nite Owl. We are so honored to have worked side-by-side with such an unforgettable force in both comics and in life.”
– DC Entertainment Executive Team.
This statement has caused a bit of an outrage with comic lovers everywhere, because it essentially sounds like an advert for the new Watchman comics and not a tribute to a man that had been doing outstanding work for them all the way back to 1943. That’s near 70 years of service, and it’s been boiled down to ‘most recently Nite Owl ‘.
In addition to being one of the biggest names in the industry for the better part of the last century, but Joe also set up his own school for aspiring artists, and won Harvey Awards’ Jack Kirby Hall of Fame Award in 1997, and Will Eisner Comic Book Home of Fame in 1998. His two sons Adam and Andy are massively popular comic artists too, and it’s great to know that he has been an inspiration to so many people. My first experiences of him were through his sons. I’m a big fan of their work and it was through their work that I heard about their father. His work on Sgt Rock is still some of the best war stories I have ever read and his artwork is so distinctive you can spot it a mile away. The thing that struck me about his work is the way it seems so realistic. These people’s lives can be easily seen written on their face and in Sgt Rock’s case you can see the pain of war in his visage. Much how Harvey Pekar expertly showed what it was like to just be an average Joe Kubert’s work on Sgt Rock made me feel what it was like to be a member of the army.
He will be missed by the many fan that his work has touched, me included. To finish here are some touching words from the The Kubert School of Art …