Earlier today, comic book artist Patrick Zircher tweeted an announcement of the death of comic writer and editor Len Wein — who co-created some of comic book’s greatest heroes. Wein was 69 years old.
Wein was born June 12, 1948. He was often sick as a child, and his father brought him a stack of comic books when he was seven and in the hospital. Wein was immediately hooked. An art teacher in 8th grade told him that he was a talented artist, and Wein began to consider working in comics when he grew up.
While still a teenager, Wein and his friend Marv Wolfman would take a weekly tour of DC comics offices. They got to know many of the staff there, and began to show them story and art samples. They were both eventually taken on as freelance writers. Wein’s first contribution to a mainstream comic book was when he was only 20-years-old, he worked on the Teen Titans story ‘Eye of the Beholder’ and from there moved onto several other comics and stories in DC. He did not just stick to superheroes, some of his work for DC was in romance, westerns, mysteries, and science-fiction.
Len Wein has passed away. Len co-created Swamp Thing, Wolverine, Colossus, Nightcrawler. His was a gigantic contribution to comics. pic.twitter.com/6d9dXfVBNw— Patch Zircher (@PatrickZircher) September 10, 2017
In 1970 Wein worked on his first superhero comic for Marvel — a one-off Daredevil story. He continued working for DC as well, taking on such notable heroes as The Flash, Supergirl, and Superman. In 1971 he and artist Bernie Wrightson created the horror comic hero Swamp Thing — a character so popular that he eventually starred in two movies and a TV series as well as numerous comic appearances.
After a well regarded run writing for Justice League of America Wein co-created another hero — along with artist Carmine Infantino he created Human Target, another character so popular that he’s had two TV series and also recently appeared on Arrow.
In 1974 Wein, along with writer Roy Thomas and art director John Romita Sr. created Wolverine while working on The Incredible Hulk. Wolverine, of course, is among the most popular of the X-Men. But Wolverine is not the only X-Men character who Wein helped create — one year later he and artist Dave Cockrum revived the X-Men comics after a few years of hiatus and co-created Storm, Nightcrawler, Colossus, and Thunderbird.
After a dispute with Marvel in the late 70s, Wein returned to DC and worked again on stories involving some of their biggest heroes. While working on Batman he and artist Marshall Rogers co-created Lucius Fox. In 1986 he was responsible for a revival of Blue Beetle.
In the early 90s Wein worked as Editor in Chief of Disney Comics for three years. He wrote for a number of animated series and contributed to a Conan story for Dark Horse Comics before once again returning to DC Comics.
Wein’s cause of death is currently unknown, though he did survive a quintuple bypass heart surgery in February of 2015. His contributions to the world of comics — as well as to the movies and TV series based on them — are nothing short of extraordinary, and his creativity will be missed.
R.I.P. Len Wein — June 12, 1948 — September 10, 2017
Source: Patrick Zircher
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