The Comics Beat is reporting that legendary comic book artist John Severin passed away on Sunday, Feb 12th in his home in Denver, Colorado, surrounded by family. John had one of the longest and well-respected careers in comics we will probably ever see. He was one of the early artists for E.C. Comics, and one of the first artists for MAD, doing work for the first several issues under Harvey Kurtzman from 1952-1954. The above image is his first appearance in MAD #1. He did so much comic work over the years it’s almost impossible to list it all. He eventually became the main artist for Cracked Magazine’s parodies, which he continued to do for 45 years until Cracked changed hands and eventually stopped publishing.
I never met John, but his sister Marie, who was also a very talented comic artist, inker and colorist, inked a mini-series I pencilled for Marvel called The Coneheads back in the 90’s. I never met her either, but we spoke on the phone a few times and she was a really nice lady. Also her inks made it look like I actually knew what I was doing.
John’s place in the pantheon of comic book history is secure. A sad loss for comics but he leaves behind a legacy of work that few other artists can or will ever equal. Rest in Peace, Mr. Severin.
137 "Ray Donovan" parody splash from MAD #534 #raydonovan #caricature #madmagazine
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