A look at the career of comics artist Jim Aparo.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Death In The Family Cards

In 1994, DC teamed with Skybox to release yet another set of "collectible" cards, this time featuring scenes from the Batman story "A Death In The Family", the infamous story that documented what turned out to be, thanks to the final votes in a telephone tally, the murder of the second Robin, Jason Todd, at the hands of The Joker. Jim Aparo was the artist on the comic book version of that story, but for the card set, a number of different artists contributed. But Jim was invited to participate, recreating some key scenes from the story with inker Dick Giordano, the guy who hired Aparo for his first comic book job way back in the mid 60's at Charlton Comics. By today's standards, the colors here look a little garish, and, with Jim edging toward retirement, it wasn't his sharpest work, but there are at least a couple of pretty nifty renditions in this handful of scenes--I rather like the bottom tier here. Jim was approaching his retirement years, and his figure work was starting to look rather stiff and awkward. I always prefer to see Jim's work in panel-to-panel continuity, though, rather than individual images. Given the format and size restrictions--and the sometimes less-than-dynamic content required, I think we can be lenient with the less-effective samples from this set.

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