John Romita Sr, the iconic comic book artist known for co-creating popular characters like Mary Jane Watson, Wolverine and the Punisher, has passed away at the age of 93. His son and fellow comic book artist, John Romita Jr, announced the news on social media, stating that his father passed away peacefully in his sleep on Monday, June 12. Romita Sr was a well-respected artist in the comic book industry, and his death has left a void in the world of comics.
Life and Career
Born in Brooklyn, New York, Romita Sr began his comic book career in 1949 with Timely Comics, the precursor to Marvel Comics. It was during this time that he met Stan Lee, who would later become a close friend and collaborator. Romita Sr’s talent was quickly recognized, and in the 1950s, he worked for rival DC Comics before joining Marvel in 1965.
Romita Sr made his mark on the industry with his work on The Amazing Spider-Man, which he took over from Steve Ditko in 1966. At the time, the comic was Marvel’s second-biggest seller, and Romita Sr’s work helped to solidify Spider-Man’s place in pop culture. He also co-created the character of Mary Jane Watson, who would go on to become Peter Parker’s love interest.
In addition to his work on Spider-Man, Romita Sr also helped to design several other popular characters, including the Punisher, Wolverine, Luke Cage and Bullseye. He was also responsible for the design of Monica Rambeau’s Captain Marvel debut in 1982.
Romita Sr’s contributions to the comic book industry did not go unnoticed. In 1973, he was promoted to Art Director at Marvel, and his influence on the industry continued to be felt long after his semi-retirement in 1996.
Despite his many accomplishments, Romita Sr remained humble throughout his career. In a 2002 interview, he expressed regret at not being part of the first generation of professional cartoonists and felt that he was always following in others’ footsteps. However, his ability to improve on other people’s characters and stories made him a valuable contributor to the industry for over 50 years.
Romita Sr’s legacy in the comic book industry is undeniable. He helped to shape the Marvel Universe and created some of the most beloved characters in pop culture. His influence on the industry can still be seen today, as his son, John Romita Jr, continues to work as a respected Marvel artist.
Romita Jr himself paid tribute to his father’s legacy, stating on social media that his father was “a legend in the art world,” and that it was his honor to follow in his footsteps. He went on to say, “He was the greatest man I ever met.”
John Romita Sr’s passing is a great loss to the comic book industry, but his legacy will continue to live on through his work and the impact he had on the industry. He will always be remembered as one of the greatest comic book artists of all time.