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Brian Floyd
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 07 July 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 6904
Posted: 07 December 2019 at 8:51pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

P.S. I shudder when reading "Miller" and "Byrne" in the same sentence, at least in reference to artwork!

++++++++++++++++
You're not the only one....

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Rebecca Jansen
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 12 February 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1884
Posted: 07 December 2019 at 11:49pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

I like the oldest (well, almost, the Charltons) stuff, Rog 2000 and Doomsday+1, and even Space: 1999 (oh and one Emergency, but maybe that one's best recommended for Randolph Mantooth freaks), and I like the present stuff more, and there is good stuff at all points between, Iron Fist, X-Men, FF, Captain America, Avengers, Superman, Namor, Doom Patrol, Lost Generation, Spider-Man, Star Trek, Stowaway To The Stars. That Fantastic Four complete story being auction is really really good stuff. The name John Byrne means good stuff. There are artists who have had periods I just haven't had any interest for...  I find it hard to really get much enthusiasm up for the '40s Toth and Kubert I've seen, but you get to the '50s and wow, that is some good stuff! I think Walt Simonson though has always been interesting from the first Manhunter in Detective. There's something to be said for a high batting average, perhaps the grand-slam home runs never have happened, but there are loads of triples and doubles over many seasons while others have burned bright and hot and been gone quickly.

I think it's a mistake to read the fan press sometimes, I remember I had some complimentary Comic's Buyer's Guide subscription once and this was around when Image started and the levels of hype in the ads and news made me wanna barf... and I didn't even care one way or the other about whatever controversy Image had stirred up... I wished them well, thought it was great they were gonna do their own stuff, it just wasn't the stuff I like. And, they were hardly the only ones or even the worst with hard sell and hype at the time. Seeing all the ads with characters I used to read about but no longer did, seeing many of them go extreme and dark... bleh, I was very glad when the subscription ran out. Give me Our Pal Sal, Jim Mooney, Rascally Roy and Gerry Conway... give me good solid stuff, not super-glitzy-flashy gimmicky genre-changing prestige format history-making invest-in-a-case, multiple covers blah blah blah. So John Byrne is not super flashy (usually) or super hot (usually), cutting-edge boundary-pushing every story. That kind of talk is from celebrity gossip rags or pretentious semi-academic professional Journals that think they know capital A art and capital L literature. Me, I like comic books. I liked them when they weren't cool, and I never gave a toss if I was cool. I like them a lot more than the conventions, the costume making, the trading cards, movie effects, tv series, autographs, the original art, or limited edition collectables. What do people who really like comic books think of the stuff? That's what probably counts.


Edited by Rebecca Jansen on 07 December 2019 at 11:54pm
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Mark McKay
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 1886
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 6:57am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

“Once upon a time he was the most popular Comic Artist in the industry”

Fixed?
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John Byrne

Imaginary X-Man

Joined: 11 May 2005
Posts: 119900
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 6:59am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

…one Emergency, but maybe that one's best recommended for Randolph Mantooth freaks…

••

Very forgiving Randolph Mantooth freaks.

When I was sent the script for that issue, the first thing that struck me was that the paramedics were running around doing very cop-like things. Since I was not familiar with the show, I assumed that was typical, and drew what the script told me to draw.

Smash cut to a few weeks later, when panic ripples thru the halls of Charlton, as the owners of the show freak out over the paramedics doing cop-like stuff. (Had they not approved the script?*) Many of the faces and clothes had to be redrawn. No time to send the pages back to me, so somebody in-house did it. Result, an issue of EMERGENCY that mostly wasn't about the stars of the show.

Ah, well. At least fans were not blaming ME for everything that went wrong in those days!!

__________________

* I wondered at the time if this was a case of Guy-in-the-Next-Office Syndrome. In other words, if one person had approved the script, but someone else was shown the finished book.

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John Byrne

Imaginary X-Man

Joined: 11 May 2005
Posts: 119900
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 7:00am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

“Once upon a time he was the most popular Comic Artist in the industry”

Fixed?

••

Not really. George Perez and I used to trade off the top spot, based on various fan polls. Until that young punk Miller showed up!

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Michael Penn
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 12 April 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 10882
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 9:16am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

"Once upon a time" is, inappropriately, the language of fairy tales because, first, it's no fable that John Byrne was popular, successful, and good 35 years ago, and, second, what... since then anything he did matters little to nothing? Did he retire in 1988 and go off to live happily ever after?! Sheesh!
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Luke Smyth
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: Ireland
Posts: 771
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 9:35am | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Popularity is based on the fickle tastes of the audience at a given time
and no indicator of ability whereas being the “best” clearly is.

The comics industry has been graced with many great artists over the
years, with a rarified few rising above that level. Artists who were
undisputedley the best in a given discipline, Kirby, Ditko, Kubert, Toth,
Eisner etc.

For along time I thought you occupied a place on the second rung,
comfortably so. On reflection, and the current work on the X-Men
Elsewhen pages only reinforce’s this opinion, I think you belong at the
top table with the rarefied few.

What I think elevates you there is the ability through your storytelling
abilities and art to illicit genuine empathy from your audience in respect
of your characters. I honestly can’t think of another artist who is better
than you at affecting the reader in this way.




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Eric Sofer
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 31 January 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 3665
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 12:45pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

ITEM: Mr. Byrne, certainly X-Men was a step ahead of cancellation during your tenure. That has nothing to do with the quality of your art. Some books have been solid sellers with what I think of as crappy art. Some books have been cancelled with what I think is genius art. While good art and good sales have a correlation... I don't think it applies here. I refuse to say when your best period occurred, except to say "now."

ITEM: "Best" is so arbitrary a term. Are you the best Superman artist ever? It's too personal. I loved your Superman art. I loved Curt Swan's Superman. I loved George Perez' Superman. All brilliant, all consistent, all worthy of appreciation - and all unique. Ditto for the X-Men, Wonder Woman, Captain America, etc.

ITEM: For discussion, it's even hard to assign a "best" era to your art. I don't think I ever saw art from you that looked sloppy, unappealing, or "rushed." I never saw anything that looked less than your best effort, as professional as possible.

Is this an esoteric discussion? Sure it is. You've changed, your art has changed*, and you've learned as time passes. It's easy to see where it's different - but no way to tell when it was "best." You may be first among equals... but (no insult intended), there are ther bests out there too. And there's no way to objectively compare your art with someoje else's, just because there's no standard.

I will say that I love your art. Long may you wave, Mr. Byrne!
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Eric Smearman
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 02 September 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 5511
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 2:43pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

JB and George Perez used to take turns pretty frequently as
my favorite artist. Keith Giffen, Walt Simonson and Jerry
Ordway each had some moments in that spot, too. I was
really late to the party re: Frank Miller as DAREDEVIL was
not on my radar at all. I bought some of his last issues on
that title and then followed him to RONIN.

Edited by Eric Smearman on 10 December 2019 at 6:47am
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Mike Norris
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 4197
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 4:30pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

JB and Perez have both improved since the days of the "old stuff". Or maybe evolved is a better word. To me that's the sign of a good artist. 
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John Byrne

Imaginary X-Man

Joined: 11 May 2005
Posts: 119900
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 5:53pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

George’s arc has been amazing. He’s just never stopped pushing himself creatively.
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Robert Bradley
Byrne Robotics Member


Joined: 20 September 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 4422
Posted: 08 December 2019 at 9:49pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Perez is my favorite artist, and he was (as is) incredibly popular, but I wouldn't ever make any statement about him being the best.

How could you ever measure such a thing?

Better yet, how about the writer not giving JB a backhanded compliment to begin with?

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