Today is the 100th birthday of comics legend Jack Kirby, the artist who co-created many of Marvel’s most famous superhero characters, including Thor. In the video below, hall-of-fame creator Walt Simonson talks about Kirby and the impact his work had on his own career, and the medium of comics overall.
Last month at San Diego Comic-Con, I had the honor and pleasure of talking to Simonson, Greg Goldstein, and Scott Dunbier—president and director of special projects, respectively, of publisher IDW—about Kirby. (Note: the video clocks in at about eight minutes but is worth every second.) The collective praise and respect for Kirby is a practice that should continue for years to come.
Kirby helped invent and evolve the visual language of comics over the span of his decades-long career, scorching the page with bombastic energy and compositional daring. You can see some of that genius in the Artist’s Editions and hardcover collections that IDW has released of Kirby’s work. He’s someone who’s been beloved by subsequent generations of fans and creators, with some of those folks taking up the cause of making sure Kirby (who passed away in 1994) got his due.
As an added bonus, in the video below, Simonson talks a bit about his expectations for the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok movie, which is based in part on his superb work on the Thunder God in the 1980s. He also discusses a new project centered on the mythological Thor, where he gets to execute a very different take on the Norse deity.