Comic Book Icon – George Perez – Passes Away At 67
The legendary artist/writer George Perez sadly passed away on May 6 with complications arising from pancreatic cancer. This devastating news actually hit me quite hard as it was George’s Wonder Woman comics run in the eighties that first introduced me to the Themysciran Titan, and ultimately made me fall in love with the character.
George Perez is one of the most popular and acclaimed artists of the past half decade, with his extensive run on Wonder Woman in the 1980’s being a defining moment not just in his own artistic career but also for the character herself. His reboot of Diana began with the 1987 issued – Wonder Woman #1, George was the main artist and plotted the series for its first two year run, then went on to write it for a further three, with his take on Wondy and her pantheon of allies and villains hailed as the greatest and most significant version of the characters since the original creation team of William Marston and Harry Peter in the 1940’s.
In 1980, George alongside fellow comic-book legend, Marv Wolfman, launched – The New Teen Titans, rebooting the classic sixties series and creating new characters to add to the roster of the team of teen sidekicks – Starfire, Raven and Cyborg, and also anti-hero mercenary – Deathstroke. It was also during this run that Dick Grayson finally stepped out of The Batman’s shadow and shed his Robin persona to become the peerlessly popular Nightwing.
George was born in New York City in June 1954, and was always destined to be an artist and started drawing from the tender age of five years old. At the age of twenty he took a job as a studio assistant at Marvel Comics, with his first published work appearing in Astonishing Tales #25 in 1974. George continued to work for Marvel until 1980 when he moved over to DC Comics, with his first artistic endeavour drawing the Flash back up tale – Firestorm. In 1985 after close to five years working on The New Teen Titans, he started work on DC’s massive crossover event – Crisis On Infinite Earths, the criss-crossing maxi-series that would end up altering the DC Universe dramatically for years to come, when this came to an end George went on to his career defining run On Wonder Woman and cemented his place in Comic-Book history.