Wicked Comics Mourns the Loss of Comics Legend Ernie Chan
Wicked Comics promoters of the comic culture worldwide and organizers of the annual Malta Comic Convention joins the multitude of comic fans mourning the loss of Ernie Chan a comics legend who sadly passed away on the 16th May 2012 at the age of 71.
Ernie Chan was a Filipino-American comic book artist, known for work published by Marvel Comics and DC Comics, including many Marvel issues of series featuring Conan the Barbarian. Chan also had a long tenure on Batman and Detective Comics. Other than his work on Batman, Chan primarily focused on non-superhero characters, staying mostly in the genres of horror, war, and swords-and-sorcery. He studied with John Buscema, and also worked with him as the inker on Conan during the 1970s. He also inked the art of Buscema’s brother Sal on The Incredible Hulk.
Chan broke into American comics in 1972 with DC, as a penciler on horror/mystery titles like Ghosts, House of Mystery, and The Unexpected. By 1974, he was working regularly for Marvel on Conan the Barbarian. From 1975-1976, Chan worked exclusively for DC, including the artwork for Claw the Unconquered, written by David Michelinie. Under the name Chua, he was DC Comic’s primary cover artist from approximately 1975 to 1977. Chan pencilled several issues of Conan and Doctor Strange, and worked on Kull the Destroyer in 1977 and Power Man in the 1980s. From about 1978 onward, he worked almost exclusively for Marvel, in the 1980s focusing on Conan.
One can argue that Chan was the person that crafted Conan as the crude barbarian we know today, which departed from the more traditional work done by Barry Windsor Smith and John Buscema. Chan gave him the gritty barbaric look that today’s Conan fans love. In view of this Ernie Chan will be forever remembered as THE Conan artist of the 80s and 90s.
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