Walt Simonson is one of the most influential and acclaimed creators in the history of comic books. Over the course of his decades-long career, he has left an indelible mark on the medium, shaping and defining some of its most iconic characters and franchises.
Born in 1946, Simonson began his career in the comics industry in the 1970s. He first gained recognition for his work on DC Comics’ Manhunter series, which featured a character he created named Mark Shaw. He went on to work on a wide range of titles for both DC and Marvel Comics, including Detective Comics, The Avengers, and X-Factor.
One of Simonson’s most notable contributions to the industry came in the 1980s, when he took over as the writer and artist on Marvel Comics’ Thor series. Simonson’s run on the title, which spanned from issue #337 to #382, is widely regarded as one of the greatest creative achievements in the history of the character and the franchise as a whole.
Simonson’s approach to Thor was marked by a renewed focus on the character’s Norse mythology roots. He introduced new characters and concepts, such as the villainous Malekith the Dark Elf and the magical sword known as the Twilight Sword. He also placed a greater emphasis on the character’s relationships and emotions, exploring the tensions and conflicts that arise from being both a god and a hero.
One of the most notable aspects of Simonson’s work on Thor was his art. His illustrations were dynamic and highly detailed, with a level of intricacy and depth that was unmatched in the industry at the time. He was a master of composition and storytelling, and he used his art to convey both the grandeur and the emotional depth of the characters and their adventures.
Simonson’s influence can also be seen in his work on other titles, such as DC Comics’ The New Gods and Orion, and Marvel Comics’ X-Factor. He has won numerous awards and accolades over the course of his career, including multiple Eisner Awards and a Harvey Award.
Some of his most highly collected comic books include:
In addition to his work in comics, Simonson has also made contributions to other media. He wrote and illustrated the graphic novel Star Slammers, which was adapted into a role-playing game and a video game. He has also worked on animation projects, including episodes of Batman: The Animated Series and The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.