Mike Esposito and Mickey Demeo, R.I.P.

Ah, darn it, I hate this sort of news.

Mike Esposito, two of my favorite inkers of the Silver Age (and beyond), has passed away at the age of 83.   If you’ve read a comic drawn by Ross Andru (and who of my generation hasn’t?  Ross Andru drew Spider-Man, Wonder Woman, Superman, Marvel Team-Up, and a host of other books) then you’ve seen Mike Esposito’s inking, as Andru VERY RARELY drew anything without his life-long friend Mike along to do the finished art in brush and pen.  They met in high school, I believe, and were attached at the hip for decades.

Yup, Ross and Mike were responsible for the SILLIEST villain in the history of comics:  the mighty “Egg Fu”, and I couldn’t have been happier.  But it didn’t just stop there, Mike contributed his brush to the INFERIOR FIVE, the MANIAKS, and a host of other bizarre Silver Age treasures that no one read but me.  And if his astoundingly prolific DC career wasn’t enough, Esposito was also an entirely other person:  Marvel inker, MICKEY DEMEO, who inked more of Marvel’s Silver Age than you’d believe.  (Mike was worried his DC work would dry up if he was known to be working for the competition, so he used a pen name at Marvel for about a decade, working on  some of the earliest and most “key” issues of the Marvel Sixties with Buscema, Kirby, Gil Kane, etc.).

It’s almost impossible to find a major DC or Marvel series that didn’t find their way under Mike (or Mickey’s) hands at some point, and we all owe both of him a huge thank you for the pantheon of memorable characters he helped bring us.

As always, Mark Evanier has the details.

No moment of zen for this one.  I’m in no mood to be amusing.

Ty the Guy OUT!

4 responses to “Mike Esposito and Mickey Demeo, R.I.P.

  1. Paul the Curmudgeon

    He was a great pro and I’m sorry to hear of his passing. One of the best places to see his work is in the book Andru and Esposito: Partners For Life, which happens to be deeply discounted at amazon.ca: http://www.amazon.ca/Andru-Esposito-Partners-Life-Mike/dp/1932563849/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1288007229&sr=1-1

  2. The inks from the ASMs and Avengers are what first brought me to those titles when I was a little kid. To a large extent, without knowing it at the time, Mike Esposito was responsible for getting me into comic books as a little tike.

    He will be sorely missed.


    Steven G. Willis

  3. Lewis F. LaHaise

    I too was an Avengers fan. I am pushing 50 so remember waiting fondly for my ‘fix’ of Earth’s Mightiest heroes. Mike did not need need special ink and fancy paper to transport me someplace fantastic.

    • He came from the era when craft work trumped showmanship. Always solid, rather than flashy. So much of my childhood was spent with Mike Esposito, I was surprised how upset I was when I read of his passing.

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