R.I.P. Joe Simon

The comic book industry has lost another legend this week. Joe Simon, co-creator of Captain America passed away at age 98. Simon has had an incredibly influential career and is seen as one of the founding fathers of the comic book industry.  In the 1940’s Simon worked on the comic book companies, Timely which was the forerunner to Marvel, and National Periodicals, which later become DC. He is considered one of the most prolific writers of the “Golden Age” of comics and has created dozens of superheroes and villains.

Most famously he worked closely with legendary artist Jack Kirby and in 1940 the two of them created Captain America, who debuted in “Captain America Comics” 1 in December of that year.  The comic caught the public’s attention immediately due to the fact the cover had a picture of the Captain delivering a right-hook to Hitler, a year before the U.S. was in the war.

Simon later said, “Jack and I read the newspapers and knew what was going on over in Europe. And there he was — Adolf Hitler, with his ridiculous moustache, high-pitched ranting and goose-stepping followers. He was the perfect bad guy, much better than anything we could have made up, so what we needed was to create his ultimate counterpart.”

He also always kept his sense of humor. When recently talking about a character he and Kirby created called the Blue Bolt, he was quoted as saying, “Like Captain America, Blue Bolt got his powers from an injection, long before the baseball players were doing it.”

It is nice to note that in his waning years Simon got to see his beloved Captain America return to mass popularity in the American mind. In fact, with the recent push in movies, the Avengers have been outselling X-Men.

So there we have it, so long, Joe, you will be missed but your legacy will always remain.  That being said, we can only assume you passed away. You might have faked your own death to hide from your arch nemesis and are planning on reappearing a year from now to vanquish evil everywhere.


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