Born on August 28, 1917, Jack Kirby taught himself to draw when he was a young boy in New York, taking the “Flash Gordon” newspaper comic strip and other sources as his inspirations. He enrolled in the prestigious Pratt Institute but dropped out on his first day, largely due to the financial strain of tuition on his family.

Kirby’s first job as a professional illustrator was as an in-betweener at the Max Fleisher studios, where he helped with “Popeye” cartoons. After working for Lincoln Newspaper Syndicate as a cartoonist and then for Victor Fox as a comic book illustrator, Kirby began drawing for Joe Simon at Timely Comics Company in 1941.

Timely had only two stars—the Human Torch and the Sub-Mariner. Simon and Kirby created a number of new characters, the most notable of which was Captain America. From there, Simon and Kirby went to work for the Detective Comics Company (known as DC), where they created “The Newsboy Legion” and “The Boy Commandos,” both of which fought the evil Axis powers in their adventures.

In the late 1950s, Kirby was doing much of his work for Marvel Comics. In 1961, with Marvel’s head writer and editor, Stan Lee, Kirby helped create the “Fantastic Four,” which inaugurated a new era of Marvel superheroes. In the years to come, Kirby helped illustrate and generate stories for “The Incredible Hulk,” “The Mighty Thor,” “The Avengers,” X-Men,” and more. Often Kirby’s role was to draw the first issue to get it off to a good start, and then let other artists at Marvel take over from there.

In 1970, Kirby resigned from Marvel and began working for National-DC comics as an artist, writer, and editor. At DC, Kirby helped generate the “Fourth World” series, spawning a whole new universe of modern mythology. Kirby returned to Marvel in 1975 but left for the last time in 1978. He passed away in 1994.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

What if Kirby

What if Kirby

Most comics websites focus on the colorful covers, and why not? But Tom Kraft’s homage to Jack Kirby takes the gr… [read review or visit site]

Cover Browser

Cover Browser

Philipp Lenssen's incredible archive of over 94,000 comic book covers - Wow! Wham! Yikes! Browse by title from the … [read review or visit site]

Doug Gilford’s Mad Cover Site

Doug Gilford’s Mad Cover Site

Doug Gilford's great Mad Magazine reference site features cover scans and reference information on every issue of t… [read review or visit site]

Jamie Coville's in-progress ode to the history of 20th century comic books. Start with his Newsstand Period Part 1 … [read review or visit site]

Popeye's Thimble Theatre

Popeye's Thimble Theatre

Bruce Shults takes us on a comprehensive Popeye fan tour, from the early comic strips to cartoons and collectible m… [read review or visit site]

Barnacle Press

Barnacle Press

This collection of obscure newspaper comic strips provides scans browsable by title, year and date. Showcases comic… [read review or visit site]

Other Great Reference Sites

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Recent News: Jack Kirby

Source: Google News

Raise A Glass Of Jack Kirby-Themed Beer To Benefit The Hero Initiative
ComicsAlliance, August 14th

I'm not really a beer drinker — I prefer my alcoholic beverages to be the sort of sugary concoctions that either involve a handful of fruit and a blender or about as much chocolate as your average donut — but if there's one thing that could get me to...Read more

Shmaltz hosting comic fundraiser honoring Marvel's Jack Kirby
Albany Times Union (blog), August 12th

KirbyAle_picture Shmaltz Brewing in Clifton Park will host a fundraiser honoring, and has created a beer in memory of, the late Jack “The King” Kirby, considered by many to be the co-creator (along with Stan Lee) of the Marvel Comics universe. The...Read more

Jack Kirby's Granddaughter Kicks Off 'Kirby4Heroes' Campaign
ComicsAlliance, August 8th

Now in its third year, the Kirby4Heroes campaign headed up by Jack Kirby's granddaughter, Jilian Kirby, is setting its sights a little higher. It's increasing its fundraising goal, which benefits comics creator non-profit group the Hero Initiative...Read more

Stolen Goods Report Filed Against The Jack Kirby Museum
Bleeding Cool News, August 7th

With Guardians of the Galaxy heating up in theatres, with scads of screen credits for just about every comic book creator who has ever worked on those characters EXCEPT Kirby, and the Supreme Court waffling on what to do with the Kirby vs. Marvel case ...Read more

Jack Kirby legacy: Kirby4Heroes aims to assist comic book creators
Los Angeles Times, August 6th

Two years ago, at the age of 16, Jillian Kirby began a campaign designed to honor the legacy of her late grandfather, Jack Kirby, the comics legend who created or co-created a host of iconic Marvel characters — Captain America, the Fantastic Four, X...Read more

Savage Dragon #200 Features A Jack Kirby Variant Cover, Blank Sketch Variant (blog), August 4th

The cover, which was sold as a print to benefit the Jack Kirby Museum back in 2013, is actually a repurposed piece of unused art featuring Captain America and Bucky, which Larsen inked, allowing him to replace Captain America's iconic costume with ...Read more

Jack Kirby is Getting His Own Beer! Proceeds Go To Charity.
Unleash The Fanboy, August 3rd

This August 28th, Jack Kirby would have turned 97 years old. To celebrate, my favorite charity, The Hero Initiative, has teamed with kosher beer makers Shmaltz Brewery to bring you a special edition “King Kirby Ale.” How cool is that? For those who...Read more

Jack Kirby Heirs Blast “Indefensible” Marvel Over SCOTUS Copyright Petition, July 29th

To quote the Thing from the Fantastic Four – “It's clobberin time!” Just two days after Jack Kirby was honored at Comic-Con, lawyers for the heirs of the comic legend have replied to Marvel and Disney with a pummeling brief filed at the Supreme Court...Read more