Posted in: Comics, DC Comics | Tagged: , ,

Comics Creators That Black Adam Credited – And Those They Missed Out

After looking at Paul Levitz's reactions to his own credit on the Black Adam movie – and the missing credit for the creator who resurrected and popularised Black Adam for DC Comics, E. Nelson Bridwell, I talked to a couple of folk, John Wells and Mike Tiefenbacher, about who got credited, why and why was missed out. John Wells posted the list they put together, for what the credits were for, which he has allowed Bleeding Cool to republish.

Comics Creators That Black Adam Credited - And Those They Missed Out
Black Adams movie credit screencap
  • Superman was created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, debuting in ACTION COMICS #1 (1939).
  • Gardner Fox and Dennis Neville created Hawkman (Carter Hall) for FLASH COMICS #1 (1939).
  • Bill Parker and C.C. Beck created Captain Marvel for WHIZ COMICS #2 (1939), the first in a family of marvels empowered by the wizard Shazam.
    Gardner Fox and Howard Sherman introduced Doctor Fate (Kent Nelson) in MORE FUN COMICS #55 (1940).
  • Bill O'Conner and Bernard "Ben" Flinton created the Atom (Al Pratt) for ALL-AMERICAN COMICS #19 (1940). In the 1980s, Roy Thomas established Pratt as the godfather of Terri Kurtzberger Rothstein and "Uncle Al" to her son Albert (a.k.a. Nuklon/Atom Smasher).
  • Sheldon Mayer created the Red Tornado, the alter ego of housewife Abigail Mathilda Hunkel, in ALL-AMERICAN #20 (1940). Geoff Johns later revealed that "Ma" Hunkel was the grandmother of Maxine Hunkel (a.k.a. Cyclone).
  • Otto Binder and Al Carreno created Sabbac (Timothy Carnes) for CAPTAIN MARVEL. JR. #4 and 6 (1943). A variation on Captain Marvel nemesis Ibac, Carnes was empowered by Satan, Any, Belial, Beezlebub, Asmodeus, and Craeteis. In WORLD'S FINEST #269 (1981), E. Nelson Bridwell and Don Newton revived Sabbac. Judd Winick and Tom Raney brought Sabbac back in OUTSIDERS #7 in 2004, establishing a new host (Ishmael Gregor) in issue #8 and new visuals that Geoff Johns and Gary Frank retained in the New 52 Shazam reboot (2012-2013) and which were used in the movie. In the film, Carreno, Bridwell, and Newton were left off the "special thanks" list.

Comics Creators That Black Adam Credited - And Those They Missed Out

  • Otto Binder and C.C. Beck created Black Adam, the first man empowered by the wizard Shazam, for MARVEL FAMILY #1 (1945). Adam died at the end of the story, but E. Nelson Bridwell used a preexisting device from the series to resurrect the character in SHAZAM! #28 (1976). Realizing that the classic Marvel Family pantheon didn't work for a 5000-year-old villain, Bridwell worked up a new sextet of Egyptian gods (Shu, Hersef, Amon, Zehuti, Anpu, Menthu) for Black Adam that was used in the movie. SHAZAM! #28's artist Kurt Schaffenberger received a "special thanks" but Bridwell, as noted, did not.

Comics Creators That Black Adam Credited - And Those They Missed Out

  • The Binder/Beck origin in MARVEL FAMILY #1 also introduced the Rock of Eternity, whose destruction in LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES #110 (1998) left enchanted shards of Eternium in its wake. Although Eternium was prominent in the movie, LSH creators Tom McCraw, Tom Peyer, and Scott Kolins were not thanked in the credits.
  • Bob Haney and Ramona Fradon introduced the ancient Ahk-Ton in hieroglyphics in Metamorpho's origin (THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD #57: 1964).
  • Mike W. Barr and Jim Aparo later featured Ahk-Ton as a villain in a time -travel story in BATMAN AND THE OUTSIDERS #17-18 (1984).
  • Jack Kirby created Intergang for his Fourth World books in 1970, starting with JIMMY OLSEN #133.
  • Roy Thomas, Jerry Ordway, and Mike Machlan introduced Nuklon (Al Rothstein) in ALL-STAR SQUADRON #25 (1986). Thomas (with Tom Mandrake) later introduced a new version of Black Adam in SHAZAM!: THE NEW BEGINNING #1-4 (1987) while Jerry Ordway included Black Adam in his own Captain Marvel origin retelling in the POWER OF SHAZAM graphic novel (1994) that led into his POS ongoing series (1995-1999).
  • John Ostrander, Len Wein, and John Byrne introduced Amanda Waller in LEGENDS #1 (1986).
  • Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis, and Kevin Maguire included Kent Nelson's Dr. Fate in 1987's JUSTICE LEAGUE #1-7. I suspect that someone was unaware that Marty Pasko and Walt Simonson introduced the concept of Nabu taking over Kent's body as Fate back in 1975's FIRST ISSUE SPECIAL #9. (Peter Svensson notes that Giffen, DeMatteis, and Maguire might also have been credited for creating Bialya in JL #2-3. Although not referenced in the final version of the movie, Bialya was prominent in the Kahndaq story in the 52 series.)
  • Paul Levitz and Joe Staton's story in ALL-STAR COMICS #74 (1978) was the first to mutually link Dr. Fate and Hawkman to ancient Egypt. JSA #21 (written by David Goyer and Geoff Johns) tied the two characters (as Nabu and Prince Khufu) to Teth-Adam. (Note that none of the ancient connections between Fate, Hawkman, and Adam made it into the movie.)
  • James Robinson and David Goyer wrote the story in which Al Rothstein became Atom Smasher (in 1999's JSA SECRET FILES #1, illustrated by Scott Benefiel). Alex Ross introduced a similar version of Atom Smasher earlier in KINGDOM COME (1996).
  • John Watson is thanked evidently because of Black Adam fighting Hawkman in the clouds on his cover for HAWKMAN #19 (2003). This begs the question, though, of why J.G. Jones didn't get a credit for the cover of 52 #45 (2007) that showed Black Adam sitting on an ancient throne in Kahndaq.

Comics Creators That Black Adam Credited - And Those They Missed Out

  • JSA #43-44 (2003), by Goyer & Johns and Leonard Kirk, established Ahk-Ton as an adversary of Teth-Adam. More significantly, the story also identified Adam's ancient homeland as Kahndaq and spurred his desire to protect it in the present day.
  • Rags Morales and Don Kramer drew the Geoff Johns-scripted 2004 JSA/HAWKMAN crossover wherein Black Adam seized control of Kahndaq. 52 #3 (2006) established Black Adam's enmity with Intergang and introduced Adrianna Tomaz, a homage to 1970s TV heroine Andrea Thomas/Isis.
  • The story was credited to the writing team of Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison, Greg Rucka, and Mark Waid, with art breakdowns by Keith Giffen and pencils by Joe Bennett. Adrianna's brother Amon debuted in 52 #23, with the same creator credits save for Drew Johnson replacing Joe Bennett. In the movie, Amon became Adrianna's son.
  • Osiris (Amon Tomaz) first appeared in a photograph with Black Adam in 2006's TEEN TITANS #38, by Geoff Johns and Carlos Ferreira.
    Maxine Hunkel/Cyclone debuted in JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA #1 (2007), by Geoff Johns and Dale Eaglesham. She was visually based in part on Alex Ross' female Red Tornado in KINGDOM COME (1996).
  • Peter Tomasi and Doug Mahnke did the 2007-2008 mini-series BLACK ADAM: THE DARK AGE. THE NEW 52 SPECIAL EDITION (for 2012's Free Comic Book Day) introduced the Shazam collective of ancient wizards. Geoff Johns and Jim Lee wrote it with art by Gene Ha, Ivan Reis, and Kenneth Rocafort. Reis was the artist who drew the pages with the wizards.
  • Geoff Johns and Gary Frank established the New 52 Black Adam origin as part of the Shazam! serial in JUSTICE LEAGUE #7-21 (2012-2013).
    2013's JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #7.4 (by Geoff Johns, Sterling Gates, and Edgar Salazar) included the pivotal scene where Adrianna Tomaz called out "Shazam" to resurrect Black Adam. The story also depicted a friend of Adrianna named Karim. In the movie, Karim was Adrianna's brother.
  • Rob Williams and Jim Lee created Emilia Harcourt for SUICIDE SQUAD #2 (2016).
  • Although he wasn't in the movie, Intergang leader Bruno Mannheim WAS in DC's BLACK ADAM prequel comics, suggesting he may have been in an earlier draft of the film. Mannheim was created by Jack Kirby in JIMMY OLSEN #139 (1971) and appeared a number of times in the early 1990s Superman titles. I'm guessing that something with Mannheim in back-to-back 1991 issues of ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN #486 (by Jerry Ordway and Tom Grummett) and ACTION COMICS #673 (by Roger Stern and Bob McLeod) figured into an earlier version of the script.
  • Likewise, the mention of Mart Nodell in the "special thanks" citations indicates that the Alan Scott incarnation of Green Lantern was referenced in an earlier version of the film. Bill Finger, crucial to developing the GL series, was not mentioned.

We have seen credits corrected between movie release and home video release, but there be room for a little wiggle here? The list was a pretty good one with a few notable exceptions. So there is a desire to get it right, which this list might speak to. It's generally not about money, although that would be nice, but respect and recognition for comic book creators and their families for work done, often in obscurity, many decades ago, that has suddenly come to the fore now.

Enjoyed this? Please share on social media!

Stay up-to-date and support the site by following Bleeding Cool on Google News today!

Rich JohnstonAbout Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
Comments will load 20 seconds after page. Click here to load them now.