1984 in comics
- The independent publishing boom continues, as Antarctic Press, Continuity Comics, Deluxe Comics, Matrix Graphic Series, and Renegade Press all enter the arena. (In addition, small press publisher Americomics changes its name to AC Comics.)
- Terry Nantier teams up with Chris Beall and Marc Minoustchine to form Nantier, Beall, Minoustchine (NBM Publishing).
- The ups-and-downs of the marketplace take their toll, as Gold Key Comics (also known as Whitman Comics), Capital Comics, JC Comics, Pacific Comics, and Spectrum Comics all cease publishing.
- The Marvel Comics imprint Epic Comics releases four new limited series (Six from Sirius, Timespirits, Crash Ryan, and The Sisterhood of Steel), solidifying the new publishing trend.
- Marvel Comics introduces its Star Comics imprint, licensed titles intended for young readers, with the three-issue limited series The Muppets Take Manhattan.
- Opening of the San Francisco-based Cartoon Art Museum.
- British writer Alan Moore takes over Swamp Thing at issue #20, a run which would turn the title around and set the foundations for Moore's career in American comics.
- "The Kid Who Collects Spider-Man," written by Roger Stern, with art by Ron Frenz and Terry Austin is published in The Amazing Spider-Man #248. (The story is later selected as one of the "Top 10 Spider-Man stories of all time" by Wizard magazine.)
- Shield-Steel Sterling, with issue #4, is re-titled Steel Sterling. (Red Circle Comics)
- World's Finest Comics #300: 52-page anniversary issue. (DC Comics)
- Nathaniel Dusk — #1 in a four-issue mini-series, by Don McGregor and Gene Colan, published by DC Comics.
- Archie Comics changes the name of its Red Circle Comics superhero imprint to Archie Adventure Series.
- New Teen Titans, with issue #41, becomes Tales of the Teen Titans. (DC Comics)
- Fantastic Four #265 — She-Hulk joins the Fantastic Four as a result of the Secret Wars
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, published by Mirage Studios, premiers at a comic book convention in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Originally conceived by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird as a one-off parody, the comic's popularity goes on to inspire four television series, numerous video games, five feature films, and a wide range of toys and merchandise.
- Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars debuts, written by Jim Shooter and published by Marvel Comics. Secret Wars is the first of a new breed of large crossover events which will become a staple of both Marvel and DC Comics publishing schedules from this point forward.
- Spider-Man's black costume first appears in The Amazing Spider-Man #252, after the character returns from the Secret Wars. The black costume eventually ties into the origin of the popular supervillain Venom.
- Savage Sword of Conan #100: "When a God Lives," by Michael Fleisher, John Buscema, and Ernie Chan.
- Capital Comics suspends publication; its titles Badger, Nexus, and Whisper are later acquired by First Comics.
- June 7: Jean van Hamme and William Vance's XIII makes its debut.
- Mister X #1, by Jaime, Gilbert, and Mario Hernandez, is published by Vortex Comics.
- Batman Special #1, Batman battles The Wrath, by Mike W. Barr and Michael Golden, published by DC.
- The Fury of Firestorm #24 features an insert previewing the upcoming Blue Devil series by writers Dan Mishkin and Gary Cohn and artist Paris Cullins.
- June 23: With issue #689, the British girls' comic Tammy ends its run, merging with Girl.
- June 30: Scream!, with issue #15, ends its run and merges with Eagle. (IPC Magazines)
- Six from Sirius — #1 in a four-issue mini-series, by Doug Moench and Paul Gulacy, published by Epic Comics.
- Steel Sterling, with issue #7, is cancelled by Archie Adventure Series.
- Pacific Comics goes into liquidation.
- Jemm, Son of Saturn — #1 in a 12-issue limited series, by Greg Potter, Gene Colan and Klaus Janson, published by DC Comics.
- The Mighty World of Marvel vol. 2, with issue #17, is cancelled by Marvel UK.
- Haunted, with issue #75, cancelled by Charlton.
- Superman #400: 68-page anniversary issue: "The Living Legends of Superman." (DC Comics)
- The Incredible Hulk #300: "Days of Rage!" by Bill Mantlo and Sal Buscema. (Marvel Comics)
- What If, with issue #47, is cancelled by Marvel.
- The West Coast Avengers — #1 in a four-issue mini-series, published by Marvel Comics. Writer: Roger Stern. Artists: Bob Hall and Brett Breeding.
- Timespirits — #1 in an eight-issue limited series, published by Epic Comics.
- Crash Ryan — #1 in a four-issue mini-series, published by Epic Comics.
- Original Shield, with issue #4, is cancelled by Archie Adventure Series.
- Ghostly Tales, with issue #169, cancelled by Charlton Comics.
- Scary Tales, with issue #46, cancelled by Charlton Comics.
- November 6: In Amsterdam the Dutch comics store Lambiek publishes a special Yiddish edition of Will Eisner's A Contract with God in the presence of Eisner himself.
- November 24: The Judge Dredd story "City of the Damned" begins its run in 2000 AD (the storyline runs through February 23, 1985).
- Wally Wood's T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents #1, published by Deluxe Comics, a revival of a superhero team originally published by Tower Comics until the late 1960s. The five published issues of this title feature some of the best artists of the era, including George Pérez, Dave Cockrum, Keith Giffen, Murphy Anderson, and Jerry Ordway.
- Kitty Pryde and Wolverine #1 in a six-issue mini-series, by Chris Claremont and Al Milgrom, published by Marvel Comics.
- The Muppets Take Manhattan #1 in a three-issue limited series, by Stan Kay, Dean Yeagle, and Jacqueline Roettcher, published by Star Comics.
- With issue #273, DC cancels Blackhawk volume 1, which ran from 1944 to 1968, 1976 to 1977, and was revived for the final time in 1982.
- Ghost Manor (vol. 2), with issue #77, cancelled by Charlton.
- Captain America #300: "Cap vs. The Red Skull — To the Death!" by J. M. DeMatteis, Paul Neary, and Dennis Janke.
- The Sisterhood of Steel — #1 in an eight-issue limited series, published by Epic Comics.
- Iceman — #1 in a four-issue limited series by J.M. DeMatteis, Alan Kupperberg, and Mike Gustovich; published by Marvel Comics.
- Blue Ribbon Comics, with issue #14, is cancelled by Archie Adventure Series.
- December 3: With issue #2103, Fleetway publishes the final issue of War Picture Library.
- January 13: Ray Moore, American comics artist (co-creator of The Phantom), dies at age 78 or 79.
- January 15: Tom Hickey, American illustrator and comics artist (Slapsie, worked for DC Comics, Dell Comics, Harvey Comics), dies at age 73.
- January 21: Phil Seuling, American organizer (founder of Comic Art Convention and Sea Gate Distributors) and voice actor (voice of one of the pig cops in Fritz the Cat), dies at age 50.
- January 31: K-Hito, Spanish caricaturist, animator, sports journalist, film producer, publisher and comics writer and artist (Gutiérrez, Macaco, Currinche, Don Turulato), dies at age 93 or 94.
- March 1: Carl Burgos, American comics artist (Human Torch), dies at age 67.
- March 15: Joseph Hughes Newton, American comics artist (Tullus), passes away at age 78.
- April 9: Lex Overeijnder, Dutch comics artist (continued Pinkie Pienter, created comic strip based on the TV show Fabeltjeskrant), passes away at age 53.
- May 2: Bob Clampett, American animator, puppeteer and cartoonist (Porky Pig, Daffy Duck, Tweety), dies at the age of 70.
- May 7: Robert Giordan, French comics artist and half of the Giordan Brothers (Franck Nevil, Tom Tempest, Les Francis, Bob Corton, Vigor and Thierry), dies at age 61.
- May 21: Ruben Moreira, Puerto Rican-American comics artist (Tarzan), dies at age 61.
- Specific date unknown: May: Al Hubbard, American animator and comics artist (Disney comics, Tom & Jerry comics, Walter Lantz comics, co-creator of Fethry Duck), dies at age 70 or 71.
- June 4: Sol Brodsky, American comics artist and Marvel Comics' production manager. Also known as Stan Lee's "right-hand man", passes away at age 61.
- June 12: Bill Wright, American comics artist (Disney comics), dies at age 66.
- June 28: Pete Costanza, American comics artist (Captain Marvel), passes away at age 71.
- July 24: Bob Heinz, German comics artist (Pif und Alf, Jan Maat, Jerry der lustige Cowboy, Basil der Kätzenkonig, Bob Evans), dies at age 61.
- July 28: Henk Kabos, Dutch comics artist (Tekko Taks), passes away at age 71.
- July 29: Fred Waring, American bandleader, musician and comics collector (the Fred Waring Comics collection ), dies at age 84.
- August 1: Howard Nostrand, American comics artist and illustrator (The comic strip based on the TV series Bat Masterson), dies at age 55.
- August 10: Virgil Partch, American cartoonist and comics artist (The Captain's Gig), dies at the age of 67 in a car accident, along with his wife.
- August 17: Bruno Premiani, Italian-American illustrator and comics artist (co-creator of Doom Patrol, worked on Tomahawk), dies at age 77.
- August 19: Don Newton, American comics artist (Batman, Captain Marvel), dies at age 49.
- August 21: Phil Seuling, American organizer of comic book fan conventions and father of the direct market, dies at age 50.
- August 28: Harry Lucey, American comics artist (Archie Comics), dies at age 70.
- September 12: Rein Stuurman, Dutch illustrator and comics artist (Bobbeltje de Maankabouter, Gerrit de Zwarte Kraai, Jantje Puk), passes away at the age of 83.
- September 25: Laverne Harding, American animator and comics artist (Walter Lantz, Hanna-Barbera, The Pink Panther), dies at age 78.
- November 14: Greg Irons, American underground cartoonist, animator, poster- and tattoo artist, is killed by a bus in Bangkok, Thailand, at age 37.
- November 30: Frans Mettes, Dutch illustrator, poster- and comics artist (Het Huis Aan 't Water), dies at age 75.
- Specific date unknown: Ben Oda, American comics letterer (EC Comics, DC Comics), dies at age 69.
- December 30: Mo Gollub, American comics artist (Disney comics, Hanna-Barbera), passes away at the age of 74.
- December 30: Al Avison, American comics artist (Captain America, Whizzer), dies at age 64.
Specific date unknownEdit
- Guy Brasseur, Belgian comics artist and teacher (Scampi), dies at age 43 or 44.
- Vittorio Cossio, Italian comics artist and animator (continued Furio Almirante, Raff), dies at age 72 or 73.
- Will Gould, American comics artist (Red Barry), passes away at age 72 or 73.
- Guglielmo Guastaveglia, Italian journalist and comics artist (early Italian Mickey Mouse comics), dies at age 94 or 95.
- Giovanni Manca, Italian comics artist (Pier Cloruro de' Lambicchi, Macarietto, Don Gradasso Sbudelloni, Tamarindo), dies at age 94 or 95.
- Creation Entertainment convention (Omni Hotel, Atlanta, Georgia) — guests include Walter Koenig, Butch Guice, and Bob Layton
- Spring: Atlanta Comics Festival (Atlanta, Georgia) — co-organized by Glenwood Distributors and Marvel Comics; featured the Jim Shooter Roast, with guests Jim Shooter, John Byrne, Bob Layton, Bob McLeod, Mark Gruenwald, and John Romita Jr.
- May 5: Portsmouth Mini-Con (Howard Johnson's, Portsmouth, New Hampshire ) — guests include Kevin Eastman & Peter Laird, and the debut of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
- June: Heroes Convention (Charlotte, North Carolina) — guest: Stan Lee
- June 2: London Comic Mart (Central Hall, Westminster, UK) — guests include John Ridgway, Gary Russell, and Richard Marson
- June 23–24: Colorado Comic Art Convention (Auraria Campus Student Center, Denver, Colorado) — guests include Bill Sienkiewicz, Joe Kubert, Ed Stein, and Drew Litton
- June 28–July 1: San Diego Comic-Con (Convention and Performing Arts Center and Hotel San Diego, San Diego, California) — 5,500 attendees; official guests: Greg Bear, Howard Chaykin, Stan Drake, Burne Hogarth, Greg Jein, Ollie Johnston, Bob Layton, Brant Parker, Marshall Rogers, Mike Royer, Robert Shayne, Dave Stevens, Curt Swan, Frank Thomas, and Al Williamson. The Con is held earlier than usual due to the Los Angeles Summer Olympics. Sergio Aragonés hosts the Masquerade.
- July 6–8: Chicago Comicon (Ramada O'Hare, Rosemont, Illinois) — convention moves from Chicago to northern suburb of Rosemont; c. 12,000 attendees
- July 6–8: Dallas Fantasy Fair (Dallas, Texas) — guests include Mike W. Barr, Kerry Gammill, Fred Saberhagen, Kenneth Smith, Jim Starlin, Roger Zelazny, and Philip José Farmer
- August 3–5: Atlanta Fantasy Fair (Omni Hotel & Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, Georgia) — 3-day membership: $25; official guests include Larry Niven, Forrest J Ackerman, Robert Bloch, Sharon Webb, Richard Pini, Peter Laird, Kevin Eastman, Fred Hembeck
- September 22–23: OrlandoCon (Orlando, Florida) — guests include Will Eisner
- September 23: King Kon Comic & Fantasy Convention (Eastern Michigan University McKenny Union, Ypsilanti, MI) — inaugural show; guests include Dave Sim, Bill Willingham, William Messner-Loebs, Fred Schiller, Mike Gustovich, Mike Vosberg, Keith Pollard, Bob McLeod, Jeff Dee, and Tom Morgan
- November: Mid-Ohio Con (Mansfield, Ohio)
- November 23–25: Creation '84 (Omni Park Central Hotel, New York City)
Presented in 1985 for comics published in 1984:
- Best New Title: Power Pack, written by Louise Simonson (Marvel Comics)
- Best Group Book: The New Teen Titans, written by Marv Wolfman (DC Comics)
- Best Character: Torquemada, from Nemesis the Warlock (2000 AD), by Pat Mills and Brian Talbot (Fleetway)
- Best UK Title: Warrior, edited by Dez Skinn (Quality Communications)
- Favourite Artist (UK): Alan Davis
- Roll of Honor: Steve Ditko
First issues by titleEdit
Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 3
- Release: August. Writer: Paul Levitz and Keith Giffen. Artists: Keith Giffen and Larry Mahlstedt.
New Teen Titans vol. 2
- Release: August. Editor: Carl Potts
- Release: September. Writers: Ralph Macchio and Bill Mantlo. Artists: Frank Springer and Kim DeMulder.
- Dragon Ball, by Akira Toriyama, first serialized on Weekly Shōnen Jump.
- Echo of Futurepast, by Continuity Comics
- Mister X, by Vortex Comics
- Mage: The Hero Discovered, by Comico Comics
- New Triumph, by Matrix Graphic Series
- Original Shield, by Archie Adventure Series
- Scream!, by IPC Magazines
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, by Mirage Studios
- Wally Wood's T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents #1, by Deluxe Comics
- Zero Patrol #1, by Continuity Comics
- Zot!, by Scott McCloud, published by Eclipse Comics
Initial appearances by character nameEdit
- Big Sir in The Flash #338 (October)
- Bizarra, in DC Comics Presents #71 (July)
- Blackbriar Thorn, in DC Comics Presents #66 (February)
- Blue Devil, in The Fury of Firestorm #24 (June)
- Bolt, in Blue Devil #06 (November)
- Crowbar, in Justice League of America #233 (December)
- Demolition Team, in Green Lantern #176 (May)
- Nathaniel Dusk, in Nathaniel Dusk #01 (February)
- Cynthia Reynolds, in Justice League of America Annual #02 (October)
- Javelin, in Green Lantern #173 (February)
- Jemm, in Jemm, Son of Saturn #01 (September)
- Jericho, in New Teen Titans #42 (May)
- Kid Devil in Firestorm #24 (June)
- Louise Lincoln, in The Fury of Firestorm #21 (March)
- Predator in Green Lantern #178 (July)
- Slipknot, in The Fury of Firestorm #28 (October)
- Felicity Smoak, in The Fury of Firestorm #23 (May)
- Steel, in Justice League of America Annual #02
- William Walsh in Tales of the Teen Titans #44 (July)
- Tezcatlipoca, in Wonder Woman #314 (April)
- Tsunami, in All-Star Squadron #33 (May)
- Vibe, in Justice League of America Annual #02
- Wrath, in Batman Special #1 (1984)
- Hardline in Justice League of America #233 (December)
- Windfall in Batman and the Outsiders #09 (April)
- Midnight in All-Star Squadron #31 (March)
- Red Torpedo in All-Star Squadron #31 (March)
- Geode in Batman and the Outsiders #09 (April)
- Overmaster in Justice League of America #233 (December)
- Barracuda in World's Finest #304 (June)
- Shockwave in Blue Devil #02 (July)
- Alan Welles in Vigilante #07 (June)
- Richard Raleigh in All-Star Squadron #33 (May)
- Paragon in Justice League of America #224 (March)
- Nathaniel Dusk in Nathaniel Dusk #01 (February)
- Major Victory in Batman and the Outsiders Annual #01 (September)
- NoMan in T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents #02 (January)
- Sparkler in Batman and the Outsiders Annual #01 (September)
- Lady Liberty in Batman and the Outsiders Annual #01 (September)
- Mayflower in Batman and the Outsiders Annual #01 (September)
- Silent Majority in Batman and the Outsiders Annual #01 (September)
- Neon the Unknown in All-Star Squadron #31 (March)
- Scyla in Sun Devils #01 (July)
- Aquarius (Zachary Drebb), in Iron Man #184 (July)
- Aries IV, in Iron Man #184 (July)
- Autobots, in The Transformers #1 (September)
- The Beyonder, in Secret Wars #1 (May)
- Lila Cheney, in New Mutants Annual #1
- Decepticons, in The Transformers #1 (September)
- Forge, in Uncanny X-Men #184 (August)
- Madison Jeffries, in Alpha Flight #16 (November)
- Amiko Kobayashi, in Uncanny X-Men #181 (May)
- Kurse (as the Dark Elf Algrim the Strong), Thor #347 (September)
- Leech, in Uncanny X-Men #179 (March)
- Magus, in New Mutants #18 (August)
- Ogun, in Kitty Pryde and Wolverine #1 (November)
- Power Pack, in Power Pack #1 (August)
- Puma, in The Amazing Spider-Man #256 (September)
- Nathaniel Richards, in Fantastic Four #272 (November)
- Rose, in The Amazing Spider-Man #253 (June)
- Sin, in Captain America #290 (February)
- Spider-Woman (Julia Carpenter), in Secret Wars #6 (October)
- Spot, in Spectacular Spider-Man #97 (December)
- Titania, in Secret Wars #3 (July)
- Venom (as the "alien costume"), in The Amazing Spider-Man #252 (May)
- Walrus, in Defenders #131 (May)
- Warlock, in New Mutants #18 (August)
- Warpath, in New Mutants #16 (June)
- Foot Clan, in Eastman and Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (May)
- Hamato Yoshi, in Eastman and Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (May)
- April O'Neil, in Eastman and Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (May)
- Shredder, in Eastman and Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (May)
- Splinter, in Eastman and Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (May)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, in Eastman and Laird's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (May)
- Bulma, in Dragon Ball Ch. 1 (Weekly Shōnen Jump December 3 issue, Shueisha)
- Chief Judge Fargo, in 2000 AD #377 (August 4 by IPC Media)
- Nightveil, in Nightveil #1 (AC Comics)
- Northguard, in New Triumph #1 (Matrix Graphic Series)
- Bucky O'Hare, in Echo of Futurepast #1 (Continuity Comics)
- Son Goku, in Dragon Ball Ch. 1 (Weekly Shōnen Jump December 3 issue, Shueisha)
- Zachary T. Paleozogt, in Zot! #1 (April by Eclipse Comics)
- NBM entry, Who's Who of American Comic Books, 1928–1999. Accessed Jan. 8, 2014.
- Tanner, Marcia. "Getting Serious About the Comics," San Francisco Chronicle (03 Feb 1993), p. 7/Z1.
- "William Vance".
- Manning, Matthew K. (2010). "1980s". In Dolan, Hannah (ed.). DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. Dorling Kindersley. p. 208. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9.
[A] sixteen-page preview story marked the debut of fledgling stuntman-turned-hero Blue Devil. An attempt to put the fun back into comics, writers Gary Cohn and Dan Mishkin and penciller Paris Cullins had Blue Devil face the machinations of Flash villain the Trickster in this lead-in to his own ongoing series.
- "Newswatch: Pacific Suspends Operations," The Comics Journal #93 (September 1984), pp. 8-10.
- Manning "1980s" in Dolan, p. 209 "The Man of Steel celebrated his 400th issue in star-studded fashion with the help of some of the comic industry's best and brightest...the issue also featured a visionary tale written and drawn by Jim Steranko, and an introduction by famous science-fiction author Ray Bradbury."
- "The History of Lambiek (1980-1985)".
- "Phil Seuling, father of the direct-sales Market, dies at age of 50," The Comics Journal #93 (September 1984), pp. 13-14.
- Carl Burgos at the Lambiek Comiclopedia
- Social Security Death Index, Social Security #130-26-6243.
- TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES exhibit description (May 3 – October 5, 2014) Archived January 4, 2016, at the Wayback Machine, Cartoon Art Museum website. Accessed Jan. 30, 2016.
- Phillips, Richard. "Weekend Tempo: The comics craze: Profit potential is a Lulu! Happenings: The comics craze could yield a Lulu of a profit," Chicago Tribune (06 July 1984), p. wc1.
- Wiater, Stanley & Bissette, Stephen R. (ed.s) Comic Book Rebels: Conversations with the Creators of the New Comics (Donald I. Fine, Inc. 1993) ISBN 1-55611-355-2
- Merrill, David. "The Atlanta Fantasy Fair," Archived 2015-05-19 at the Wayback Machine Drunken Catspaw (Jan. 2007). Accessed April 22, 2008
- Detroit Free Press (September 20, 1984), p. 189.
- Davis profile, Who's Who of American Comic Books, 1928–1999.
- Ditko profile, Who's Who of American Comics Books, 1928–1999.
- Manning "1980s" in Dolan, p. 208: "Utilizing the talents of writer Paul Levitz and artist Keith Giffen...the Legion was off and running in their own new title with a major new storyline."
- Manning "1980s" in Dolan, p. 209: "Featuring the trademark writing of Marv Wolfman and the art of George Pérez, this second incarnation was a success from the start, providing readers with the perfect blend of high-quality paper with high-quality storytelling."