Mike DeCarlo

Mike DeCarlo (born March 14, 1957)[1][2] is an American comics artist. He is best known for his work for DC Comics in the 1980s inking the artwork of such artists as George Pérez, Greg LaRocque, Keith Giffen, and Jim Aparo.

Mike DeCarlo
Atlanta Comic Con 2018 - Mike DeCarlo.jpg
DeCarlo in 2018
Born (1957-03-14) March 14, 1957 (age 63)
Notable works
"Batman: A Death in the Family"
Legion of Super-Heroes
Tales of the Teen Titans

DeCarlo has worked on such diverse titles as Atari Force, Cartoon Network Block Party, Crisis on Infinite Earths, Fantastic Four, and Simpsons Comics as well as adaptations of the Warner Bros. stable of cartoons including Looney Tunes, Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain and Superman & Bugs Bunny.


Mike DeCarlo entered the comics industry as an assistant to Dick Giordano.[3] When Giordano became an editor at DC Comics in 1980, DeCarlo became an inker in his own right.[4] DeCarlo inked the penciled artwork of George Pérez on "The Judas Contract" storyarc in Tales of the Teen Titans with Giordano.[5][6] Pérez critiqued their work in a 2003 interview stating that "While not perfect in getting the same feel [as Pérez inking the art himself], they were closer as far as the crispness that the characters needed."[7] He inked the Legion of Super-Heroes from 1986 to 1988[5] first with Greg LaRocque[8] and then briefly with Keith Giffen. As inker of the Batman comic book series, DeCarlo worked on several key storylines including the "Ten Nights of The Beast" which introduced the KGBeast; "A Death in the Family" which featured the death of the second Robin Jason Todd;[9] and "A Lonely Place of Dying" which saw Tim Drake become the third Robin.[5] In 2014, critic Greg Burgas of Comic Book Resources reviewed DeCarlo's inking of Jim Aparo's work on the final chapter of "Ten Nights of The Beast" commenting that "inkers who don’t add roughness to Aparo’s line work aren’t doing him any favors. DeCarlo is better than [Bill] Wray, but he still seems to keep Aparo’s work too smooth." He later adds that "I love the first image, with Batman and the Beast fighting in the sewer and the artists somehow putting their shadows on the wall. I don’t know if Aparo drew this in and then DeCarlo inked it, or if DeCarlo just inked it without the benefit of pencils. It’s quite cool, though."[10]

At Marvel Comics, DeCarlo inked Conan the Barbarian, NFL SuperPro, The Mighty Thor, and What The--?![5]

Bongo Comics Group's Radioactive Man series received an Eisner Award in 2002 for "Best Humor Publication" while DeCarlo was one of the artists.[11]

Role-playing gamesEdit

DeCarlo illustrated the covers to the DC Heroes role-playing game adventures Deadly Fusion (1990)[12]:46 and The Law of Darkness (1990).[12]:48 Other products in the game line that he drew include the Who's Who in the DC Universe Role-Playing Supplement 1 (1992) and the DC Heroes Role-Playing Game (3rd Edition, 1993).


  1. ^ Miller, John Jackson (June 10, 2005). "Comics Industry Birthdays". Comics Buyer's Guide. Iola, Wisconsin. Archived from the original on October 30, 2010.
  2. ^ Mike DeCarlo at INDUCKS
  3. ^ Eury, Michael (2003). Dick Giordano Changing Comics, One Day at a Time. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing. pp. 99–100. ISBN 978-1893905276. Assisting Dick as background inkers were protégés Mike DeCarlo...and Bill Collins
  4. ^ Eury, p. 105: "Mike DeCarlo, like Dick's assistants who preceded him, had graduated into the big leagues as a solo inker."
  5. ^ a b c d Mike DeCarlo at the Grand Comics Database
  6. ^ Flores, Mark (April 24, 2003). "Here they come to save the day, and us: Not all superheroes work alone. These teams give comics lovers something to cheer about", USA Today, p. D08.
  7. ^ Nolen-Weathington, Eric (2003). Modern Masters Volume 2: George Perez. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing. p. 39. ISBN 978-1893905252.
  8. ^ Schweier, Philip (October 2013). "Back to the Future: The Legion in the 1980s". Back Issue!. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing (68): 61.
  9. ^ Daniels, Les (1995). DC Comics: Sixty Years of the World's Favorite Comic Book Heroes. New York, New York: Bulfinch Press. p. 201. ISBN 0821220764. The four-part storyline, written by Jim Starlin with art by Jim Aparo and Mike DeCarlo, appeared in four issues of Batman under the title 'A Death in the Family' in 1988.
  10. ^ Burgas, Greg (January 24, 2014). "Year of the Artist, Day 24: Jim Aparo, Part 4 – Batman #420". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on August 21, 2014.
  11. ^ "2002 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards". Hahn Library Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on July 25, 2014. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  12. ^ a b Schick, Lawrence (1991). Heroic Worlds: A History and Guide to Role-Playing Games. Amherst, New York: Prometheus Books. ISBN 0-87975-653-5.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Omega Men inker
Succeeded by
Ricardo Villagran
Preceded by
Dick Giordano
Tales of the Teen Titans inker
Succeeded by
Romeo Tanghal
Preceded by
Larry Mahlstedt
Legion of Super-Heroes vol. 3 inker
Succeeded by
Al Gordon
Preceded by
David Mazzucchelli
Batman inker
Succeeded by
Dennis Janke
Preceded by
Steve Montano
The Mighty Thor inker
Succeeded by
Pat Olliffe