Tom Mandrake

Tom Mandrake (born 1956)[2] is an American comics artist, perhaps best known for his collaborations with writer John Ostrander on several series, including Grimjack (from First Comics) and Firestorm, The Spectre, and Martian Manhunter from DC Comics.[3]

Tom Mandrake
Mandrake at the East Coast Comicon
Born1956 (age 63–64)
Area(s)Writer, Penciller, Inker
Notable works
The Spectre
Martian Manhunter
AwardsDon Thompson Award, 1992, 1993[1]
Spouse(s)Jan Duursema
Official website

Early lifeEdit

Mandrake grew up as a fan of Marvel Comics of the 1960s, as well as painters of the Brandywine School, particularly Maxfield Parrish and Howard Pyle.[4] Together with his friend L.B. Kellogg, he created a fanzine titled First Flight while in high school.[5] Mandrake spent two years at Cleveland's Cooper School of Art,[4] and then two more years at The Kubert School, where he earned his degree.[2][5]


Mandrake began working for DC Comics where he drew backup stories for the Sgt. Rock title. In a 2001 interview, he recalled "finally landing my first real work, that was a two part story in DC's New Talent Showcase. Once again with my old buddy L.B. at the writers helm on our pirate epic 'Skydogs'."[5] For Marvel Comics, Mandrake provided finished art over layouts by Sal Buscema on the New Mutants title. Back at DC, he and writer Doug Moench created the Black Mask in Batman #386 (August 1985)[6][7] and the Film Freak in Batman #395 (May 1986).[8] Mandrake was one of the contributors to the DC Challenge limited series in 1986 after finishing his run on Batman.[9] In 1992, Mandrake and writer John Ostrander launched The Spectre series at DC Comics.[10] In issue #54 (June 1997), the creative team introduced the character Michael Holt as a new version of Mister Terrific.[11] Following the end of The Spectre series, they moved onto a Martian Manhunter series.[12] In 2001, he worked with writer Dan Mishkin on the short lived series Creeps and in 2006 on the children's book The Forest King: Woodlark's Shadow.[13] In 2007, a story-arc titled "Grotesk" reuniting Ostrander and Mandrake appeared in Batman issues 659-662.[3] An X-Files/30 Days of Night crossover in 2010 was drawn by Mandrake and co-written by 30 Days creator Steve Niles and Adam Jones, the guitarist for the band Tool.[14] Mandrake drew the DC Retroactive: Batman - The '70s one-shot (Sept. 2011)[15] and a revival of Marv Wolfman's Night Force series (May–Nov. 2012).[16] He collaborated with J. Michael Straczynski on the Sidekick series in 2013–2014.[17]

Mandrake with his wife, fellow comics artist Jan Duursema

Personal lifeEdit

Mandrake is married to fellow comic book artist Jan Duursema, whom he met while both were students at The Kubert School. Their wedding was held on the school's grounds.[5] The couple have a son, Jack Moses Mandrake,[18] and a daughter, Sian Mandrake,[19] who is also a Kubert School-trained comics illustrator.[20]


DC ComicsEdit

Eclipse ComicsEdit

First ComicsEdit

Image ComicsEdit

Marvel ComicsEdit


  1. ^ "Compuserve Comics and Animation Forum's Don Thompson Awards". Hahn Library Comic Book Awards Almanac. n.d. Archived from the original on February 12, 2012.
  2. ^ a b "Tom Mandrake". Lambiek Comiclopedia. 2012. Archived from the original on February 24, 2012. Retrieved February 23, 2012.
  3. ^ a b John Ostrander and Tom Mandrake collaborations at the Grand Comics Database
  4. ^ a b Bails, Jerry (n.d.). "Mandrake, Tom". Who's Who of American Comic Books, 1928-1999. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d Contino, Jennifer (2001). "Creepy Concepts". Sequential Tart. Archived from the original on March 11, 2012. Retrieved March 11, 2012.
  6. ^ Wallace, Dan (2008). "Black Mask". In Dougall, Alastair (ed.). The DC Comics Encyclopedia. London, United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. p. 52. ISBN 0-7566-4119-5.
  7. ^ Manning, Matthew K.; Dougall, Alastair, ed. (2014). "1980s". Batman: A Visual History. London, United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. p. 153. ISBN 978-1465424563. Writer Doug Moench and artist Tom Mandrake would make an important contribution to the Batman mythos with the villain Black Mask.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  8. ^ Manning "1980s" in Dougall (2014), p. 161: "In this start of a three-part story, writer Doug Moench and artist Tom Mandrake introduced the villain Film Freak."
  9. ^ Greenberger, Robert (August 2017). "It Sounded Like a Good Idea at the Time: A Look at the DC Challenge!". Back Issue!. Raleigh, North Carolina: TwoMorrows Publishing (98): 43.
  10. ^ Manning, Matthew K.; Dolan, Hannah, ed. (2010). "1990s". DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. London, United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. p. 255. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9. The crime fighter from beyond the grave, the Spectre, was back in a new series by writer John Ostrander and artist Tom Mandrake.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  11. ^ Manning "1990s" in Dolan, p. 279: The Spectre ongoing series was nearing its end, but that didn't stop writer John Ostrander and artist Tom Mandrake from pooling their creative forces to create one of the DCU's newest shining stars...An inspired and reborn [Michael] Holt then picked up the mantle of Mr. Terrific."
  12. ^ Manning "1990s" in Dolan, p. 285: "The fan-favorite team of writer John Ostrander and artist Tom Mandrake, fresh off their lengthy run on The Spectre, were ready to take on another caped powerhouse with Martian Manhunter.
  13. ^ Mishkin, Dan; Mandrake, Tom (2006). The Forest King: Woodlark's Shadow. Actionopolis/Komikwerks. pp. 101. ISBN 0-9742803-5-6.
  14. ^ Hudson, Laura (April 19, 2010). "'X-Files/30 Days of Night' Comic Book Crossover". ComicsAlliance. Archived from the original on March 11, 2012. Retrieved March 11, 2012.
  15. ^ Manning "2010s" in Dougall (2014), p. 319: "In this 1970s [tribute] issue, a new Terrible Trio was introduced that included Lucius Fox's son, Tim, thanks to writer Len Wein and artist Tom Mandrake."
  16. ^ Campbell, Josie (March 6, 2012). "Wolfman Revisits Baron Winters & Night Force". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on March 10, 2012. Retrieved March 10, 2012.
  17. ^ Dietsch, TJ (June 10, 2013). "Exclusive: JMS Explores Dark Side of Teenage Superheroing in Sidekick". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on October 15, 2013.
  18. ^ Duursema, Jan (January 5, 2017). "My son, Jack Mandrake, posted his first YouTube drawing video. Proud mom!". Twitter. Archived from the original on June 8, 2017.
  19. ^ Willis, Mark, ed. (2014). "Interview with Up and Coming Superstar....Sian Mandrake". The Independent Comic Book Review. Archived from the original on March 7, 2017. Retrieved April 16, 2017.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  20. ^ "Faculty: Sian Mandrake". The Kubert School. n.d. Archived from the original on March 18, 2017. Retrieved April 16, 2017.
  21. ^ Sullivan, Michael Patrick (March 10, 2008). "Riches, Grant and Mandrake Go To 'The Safest Place'". Comic Book Resources. Archived from the original on February 24, 2012. Retrieved February 23, 2012.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Bob McLeod
New Mutants inker
Succeeded by
Bill Sienkiewicz
Preceded by
Rick Hoberg
Batman artist
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Timothy Truman
Grimjack artist
Succeeded by
Flint Henry
Preceded by
Martian Manhunter artist
Succeeded by
Eduardo Barreto