“I am Iron Man.”
This was Robert Downey JR’s line at the end of the Iron Man movie.
In the 70s… that line applied to George Tuska.
The Iron Man I grew up with was magnificently drawn by him..
It is during his run that I became an Iron Man fan.
But my favorite issue from his run had to be from issue # 78. An issue where Stark recalls how some weapon test went very wrong in Viet Nam.
Boy was that a great issue. I must have read it a thousand times. My copy of that comic is falling apart from my reading it wayyyyy too much.
It was also under his short Avengers run that I became a fan of Beast. I was not familiar with Beast until I saw him in the pages of the Avengers. Although later the title would be taken over by George Perez… it was Tuska who made me a fan not only of Beast… but of Yellow Jacket as well.
Loved those issues.
Sadly I don’t have that many comics drawn by Tuska.
Other then his Iron Man…. I have a few Avengers comics… A few Daredevil comics…. And probably an issue or two of some other series that I can’t recall right now.
Somehow… he seemed to be very under-appreciated as an artist.
Although in “The Great Comic Book Artist”, it is mentioned that “he has been too often at the mercy of inkers less talented then he.” That “To see Tuska at his best you have to look back to the forties”.
Sadly…. An inker can make or break a penciller’s work.
Often, Tuska was matched with inker Vince Colletta. Colletta for example would take an artist’s penciled work and bring it to his level. So if he took the work of some lesser artist… he would bring it up to his level. But if he took the work of a better artist… sadly he would take it down to his level.
George Tuska was one of the greats who somehow fell under the radar, which happens wayyyy too often to many great artists.
I really got a kick when Iron Man made an appearance in Spider-Girl, and Ron Frenz drew Iron Man as if George Tuska had drawn the character himself. It was like seeing the Iron Man of my younger years once more.
Ahhhh…. The memories.
But as long as we have Iron Man around…. We will have a little reminder of George Tuska…. Since for a decade or so….
He was Iron Man.
R.I.P. Geroger Tuska. 1916- 2009