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Comic Book Legends Revealed #240

Welcome to the two-hundred and fortieth in a series of examinations of comic book legends and whether they are true or false. Click here for an archive of the previous two hundred and thirty-nine.

Comic Book Legends Revealed is part of the larger Legends Revealed series, where I look into legends about the worlds of entertainment and sports, which you can check out here, at legendsrevealed.com. I’d especially recommend you check out this installment of Moive Legends Revealed where we see what movie tricks the director of Shane had to use to make it look like Jack Palance was mounting a horse!

Since it is New Year’s Eve, and most folks have better things to do today and tomorrow than read Comic Book Legends Revealed, Jonah and I talked it over, and you folks are going to get quite the New Year’s treat. The regular edition of Comic Book Legends Revealed will run this coming Monday (with another brand new installment at the regular time next week). Today will be a special edition of the column, featuring all “False” legends involving some of the stranger legend suggestions I have received over the years, all involving whether certain comic book professionals, well, exist!

Let’s begin!

COMIC LEGEND: Lynn Varley is a pseudonym of Frank Miller.

STATUS: False

Years ago, a reader sent the following suggestion:

What about the rumor that Lynn Varley is actually a pen name for Frank Miller? I’ve never been able to find out anything about Ms. Varley that isn’t connected to Miller’s work.

Has anyone else heard this and/or is able to dispute this with proof?

While I knew that this one was false, I mean, Ms. Varley won the Eisner Award for Best Colorist for her work on 300…

and her work on Elektra Lives Again…

and nominated for her work on Sin City…

– she’s pretty clearly a “real” person. Using a pseudonym once for an award nomination or win is possible, but winning multiple awards over many years? More than a little bit unlikely.

Also, Varley was married to Frank Miller – we’re to believe that Miller invented a wife?

In any event, even if you wish to be all “the awards mean nothing! It’s all still a ruse!,” my pal Johnny Bacardi rightfully pointed me in the direction of an old Comics Journal interview with Trevor Von Eeden where he talked about dating Varley before she dated Miller. That is pretty much the nail in the ol’ “is she a real person?” coffin.

Thanks, Johnny!

(NOTE: I had a photo of Varley from the Associated Press, but they appear to have totally botched their credits, and it was not Varley, but Miller’s current girlfriend, Kimberly Cox. I wonder how often they mis-credit people?)

COMIC LEGEND: Frank Quitely is a pseudonym of Grant Morrison.

STATUS: False

Reader Sandy wrote in recently to note that, apparently, because Frank Quitely’s name IS, in fact, a pseudonym, that there were rumors that it was a pseudonym for Grant Morrison, a noted creative partner with Quitely (Morrison DID draw comics at one point in his career).

In actuality, the name Frank Quitely came about when young Vincent Deighan began writing for the Scottish comic magazine, Electric Soup in 1990, while in his early 20s.

He drew a strip called The Greens, and in case the ribald humor would embarrass his family, he took on the fake name (a play on the phrase “quite frankly”).

Soon he got attention from 2000 AD in England, and in 1994, he began working for American comics, with his full comic book debut coming on the 1994 mini-series, Flex Mentallo.

That comic was written by Grant Morrison, and the pair would have a number of other notable collaborations over the years, from JLA: Earth 2…

to New X-Men…

to We3…

to All Star Superman…

to Batman and Robin…

Alternatively, my pal Dan told me that there were rumors back in the late 1980s that another Morrison collaborator, Chaz Truog, was ALSO a pseudonym for Morrison. Truog, though, is not even British! He was born in Minnesota!

And no, he is not a pseudonym for Grant Morrison. Check out his nifty website to read more about Truog, who is an interesting fellow!

COMIC LEGEND: AJ Lieberman is a pseudonym of John Byrne.

STATUS: I’m Going With False

This was a funny one, because at least in the other cases, there at least is some connection between the two people that, I dunno, at least SORT of explains why someone might think that there was something going going on with the two (Quitely being a pseudonym and working so much with Morrison, Varley working almost exclusively with Miller the past twenty years and not having a very public profile at all).

In the case of Andrew J. Lieberman and John Byrne, though, it was simply a case of “process of elimination” following a comment by Byrne.

A few years back, on his forum, John Byrne made a comment saying that he had been writing some comics for DC Comics under a different name. It appeared as though it was meant as a joke, but it was not plainly stated “this is a joke,” (which is how most jokes go – they tend not to include “Oh by the way, this is a joke” disclaimers) so soon, Byrne’s comment was translated into “John Byrne is definitively writing a comic for DC Comics under a different name – let’s find out who!”

And when everyone at DC was properly “eliminated,” AJ Lieberman was the only one “left standing” as he was a new writer at DC Comics that no one knew anything about, but he had become the writer of two titles, Harley Quinn and Batman: Gotham Knights.

So based solely on no one knowing him all that well (and his lack of interviews at the time), Lieberman was labeled as Byrne’s pseudonym.

Even as Lieberman later did Martian Manhunter, it continued…

I can’t say that Byrne was NOT writing for DC under a pseudonym, but I am just about 100% certain that Lieberman was not it.

I’ve read tons of interviews with Lieberman, and he specifically mentions about how he got into writing comics (before writing comics, Lieberman worked for MTV as a writer) and his experiences beginning comic book writing (specifically he talks about Harley Quinn as the first comic he ever wrote), and currently, he is working on a comic for Image called Cowboy Ninja Viking.

Besides the unlikely nature of Byrne keeping up a pseudonym for five years at two different comic book companies, Lieberman’s interviews would all have to specifically be him lying for this to be true, and I don’t buy it.

Not only that, but a reader noted that he had heard Lieberman interviewed on a podcast, and it sure did not sound like Byrne.

So while I suppose I can’t prove that it is not an extremely elaborate ruse by Byrne that has been carried on for five years, I think it is very safe to go with a “false” on this one.

Cowboy Ninja Viking is awesome, by the way.

Okay, that’s it for this year!

Thanks to the Grand Comic Book Database for this week’s covers! And thanks to Brandon Hanvey for the Comic Book Legends Revealed logo!

Feel free (heck, I implore you!) to write in with your suggestions for future installments! My e-mail address is cronb01@aol.com.

As you likely know by now, at the end of April, my book finally came out!

Here is the cover by artist Mickey Duzyj. I think he did a very nice job (click to enlarge)…

If you’d like to order it, you can use the following code if you’d like to send me a bit of a referral fee…

Was Superman a Spy?: And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed

See you next week!

Happy New Year, everybody!

86 Comments

I had no idea about any of these. Interesting stuff.

Lieberman’s run on Gotham Knights was when Hush appeared in every single issue for 2 years straight or something, wasn’t it? Man, those were not good comics.

I thought Quitely’s US debut was one of those one page strips in The Big Book of Urban Legends…

John Byrne is, in reality, Fabian Nicieza. YOU HEARD IT HERE FIRST

You talk about Byrne’s quote, but it would have nice to actually see what he said. (Assuming said quote hasn’t been erased by now.)

So tell us the truth – who is Brian Cronin, really? Clearly it’s a pseudonym for someone! Are you really John Byrne?!

Not that I ever thought Lynn Varley was actually Frank Miller but I don’t really see how being nominated for an award can be enough to confirm an identity. Do you have to send in a copy of your driver’s license when you submit your work for review at the Eisner’s?

Roderick Jaynes has been Oscar-nominated for his editing, hasn’t he?

…the pair would have a number of other notable collaborations over the years…

Don’t forget WE3! (Only Flex Mentallo was better, IMO)

That’s hilarious that someone actually believed that Morrison was frank Quietly.

For someone with that level of drawing ability to have even Morrison’s modest writing talent would be such a rare phenomenon that its ridiculous to imagine such a person wasting their talents on superhero comics.

Omar Karindu, with the power of SUPER-hypocrisy!

December 31, 2009 at 6:17 pm

I once suspected that Byrne was writing as Royal McGraw, who did some Batman fill-ins during the recent Paul Dini run of Detective, but apparently that’s not true either.

Grant Morrison is really Magneto. I thought everyone knew that.

From what i heard Morrison is a quite talented artist but having bumped into both at the same Glasgow comics mart in the 90’s where tey signed my Flex Mentallo copies i can safely say they are not the same person.

Unless Morrison hired somebody to play Quietly who could also draw in a similar style, a nefarious plot i could see Morrison trying.

@Corey Donald Kaufman was nominated for both an Oscar and a Golden Globe for co-writing the screenplay for “Adaptation” with his brother, Charlie. Neither of those nominations was hampered by his being completely fictitious. According to imdb, the brothers were told by the Academy that they would have to share a single statue if they happened to win. My guess is that it would be in Charlie’s house. :)

@Aaron, I never knew about the Donald/Charlie Kaufman thing. Pretty funny and great real life example of why I thought it seemed inconsequential to whether a person actually exists.

French comics blogger/artist Frantico is a pseudonym for Lewis Trondheim (which itself is a pseudonym, his real name is Laurent Chabosy). Currently he is working on a series named “Mega Krav Maga” with Mathieu Sapin (a real guy, I met him once):
http://www.megakravmaga.com/

Best,
Hunter (Pedro Bouça)

Holy shit, when did Frank Miller turn into Bob Dylan?

Brian,

I recently heard that Frank Miller is a pseudonym for Bob Dylan. Apparently he likes making comics as much as music. Any truth to that?

Ask Trevor Von Eeden if Lynn Varley is real…

Or you could ask Robert Loren Fleming, but he’s dead.

I agree with some of the posters above. While appearing in public is almost certainly a guarantee that the person is real, awards are less so. Remember when Stephen King invented Richard Bachman? To the point of hiring an actor to pose for a photograph which was in the inside back cover of the Bachman books. Kinda related to Varley, King even created a name for Bachman’s fictious wife. Of course, the ruse was eventually discovered. While i don’t really know why anyone would create a new name in the field of comics, i’m saying it could have happened, in a similar way to Bachman.

@Kevin B
Bob Dylan? I thought that was Leonard Cohen :)

@Busterchops

Maybe Cronin can tell us if Dylan and Cohen are one and the same. I mean, my iTunes registers at least one version of “Hallelujah” per each of them…

“While i don’t really know why anyone would create a new name in the field of comics”

The late great French writer Greg (Michel Regnier) used several pen names especially when he was an editor AND writing several comics at the same time (e.g. “Comanche”) because he didn’t want his name be credited to too many series.

Paul McCartney’s 1970s song “Magneto & Titanium Man” is actually about Bob Dylan, Stephen King, and their love of “Iron Man” comic books.

So Brian, how about finding out who Writer X, who did the The Brotherhood (of mutants) miniseries for Marvel years ago, really was? His/her identity was supposed to be a big reveal for later, but far as I know it was never given. (Probably because Brotherhood failed badly.) Have you covered this one already?

>While i don’t really know why anyone would create a new name in the field of comics<

Actually, that happenned quite a lot in the story of comics. Even back in the golden age, artists, writers and editors were coming up with fake aliases to bypass exclusivity contracts, hide their public identity from the shame of working in the supposedly "low-brow" comics industry or, in the case of editors, just pretend there was one big artist behind a title that was actually being written and draw by a whole bunch of people.

And that was not something that only happened here and there, in the fringes of the industry either. Some of the most famous names of comics worked under pseudonym. Like Gil Kane, Denny O´Neil, Steve Englehart, Gardner Fox, and The-God-of-things-comicky, Jack Kirby Himself.

Sorry, but that’s not a picture of Lynn Varley. According to the google searches I did, that’s someone by the name of Kimberly Cox. Alas, we still don’t know what Ms. Varley looks like.

Even Byrne doesn’t deserve the cruelty of being equated with Lieberman.

Hi Brian,

I was the one who suggested the Varley was a pen name for Miller. With the exception of Trevor Von Eden’s interview in the COMICS JOURNAL (as mentioned above), I have yet to find any conclusive proof that this woman exists. As a matter of fact, a friend of mine who is close with several longtime pals of Miller’s claim to have never met her despite their thirty plus years of friendship.

If Ms. Varley does exist, fantastic. If not, kudos Mr. Miller.

Happy New Year to all!

FuryOfFirestorm

January 1, 2010 at 11:53 am

Seems my hunch about Frank Quitely’s name was right! I always thought it sounded like a pen name, since it was a “spoonerism” of “quite frankly”. BTW, I’m not into his drawing style- everyone looks bloated, like they were stung by bees and had an allergic reaction.

I’m AJ Lieberman and so is my wife.

I certainly can’t offer anything definitive, but I do know Lynn Varley has done work completely unassociated with Miller when she worked for First Comics.

She coloured the first couple of issues of AMERICAN FLAGG! and a 2-part story in JON SABLE, FREELANCE. I’m assuming there were other credits too.

I can’t imagine MIller, if he and Varley were in fact one in the same, was taking on this work in addition to his other projects (which, at least when the SABLE issue was released) was the same time they were working on THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS…

Darn. I came to post the Donald Kaufman thing, too.

Anyways, I have a hard time believing that Lynn Varley (or anyone) would remain friends with Miller after seeing The Spirit.

@Esteban: Here’s another picture of Miller and Varley at the Spirit premiere. The AP identifies her as Lynn Varley. Don’t know where you saw the other caption but I think it’s safe to say that woman is Lynn Varley.

http://www.daylife.com/photo/0eQC0bebku5Sq

Also, apparently she has done more than coloring a couple of times, according to Comics.org. She did a couple of 2-page paintings in 300 #1 and also a pin-up in Sin City: Hell and Back #9. I don’t have either of these issues but apparently they weren’t included in the collected editions.

I’m confused…. Just because a woman has the name Lynn Varley, and has had a relationship with Frank Miller, does that mean she actually did the coloring for the pieces that were nominated for the awards? There is still no proof that Frank Miller isn’t the Lynn Varley that has been credited as a colorist.

I could have the name John Byrne, Frank Miller, or Grant Morrison, but that does not mean that I have ever written a published comic . I could say my name is Ethan Van Sciver, but I would be hard-pressed to prove it.

@rolly – if you apply that requirement, then there are hundreds of comic book creators who could just be posing as creators. The only way to truly prove it is to sit everyone down and have several eye witnesses and a camera capture them working on a comic, and then have art critics and specialists compare the work and somehow certify that is of consistent quality. And even then you could claim that they just faked it. Or paid everyone off to continue the scam. I suppose we could do DNA testing on original artwork and the creators. But I don’t really want to pay for that. And there’s probably a way to cheat those results too if you really tried hard enough.

There comes a time where you just have to take people’s word for it.

@Corey– Well, there are literally thousands of people who I am sure have witnessed John Byrne or any other famous artist at work, and have probably received their signature on artwork drawn by the artist while they were being watched. Such art is easily comparable to the works of others– I would not mistake John Byrne’s work for that of Darryl Banks or Ethan Van Sciver, for example. I have Mark Waid’s signature– while I have none of Mark’s scripts in hand or other samples of his handwriting to compare it to, I have no reason not to believe it is Mark’s. I am willing to take that at face value.

In Brian’s explanation, he states “While I knew this one was false…” and the evidence he provides is the photo of the two of them together to prove that Frank Miller is not Lynn Varley. But that dodges the question that forms the ‘legend’. The real question is whether or not Lynn Varley served as a pen name for Frank Miller. While Lynn Varley may exist apart from Frank Miller, Frank could have her name as a pseudonym (or, as an act of love, gave her the credit) while he actually did the coloring on the works in question. Since we do not typically see colorists at work, I don’t think many of us have samples of their coloring that would be useful in comparing them to prove or disprove the colorist’s identity. I do not doubt that she actually did the work, only that the evidence that has been provided to refute the legend was very weak, and the answer is not as simple as stated here.

I believe that Frank Miller and Frank Quitely are the same person, because they are both named Frank.

Oh, and Grant Morrison is really Jim Morrison… because we all know that the Lizard King is not really dead.

@rolly – It might be worth it to track down that Comics Journal interview with Lynn Varley mentioned earlier in this thread. I can see your point to an extent, and I agree that Brian has on occasion not quite laid out all the evidence before jumping to the conclusion. However, I think in this instance the conclusion is sound without some piece of evidence to raise a red flag.

Also, why do you have no reason to not believe Mark Waid is the originator of Mark Waid’s scripts, but you do for Lynn Varley’s work?

@SwanShadow – the Grant/Jim Morrison thing actually makes total sense.

@Corey I believe it is Mark Waid’s work because Mark gave it to me. At least it was someone who looks like the photos the convention used to tout his appearance. Maybe it wasn’t Mark, but the handwriting is the same as other Mark Waid signatures that I’ve seen, so I guess it’s safe to say it was Mark. I have not seen Lynn Varley in person, nor do I have her signature… For that matter, I don’t have Frank’s, Bob’s, or Leonard’s signatures either. For all I know, they could all be the same person.

@rolly – And how do I know that Mark Waid hasn’t just paid you off to vouch for him? And what does a signature have to do with anything? We all have signatures. Maybe the Mark Waid you met has someone else do all of his writing. Did you watch him type up a script? And on and on it goes. Eventually you either have to assume everyone is faking everything, or just give people the benefit of the doubt.

Without trying to perpetuate this ridiculous, the reason why I had initially inquired about this rumor is that after hearing it, I did a bit of research. Lynn Varley is a painter. A google search reveals neither a single example of her work outside of comics, nor a single mention of a gallery show. Until the recent COMICS JOURNAL interview with Trevor Von Eden who revealed that he dated her before she left him for Miller, I had never come across her name without a credit next to it.

Apparently, she exists as more than a pen name.

Let’s move on.

LIeberman is definitely not John Byrne. He did a podcast interview recently with Comic Geek Speak and sounds nothing like Byrne from podcast interviews I’ve heard with him.

@Corey: I don’t trust that AP Photo credit (if AP is in fact responsible for the text accompanying that photo on the daylife site). The woman is identified as Kimberly Cox on the Internet Movie Database (www.imdb.com), where her only acting credit is a small role in Sin City (as “Damsel in Distress”), and where she’s also shown as Frank Miller’s (apparently pregnant) date to the premier of the second X-Files film. I thought maybe Lynn Varley was now pursuing an acting career under a new name, but then I found this site:

http://arionhunter.livejournal.com/73602.html

which shows a photo of Miller with a different person identified as Varley *and* a later picture of him with Ms. Cox, and they’re obviously different people.
My guess is that Cox is Miller’s current girlfriend, following his divorce from Varley, and that whoever labeled those Spirit premier photos assumed it was Varley, not realizing that the two had divorced. Brian may want to rethink and revise this entry.

LIFE identifies her as Kimberly Cox at the X-Files premiere:
http://www.life.com/image/82050497

Roderick Kingsley is the pen name of the Hobgoblin.

Brian,

i know it´s not a “legend” because it´s a true story, but i’d love to read more details about Stan Lee working with french director Alain Resnais on a film called “The Monster”, that never got made. There´s so little about it on the internet.

@MWGallaher – you mentioned you found another picture of Miller with a different woman labeled as Varley. So THAT’S probably Varley.

@MWGallaher – you mentioned you found another picture of Miller with a different woman labeled as Varley. So THAT’S probably Varley.

Yeah, that makes sense, but really, with the Von Eeden stuff, I don’t think a photo is even necessary anymore, so I just dropped it all together (it IS pretty annoying that the AP miscredited her).

Yeah that does it too. Probably even better.

Unless Frank Miller paid off Von Eeden…

Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely are 2 aspects of the same entity, like some enormous, imperfect crystal when viewed from from different sides. Gee-eM and Eff-Qu appear separate in 4-dimentional spacetime but in reality are one.

RE: LIFE identifies her as Kimberly Cox at the X-Files premiere:
http://www.life.com/image/82050497

If the AP associated the name “Kimberly Cox” with the photo, then any media outlet on their distribution list is likely to print it as-is. Thus, one wrong name gets distributed multiple times.

Since IMBD is user-generated data, the wrong info could very easily be perpetuated.

It’s also possible that LIFE (or any media outlet) changed the name from what the AP provided, and IMDB picked up THAT error.

For a time I was certain that Dusty Abell was a pseudonym for Art Adams, largely based on Abell’s art work for Superman Annual #3 (the Armageddon 2001 crossover issue)
http://images2.wikia.nocookie.net/marvel_dc/images/d/db/Superman_Annual_Vol_2_3.jpg
You do have to admit his artwork at the time was very Adams influenced.

Oh man, I remember the “Dusty Abell is a pseudonym!” stories! I think it was mostly based on how “out of nowhere” he seemed to be, as he appeared way too talented for a guy barely in his 20s like Abell was back then (his youth was why he seemed so “out of nowhere,” as he effectively WAS coming “out of nowhere”!).

Quitely did some work for Marvel on their Marvel Masterpieces trading cards in the 90’s under the name Vince Deighan. I was recently looking through some of my old back issues and found the issues where they reprinted the cards in pinup form where they list him in the credits as Vince Deighan, but some of the paintings are signed Frank Quitely.

Daniel O' Dreams

January 3, 2010 at 10:50 am

THW said: “Grant Morrison is really Magneto. I thought everyone knew that.”

No no no, it was Grant’s identical twin brother POSING as Magneto. common mistake. He’s also A. J. Lieberman.

So, wait, was John Byrne writing DC Comics under a pen name or was it a joke? And if so, what was it?

And, while we’re at it, why did James Owsley become Christopher Priest?

Why did Joe Brozowski become J.J. Birch?

Is it true that Steve Gerber used a pseudonym to write children’s comics for Marvel after he was out of favor with the management after the Howard the Duck lawsuit?

Who’s Writer X (Brotherhood)?

Who’s J.D. Finn (Action Comics)?

Who’s Paul Scott (Brigade)?

Who’s Justin Thyme (Legion of Super-Heroes #50)?

Who am I? Who are you? Where am I? Hello?

So, wait, was John Byrne writing DC Comics under a pen name or was it a joke? And if so, what was it?

I dunno for sure, but I strongly lean towards “joke.”

Actually those are aliases for one person…
Frank Stallone.

I, too would love to know who Writer X was…

Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely are 2 aspects of the same entity, like some enormous, imperfect crystal when viewed from from different sides. Gee-eM and Eff-Qu appear separate in 4-dimentional spacetime but in reality are one.

Pack it in, boys. All has been revealed.

I believe Howard Mackie ( Spider-Man, Ghost Rider ) was revealed to be writer X on Brotherhood?

It’s a little known fact that ‘Grant Morrison’ is actually MY pseudonym. I’ve hired an actor to portray ‘Grant’ for the past twenty-odd years at various conventions and such. Our awkward ‘first’ meeting at the San Diego Comicon in 1990 was carefully rehearsed. Now it can be told!

Wilbur: Brozowski (sp?) “became” Birch, as Ostrander explained in the pages of Firestorm, because he was trying out a fairly different style and didn’t want to be associated with it if everyone hated it. That’s the official story, anyway. Maybe he was just on the lam!

I thought Writer X was Howard Mackie.
Lynn Varley won an award for Sin City? REALLY?
“Oh look, I put a spot of red just there”.
REALLY?

Actually, Quitely and Morrisson being the same person might explain why Quitely is such a slow artist, he has to write stuff AND draw it!

Wizard claimed Writer X was Catcher in the Rye author J. D. Salinger

I too thought the general consensus was X being Howard Mackie.

As to the Owsley to Priest name change, I remember hearing a story about it awhile back, and its the same one on wikipedia: that at one point he was carrying out a threat he had made at one point in his life to ‘become a priest’, but that this was said in jest and might not be true at all.

@David R: “Sin City: Hell and Back” features a lot of colour and the trade is on glossy paper.

It’s a big departure style-wise from earlier Sin City tales.

….It’s pretty much a done deal that Howard Mackie *has* to be “X”. The same “process of elimination” points to it, and we have to remember that a running gag in the columns of editor Mark Gruenwald was that Mackie was a mysterious figure whose face no one at Marvel had ever seen.

A couple years ago I did a search online for Lyn Varley and couldnt find anything about her. Could not find a picture and could not confirm that she really existed.

I actually started a Wiki page on her based on information that I found online, since then I have seen little snippets of info, like she was now divorced from Miller, BUT STILL CANNOT CONFIRM REASONABLY THAT SHE DOES EXIST !

I also through the process of elimination came to the conclusion that AJ Leiberman was John Byrne ……………. for about 10 seconds………….

Leiberman did not write like Byrne

I thought he might have been Royal McGraw but I found credits for McGraw elsewhere (in other media, I think)

Figured the old coot was just pulling our chain

all of you guys are actually me.

We’re all skirting around the one true answer to all these (and more) questions.
Every single person who ever created, what we call, a comic book is really the work of one person…

…Julius Schwartz.

And now, I must go and join Salman Rushdie in hiding.

“Roderick Jaynes has been Oscar-nominated for his editing, hasn’t he?”

Only twice. And the nominations were 10 years apart. Plus it’s common knowledge amongst editors that he’s a pseudonym.

“Wizard claimed Writer X was Catcher in the Rye author J. D. Salinger”

Now, that *has* to be a joke. Thomas Pynchon is more likely. But yeah, I guess Howard Mackie is your best bet.

@Dale:
As posted previously in the comments, there’s a picture of Varley at http://arionhunter.livejournal.com/73602.html . It’s a cute family picture, actually. Plus, it looks like they’ve adopted Jim Lee!

Joaquin S Terrones

January 4, 2010 at 6:26 am

Small error, Brian, Flex Mentallo was published in 1996.

“Some of the most famous names of comics worked under pseudonym.”

One big omission from that list. Stanley Martin Lieber got into writing comics as a young man, but was still planning to write a novel some day, and didn;t want his given name connected with comics, still cosidered “kid’s stuff” at the time. So he saved that name, and took the pseudonym…Stan Lee.

“And, while we’re at it, why did James Owsley become Christopher Priest?”

He’s never said. Like Jonah Hex and his face, he gives a different explanation every time. The two most popular is that he’d promised his mom he’d “Become a priest” and that he just rhought the name sounded “really cool”.

“Who’s Justin Thyme (Legion of Super-Heroes #50)?”

It sure as hell isn’t Jim Shooter. Brian’s actually hit this one before, but “Justin Thyme” is a punny (“Just in time”) pseudonym used for a book that had to be finished by committee due to deadline issues. So we may never know exactly who worked on that issue.

I wonder if anyone remembers the story behind Frederick R. Ewing, the author of the best-seller “I, Libertine”?

I found an audio interview with Jim Starlin who said that he used Lynn Varley as a model for a character in Dreadstar (it was an interview with the Sidebar podcast) ftw!

Please, mad!, Starlin is obviously just in on the scam, too! I bet the “character” she modeled for was just blank space in a background scene!

Next time I talk to Trevor Von Eeden, I ought to tell him about this whole “Is Lynn Varley a real person?” debate, just to find out his reaction :)

Lynn Varley is a real person. Matter of fact, she is a real nice person and a seriously talented artist in her own right. Put this to rest, please.

I heard that AJ Lieberman was a pseudonym for Chuck Austen.

I’ve actually met Lynn Varley, at a Wizard World event in Chicago in 1997, and have a collection of “The Complete Frank Miller Batman” signed by her (and Miller as well). She is very much a real person, and is actually one of the most pleasant comics professionals I’ve ever met.

[…] Originally Posted by khuxford If you search the web enough, you'll realize that means it was AJohn LieByrneman and Rossmo. If you search the web enough you'll find it probably wasn't. Comic Book Legends Revealed #240 | Comics Should Be Good! @ Comic Book Resources […]

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