Friday, July 29, 2016

The Champion

The Champion
by Doug Moench (story) and Dan Day
Special Studio, 1990

‘The Champion’ was completed in 1982 (Gene Day, who contributed to 'The Champion' and was the brother of Dan and David Day, all Canadian comics artists, died of a heart attack that same year). It wasn’t until three years later that it was published, in issue No. 33 of Marvel’s Epic Illustrated (December 1985). At the insistence of Epic Illustrated editor Archie Goodwin, the comic was shortened from 22 to 16 pages.

In 1990 Dan Day was able to have the entire story published in comic book format by Canadian publisher Special Studio.

Doug Moench's plot is overwrought and pretentious - in one panel, the external narration states that 'Molecules are disturbed' (?!) - but it's Day's artwork that really makes 'The Champion' one of the best comics of the 80s. 

Day's intricate pen- and- ink draftsmanship features some amazing shading and stippling effects, all this in the era before Photoshop:

Dan Day went on to pencil the Eclipse Comics series Aztec Ace, as well as the Cases of Sherlock Holmes series of comics for Canadian publishers Renegade / Northstar. Both series are well worth reading in order to further further acquainted with Day's artwork.

Posted below is 'The Champion' in its entirety.

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