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Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Arnold Drake, American comic book writer (Doom Patrol),died from pneumonia and septic shock he was 83

Arnold Drake [1][2] was an American comic book writer and screenwriter best known for co-creating  DC Comicscharacters Deadman and the Doom Patrol, and the Marvel Comics characters the Guardians of the Galaxy, among others.

(March 1, 1924 – March 12, 2007)
Drake was posthumously inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Famein 2008.

Arnold Drake was the third child of Max Druckman, a Manhattan furniture dealer who died in June 1966 at his home in Forest Hills, Queens, New York City,[3] and Pearl Cohen. His eldest brother, Ervin Drake, born Ervin Maurice Druckman, and the middle brother, Milton, both became notable songwriters.[4] His family was Jewish.[5]
At age 12, Drake contracted scarlet fever, confining him to bed for a year, a time he spent drawing his own comic stripcreations.[2] Years later, turning to writing, he studied journalism at the University of Missouri and later at New York University.[2]
Collaborating with co-writer Leslie Waller (together using the pseudonym Drake Waller) and artist Matt Baker, Drake wrote St. John Publications' pioneering It Rhymes with Lust, a proto-graphic novel comics magazine sold on newsstands in 1950.[6] At some unspecified point before or after this, he met a neighbor of one of his brothers: Bob Kane, the credited creator of Batmanfor one of DC Comics' precursor companies. After collaborating with Drake on some projects, Kane introduced Drake to editors at DC.[2]
Comic books during this time did not routinely list creator credits; historians have, however, pinpointed Drake's first DC work as the first seven pages of the eight-page Batman story "The Return of Mister Future" in Batman #98 (March 1956).[7] Soon, Drake was scripting stories across a variety of genres for DC, from adventure drama ("Fireman Farrell" in Showcase #1, April 1956) to humor (1960s stories for the company's Bob Hope and Jerry Lewis comics) to mystery and supernatural fiction (the anthology series House of Mystery) to science fiction (the feature "Tommy Tomorrow" in World's Finest Comics #102, June 1959, and elsewhere, and the feature "Space Ranger" in several issues of Tales of the Unexpected, to give a sampling).[8]

In the late 1960s, Drake freelanced for Marvel Comics, beginning with Captain Savage #5 (Aug. 1968), starring a World War IIMarines squadron; he would additionally script some later issues of that series, plus a single issue of the WWII series Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos. Drake wrote the run of X-Men #47–54 (Aug. 1968 – March 1969, co-writing his initial issue with Gary Friedrich), which included two rare circumstances of stories drawn but not written by the noted comics writer-artist Jim Steranko. Drake introduced several new characters to the series including Mesmero,[23] Lorna Dane,[24] and Havok.[25]Drake as well wrote issues of the space-alien superhero Captain Marvel, stories for the superhero satire comic Not Brand Echh, and a story of the jungle lord Ka-Zar. In Marvel Super-Heroes #18 (Jan. 1969), Drake and editor Stan Lee co-created the Guardians of the Galaxy,[26][27] a far-future team of freedom-fighters gathered from different planets of our solar system. The characters would star in a 62-issue series in the 1990s, and inspire a new team of that name in the 2000s.
By mid-1969, however, Drake had left Marvel. His next new comics work to be published was a supernatural anthology story in Gold Key Comics' Grimm's Ghost Stories #1 (Jan. 1972) – the first of many stories for that company, including for the series Boris Karloff Tales of Mystery, and the licensed TV-series titles Dark Shadows, Star Trek, and Twilight Zone, among others.[8]His Gold Key work included what comics historian Mark Evanier called "a particularly long and delightful stint on Little Lulu",[2]beginning with issue #232 (May 1976). In 1973, Drake began freelancing again for DC occasionally, writing stories for series as varied as Weird War Tales and Supergirl.[8] Beginning in 1977, Drake contributed stories to several issues of Charlton Comics' black-and-white satirical-humor magazine, Sick.
Drake contributed to all four issues of Starstream, a 68-page anthology series with cardboard covers that adapted classic science-fiction stories. That series was published by Whitman Comics, the rights-holder to several properties it licensed to Gold Key, and Drake would continue with Whitman when it began distributing Little Lulu and its other properties itself in 1980.[8] By 1981, Drake was executive director of the Veteran's Bedside Network, an organization through which actors, actresses and sound engineers would perform scripted material to entertain patients in Veterans Administration hospitals in the New York City area.[28]
Drake's last known original comics story for nearly 20 years was the six-page "G.I. Samurai" in DC's G.I. Combat #276 (April 1985). He resurfaced two decades later with the 12-page "Tripping Out!", illustrated by Luis Dominguez, in the mature-audience comics magazine Heavy Metal vol. 26, #6 (Jan. 2003). This story was accompanied by a one-page biography of the two creators.[8]
Drake wrote the foreword, introduction, preface and afterword of DC's 2002 hardcover reprint collection The Doom Patrol Archives #1. He was also working on a new Doom Patrol graphic novel, a prequel story, at the time of his death.[29] He as well wrote a five-page afterword, "The Graphic Novel – And How It Grew", in Dark Horse Books' March 2007 reprint of his and collaborators Leslie Waller and Matt Baker's pioneering, 1950 proto-graphic novel It Rhymes with Lust.[8]

Drake collapsed days after having attended the February 23–25, 2007 New York Comic Book Convention, where he had had, organizers said, "a touch of pneumonia".[2] Admitted to New York City's Cabrini Medical Center, he died of pneumonia and septic shock.[30]

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