Thursday, August 16, 2012

Shaking the Infantino Family Tree

Carmine Infantino is, of course, a legendary figure in the world of comic books. After getting his start drawing in the 1940s, Mr. Infantino made a big wave by drawing the 1956 revival of The Flash in Showcase #4 which is fairly universally regarded as the beginning of the Silver Age of comics. From the mid 1960s to the mid 1970s he served as the Editorial Director then Publisher of DC Comics (and so it was on his watch that Jack Kirby migrated to DC from Marvel and created his Fourth World comics). Then Mr. I settled back into drawing comics for another decade or so. It's difficult to dispute that Carmine Infantino has had a wonderful career in comics.

But do you know his younger brother also drew comic books? That's right! Before yesterday I had never heard of Jim Infantino, but then I read this paragraph about him in the Lambiek Comiclopedia.

To learn more I consulted the Grand Comics Database, which lists exactly seven stories drawn by Jim Infantino between 1949 and 1956. There are westerns and horror stories in the list, mostly done for Marvel/Atlas Comics. The GCD list is incomplete, though, because it does not include one or two titles that are mentioned in the Comiclopedia entry.

Whoops! Fasten your seatbelt! Memory realignment in progress! Now I realize that I did hear of Jim Infantino before yesterday, because I remember reading this article by Harry Mendryk when it was first published in his Simon and Kirby Blog three years ago. Harry wrote in that article that Jim I. was a studio assistant to Joe Simon and Jack Kirby and a vintage photo is displayed with Jim I. flanked by Jack Kirby and Ben Oda.

(By the way, if you search the internet for "Jim Infantino" the majority of your search results will be about a contemporary musician who lives in Boston. Unrelated? No! This gent is Carmine's nephew!)

Here is one sample of Jim Infantino artwork so you can add it to your database.


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