Carmine Infantino's passing away hits me the same way that Julie Schwartz's or Curt Swan's passing away hit me. These were giants among comic book creators, men who shaped my very childhood with their wonderful stories for DC Comics, and nobody has ever come along to supplant them from my memories.

I started reading comic books in 1966, so in some way I guess I missed being there for most of Infantino's long and classic run as a pencil artist for DC. He would be promoted to art director in 1967, and other than a few covers here and there, his art vanished from DC for a long time (though of course his presence was felt on every comic, whether as art director or his eventual ascension to publisher). But for that magical Go-Go Checks era of 1966-67, I got to enjoy a lot of Infantino's work on The Flash, which quickly became one of my favorite DC titles. (For some reason, I never really got into Batman or Detective in the Silver Age, even though the "Batman" TV show was directly responsible for me buying comics in the first place.)

Here are the front covers to my favorite Infantino Flash stories from that period. Coincidentally (or maybe not so coincidentally), they're the last three issues he did (until the 1980s, anyway). Rest in peace, Carmine Infantino.

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Yeah, it's easy to tell when you first started reading, as your favorites are just that much later than mine--although we probably are picking covers from when we were the same age. The team of Infantino and Anderson was hard to beat. The first and last of these were pretty iconic for me--that Flash-GL team-up was really exciting, both for the cover and the story inside, and I vividly remember getting it. The middle one I've come to think of as one of the great SA covers for the excellence of the design and the sheer goofiness of the concept and balloons.

This was a big one for me. My intro to the Flash.

That was a good intro! Lots of people got interested in comics through those annuals. They realized there was a lot of interesting history out there. And if we hadn't read the stories before, they were new to us--and 80 pages for a quarter was a good deal.

-- MSA

My first regular off-the-rack issue was Flash #111, so when I got this one it it was a great catch-up on all the featured rogues.


doc photo said:

This was a big one for me. My intro to the Flash.

...Did these Giants edit the stories as the 60s DC Justice Leagues did ?????????

  Of course , the League was dealing with a uniform book-length size , Flash was not...

doc photo said:

This was a big one for me. My intro to the Flash.

Even though the stories inside were usually lackluster at best (and usually drawn by Shelly "Bob Kane" Moldoff), Infantino's work on Batman covers during the mid 1960s was fabulous. A few of my favorites:

I'm seeing a trend here in that you like covers with a lot of type on them. I don't find those all that appealing. Of course, I'm not a big fan of the cover that Julie Schwartz said was his all-time favorite, either, so tastes can differ.

And, let's face it, there is NO newsstand dealer, much less a drugstore clerk, who would know without even looking that he had sold out of Batman comics on Earth-Prime. But I imagine if Batman lived here, he might remember that.

Wasn't it always a little weird that these real heroes had comic books about their adventures, especially if they were made up? That was mostly the Marvel Universe, but it still never quite made sense to me. But I did think it was pretty cool to see so many comics hanging on that newsstand that I actually bought!

-- MSA

...BTW , MSA , that cover was part of an odd middish 60s trendlet - " Comics that incorporated repros of comic covers , either on the cover or in the interior " .

Tended to register a bit better than Marvel's attempts at putting B&W photos inside of stories , anyway !!!!!!!!!

Mr. Silver Age said:

I'm seeing a trend here in that you like covers with a lot of type on them. I don't find those all that appealing. Of course, I'm not a big fan of the cover that Julie Schwartz said was his all-time favorite, either, so tastes can differ.

And, let's face it, there is NO newsstand dealer, much less a drugstore clerk, who would know without even looking that he had sold out of Batman comics on Earth-Prime. But I imagine if Batman lived here, he might remember that.

Wasn't it always a little weird that these real heroes had comic books about their adventures, especially if they were made up? That was mostly the Marvel Universe, but it still never quite made sense to me. But I did think it was pretty cool to see so many comics hanging on that newsstand that I actually bought!

-- MSA

The first story that I read in which I first really appreciated Infantino's art came WAY later than all of these:

But even later than that when I was able to get into his earlier Flash work I really dug this one:

It's easy to enjoy Infantino's Flash work, as that's what he's best known for. However, for me the great revelation was his Elongated Man stories. He was really allowed to let his inner absurdist out, and really put it to great use.

I'm not familiar with that Danger Trail, but it sounds promising with Infantino. Of course, it would've been better if they'd let him do the cover rather than giving it to Gulacy, especially since Infantino was no slouch at covers.

To even things out, here's one of Infantino's little known covers. He did a number of Plas covers after a round-robin of many other artists, but he didn't do the interiors.

-- MSA

So is this the answer to where the expression, "the mad mod" came from?

I always avoided reading comics with trick covers like that Flash "STOP: Don't Pass Up this Comic" gimmick. I 

always associated it with those billboards that say "SEX: Now that I've got your attention...." or "CAUGHT YOU...reading billboards again, aren't you?!"

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