There’s little question that we comic book fans love visual storytelling. It’s why we read comic books and watch blockbuster movies, sometimes even at the same time. (We once tried to read WATCHMEN while watching the Matrix trilogy. Yeah… Let’s just say that it was a long time before we could look at a plate of calamari without screaming and running away in terror.)
We’re pretty sure that there are no cephalopods drawing comics for DC, though it does seem like our artists have more than two arms at times considering how quickly they can turn out pages. Utilizing their pencils and err…ink, they bring to life breathtaking images of action, heart-felt emotion and general jaw-dropping awesomeness month after month in the pages of books like Justice League, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, Superman and more.
The Batman family of titles already has its fair share of talented artists—from Greg Capullo and Jay Fabok to J.H. Williams III, Patrick Gleason and Chris Burnham. But as far as we’re concerned, there’s always room for one more when it comes to mega-talented artists, and with the release of yesterday’s BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT #16, another penciling superstar arrived in Gotham City: Ethan Van Sciver!
As is our tradition whenever this happens, we quickly photocopied every page of the issue and used them to wallpaper our living room. But since it’s only a matter of time before our roommate tears them down (the guy clearly has no appreciation for good interior design), we thought a much better way to celebrate was to take a look back at his previous work in the DCU to bring you the 5.2 Reasons We Love Ethan Van Sciver!
1. Green Lantern: Rebirth
There are a lot of reasons to praise the Geoff Johns-penned six-issue limited series GREEN LANTERN: REBIRTH. Not the least of which is that it reinstated veteran Lantern Hal Jordan into the Corps and kicked off Johns’ near decade-long tenure with the character. However, one of the coolest moments came in this spread, which illustrated the various ways each Lantern uses his ring, intricately detailed every step of the way by Van Sciver.
2. Batman/Catwoman: Trail of the Gun
Those looking for an early taste of Van Sciver’s Dark Knight should look no further than this two-issue limited series written by Ann Nocenti (currently of Catwoman and soon Katana fame). From the cover of the first issue alone, you see what makes Van Sciver such a great artist: he not only draws an incredible Selina Kyle and Dark Knight but also takes the time to add details that really bring the image to life. Van Sciver not only rendered the individual strands of Catwoman’s hair and the grip of the gun but also made sure to detail every dead body. That’s the type of meticulous detail even Batman would give a respectful nod toward.
3. Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps Special #1
Everything. Everything about this opening shot (literally) to the Sinestro Corps War that ran through the Green Lantern titles was amazing. Like this aforementioned moment:
Or this chilling scene:
And especially that geekily giddy moment at the end that we don’t want to spoil for you!
4. Flash: Rebirth
The dream-team of Johns and Van Sciver reunited once more to momentarily slip off their Lantern Corps rings and go for a run in the Speed Force for the six-issue FLASH: REBIRTH. The series featured every member of the Flash family and Van Sciver even got to redesign a number of their costumes.
5. Green Lantern Annual #1
Johns and Van Sciver previously heralded big changes to the Green Lantern Universe with both Green Lantern: Rebirth and with the Sinestro Corps Special. That tradition continued most recently with the GREEN LANTERN ANNUAL #1, which saw the Guardians of the Universe going completely cuckoo for cocoa puffs insane, the shocking death of both Hal Jordan and Sinestro, and the Rise of the Third Army.
5.1 This Double Page Spread
5.2 His First Arc Ventures into the Mad World of the Mad Hatter
We’re all of a sudden craving seafood, but while we’re out, be sure to let us know which Ethan Van Sciver comics are your favorites. And what did you think of his debut on Batman: The Dark Knight?