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Topic: Roy Thomas co-created Wolverine…? Post ReplyPost New Topic
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Gian Franco
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 11:11am | IP Logged | 1 post reply


What do you think? To be honest, if Roy Thomas defines himself as the co-creator of Wolverine, then Stan Lee definitely co-created the Silver Age Vision.
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Brian Miller
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 11:32am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

I agree with Mark Waid.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 11:37am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Marvel now assigns creator credit on the basis of involvement, no matter what the degree. Look up Alpha Flight and you will often find Chris Claremont and me listed as co-creators—and sometimes Chris as sole creator!—on the basis of Chis having been first to script them, and despite him having nothing to do with the actual development of the characters.

It’s a far cry from when I started at Marvel. Then it was policy to deny any creator credit, for fear it would imply ownership.

Creation in comics is often a drawn out, cumulative process. David Micheline and Todd Mcfarlane make some minor changes to an existing concept—mostly developed by Roger Stern—and claim creation of Venom. Roger himself is credited as creating Hobgoblin, tho the character is derived entirely from the Green Goblin.

It’s something parallel to my complaints when someone adapting an existing character to another medium is credited as “creator”.

And as for Wolverine—remember that Len’s concept was for an eighteen year old with claws that telescoped out of his gloves. And he disagreed quite strongly with how Dave and Chris developed the character.

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Gian Franco
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 11:46am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Yeah, but at the time Roy Thomas was the EiC… he was paid to help the creators develop their creations, just like Stan Lee himself did during the 60s (for example with the Vision). He didn't worked on those Incredible Hulk issues as a writer, am I right?

Also, Marvel Studios won't credit Herb Trimpe as a co-creator, despite he technically illustrated Wolverine's first appearances (using, obviously, John Romita Sr.'s character design)
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John Byrne
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 11:55am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Herb didn’t create Wolverine. He drew him first, in the comic, but he was handed the whole character as a fait accompli.
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Gian Franco
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 12:01pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

I know, I mentioned him just because “Marvel now assigns creator credit on the basis of involvement”… and Herb Trimpe clearly was there.

However, to me writers or artists deserve that credit only when they really contribute to create a character. When I think about the Alpha Flight, the first name that comes up in my mind is only yours. So is with Jack Kirby and Silver Surfer.
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Jim Petersman
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 2:12pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Hey! I read those issues. Without readers, those characters would never have taken off. Where's my cut?
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Craig Earl
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 4:17pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

It's an interesting debate, one which makes me think of instances where characters peaked (and changed) under the direction of others who had nothing to do with their creation.

Certainly, at least for me, the X-Men (and particularly Wolverine) were never better than with JB's involvement, while MIchelinie and Layton breathed life into an Iron Man that had become stale. 

Likewise, as much as I love Daredevil's early adventures, Frank Miller took DD to a whole new level, while another that springs to mind is Captain Britain; pretty two-dimensional and uninteresting until Moore and Davis got hold of him.

Creators should always be acknowledged, but those involved in a character's development surely deserve credit (and criticism too, if they mismanage the potential).
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ron bailey
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 5:18pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

This debate is one of the reasons I was so thrilled at the time to see the debuts of properties like Next Men, Hellboy and Sin City. Great original characters and stories from whom there could be argument about credit/creation/ownership, and most importantly to fans (you would think) pure vision. 
Pretty much the comic book version of the Trudeaus, Breatheds, Shulzes and Wattersons. 
No more taking the credit for the good stuff and blaming the others for the bad. 
I've been educated on why those properties didn't survive the market, but nevertheless it was a glimmer of hope for what was possible.
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Rebecca Jansen
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 5:47pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

"Without an audience there just ain't no show." - Rain-O by the group Chilliwack.
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James Woodcock
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 5:54pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

As mentioned by JB above, my main grievance in all these things is when
someone takes an existing property, adapts it to tv or film, & gets listed as
sole creator.
The Daredevil argument when the showrunner left after the first episode,
yet still fought for, and got creator credit was the pinnacle of this in my
eyes.
He didn’t create that show. He adapted someone else’s creation, & it should
be listed as such.
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Eric Jansen
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Posted: 31 March 2024 at 6:05pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

I recently watched a YouTube interview with Roy Thomas and somewhere in answering a question, Roy mentions that he wished he had taken Len Wein off that particular issue of THE INCREDIBLE HULK and just wrote the thing himself (as he was the series writer not too long before--twice I believe).  It was not a credit grab, it was more like "Oh well, that's the way it goes."

The Bleeding Cool article really downplays his involvement, but the interview (and this was the first I'd heard of it) has Roy saying he came up with the name, nationality, stature, and attitude of the character and basically assigned Len to write a story with this character.  He was just being matter-of-fact about it.

I think it comes down to--if Len Wein were replaced on that issue, there would still be a Wolverine at Marvel.  If you remove Roy Thomas from the equation, there would be NO Wolverine!  Sure, leave the editor out of things where he just makes suggestions or otherwise "just does his job," but this seems more like "I came up with this idea, write a story about it."  I'm more than okay with Roy getting co-credit.

Now, Dave Cockrum came up with his face beneath the mask and the face has become the de facto "costume" (or design) of the character across the world thanks to the movies (and some cartoons and products).  I would give him credit too.
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