Updated on 16 October, 2021
Image Comics has been a popular comic book publisher outside of the DC Universe for some time. In an effort to satisfy readers who do not and would rather not, Image Comics recently announced plans to wind down their long-running comic book line this year. It is unclear what the publisher is planning or if any of their existing superheroes will see the axe fall. Most importantly, though, Image Comics has not announced any new comic books as of yet. We'll have to wait and see if they ever do.
The reason I bring this up is that Image Comics has been one of the most successful and interesting comic book publishing companies on the planet since its founding in 1985. Image Comics was created by legendary writer/artist Bill Finger and his associate artist Jerry Seinfeld. The company initially published Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Incredibles, The Flash, and several other popular characters before launching their TV show, including Vampire Knight and Bridget Jones Diary. Their popularity soared when the company added some successful superhero television shows including supervamp characters The Shield and Smallville. The television show became a critical success and the company's stock increased more than tenfold in a short period. Not to mention, the television show spawned a feature film which went on to become one of the year's highest grossing movies.
Many of today's comic book creators got their start with Image Comics. Some notable names include creator John Constantine, co-writers Scott Lobster and Greg Ruckley, and artist Steve Jobs are currently working together. One of the earliest Image Comics creations is Peter Tomasi's "Kronos" story, which spun off from the popular comic Watchmen. Several other creators of both classic and modern comic books have also done extensive work for Image.
So, let's get started. Let's take a look at the early Image Comics characters we'll be focusing on here. One of the earliest Image Comics characters was Green Lantern, created by Robert Greenhouses and Bob Kane. In this comic, the Guardians of the Universe sent him to Earth to protect it from the villains. The character is known for his powerful shields and boots, which he uses to fight crime and give his city a heroic, "winning" spirit. This is one of the first appearances of a character named Green Lantern, which has grown into an iconic character.
One of the earliest creations of DC comics was Robin, a super-robot who was created by Todd McFarlane and Neil Gaiman. In the comic, he was a teenaged recruit in the Special Forces unit of the Green Lantern Corps. He was given a robotic body by the aliens called the Rogues, and he was later left alone on Earth without any technology or power of his own. He was befriended by a robot called Batroc, and together they worked to save the Earth from evil. The team of characters has been depicted as a rotating team ever since, and has developed several different relationships and friendship over the years.
One of the most beloved Image Comics characters of all time is Green Lantern, and his most famous role was as the protagonist in the hit TV show of that time, Smallville. In the TV show, he was a young aspiring planetary citizen who was chosen to pilot a space ship, the Larian, which was being launched as an invasion force to destroy the evil villains from the Green Lantern Corps. The TV show evolved into a TV movie series, a feature film, and then an animated series. A feature film written and directed by Guy Ritchie, titled Lantern, was released in 2021, which starred Nicholas Cage and Stafford Coppedge as the titular heroes.
The DC comic world has a lot of great characters including Dark Knight II's Wayne Shaneles, Firestorm, Aquaman, and the Green Lantern, John Stewart. These characters have all gone on to have their own spinoff series, some of which have been made into live action films. There has even been a few Image Comics crossovers between these established characters. The Batman Begins film featured older Batman, while the Dark Knight featured the younger version of the Dark Knight.
Mocking Bird, from the new hit animated film by Greg Berlanti and Mark Wahlberg, has also made a few cameo appearances in some of the DC comics. His appearance was, however, purely for marketing purposes, as no one actually saw anything in Mocking Bird. Various other characters from the DC Universe such as the Question,ropolis city villains, and a few from the Justice League have also made their way into some of the comics, as well. There are sure to be more characters from DC comics and the multimedia that will make their way into comics in the future.