Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Dwayne McDuffie February 20, 1962 – February 21, 2011

(I had a post queued up for this week, but somethings things change. -Scott)

One day after turning 49, industry icon Dwayne McDuffie passed away due to complications during surgery.

Known for his work in comics, tv, and animation, McDuffie was a long-time advocate for better representation of minorities. His work on the Justice League cartoon is beloved by fans of both tv and comics, and heralded as one of the great JLA stories of all time. The success of the cartoon is such that an entire generation of fans thinks of John Stewart as Green Lantern, not Hal or Kyle.

His influence in comics was equally profound. As one of the founders of Milestone Comics, McDuffie was instrumental in creating the character Static, who later got his own tv show, Static Shock.Through Milestone and Static, McDuffie used his career to introduce more diversity into comics; more people of color, more stories involving them, and better stories with them. This was a theme of McDuffie's work: diversity.

Besides his work on tv and with Milestone, McDuffie also wrote for Marvel and DC Comics, including the fan-favorite Damage Control.

Stories being told today speak of his generosity towards fans who'd approach him at con's, and the up-and-coming pro's who would reach out to him for advice. He was a creative icon with a passion and love of the characters that have entertained generations of comic fans. He leaves behind an industry full of those who'd benefited from his advice and his drive, and will be forever remembered as a trailblazer, in an industry that never has enough of them.

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