To say that Rob Liefeld is a controversial figure in the comic industry is something of an understatement. Is it possible to appreciate the work of a guy who can't draw feet?
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I like Rob Liefeld' style. Its unique, its innovative. In his prime, there was Todd McFarlane, Jim Lee, a bunch of guys who tried to draw like Jim Lee, and Rob Liefeld. He was a fusion artist before susion art was a thing in comics. He's an acquired taste, but his work does pop off the page.
Rob Liefeld created Deadpool, Cable, and Domino. He didn't inject them with the personality that other writers gave them, but he did come up with their base design and concept which other artists and writers could take and go wild with.
Other characters that aren't too bad include Overtkill and Chapel, who both served as cool villains for Todd MacFarlane's Spawn. In fact, Chapel, who was a member of Rob Liefeld's flagship superhero team, Youngblood, was the one who actually killed Al Simmons, which caused Al Simmons to go to Hell and become Spawn, which makes a Chapel a pretty important character in the grand scheme of that story. Here's an awesome scene from the Spawn Animated Series.
Rob is allegedly a really nice guy and works amazingly well with others. There was one instance where Rob Liefeld had to leave Image, possibly due to the Valiant Comics Crossover disaster that was "Deathmate." He took his properties like Youngblood and Supreme with him, and founded Awesome Entertainment, but his comics weren't selling. So one day, Alan Moore stopped by and agreed to write for him. Allegedly Moore dropped acid and talked to ghosts, and then he got to writing an arc for Youngblood called "Judgment Day" and another arc for Supreme that reinvented the character. I read Judgement Day, and I attest that it is a quality arc that starts out as a murder mystery, and then becomes a generation spanning legacy story told with pastiches of adventure genre comic book characters. By the end of Judgement Day, Moore introduces some fun characters to the Youngblood roster, including a Dada artist, and a gadgeteer genius girl. Supreme, I have not read, but heard it won an Eisner award, which is the comic equivalent of an Oscar. One thing that is really true about him, that even he said of himself, that despite having a lack of skill and wit, he does have a lot of imagination. Other writers have described his characters as cool looking toys that they can play with, which is an apt description. In a way I would say he's a little more like George Lucas than Michael Bay, just with a lot less OCD and the ability to hand criticism.
It's not his fault that he is not a good artist, nor that he gets to do comics with poor quality art. He legitimately lacked formal training, and his original position was as an inker for Hawk & Dove at DC. The original artist for Hawk & Dove durning his run as its inker was sick or something, and could not do the artwork for an issue, so he had to step up as a then temporary replacement for the artist who wasn't available. When he took over, he depicted the characters as significantly more muscular, and people dug the change in art, probably due to it looking kind of fresh, and the issue he worked on sold significantly better than usual, cementing his position as an artist(but with no formal training).
Is it okay to like Rob Liefeld, yes because it's personal opinion hell I collect a lot of his work simply because of his infamous reputation of being the Ed Wood of Comic Books. No being the co-creator of Deadpool and Cable doesn't excuse his behavior or from being criticized
The Kennedy Cartoons of comics, for those who don't know it was an animation studio from Canada that is best known for their work on Tiny Toon Adventures, in those episodes compared to the other studios the characters were extremely stretchy and bouncy, frequently off model, and often recycled the same quirks over and over such as dancing in a way that involves kicking their feet up and down and side to side, sticking their fingers in the air, and often doing the "ooh" mouth.
I like him.
He's not the best artist, but so what. Kinda was the flagship of what's now loosely called "Fusion" and it'll become a nostalgic style over time.
IMO most of the hate is pure jealousy - he was the kid who showed his portfolio to "Joe Pro" and got hired then went superstar. Versus the earlier generation of comic artists being from the "Liberal Arts degrees are dime a dozen" Hippie era and having to have credentials even though "Real" college wants you to spatter blaphemy with feces and you can get an advanced art degree and not draw a stick figure then if lucky enough to be hired to lettering or inking for 10 years first.
Cool comic to look up - the "Lob Convention Special" - full of refs to Rob. Including the "Show your portfolio to a Pro" - where they thought Lobo was Simon Bisley - get that joke? And, well Lobo's behavior is (feeling at least) how it turns out for most fan artists meeting joe pro...
I 100% agree with everything you said, man. I consider him a guilty pleasure. His art is something nostalgic from my childhood. Is it good, objectively? No. But, it makes me smile and brings back what I loved about comics as a kid. I wish we had more creators that actually loved comics, rather than using them as a vehicle to push a social agenda... ::glares@Marvel::
I definitely respect rob leifeld, however I don’t think he’s a great artist or writer. I mean the dude created some of the most popular comic book characters of all time. I mean the dude made Deadpool. DEADPOOL. Gotta respect that.
I became a comics fan in the 80s, during junior high and high school. Then I went away from it. Then in the early 90s I remembered them and went to a local comic shop to see what's going on. I browsed several different copies of whatever was current at the time. I saw a lot of what I later learned was Leifeld and Leifeld-inspired work, and immediately said "nope". It took me another ten years or so to take another look, and start catching up on the stuff that wasn't too 90s-looking. Today's comics are largely very very bad, with some exceptions here and there. Can we go back to the 70s and 80s yet??
While prefer artists like Jim Lee, I dont think rob is a bad artist at all...I mean hes better than me, and better than a lot of other people. So how can I call that bad. Do I think hes as good as Jim lee? No. But I cant call his art bad, when I cant come close to it.
There is a middle ground actually. I went from an edgy preteen who loved Rob Liefeld to a cynical young adult who thought he was a hack, to a middle aged man who thinks his work is amateurish but has value.
I actually got to meet Rob Liefeld at a con recently, and in all honesty he's a really cool dude. He's excellent to his fans and as you mentioned offers some truely fascinating insight into the comic book industry as a whole. He is a douche but he's the kind of douche you love.
Rob Liefeld used Aids and Suicide as a major plot line for his character Chapel. Rob is an overrated hack. He has no originality and he is a bit of a homophobe. His storylines have consistently been crape and his art work isn't even juvenile.
I have never understood why he has a following other then because of the Bro code.
And lets not forget he has a history of screwing and exploiting his employees.
This really shouldn't be an issue or a debate. Rob signifies everything that is wrong with comic books.
I agree! I've never hated Rob's art or loved it, but i never knew he was this hated.
I think he was just a product of his time, because in the 80s and 90s, when he was very popular, big guns, and big muscles was what was popular. So it's easy to forget where Rob Liefeld was coming from...Or he's just a bad artist, who knows.
I gotta say, I read the shit out of some Liefeld Marvel & Image books back in the days.
I also own every X-Force issue he ever made.
I can't say shit about the guy.
But, yeah... that's not what feet look like 🤔
While he is not a very good artist, that infamous drawing of Captain America and any of his drawings of feet make me laugh and actually make me feel better when I am in a bad mood. Also I have to admire the guy because if it wasn’t for him we wouldn’t have the likes of Deadpool, Domino, or Cable. So while I wouldn’t call myself a fan of the guy, I don’t hate him and I have to thank him for his contributions to the industry too.
The only reason his comics were well sold is because he was in the right place at the right time. The industry in the 90s changed drastically after Watchmen and TDKR. Everything had to be edgy, dark and sexualized. That's exactly what Rob's art is.
Whoever praises Rob Liefeld knows nothing about comics.
And whoever compares it with Mc Farlane knows even less.
Praising a dude that "creates" characters just to say they're his and then pays others to do what supposedly it's his job can never be justified or applauded.
Praising a dude that cashed first and half-assed delivered (while being watched by his editor!) a whole crossover with Valiant Comics that ruined them while he played Karma Houdini and cashed out his Conan sword can never be right.
All millennials will cry "Deadpool" and "Cable", while celebrating their ignorance.
ALL of Liefeld's characters are either a Cable or a Deadpool and the ones that are not are simply photoshopped rip-offs!
And you can bet your ass that he didn't create the conventions of DP leaning on the fourth wall.
You should be ashamed of how stupid you are and how much credit you give to your dim-witted nostalgia.
How YOUR stupidity ruined comics culture for ALL OF US and how leeches such as Liefeld made a living by scamming youngsters en-masse.
Wanna know "for real"?
Go Read Youngblood #1 and read aloud their promo for "Rob Liefeld Fans!"
Google Mile High Comics' "The Downward spiral of 1990" by Chuck Rozanski.
Until then, your admiration for this person is as justified as your ignorance.
You either hate Rob Liefeld or you're dumb. Everyone already knows he's a terrible artist but a lot of people don't know that he deserves credit for also being a bad writer and a general, all around, piece of shit.
I really don't get the hate for his art, yes he exaggerate a lot of the body parts and guns.... well he does it BECAUSE HE IS DRAWING A FREAKING COMIC BOOK!!!! He's not drawing photo realism scenes!!! ITS A COMIC MAKE IT WILD MAKE IT CRAZY AND INSANE!!! God damn people quit hatin!!!
People don't realize this but it was Rob Liefeld, Todd McFarlane, Erik Larsen, Jim Lee, Willice Portacio, Marc Silvestri, Dale Keown and Jim Valentino that saved the comic book industry during the 90s. These artists revolutionized the industry and Rob most definitely deserves respect in the comic book industry. I don't understand the hate for him when the industry should be thanking him and all the other Image creators who made the comic book industry better and way more popular.
if you have to ask anyone else if its okay for you to like any artists work, its time to top yourself.seriously,i am not joking,people that devoid of individuality and confidence are oxygen thieves. fuck what anyone else thinks of your tastes in art,music,literature etc...
I will state that I'm a fan. I know it's not cool to say, but go back and read "What if Wolverine were an Agent of SHIELD" or the last New Mutants and early X-Force issues. That artwork is damn good. Sorry. He did not make a career based off of drawing Captain America with boobs. His work may have devolved, but at his core he does have talent.
Rob Liefeld is not a particularly good artist. He's not a good writer. He's not good at delivering what he promises and when. What he is good at however is knowing what sells books and what fans are looking for. His ideas aren't particularly bad. It is his execution that is bad. If he could somehow come up with some core ideas of what makes a comic book great and how it should be presented, then get good artists and good writers to execute that plan, then we would see some very good stories out there.
If he did 12 issues of any comic, even if it would take him three years, then he would have my respect, he's passionate about comics, I've had chats with him on Facebook, but he just not committed enough to sit down and do the work, I would love a10 issues story run of Youngblood drawn by him, but I don't see it happening.
I honestly tend to feel sorry for the guy with all of the hatred, he's a smug prick but that's just because deep down he's insecure about his abilities.
Not all of his art is bad (granted it's not all amazing and some of it can be horrible, like that Captain America).
But I'd like to see the people who hate him make better art; because it's way more constructive than just sitting around, criticizing him.
Even the most experienced artists will make a fuck up at times, especially in the comics industry, where you have to pump out sketches non-stop (occasionally of things you hate to draw) and then pass it down like an assembly line, it's honestly more work than art.
I know that because friends from my old fine art courses have worked at Marvel, and they say it's taxing. It's really hard to find good-paying work as an artist because it's just become such an over-crowded industry, and nowadays your job is more or less determined by who you know instead of how well you draw.
Which is why it's honestly admirable that someone like Rob Liefeld, who everybody hates, can stay relevant, even though it's mostly through hatred. And despite the fact that many people think he's a terrible artist: He continues to make them hate him by making art. It makes his anatomy mistakes kind of endearing, just breaking the mold a little.
The real problem is that he avoids criticism like the plague and probably doesn't go over things more than once or twice, he's a decent drawer who doesn't use his eyes to notice mistakes, and gives up occasionally on things like feet because he doesn't like drawing them (coincidentally, feet are my favorite thing to draw, not as a fetish). But it's hard to get better when criticism turns into or is mixed in with pure hatred.
"He may not be a great comic book artist but he is a great comic book personality". Yeah man, let's admire people not for their work but for their "personality". Great idea! XD
That this guy still gets work may be proof that the majority of comic books are aimed at low IQ individuals.
Rob Liefeld is a STYLE artist. Very much like Jae Lee was a STYLE artist. They were unique and they broke the mold of how comics were drawn. Their art was a middle finger to the status quo and that's what made them refreshing. They added a sense of style to an industry that at the time had become stale with this sort of sameness or copycat formatting of doing comics that had become all too bland. It took a lot of guys to stand up to industry Giants and daring to step out from behind the mighty shadow of the likes of Jack Kirby and daring to do something new, that is what I remember Rob Liefeld for, and I thank him for it. And I love the fact that people hate him doesn't bother him. Hats off to him.
I liked captain america#6 with cable
It was nothing but splash pages and fighting and the only time I seen Cable tackles Modok and zonk him with telepathy. I thought it was cool, and I read Daniel Clowes books. Come at me fan boys.
>His Captain America run
>No being able to draw women
I'd rather have any of the newer Marvel comics now days, but that's because i don't have nostalgia goggles for the 90s. The 90s kinda sucked
I could never hate the man that admired Slade(one of my all time favorite villans) so much that he made a spinoff that became bigger than the original and for a moment Cable and Strife were all me and my friends would talk about for months on end no supes no batman no Wolverine spidey nothing but Cable Cable Cable! heck I was 13 don't hold it against me That man gets the thumbs up from me he and Todd McFarland made comic reading that much more interesting venom anyone!
I have no issues with Rob Liefeld. Everyone hates on him while he turns it into cash. He can be hit or miss, but look at how shitty comics look today. Marvel is the worst. I hate the dull colors, traced images, and incredibly flat, lifeless expressions.
Yeah he exaggerates. He draws overly exaggerated fun characters. How awful!
of course its ok to like rob, even insinuating that it isnt ok is the problem i have with comic elitist thinking. I love rob liefeld, i love jim lee, i love kirby and romita.... i love it all as long as its brough be joy happinesss and an escape
The sales for X-Force #1 must be divided by 5 to get an accurate measure of how many people picked them up. You said that comics selling a million copies was a 'rare' occurrence in the 90s.
Well, besides X-force #1, X-men #1, Spider-Man #1 and Superman #75, Spawn #1 and Youngblood #1 it wasn't rare: it NEVER happened, to Rob Liefeld or anyone.
All of these comics (except the two from Image and one from DC) benefited from being reboots of popular characters. Further, many comics sold in the neighbourhood of 600K to 800K (see below).
If Youngblood #1 and X-force #1 are Liefeld's claim to fame, what were the sales of the *second* issue of each of those titles? Look at the sales charts of the day: Amazing Spider-Man, Spider-Man, X-men, Uncanny X-men, Batman & Detective Comics all sold better than a regular issue of X-force or Youngblood.
Yet we don't see Marv Wolfman, Norm Breyfogle, Alan Grant or David Michelinie publicly insulting creators and staff (ie: referring to Tom Brevoort as 'fat' on Twitter) with the justification that they "used to be a star, so it's okay".
"...he's focussed, he's sincere, and he's passionate about what he does..." Someone who consistently, and irresponsibly misses deadlines is not focussed. Someone who is sincere and passionate works hard to improve their craft. This guy is a horrible artist with no understanding of human anatomy, physics, or scene composition and has made no effort to improve over the decades he has been doing this. The same is true of his writing.
It doesn't matter if his artwork is exaggerated. But his art is so ugly and dull. And also he doesn't know how to draw legs so he has to ask ghost artists to draw for him. But the worst thing is that he copies others' work. He is shit at drawing, and he knows it. Still don't know how he got the job.
I love the exagerative way he draws. Whether or not you agree with his proportions doesn't matter. For comics there are no rules. His work is selling obviously because people like his artwork, myself included. Todd MacFarlane even got scrutinized for drawing Spidermans eyes too big according to people at Marvel but guess what?! Sells were up because people liked his style for bringing something new and more dynamic to the table. The same goes for Liefeld.
I actually miss the macho era of the 90s. when the men had big muscles and big guns. women had big boobs and still were bad ass. now oh my gosh we can't offend anyone. draw her boobs smaller make sure there is at least 1 gay person on the team and make sure to tone down the violence
What are you talking about? Tonnes of male characters are drawn with impossibly large muscles, same for women's breasts. A lot of teams don't necessarily have LGBT characters on them and I hardly think that the violence is toned down. A couple of years ago, Superior Spider-Man punched a guy's jaw clean off, Deadpool and Punisher hardly have toned down violence and it's not like they go that easy on the blood.
Also, it's not that hard to find characters running around with giant guns.
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