13 BATMAN SPLASH PAGES: An IRV NOVICK Birthday Celebration

The late artist was born 107 years ago…

UPDATED 4/11/23: Hey, folks! We have a fun new 13 COVERS feature on Irv Novick over here. But it’s been a few years since I first ran this tribute — 2020 as it happens — and I just wanted to share it again. Love Irv Novick. Dig it. — Dan

In a lot of ways it’s unfair to compare artists. Everyone has their own style, their own approach to their work. And it either works for you, the reader, or it doesn’t.

The most impartial way to describe the late Irv Novick — who was born April 11, 1916 — is “workmanlike.” He doesn’t dazzle and as one of the main Batman artists of the Bronze Age, he’s typically overshadowed by Neal Adams, Marshall Rogers and Jim Aparo, to name a few.

But so what? He’s one of my all-time faves because he just happened to draw some of my favorite stories ever. And that counts for a whole helluva lot. Irv Novick’s linework and lithe Batman were staples of my youth and his stories — whether paired with Denny O’Neil, Len Wein, Marv Wolfman or anyone else — resonate with me now just as they did then.

Thing is, except for a relatively short period in the late ’60s, Novick wasn’t assigned cover work on Batman (or Detective).

Last year, we highlighted 13 of those Silver Age covers. (Click here.) This year, instead of a 13 COVERS birthday salute, we bring you 13 SPLASH PAGES — from some of the greatest stories I’ve ever read:

Batman #315

Batman #313

Batman #334

Batman #242

Batman #332

Batman #317

Batman #333

Batman #266

Batman #316

Batman #335

Batman #323

Batman #324

Batman #260


— 13 COVERS: An IRV NOVICK Celebration: 2019 Edition. Click here.

— THE LAZARUS AFFAIR: The Best BATMAN Story Never Collected by DC — UNTIL NOW. Click here.

Author: Dan Greenfield

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  1. Growing up in the 70s, Iran was my Flash artist- For some reason I didn’t even realize he was doing the Batman also. It wasn’t until his Batman work slowed down that I missed him. The splash panel to Batman 266 has always been one of my favorites- it’s been burned into my memories and I have even had dreams about it!

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  2. Irv was THE Flash artist for me in the 70s and I was so incredibly disappointed when he left the title for Batman. The upside was that he was a great Batman artist though!

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  3. Same here–remember him more for his Flash work than Batman. How about a 13 Flash post?

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      • I’m late to the party. Adams is my favorite Batman artist but I’ve always found Irv to be very underrated. Did he draw Batman taller than most? Seems to me that he looks taller when he drew him. Or am I crazy?

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  4. I loved his Flash work in the 70s. I think he had about an 8-year run on that title. He also handled most of the Joker series in the mid-70s which was a fun ride. His Batman work was great too – thanks for posting these!

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  5. This article makes me very happy. I’m really surprised how many comments are focused on Irv Novick as a Flash artist because for me he is one of my definitive Batman artists. I was a Bat-Fanatic from the late ’70s to the mid ’80s so the artists who drew MY Batman were Irv Novick, Jim Aparo and Don Newton. I’m a big fan of Adams & Rogers, too. But these three talented artists were my constant companions when Batman comics meant the most to me and I will always love them best.

    “Groovy” Mike Decker

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  6. Great shout-out to an under-appreciated comic great. Novick’s Batman was just as seminal for me as Jim Aparo and Don Newton.

    Well done!

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  7. My very first comic I bought was Flash 229 Great cover by Nick Cardy with a Irv Novick story. Great artist.

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