13 SPLASH PAGES: A DON HECK Birthday Celebration

A tribute to an unsung artist…

The late Don Heck — born 92 years ago on Jan. 2, 1929 — was a pro. Never a superstar, he nevertheless always got the job done, the type of penciller who keeps the machine moving while the superstars garner the glory.

So dig these 13 SPLASH PAGES from Heck’s ’60s Avengers — starring primarily Cap’s Kooky Quartet.


Avengers #17

Avengers #24

Avengers #19

Avengers #33

Avengers #40

Avengers #35

Avengers #10

Avengers #31

Avengers #9

Avengers #27

Avengers #25

Avengers #11

Avengers #28


— 13 COVERS: A DON HECK Birthday Celebration: 2016 Edition. Click here.

— 13 COVERS: The Heroes of THE AVENGERS. Click here.

Author: Dan Greenfield

Share This Post On


  1. AVENGERS #17 was my first issue of regularly buying a Marvel title. Before that I was pretty much a DC reader. Though I know I bought X-MEN #1 off the stands (to have something to read on an insurance sales call with my father out-of-town) and also FF #8 & TOS #46 on a trip to my great aunt and uncle’s place.

    Then trading comics with a neighborhood boy got me into Daredevil and Spider-Man. I wish I had hung onto those first three comics, though I replaced X-MEN #1 a couple of times. My cousin took the latter two as I left them ‘up in the country’ to re-read when we would go back. That FF #8 haunts me now and I wish I had replaced it many moons ago. Too pricey now.

    So, the Don Heck art holds a special place in my heart. Kind of like Mike Sekowsky in the way they are remembered (I was a regular JLA buyer). It wasn’t until I got a second chance at Marvels I missed at cover price that the Kirby covers etc. started grabbing me. They would get bundles of Marvels and a few Harvey superhero comics and Charltons that had never been on the stands at the little mom and pop grocery store my brother worked at one summer. My second chance at them!

    Some there would only be one copy of some issues I needed, some more. I remember the shock of seeing DD in yellow costume (#5) the evening my father drove me over there after my brother called me about them. It was like a dream (not very good lighting in the store). One small flat comics rack.

    I don’t know if I had been oblivious to them originally or if they didn’t get as good a distribution. We did live in Houston till I started 2nd grade. I have no memories of them in Houston. That’s when I REALLY got into collecting.

    Post a Reply
  2. Heck drew pretty women but that’s the only compliment I can pay him. I found his superhero work to be rigid and stagnant.

    The splash from Avengers 16 is included but that issue was pencilled by Kirby.

    Post a Reply
  3. Heck’s AVENGERS work is my favorite of his. It seemed much more polished and dynamic than other work of it.

    Post a Reply
  4. A good observation that he was a pro – though not the superstar that Kirby, Adams, Grell, Cockrum, And others became.

    His work is good with fine composition. These pages are dynamic openings. He wasn’t one of my favorite artists – but his work didnt make me cringe like some others did.

    He was prolific and carried a lot if series for a while. I appreciate his work more now as an adult.

    Thanks for posting these.

    Post a Reply
  5. It seems pretty evident that when Don was assisted by an A list inker such as Frank Giacoa, his work excelled.

    Post a Reply

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: