This week we had the passing of a great talent Jerry Robinson and many reporters were calling and asking for stories about Jerry. Neal ended up telling this one and I decided to put it up and do a little tribute to Mr. Robinson this week.
The first time I remember meeting Mr. Robinson was the day the photo of the great handshake happened. I ended up coming into Continuity and Mr. Robinson, Mr. Siegel, Mr. Shuster and Mr. Adams, ha ha, my dad, all standing around being very happy. I knew who Jerry and Joe had created, but I wasn’t sure about the older gentleman that was with them so, I went in the back of the studio and asked one of The Crusty Bunkers. He said, “Kris, I can’t believe you don’t know who that is?”in a really mean tone. I then went into another room and asked the same question to a nicer Crusty Bunker. He said that the older gentleman is the man that created Joker and Robin. I laughed and left and then thought about it. I went back into the reception area and thought how lucky am I to be in the same room with the creators of Superman, the guy who created the worst villain ever and the guy who drew the best Batman and Superman in the world. That is a day I will never forget.
Now for Neal’s piece:
We have just seen the passing of not only one of the greatest comic books geniuses of our time, but also unique in that generation.
A true Mensch, an activist, a man, a stand up brother. Yes, even in that first generation of comic book artists there were true revolutionaries who stepped out into other areas of art and thinking.
While he was a comic book artist, he created great comic book characters, but in a day where the goal of comic artists was to create a syndicated comic strip, Jerry simply became another total human being. His comic strip and editorial work was not more of the same, it was editorial, it was humorous, it said things. It wasn’t oh-here’s-what-I-can-do, it was, “I have opinions and a sense of humor and, by the way, I’ll express them with drawings as well.”
Jerry represented the brotherhood of the medium, the reaching out to other artists of other countries who were doing political cartoons with humor that sought to bring about cultural change.
Jerry was elected the President of the Cartoonists Society and was there when I had to reach out to them to help me with re-establishing the reputation of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. I have no idea what another President of the Cartoonists Society would have said. I can tell you only that with Jerry Robinson, I didn’t even get a chance to finish asking the question when he called out to me “of course I’ll help with this, Neal, I’ve been following it.”
You will never know the Jerry Robinson that I knew, and I promise you that had you, you would a better person for it. I believe I am a better person for knowing him. And I say this with tremendous pride: Jerry Robinson liked me.
Rest In Piece Mr Robinson
Neal and Kris Adams