Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Joke or Hoax?

I happened onto the AOL website today and saw this headline on their front page:

X-Men Illustrator Dies Wearing Superman Pajamas

When I clicked the link, it said the page did not exist. Was this a hoax story? A joke by a headline writer? A hack by a creative teenage geek? Or perhaps some sort of viral marketing scheme, like the on-line interviews with Gary Troup, author of Bad Twin, that appeared over the summer?

Does anybody know anything about this?

UPDATE: Finally got the link to work, and now I'm sad, because it's true. Dave Cockrum was the one who died.

Cockrum's work first got on my radar when he started drawing the "Legion of Super-Heroes" backup feature in Superboy during the late 70's. Like his later work on X-Men, he redesigned costumes and brought a fresh, exciting look to a property that had become stagnant and dated. Then he moved to Marvel and did the same thing with the X-Men, not just drawing the book but creating the characters of Storm, Nightcrawler and Colossus.

Unfortunately, the property took off in a way that his career never did. When Cockrum left the X-Men, John Byrne stepped in and immediately pushed the book to greater heights of popularity, and even though Cockrum later returned for another lengthy run, his work was never as popular as that of other artists on the feature.

But I remember his work fondly, and I'm sorry to hear about this, and now I'm pissed about that flippant headline.

Plus, I was about to call out this story about Lindsay Lohan as a hoax, too, wondering if it was National Hoax Day or something. Now I'm not so sure.

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