Longtime comic book artist Joe Sinnott passed away yesterday at the age of 93. Sinnott will understandably be remembered as one of the all-time greatest inkers/embellishers to have worked at Marvel Comics. His slick, polished, highly detailed finishes complemented and enhanced numerous pencilers throughout the decades. In previous Comic Book Coffee entries, Sinnott’s inking has been seen over Jack Kirby, Rich Buckler, and Al Milgrom.
Perhaps a less well-known aspect of Sinnott’s career was his full artwork. During the first decade of his career, from 1950 to 1950, Sinnott drew complete stories, both pencils, and inks. In the 1960s, even when Sinnott began working primarily as an inker and finisher at Marvel, he was still illustrating beautifully detailed historical and fact-based stories for Treasure Chest, a comic book series that was distributed to Catholic schools in North America.
I wanted to showcase an example of Sinnott’s solo work. Battle was a war anthology published by Atlas (the precursor to Marvel) from 1951 and 1960, running for 70 issues. Sinnott drew a number of stories that saw print in Battle between 1954 and 1959.
“Defense” is a tale of the Marines fighting in the Korean War. Sinnott’s highly detailed art very much captures the grim violence of armed conflict. On this page, in between bloody engagements with the North Korean forces, the Marines take a badly-needed coffee break in the trenches.