GASPAR SALADINO in LIGHT & DARKNESS WAR, MOEBIUS GNs

All images © Marvel and the respective copyright holders. From THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS WAR #1, Oct 1988

This article combines Gaspar Saladino lettering work on a few titles from Marvel’s Epic line. This one ran six issues, all with great painted line art by Cam Kennedy, and all lettered by Gaspar. The images I have aren’t the best, a bit blurry, but you can still see how effective the lettering is. I love the rough balloon at the bottom of this page. I’ll show one page from each issue.

From THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS WAR #2, Nov 1988

Here Saladino has used double-bordered balloons for this character allowing room for a color, though the color chosen tends to blend into the art.

From THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS WAR #3, Jan 1989

Lots of radio or broadcast balloons on this page that work well.

From THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS WAR #4 Feb1989

Gaspar was a good choice for the war theme, and he put his many years of experience doing DC Comics war stories to good use where it added to the story, like the dramatic balloons the last panel here.

From THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS WAR #5, April 1989

Another special style is used on these caption borders, and the fill color helps distinguish them, though that wasn’t Gaspar’s choice.

From THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS WAR #6, Sept 1989

Thought balloons were on the way out by 1989, but still used here. The dark brown color in the caption makes it hard to read, again not Gaspar’s choice.

From MOEBIUS #2, 1987

French artist Jean Giraud was a superstar in the world of European comics. In the 1970s he began publishing groundbreaking work under the pen name Moebius that gained worldwide attention. Marvel published nine graphic-novel size squarebound collections of that work from 1987 to 1994. Giraud always lettered his work in a distinctive style, but of course in French, you can see a bit of it in the story title and signature here. For these reprints, lettering in English replaced the French in the original balloons, but often Giraud’s balloon shapes were retained, making some of them seem too empty and some too full at times, but generally it worked okay. (This was the same process used on his work and that of others in HEAVY METAL magazine. Some issues had one long story, but most were collections of shorter ones, and a variety of Marvel letterers worked on them. Gaspar did some of the stories, his first is above. I don’t know if he saw Giraud’s lettering, but what he’s done has appealing styles.

From MOEBIUS #3, 1987

On this story I’m not sure who did the title and top lettering, it’s probably partly by Giraud and partly by Gaspar.

From MOEBIUS #4, 1987

Another pen name used by Giraud was simply Gyr, as here. Did he do this title in English, or is it by Saladino or someone else? I don’t know.

From MOEBIUS #7, 1990

All the lettering on this page is by Saladino, I like the title.

From EPIC GRAPHIC NOVEL: BLUEBERRY #2, 1989

Marvel also published five similar collections of Giraud’s work on the western strip Blueberry. Gaspar lettered just one story for those. Here you can see him struggling a bit to fit everything into the existing balloon shapes.

To sum up, here are the details of Saladino’s story lettering for these books.

THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS WAR #1-6: 28pp each

MOEBIUS #2: 9pp

MOEBIUS #3: 20pp

MOEBIUS #4: 5pp

MOEBIUS #7: 2pp

BLUEBERRY #2: 22pp

That’s a total of 221 pages, a good amount of work for Gaspar at Marvel. More articles in this series and others you might like are on the COMICS CREATION page of my blog.

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