GASPAR SALADINO in THE SPECTRE

All images © DC Comics. From THE SPECTRE #4, May-June 1968

The Spectre was created by Jerry Siegel and Bernard Bailey and began appearing in 1940. He had many later revivals, the most important one was from Editor Julius Schwartz in 1966 when he appeared in three tryout issues of SHOWCASE, and then in ten issues of his own series. This Spectre was immensely powerful and scary, and issues 2 to 5 featured stories and art by DC newcomer Neal Adams. Gaspar was just taking over from the previous regular cover letterer Ira Schnapp on the one above with effective open lettering that adds to the drama.

From THE SPECTRE #5, July-Aug 1968

Both logos on these issues are by Schnapp, but Gaspar’s cover blurbs are large and effective.

From THE SPECTRE #7, Nov-Dec 1968

When artist Jerry Grandenetti took over as cover and interior artist on issue #6, he and Saladino worked together on different logos for each issue, as seen here, along with Gaspar’s fine blurb at the bottom.

From THE SPECTRE #9, March-April 1969

Some of the logos were spectacular, like this one, but the focus in this article is on cover lettering, and Saladino did the top blurb as well as the book title here.

From THE SPECTRE #1, Nov-Dec 1967

Saladino also lettered several full issues of the book, beginning with the first one. The feature logo may have been pencilled by artist Murphy Anderson and inked by Gaspar. The story title is fine Saladino work.

From THE SPECTRE #2, Jan-Feb 1968

Working with Neal Adams seemed to bring out the best lettering from Gaspar, and these sound effects are full of energy.

From THE SPECTRE #4, May-June 1968

Here Adams left lots of room for the story title, and Gaspar filled it well, using dry brush for the word WRECKS.

From THE SPECTRE #6, Sept-Oct 1968

Saladino’s final story lettering was with Grandenetti, and there was also lots of room for his creative styles in this issue.

From THE SPECTRE #1, April 1987

The character had many later revivals. The first issue of this one featured a fine Saladino scroll caption at the bottom, his only work on the series.

From WRATH OF THE SPECTRE #4, Aug 1988

A later four-issue series reprinted stories from ADVENTURE COMICS, and Gaspar’s only involvement was cover lettering for this issue. I’ve found no other work by him in later Spectre series.

To sum up, I found Saladino cover lettering on these issues:

THE SPECTRE (1967): 4-10

THE SPECTRE (1987): 1

WRATH OF THE SPECTRE: 4

That’s nine in all. Below are the details for his story lettering on the 1967 series.

#1 Nov-Dec 1967: 23pp

#2 Jan-Feb 1968: 23pp

#4 May-June 1968: 24pp

#6 Sept-Oct 1968: 23pp

That’s 93 pages in all. More articles in this series and others you might like are on the COMICS CREATION page of my blog.

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