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Notes on the Spawn of Indie Comics Giant, Image

Youtuber kaptainkristian explains how the indie comic biz was built on the backs of pissed off Marvel deserters.
Todd McFarlane's Spawn was one of the first releases from Image Comics. Screencap via

From shambling “walkers” in the pages of The Walking Dead to the green-finned muscle-cop Savage Dragon, from the hellion-makes-good of Spawn to the superhero squad WildC.A.T.s, Image Comics has been a haven for creator-owned content since its inception in 1992. But how did the company first form? Who were the driving forces behind its initial push toward success? Video essayist kaptainkristian tackled the subject in his latest video, "Spawn - The Rise of Image Comics." With a nice score and slick editing, he takes audiences through the previous successes and scandals that lead up to the founding of Image.


The company first came about after artists and writers Todd McFarlane (creator of Spawn), Jim Lee, and Rob Liefeld left Marvel after huge successes. They (and the other like-minded comic creators who joined them) felt they weren’t being justly compensated for their meteoric work, so they split and Image was born. “These weren’t just hot headed kids rebelling against the system,” kaptainkristian explains in the video. “These were the driving forces of the entire industry. Comics were picking up steam, and the creators wanted equal compensation.” This desire drives the central ethos behind Image: all comics are 100% owned by the people who create them.

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Some of the founding members of Image Comics. Screencap via

As soon as they formed the new company, readership followed. “For just a short time,” says kaptainkristian, “what was popular were the books and the creators, not just the characters. Image was a gateway for millions of new fans to get into comics, and it also served as a jumping-on point for people too intimidated by the four or five decades of history and continuity of Marvel and DC comics.”

Check out kaptainkristian’s video below to learn more about the foundation of Image Comics:

Check out kaptainkristian’s channel for more video essays dissecting everything from Childish Gambino to Jurassic Park, and if you like the work, consider donating on Patreon.


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