Here’s the latest installment of Maggie Thompson’s ongoing look at important beginnings, middles, and ends, this time for March 31 through April 6, 2023...

145 years ago April 6, 1878 Artist Charles Folkard is born. He creates Teddy Tail.

140 years ago April 1, 1883 German artist Karl Arnold is born. He contributes to comics for Simplicissimus.

120 years ago April 3, 1903 Artist Horace T. Elmo is born. In addition to producing newspaper features for Lincoln Features and then his own Elmo Features Syndicate, he provides Golden Age comic book features to DC and Timely.

120 years ago April 5, 1903 Willy Cute by Joseph A. Lemon begins.

115 years ago April 3, 1908 Surreal gag-manga creator Shigeru Sugiura is born.

115 years ago April 3, 1908 Italian artist and animator Nino Pagot is born. He co-creates Calimero with his brother, Toni Pagot.

110 years ago March 31, 1913 Keeping Up with the Joneses by Arthur R. “Pop” Momand begins.

105 years ago March 31, 1918 Dutch artist and head of Studio Avan Loek van Delden is born.

105 years ago April 1, 1918 Golden Age writer-artist Frank Borth is born. He creates “The Spider Widow” and “Ken Stuart,” contributes to Treasure Chest and Cracked, and scripts There Oughta Be a Law.

100 years ago April 1, 1923 Writer Leslie Waller is born. He co-scripts the “picture novel” It Rhymes with Lust with Arnold Drake.

100 years ago April 6, 1923 Spanish-French artist Edmundo Marculeta is born.

95 years ago April 1, 1928 Express Newspapers Cartoon Editor Peter Maddocks is born. He creates several BBC children’s animated series and the Four D. Jones (1955-1965) newspaper strip.

95 years ago April 5, 1928 Award-winning Swiss-German writer-artist and German comics pioneer Hansrudi Wäscher is born. He is known for his work on mini-sized comics and for series including Nizar, Ulf, and Buffalo Bill.

90 years ago April 4, 1933 Ed Shukin is born. He’s Marvel VP of Circulation and Sales 1975-1985, VP of Kable News, and President of the Comics Magazine Association of America.

80 years ago April 3, 1943 Writer-artist and actor Joe Cunningham dies of coronary disease at age 52. He was known for his Rufus McGoofus strip and sports cartoons.

70 years ago April 2, 1953 Writer-artist of Daddy’s Girl and The Summer of Love Debbie Drechsler is born.

70 years ago April 2, 1953 James Vance is born. He’s the award-winning writer and co-creator (with Dan Burr) of Kings in Disguise.

70 years ago April 3, 1953 Belgian writer Pieter Aspe is born.

65 years ago March 31, 1958 Harry O’Neill dies at age 66. He wrote and drew the Broncho Bill newspaper strip from 1928 to 1950.

65 years ago April 2, 1958 Tintin introduces Oumpah-pah by René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo.

65 years ago April 6, 1958 Swiss cartoonist Philippe Becquelin (who works as “Mix & Remix”) is born.

60 years ago April 1, 1963 Writer Mark Shainblum is born. He co-creates Northguard and Angloman and is 2002-2003 president of SF Canada.

60 years ago April 1, 1963 Award-winning writer James Robinson is born. He co-creates Leave It to Chance, writes many series featuring such characters as Batman and Superman, and writes and directs Comic Book Villains.

60 years ago April 5, 1963 Award-winning artist-writer Arthur Adams is born. He creates Monkeyman and O’Brien and co-creates Jonni Future and Longshot.

55 years ago April 4, 1968 Matteo De Cosmo is born. He’s art director on such projects as the TV series The Punisher and Luke Cage.

55 years ago April 4, 1968 King Features artist Roland J. Scott dies at age 81. He created Sally’s Sallies and Scott’s Scrapbook.

40 years ago April 6, 1983 Artist Christopher Rule dies at age 88. He worked with the Jack Binder Studio and was a Timely staff artist.

35 years ago March 31, 1988 French artist Jean Sidobre (who also worked as “Georges Lévis”) dies at age 63.

35 years ago April 3, 1988 Influential creator Milton Caniff dies of lung cancer at age 81. He wrote and drew Terry and The Pirates, Miss Lace, and Steve Canyon.

30 years ago March 31, 1993 Animator and artist Manuel Gonzales dies at age 80. He worked for Walt Disney Studios and drew Mickey Mouse Sunday pages and other Disney comics.

30 years ago March 31-April 1, 1993 The first pros-only comics con – ProCon – is held right before the seventh WonderCon.

20 years ago April 3, 2003 Belgian cartoonist Karel Boumans dies at age 71. (He worked as “Kabou.”)

20 years ago April 4, 2003 Filipino artist Rudy Florese dies at age 56. He contributed to DC and Pendulum Press.

10 years ago March 31, 2013 Artist (Robert J.) Bob Clarke dies of complications of pneumonia at age 87. He was known for his commercial work and hundreds of contributions to Mad.

10 years ago April 1, 2013 French artist Christian Mathelot dies at age 89.

10 years ago April 2, 2013 French artist Fred Othon Artistidès (who worked as “Fred”) dies at age 82. Known for Philémon, he was art director of Hara-Kiri.

10 years ago April 3, 2013 New Yorker cartoonist Ed Fisher dies at age 86.

10 years ago April 4, 2013 Award-winning artist and editor Carmine Infantino dies at age 87. He came to fans’ attention with his groundbreaking work on DC’s Flash (kicking off the Silver Age), although his comics work had begun in the Golden Age.

5 years ago April 5, 2018 Director, animator, writer, and producer Isao Takahata dies at age 82. He co-founded Studio Ghibli with Hayao Miyazaki.

And here are the anniversaries spanning the month of April…

85 years ago April 1938 Who’s that on the cover of Comics on Parade #1? Included are Abbie an’ Slats, The Captain (and the Kids), Tarzan, Fritzi Ritz (and Nancy) … You get the idea. The contents are reprints of United Feature Syndicate strips.

80 years ago April 1943 The cover of DC’s Batman #16 says, “Surprise! Somebody learns the true identities of Batman & Robin! Who can he be?” Relax, folks. “Here Comes Alfred!” introduces Alfred (the man he can be). It’s written by Don Cameron with art signed by Bob Kane and inked by Jerry Robinson and George Roussos.

75 years ago April 1948 The cover of Marvel’s Crimefighters #1 proclaims, “All crooks are yellow!” So there’s that.

75 years ago April 1948 She was featured in jokes before she became the star of Paramount’s cartoons. Now, St. John’s Little Audrey #1 introduces Little Audrey (the Paramount version) to comic books.

70 years ago April 1953 Superhero parody alert! EC’s Mad #4 features “Superduperman!” by Harvey Kurtzman and Wally Wood.

70 years ago April 1953 Fawcett’s Master Comics #133 is the last issue, part of the close-down of the company’s superhero line.

65 years ago April 1958 DC’s Adventure Comics #247 introduces Saturn Girl, Cosmic Boy, and Lightning Boy as representatives of The Legion of Super-Heroes. The story is written by Otto Binder and drawn by Al Plastino. But what’s Cosmic Boy telling Superboy? “Your low score on the tests we gave you proves your powers are too ordinary!” Gee whiz! Choke!

60 years ago April 1963 Harvey cancels Black Cat Comics with #65.

60 years ago April 1963 DC’s Adventure Comics #307 introduces Element Lad (as Mystery Lad) to The Legion of Super Heroes. “The Secret Power of the Mystery Super-Hero” is written by Edmond Hamilton and drawn by John Forte.

60 years ago April 1963 Marvel’s Tales of Suspense #40 gives Iron Man new armor in “Iron Man versus Gargantus” by Stan Lee, Robert Bernstein, Jack Kirby, and Don Heck. Ooo, gold! Shiny!

60 years ago April 1963 Marvel’s Fantastic Four #13 introduces The Red Ghost in “The Fantastic Four versus The Red Ghost and His Indescribable Super-Apes” by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Steve Ditko. But wait. There’s more! “In this spellbinding tale you will meet the most dramatic being of all time! The mysterious Watcher! Who is he? What is he?” Check out “Menace on the Moon!” also by Lee, Kirby, and Ditko.

60 years ago April 1963 The Metal Men were introduced in DC’s Showcase a year earlier, and now they get their own series. DC’s Metal Men #1 offers “their own spectacular book!” (It’s the first time responsometers are mentioned.)

55 years ago April 1968 “Take a deep breath, reader!” DC’s Secret Six #1 introduces The Secret Six in “Code Name: Mockingbird” by E. Nelson Bridwell and Frank Springer.

55 years ago April 1968 “Cap, in his own magazine at last!” The issue of Marvel’s Captain America is called a “big premiere issue!” but it’s #100 – because it continues its numbering from Tales of Suspense. (We’re not gonna mention that he’s had his own magazine before, right?)

55 years ago April 1968 And here’s another Marvel “big premiere issue!” – this time Marvel’s The Incredible Hulk #102. It picks up its numbering from Tales to Astonish.

50 years ago April 1973 DC’s Shazam! #2 introduces Mr. Tawny and Mr. Mind to the Silver Age. “The Astonishing Arch Enemy” is by Denny O’Neil and C.C. Beck.

50 years ago April 1973 Marvel’s Incredible Hulk #162 introduces Wendigo, “the thing that walks like a man!” “Spawn of the Flesh-Eater” is by Steve Englehart, Herb Trimpe, and Sal Trapani.

45 years ago April 1978 Charlton cancels Ghostly Haunts with #58. And The Many Ghosts of Doctor Graves with #65 (but that will pick up again with #66, dated June 1981).

45 years ago April 1978 Marvel’s Iron Man #109 introduces Crimson Dynamo V (Dimitri Bukharin) and Vanguard (Nikolai Krylenko). “Moonrise!” is by Bill Mantlo, Carmine Infantino, and Fred Kida.

45 years ago April 1978 “In an age when giants walked the world – he was the mightiest of all!” Marvel’s Devil Dinosaur begins, created by Jack Kirby.

45 years ago April 1978 Marvel’s Machine Man begins. He’s a living robot: “Hunted, hounded, he fights to survive in a hostile world!” Hey, he’s also created by Jack Kirby in a spinoff of the Mr. Machine character from 2001: A Space Odyssey #10!

45 years ago April 1978 “To know her is to fear her!” Marvel’s Spider-Woman begins, “Now in her own book! The superheroine sensation they said couldn’t be done!” “… A Future Uncertain!” provides the origin story of Jessica Drew, now that she’s left Hydra. It’s by Marv Wolfman, Carmine Infantino, and Tony DeZuniga.

40 years ago April 1983 “So long, chumps!” Marvel’s Crazy Magazine ends with #94.

40 years ago April 1983 “Extra! Meet the amazing Amethyst, princess of Gemworld in a special free 16-page comic!” DC’s The Legion of Super-Heroes #298 offers a “prevue pull-out!” “Duel in Dark Magic!” is by Dan Mishkin, Gary Cohn, and Ernie Colón.

40 years ago April 1983 The Omega Men were introduced a couple of years earlier. Now, DC’s The Omega Men gives the team its own series.

40 years ago April 1983 The character was created by Nicola Cuti and Joe Staton for Charlton a decade earlier. Now, “He’s back!!” First’s E-Man begins with “E.M., Phone Home” by Martin Pasko and Joe Staton.

40 years ago April 1983 It costs a quarter and amounts to a Marvel fanzine from Marvel: Marvel Age #1 is edited by Carol Kalish and features Crystar.

35 years ago April 1988 Eddie Brock gets another cameo in Marvel’s Amazing Spider-Man #298. (There will be more.)

35 years ago April 1988 DC’s Teen Titans Spotlight ends with #21.

35 years ago April 1988 DC’s Action Comics #599 features the company’s first “Bonus Book” a 16-page insert. In this case, it’s “The Karma Baggers” (starring Superman and Jimmy Olsen) by Joe Calchi, Britt Wisenbaker, and James Scott.

35 years ago April 1988 OK, Crisis is over. Time to find out what’s up with Supergirl (Matrix). She’s introduced in Superman #16 In “He Only Laughs When I Hurt” by John Byrne and Karl Kesel. (By the way, it’s also the first post-Crisis appearance by Prankster and Morgan Edge.)

30 years ago April 1993 Image’s 1963 limited series begins. Alan Moore will be nominated for a Best Writer Eisner Award, and the series will be nominated for a Best Series Harvey Award.

30 years ago April 1993 “A cog in the corporate machine is about to strip some gears…” DC’s Hardware #1 from Milestone features “Angry Black Man” by Dwayne McDuffie, Denys Cowan, and Jimmy Palmiotti.

30 years ago April 1993 “The future begins here!” The first issue of DC’s Legionnaires is by Tom and Mary Bierbaum, Chris Sprouse, and Karl Story.

30 years ago April 1993 The Mighty Magnor by Sergio Aragonés and Mark Evanier begins from Malibu.

30 years ago April 1993 DC’s Sandman Mystery Theatre from Vertigo starts with “The Tarantula Act One” by Matt Wagner and Guy Davis, based on a story by Gardner Fox and Bert Christman in Adventure Comics #40 (July 1939).

30 years ago April 1993 Issue #100 of Sergio Aragonés Groo the Wanderer comes from Marvel. It’s by Sergio Aragonés and Mark Evanier.

20 years ago April 2003 Action Comics #800 is a “double-sized anniversary issue!” and features a Drew Struzan cover that provides a variant view of the cover of Action Comics #1.

15 years ago April 2008 It isn’t Marvel’s first X-Force #1 and it won’t be the last, but a tip of the hat, anyway. This time, it starts with a six-parter. “Angels and Demons” is by Craig Kyle, Christopher Yost, and Clayton Crain.

15 years ago April 2008 The first issue of DC’s Tiny Titans is co-scripted by Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani and drawn by Baltazar.

15 years ago April 2008 “The greatest superhero book of all time is finally here!” Kick-Ass comes from Marvel’s Icon line, and #1 is by Mark Millar, John Romita Jr., and Tom Palmer.

10 years ago April 2013 The first issue of Marvel’s Fearless Defenders is by Cullen Bunn and Will Sliney.

10 years ago April 2013 There were earlier releases of a first issue of Marvel’s Nova. There will be more later. This time, the story’s by Jeph Loeb, Ed McGuinness, and Dexter Vines.

10 years ago April 2013 There were earlier releases of a first issue of Marvel’s Uncanny X-Men. There will be more later. This time, the story’s by Brian Michael Bendis, Chris Bachalo, Tim Townsend, Jaime Mendoza, and Al Vey.

10 years ago April 2013 Completist alert! DC’s Justice League of America #1 has more than 50 variant covers featuring a variety of flags. (Wups! Almost forgot! There is a story. It’s by Geoff Johns and David Finch.)

10 years ago April 2013 OK. Some folks might think this is weird. Marvel’s Secret Avengers ends with #37, cover-branded “final issue.” The story is by Rick Remender. But, hey, simultaneously, Marvel’s Secret Avengers #1 features “Budapest” by Nick Spencer and Luke Ross. Because collectors can handle this sort of thing. (Come on. How many copies of that DC flags issue did you buy?)

5 years ago April 2018 Marvel’s Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man gets to #300. “Showdown” is by Chip Zdarsky, Adam Kubert, and Juan Frigeri. There are lots of guest stars (and variant covers)!

5 years ago April 2018 IDW’s Sonic the Hedgehog series begins with a story by Ian Flynn, Tracy Yardley, Jim Amash, and Bob Smith. As is the case with many other Sonic titles, it’s based on the Sega videogame, which has had several comics franchises, starting with a manga series in 1992.