|Born||January 7, 1959|
Victor, New York
|The Adventures of Superman|
Hawk and Dove vol. 2 and 3
Superboy vol. 3
Superman vol. 2
Karl Kesel (born January 7, 1959, Victor, New York) is an American comics writer and inker whose works have primarily been under contract for DC Comics. He is a member of Periscope Studio and is best known for his collaborations with fellow artist Tom Grummett on The Adventures of Superman, Superboy, and Section Zero, as well as the first Harley Quinn comic title.
After a friend at college complimented his inking, Karl Kesel began submitting his portfolio to Marvel Comics and DC Comics. Kesel's first work for DC Comics appeared in New Talent Showcase #4 (April 1984). He soon became the inker on Tales of the Legion of Super-Heroes — so soon, in fact, that he suspected that he was assigned New Talent Showcase #8 as a test run to see how well he jelled with Tales of the Legion penciller Terry Shoemaker. Kesel was discouraged that inks which looked smooth and clear on his original pages appeared clunky in the printed comics, and with some guidance from Dick Giordano he studied how to draw in a way that would appear better on the printed page. Kesel worked on the lighthearted 'Mazing Man series, as well as providing inks over the pencils of George Pérez on History of the DC Universe and John Byrne on Legends and Superman vol. 2. With his then-wife Barbara Kesel, he co-wrote a Hawk and Dove miniseries in 1988 which was drawn by Rob Liefeld. Kesel and artist Tom Grummett are the creators of the modern Superboy character, Kon-El, who debuted in the "Reign of the Supermen" story arc, starting from The Adventures of Superman #500 (June 1993). An ongoing Superboy series was launched by Kesel and Grummett in February 1994. In 1996, Kesel and artist Stuart Immonen produced The Final Night limited series. That same year, Kesel was one of the many creators who contributed to the Superman: The Wedding Album one-shot wherein the title character married Lois Lane. Kesel wrote the Batman and Superman: World's Finest ten-issue limited series (April 1999–Jan. 2000) which explored the Post-Crisis history of the two with each of the ten issues taking place one year after the other. He and artist Terry Dodson launched a Harley Quinn ongoing series in December 2000.
Kesel's first work for Marvel Comics was inking a Vision story in Avengers Spotlight #23 (Oct. 1989). He inked Mark Bagley's cover art for the Japan-exclusive Super Famicom video game The Amazing Spider-Man: Lethal Foes in 1995. Kesel wrote Daredevil issues #353–364 (June 1996 – May 1997) and in 2002 wrote the story, "Remembrance of Things Past" in which it was revealed that Ben Grimm, the Thing of the Fantastic Four, is Jewish. Kesel wrote and drew a "lost" Captain America comic strip from the 1940s which was published on Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited. In 2011, he scripted a Hulk and the Human Torch story which had been plotted by Jack C. Harris and drawn by Steve Ditko in the 1980s. It was published by Marvel as Incredible Hulk and the Human Torch: From the Marvel Vault #1 (August 2011).
Kesel worked with comic book illustrator Brandon McKinney on issues #6 and #13 of the comic series Aliens: Space Marines published by Dark Horse Comics, which accompanied alien figures in the first line of Alien figures released by Kenner in 1992.
In 2000, Kesel and his former Superboy collaborator Tom Grummett created Section Zero as part of the Gorilla Comics imprint at Image Comics. Gorilla Comics was intended to be a creator owned company financed by a comics related website, eHero.com. The website proved to be a financial failure, leaving the creators to personally finance their own books. Along with the other Gorilla Comics creators, Kesel and Grummett attempted to continue the series they started, but these efforts proved to be unsuccessful. In January 2012, Kesel announced that he and Grummett would be relaunching Section Zero as a webcomic on the Mad Genius Comics website. The previously published stories were posted on the site and new material was added as it was completed. A Kickstarter campaign in 2017 will allow Kesel and Grummett to finish the story.
For several years, he was married to fellow comics writer Barbara Kesel (née Randall), with whom he wrote Hawk and Dove; they have since divorced.
Kesel was nominated for the Eisner Award for "Best Inker" in 1991 and 1992.
In 2016, he was nominated for Inkwell Awards Favorite Inker.
Comics work (as writer unless noted) includes:
Written by Barbara and Karl Kesel and drawn by future superstar Rob Liefeld, this five-issue miniseries reestablished the famous pair for a new generation.
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Karl Kesel and Tom Grummett's Section Zero may get a second shot at life if a Kickstarter campaign gets the required funding.
1,049 backers pledged $65,140 to help bring this project to life.