Jerry Robinson died this week at the age of eighty-nine. He was a teenager when Bob Kane hired him as an assistant in the summer of 1939. From inking and lettering he moved on to being the uncredited principal artist on some Batman comics before being hired away by the publisher.
At a signing in Boston earlier this year, I asked Robinson about the appearances of his and inker George Roussos’s names in early Batman pages—slipped onto shop signs and the like. Was that their way of “signing” the art alongside Kane? With a sly smile, Robinson said, “I probably signed Bob’s name more than he did!”
The photo above comes from Geoff Boucher’s 2009 profile of Robinson from the Los Angeles Times. Is it a sign of our values that lately Robinson has been celebrated more for co-creating the Joker than for co-creating Robin?