Legendary comic book writer Len Wein has died at the age of 69. The scribe was responsible for creating some of the most popular and enduring comic book characters in history, including Wolverine and Swamp Thing.
Wein conceived Swamp Thing with artist Bernie Wrightson, whom The Walking Dead dedicated its Season 7 finale to and had a walker of him created in tribute.
The character of Swamp Thing was created from exposure to chemicals during a lab explosion. His first appearance was in 1971 in a standalone horror story within a comic called House of Secrets. Swamp Thing had his own TV series in the 1990s as well as an animated series, and Wes Craven directed a live action film in 1982.
Wolverine, meanwhile, needs little introduction. The X-Men character has not only featured in the X-Men movies, he is also the only X-Men character to feature in a series of spin-off films – of which there have been three to date. Wein co-created the character, who has an endoskeleton fused with a (fictional) metal alloy known as adamantium and protractible claws, alongside Marvel art director John Romita, Sr.
And if you knew all that, here’s something you may not know — Wein was also editor for the DC miniseries Watchmen for Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons.
Today, the industry is mourning the loss of a legend. Here are some of the things fans and peers are saying:
Comic book writer Mark Millar credits Wein with giving him a living — he wrote stories for both Swamp Thing and Wolverine:
RIP the great #LenWein. He co-created Wolverine & Swamp Thing, both of which gave me a living as a writer & endless pleasure as a reader.
— Mark Millar (@mrmarkmillar) September 10, 2017
Author Neil Gaiman, meanwhile, called Wein a friend, and inspiration:
— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) September 10, 2017
Lest we forget, one fan reminded us Len Wein had a cameo role in X-Men: Days of Future Past:
— Cool Comic Art (@CoolComicArt) September 11, 2017
DC Comics president Geoff Johns paid tribute:
— Geoff Johns (@geoffjohns) September 11, 2017
As well as the publisher:
— DC (@DCComics) September 10, 2017
This fan shared his favourite Len Wein quote:
— NerdSync (@NerdSync) September 11, 2017
While this fan acknowledged everything he gave to comics:
— Darrell Taylor (@theVoice123) September 10, 2017
Comic book writer and artist Brian Michael Bendis called out Wein’s contribution to the success of the X-Men:
Len Wein, co-creator of WOLVERINE and SWAMP THING & more responsible for the x-men you love than he gets credit for. Thank you. #RIP
— BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (@BRIANMBENDIS) September 10, 2017
Hugh Jackman, meanwhile, declared Wein responsible for the greatest ever comic book character:
Blessed to have known Len Wein. I first met him in 2008. I told him – from his heart, mind & hands came the greatest character in comics. pic.twitter.com/cFqL1uy0JV
— Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman) September 11, 2017
Yes, he means Wolverine. RIP Len Wein.