Len Wein Dies: Wolverine, Swamp Thing Creator Leaves Indelible Legacy

Kim Taylor-Foster
Comics Marvel
Comics Marvel DC

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.

Wein is also credited alongside artist Dave Cockrum as reviving the X-Men. The duo are responsible for introducing the characters of Storm, Nightcrawler, Colossus and Thunderbird to the world.

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:

Author Neil Gaiman, meanwhile, called Wein a friend, and inspiration:

Lest we forget, one fan reminded us Len Wein had a cameo role in X-Men: Days of Future Past:

DC Comics president Geoff Johns paid tribute:

As well as the publisher:

This fan shared his favourite Len Wein quote:

While this fan acknowledged everything he gave to comics:

Comic book writer and artist Brian Michael Bendis called out Wein’s contribution to the success of the X-Men:

Hugh Jackman, meanwhile, declared Wein responsible for the greatest ever comic book character:

Yes, he means Wolverine. RIP Len Wein.

Kim Taylor-Foster
Kim Taylor-Foster is Entertainment Editor for Fandom in the UK. She was raised on an unsteady diet of video nasties and violent action flicks.