Click here to return to the main page of Wildwood Cemetery: The Spirit Database
Cast Creators Links
Miscellaneous Resources Storylines
The DC Direct Spirit mini bust was inspired by which Spirit section? (Answer at bottom of the page)

During the 60 plus years that The Spirit has appeared in comic books, the feature has been reprinted  in the USA by a number of publishers. Looking at them in chronological order:

The cover to Police Comics #11

Police Comics #11

Quality Comics Group

Started in 1939 by Everett M. "Busy" Arnold the publisher's first title was Feature Comics, a title originally packaged by Arnold for another company (under the title of Feature Funnies). Within the space of a couple of years the publisher introduced it's own "superhero" with Dollman, which was shortly followed by Jack Cole's Plastic Man. The Spirit would first appear in the pages of Police Comics #11 (where Plastic Man also appeared) and would later get his own title in 1944. Eisner also had a hand in creating the feature Blackhawk for Military Comics #1 in 1941 for the publisher. Quality lasted until December 1956 (The Spirit reprint comic having been cancelled in 1950), where the remaining titles moved over to DC Comics, along with the other characters that Quality had published. 

There is an excellent site showing covers from the Quality Comics titles which can be found here.

The cover to The Spirit #3

Spirit #3

The cover to Fiction House The Spirit #4

Spirit #4

Fiction House

Before Will Eisner started The Spirit feature, he operated a packaging house along with Jerry Iger. Together they would hire artists and writers to package strips and complete comic books to be published by the new comic book publishers that were springing up after the success of strips like Superman. Fiction House were one of these publishers that the Eisner-Iger studio produced work for, including creating the jungle heroine Sheena who appeared in Jungle Comics. Fiction House also released the first continuously published science fiction comic with Planet Comics (lasting over 13 years). Known primarily for their titles featuring beautiful women on the covers, they were hit by the introduction of the Comics Code in the early 1950s. They published 5 issues of The Spirit between 1952 and 1954, which was the time the publisher ceased operations.

The cover to Fiction House The Spirit #5

Spirit #5


The cover to an issue of The Spirit published by IW

IW/Super Comics

Started in 1958 by Israel Waldman, this publisher printed titles by using printing plates of various 1940s and 50s comic titles without obtaining permission from the copyright holders! Packaged with new covers, the titles were usually sold in bags of three at grocery stores. There are at least two known issues of The Spirit which were printed without Will Eisner's permission. The publisher seems to have lasted until 1964, publishing many hundreds of comics.

The cover to an issue of The Spirit published by IW

Promotional ad for The Spirit series by Harvey

Promotional ad for The Spirit 

Harvey Comics  

Started in 1939 by brothers Leon and Alfred Harvey, the publisher is best known for it's range of titles aimed at the pre-teen market like Casper the Friendly Ghost, Richie Rich etc. However, Harvey had published a wide range of comics on the subjects of romance, adventure, and horror during the 1940s and 1950s. With the Batman craze of the 1960s, Harvey published two issues of The Spirit, which included some new material by Eisner. Harvey Comics were sold to Jeff Montgomery in 1990 (with the exception of the superhero titles and the Sad Sack character) but the comics line was discontinued in 1994, the characters were sold to Classic Media LLC in 2001. In 1991 however, Lorne-Harvey Publications started up, which has reprinted the superhero and Sad Sack material it has the rights to..Lorne-Harvey have a website on the Black Cat, which can be found here.

The cover to The Spirit #1 by Harvey Comics

The Spirit #1

The cover to Eerie #54 - the first Warren appearance of The Spirit

The cover to Eerie #54

Warren Publishing Company

Started in 1964 by Jim Warren, this publisher started a craze when he released Famous Monsters of Filmland, a magazine featuring photos from old monster movies along with material from noted sf fan Forrest Ackerman. Spurred on by the success of the magazine, Warren then went on to release two horror based comic magazines, which were reminiscent of the titles released by EC in the 1950s. Creepy and Eerie enjoyed success for nearly 20 years. Spirit reprints appeared in Eerie #54 and #55 in 1973 and in 1974 Warren launched a Spirit Magazine which featured reprints of classic sections in black & white mainly. Under Warren as a publisher, the magazine lasted for 16 issues and a colour special before Kitchen Sink took over the magazine in 1978. Warren Publishing lasted until 1983 before it ceased operations. 

For an excellent overview of this publisher it is worth reading The Warren Companion.

The cover to The Spirit Magazine #1

The cover to The Spirit Magazine #1

The cover to Snarf #3

The cover to Snarf #3

The cover to The Spirit Magazine #20

The cover to The Spirit Magazine #20

Kitchen Sink

Started in 1968 by Denis Kitchen, this publisher first published material by Eisner on the cover of Snarf #3. This was quickly followed by two 'underground' reprints of Spirit sections in 1973. Eisner was keen to have more work published by Kitchen Sink, but had already agreed to have The Spirit reprinted by Warren Publishing. In 1978 however, Kitchen Sink were able to take over publication of The Spirit Magazine from Warren. The publisher continued reprints of the strips, as well as featuring new work by Eisner. The magazine series lasted until #41 in 1983. The original format of the magazine was split into two: the Will Eisner Quarterly featuring new Eisner material (not Spirit stories, although there would be a reprint of the very first Spirit sections from 1941 in most issues); and a new Spirit reprint series, which would do something never attempted before: reprint all the post-War Spirit sections in chronological order! The Spirit reprint series managed to reprint all of the sections in 87 issues, and then attempted to reprint all of the pre-War sections in The Spirit: The Origin Years, which unfortunately only lasted for nine issues. The publisher lasted until 1998 before it had to cease operations. 

However, Kitchen Sink and Denis Kitchen still have an involvement with Will Eisner and The Spirit - Denis Kitchen is Will Eisner's agent and sells original artwork by Eisner.

A fascinating history of most of Kitchen Sink's history is found in Kitchen Sink Press: The First 25 Years

Denis Kitchen has his own website which can be found here.

The cover to The Spirit #1 by Kitchen Sink

The cover to The Spirit #1

The cover to The Spirit: The Origin Years #1

The cover to The Spirit: The Origin Years #1

A promo ad by DC to launch The Spirit Archives

The promo ad to launch The Spirit Archives series

DC Comics

One of the oldest comic book publishers in the USA, DC Comics first started publishing in 1935 (under the name National Allied Publications) with New Fun Comics. With the publication of Action Comics #1, featuring the first appearance of Superman, the worldwide success of the publisher was assured - adding to it's line the characters of Batman and Wonder Woman. During the course of it's sixty-plus years of publication, the DC line has experimented in all genres of the comic book field, and has also acquired the titles and characters from a number of other publishers who have fallen by the wayside. The characters of Quality Comics, Fawcett Publications and Charlton Comics have all been added to the DC stable. In May 2000, DC Comics published the first volume of The Spirit Archives - a series of books that will reprint in chronological order and in colour all of The Spirit sections from 1941 to 1952! DC Comics also reprinted a facsimile edition of Quality Comics' The Spirit#1 as part of it's Millennium Editions line in 2000.

The Spirit Archives #1

The Spirit Archives #2

The daily run of The Spirit has also been reprinted by various publishers, most notably Edwin Aprill in the 1960s and Ken Pierce Books in the 1980s. To find out more information, please click here. To date though unfortunately a complete run of all the strips in the daily sequence has not been achieved by any one publisher in the USA.

Search this site!

powered by FreeFind

Rate this site
with ADBD
10 is the best rating

Quick Link

Click here to goto Will Eisner's site!

Trivia Answer: 7 April, 1946 (For more information, click here)