Image gallery

Finding good Elongate Man art is a bit hard these days. So I'll make the task a bit easier for you by making a nice image gallery (which I'll be updating as I find material).

Make sure you check the Top 20 Elongated Man Deviantart post, there's some great material there.

The Infantino era


 
The image that started it all for fans.
One think they never realized in the silver age is that the challenge for a speedster wouldn't be catching a stretchy, but escaping one.
Cover of Showcase Presents: The Elongated Man, vol. 1, adapted from Detective Comics #336, "House of Flashy Traps!"
Ralph in the bronze era
According to Diabolu, this is a 1984 postcard by George Pérez...
Normally, Pérez's art is awesome, but I find both portraits terrible in this case. Ralph look like those people who don't know how to smile an just force a grin. And what's with the picture. I'm sorry, but this one is terrible, just terrible.
 
Elongated Man's entry of Who's Who, the Definitive Directory of the DC Universe. Art by Carmine Infantino.
It turns out Ralph's bio in the first Who's Who was drawn by Carmine Infantino. I have to admit that it is my least favorite EM work from that talent. The stuff in the back looks like great classic Infantino, and the main figure looks okay. The only deal breaker for me is the weird arm. It looks way too lame. It looks like there was no clever idea o showcase Ralph's powers. I mean, take this Mr. Fantastic portrait by the King as a reference. That's what I call dynamic stretching!
Post-Crisis era before Identity Crisis
Raph's file in Who's Who in the DC Universe #7. Art by Bart Sears.

I guess the inking still made a big difference around 1990, because the art of Ralph's bio in Who's Who in the DC Universe #7 looks really different from his Justice League Europe material. The picture is a bit odd, and he really drew a blank with the setting, but I like the lighthearted dynamic of it. A nose twitch or a magnifying glass wouldn't have hurt.

Ty Templeton's art in Secret Origins #30.

I just love those three panels. I love the composition, the colors, the romance, and the graphic story telling; they are very "pop art". Too bad Templeton didn't do the story as well (I'm not shy about claiming that Gerard Jones ruined the Elongated Man).

I normally would have ignored Ty Templeton's art out of ignorance and a very obtuse eye. My main reason being that I don't like the way he draws faces in his early 90s stuff , including The Elongated Man: Europe '92[UPDATE: read the comments section of this article for a really awesome surprise and to see how I ate my words, ha, ha - 10/23/11]. But Busterella's avatar pic from Secret Origins #30 made me realize the mistake I was making. I love the compositions of Ty in that issue. I also took a look at his Batman & Robin Adventures stuff and is even better.
Bart Sears drew a really cute Sue and a dynamic Elongated Man.

Crop of the cover of Animal Man #16. Art by Brian Bolland.
This is one damn cool image. During the JLE era, the best portrayals of Ralph were done in this story by Grant Morrison and specially JLI Quarterly #4 by Mark Waid.
"The Other Uniform". rt by Ron Randall.
Around the mid 90s the Elongated Man wore a fourth uniform, which was basically the first one with a big E in the chest. He also had a nerdy hairdon't. For some reason Gerard Jones was determined to make Ralph a clueless clown, something I'd have enjoyed if at least the jokes were funny.

The Elongated Man entry at JLA-A #1. Art by Scott McDaniels and Rob Stull.
The Dark Knight Strikes Again
The Elongated Man in The Dark Knight Strikes Again. Art by Frank Miller and Lynn Varley.
Yeah, in the Millerverse not even Ralph is a normal person. You think that's Sue?

Identity Crisis

Ralph and Sue in the JLA Satellite. Panel from Identity Crisis #1, art by Rags Morales.
Yeah. Somebody's into butter pecan ice cream. (Panel from Identity Crisis #1, art by Rags Morales).

The tragedy begins. Ralph and Sue in Identity Crisis #1. Art by Rags Morales.
This dark image has been printed or copied at least a dozen times in DC stories. Very symbolic of this era: The bright and classic silver age costumes, but the angry 90s storytelling.

Not a nice moment for Sue Dibny fans. (Panel from Identity Crisis #2, art by Rags Morales).
Her murder in Identity Crisis #1 was not enough, so Sue was retroactively abused in the next issue.

Ralph Dibny by Rags Morales.
 I'm not sure whether this sketch was made before of after Identity Crisis.

Character study by Michael Turner. I'm guessing it was for the Identity Crisis figure. Meh. The face has no personality and he looks like a generic slim superhero. Why would he stretch his arms like that?
Front center, a great place for the World-famous Elongated Man.
This page was created by Rags Morales for the cover art of Absolute Identity Crisis released October 12th, 2011. Artists often forget how tall is Ralph supposed to be, but it's clearly not the case here.


52
The craziest Elongated Man scene ever.
Cleaning Felix clock normally takes the entire League, but it seems to be no challenge for the ductile detective.

Yeah, well, defeating a demon is a little harder.

Some characters didn't make it through 52.
... Or didn't they? Die of envy, Kerbys! (...y'know the ghost couble from Topper).

The origin of the Elongated Man in 52, Week Thirteen.
The Elongated Man by Kevin Nowlan for 52, week thirteen.


Ralph and the JLA gang. Art by Kevin Nowlan for 52, week thirteen.
Art from 52, week thirteen, adapted by Diabolu.
Nowlan's Ralph is very 60s silver agy, specially the one from the circular panel.

Booster Gold #15
Cover of Booster Gold #15. Art by Dan Jurgens.
This is the best use of Elongated Man in a cover.

Justice

An Image I adapted from Alex Ross' Justice.
I hated Alex Ross' portrayal of Ralph and Sue. Ross normally does realistic yet very classic versions of the characters, yet the Dibnys look nothing like themselves.

CARDS

 
1989 Mayfair Games DC Heroes Elongated Man character card, found by Diabolu.

Impel DC Cosmic Cards#47: Elongated Man. Art by Bart Sears.
Sears constantly drew an interesting Elongated Man, too bad Gerard Jones didn't do much with it.

There have been some nice art works for DC JLA VS System cards.
This one was done by James Jean in 2005. It's quite silly, but it makes reference to the Mike W. Barr stories in which Ralph is a big detective fiction fan.

I can't track the origin of this image, but it's one of the best. The artist nailed the character. Specially as portrayed by Mike W. Barr. If someone knows the source of this image, please, let me know.
Ok, I tracked it. It turns out it was made by Ryan Sook and it's a card. We can find it in his awesome 2007 art gallery. I also found out he made a cool preliminary version:
I'm loving the suit and coat! Purple suits him better. The lights were a little weird and the hair looks a bit more like Maxwell Lord's.

ANIMATION
Justice League Unlimited

 
After saving the day In Justice League Unlimited's The Greatest Story Never Told.
Bruce Timm's design for Ralph was spot on. I'm not convinced about the "EM" logo, but the uniform is the best in my book. The original purple and white uniform was really weird with the division right in the middle. The belt and the collar are very Mr. Fantastic.

The slim physical look really suits him; specially when you consider the how bulky the other male characters look.  I'm not sure wether it was done on purpose or not, but he has an Ace Ventura type of look. I think it suits him.

I have the impression that not all the character designs of the DC animated Universe are done by Timm. At least I'm sure that he have had collaborators. That was the case with his early designs for Man-Bat, Poison Ivy and Mr. Freeze.
Missed him, Fartseid!
 Now, I'm not sure who did this type of promotional art for the series, but I can tell he's a Ralph enthusiast. Whoever did this artwork lacks Bruce Timm's quality (maybe they are fast sketches that somebody else worked), he normally does interesting dynamic poses but, unlike the real deal, always end up looking contrived and their rendering looks cheap. However, in this particular case, the pose that he created is just too cool, and that's quite a merit, since stretchers are hard to work with. I love that Ralph is taking a shot at Darkseid -- and making him miss a hit! This could never happen, unless the story is about Darkseid killing JL's nicest guy to demoralize them; but it sure looks awesome.
Right there, bottom center, between Superman and Aquaman.
 I recently found this other one. I love this JLA satellite tribute. The only oddball is Wildcat (Supergirl was one of the most recurring characters of that era). Now that I think about it, besides Dr. Fate,  these were the only characters made for this promotional material.

Batman: The Brave and the Bold

Elongated Man teaming up with Batman in Batman: The Brave And The Bold's episode "Bat-Mite Presents: Batmans Strangest Cases!"
Yes that's the type of Elongated Man adventures that animation have been missing!

SOME NICE SKETCHES
I don't know the exact nature of the following sketches, but they were done by recognizable artists, so, I'm posting their drawings here and giving people links to their fantastic sites (hey, I doubt a little extra promotion would hurt them).

Ty Templeton
Another pic by Ty: Ralph vs. Katrina. Sounds like a title for an adventure of the Tick.
Doc Shaner

Curry, Dibny and Starro by Doc Shaner.
DC should hire and listen to this guy. There's more of his wonderful art at Evan "Doc" Shaner Advetures.

Philipp S. Neundorf

If Neil Gaiman ever does an Elongated Man story, this is how the art would look like!

Terry Beatty
Nope, that's not Sue.
Ralph teaming up with Ms. Tree, a creation of Beatty with Max Allan Collins.

Michael Netzer
Ralph got to be the E in Netzer's hero alphabet poster. Take that Eee...lastic Lad?
 For more of Michael Netzer's art, go to his Portal.

Chris Samnee
Check out his art at the Chris Samnee blog.
Ralph Dibny by Chris Samnee.
Samnee captured the essence of Infantino, Schwartz and Fox's Ralph Dibny and yet the character design couldn't be more original. Read Chris' comment in his original post about this drawing.
Ralph and Sue by Samnee.
Yup, those are the Dibnys. In his original post about this other drawing Samnee said: "Dear DC Comics, Please make Ralph and Sue Dibny not ghosts... and let me draw them in an awesome comic where they solve mysteries. Thank you, Chris Samnee". I say "DC, please listen to this guy" hahaha.


A bit more from Samnee, yet.
 Steve Rude

Ralph gets his clock cleaned.
 I don't know if I should even be posting this one here - C'mon, I looks like Hal isn't even trying! I think Ralph is sneakier than that. Oh well. The art is beautifl at least. Very elegant; it captures the spirit of the silver age. For more awesome art, go to Steve Rude's website.
J. J. Kirby
I have no info on this pic. It seems like a reinterpretation of Central City's finest duo, but it says "Elastman".

Sebastien Chrisostome
I'm still not sure where to place this, but this guy has a special quality. See more of his interpretations of American superheroes as his site, they are weird but they have great dynamism.

Rafa Rivas
Oh, and I'm not famous at all, but here's a sketch I made:
Ralph, Sue and Slam by Rafa.
Meh. Sue's face should be rounder. What the hell did I do with her breasts? Considering she spent some years involved with the JLA, I though it would be a good to give her a spandex, but I'm not sure I like the idea anymore, haha. I have no clue about my logic with the shading. Remind me to ink that drawing again. Since Infantino was the best at dressing her, I still think he sense of fashion should have influences from 60s.
I used a bunch of Dick van Dyke and Thin Man pics as references.

4 comments:

  1. I recall that the Who's Who entries had some nice pics of the Elongated Man.

    One of the things I hate about how Ralph was depicted, after the end of his classic run, was that artists always felt compelled to draw him stretched out. Especially his neck and often his nose. Brian Bolland's Animal Man cover is the rare exception. (Also, as I recall, fellow Vancouverite Stephen Sadowski showed some restraint in his one fill-in job for Starman,)

    Infantino allowed Ralph moments to appear just like an ordinary human being. The stretching isn't so visually interesting if the Elongated Man is ALWAYS doing it. It's like if Superman was always flying around even when he was just Clark Kent or if Johnny Storm was always on fire.

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  2. Don't worry this post is far from over, I'll keep updating it as I find more interesting images.

    I'm not a fan of the first Who's who image. I've been meaning to add it to this post with a little review (along with the one by Bruce Timm in which he's fighting Darseid and one hitting Faust in 52). I feel it has the problem you noticed in his appearances after the original stretching. Stretching the arm to say hello is just dumb, they should have done a Kirbiesque pose or soething interesting.

    You're right, too much stretching makes it less special. I thought it was just Gerard Jones who destroyed Ralph rep.

    By the way I'm preparing a post about the best Elongated man quotes. It seems it's going to take me a while to prepare it; so, nominations are welcomed.

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  3. I appreciate the kind words you said about my Ralph and Sue sequence in Secret Origins #30. I have a theory as to why you didn't like my penciling in the Elongated Man miniseries...it's because I didn't pencil the Elongated Man miniseries, Mike Parobeck did. I was merely the inker. To be honest, I loved Mike's work, so we disagree on the quality of it, but either way, it wasn't my drawing.

    Ty the Guy Templeton

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  4. Damn... Wow. You drew and wrote some of the earliest comics I read in English (which is why chatting with you feels surreal), back then, I didn't even know the language. I got you mixed up with Parobeck because because of Batman Adventures, I started collecting in '94, when it changed to Batman and Robin, which felt like an extension of the series, with awesomely faithful art. Then, I got a Batman Adventures trade, which I've always thought was you as well. I just thought that shiny eyes was something you stopped doing, jajaja. I didn't find out it was another person until now. That also explains how come I love the composition of SO #30 so much. The very same things that I loved from those panels are the ones that got me hooked on Batman and Robin Adventures. You almost made art deco shapes out of the panels, and I could stare for a really long time at your lettering for titles and sounds. I felt the same way with your '04 Batman Adventures run as a writer, I kept wishing to see nods to that in JLU and I'm still wishing somebody makes the Penguin Gotham's mayor for a while.

    Do you have any other Ralph or Sue or R+S pick I could use by any chance?

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