The Phantom: The Unsung Inspiration of Modern Comics

Wanted to share a little comic book history

Ramblings Of A Comics Fan

First appearing in newspapers on February 17, 1936, the Phantom was the first character to wear the skintight costume worn by so many superheroes today. He was also the first character to wear a mask with no visible pupils. Creator Lee Falk explained  that Ancient Greek busts inspired the idea of the not showing the Phantom’s pupils when he was wearing his mask, incorrectly believing that  the busts displayed no pupils (in fact they did; originally the eyes would have been painted on, and over time the paint had faded) which he felt gave them an inhuman, awe-inspiring appearance. In an interview published in Comic Book Marketplace in 2005, Falk said the Phantom’s skin-tight costume was inspired by Robin Hood, who was shown wearing tights in films and on stage.

The Phantom has been staring in new stories since his first appearance in 1936, but not every Phantom story is about the same Phantom –…

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