Artist Ryan Bodenheim died on the 20th of December at the age of 44. Rich has the obituary, if you’re interested. The year couldn’t end without a final twist of the knife, I guess.
Bodenheim isn’t as big a name as some, but he was an excellent artist. His output wasn’t too big, and I guess it was due to health problems, as it sounds like it’s something that plagued him his entire life. His best work (that I saw) was on The Dying and the Dead, the oft-delayed (again, presumably because of his health problems) and now never-to-be-completed action thriller conspiracy story with Jonathan Hickman. His work on the book showcases his amazing talent – his clean line, his attention to detail, and his boundless imagination. Check out this sequence from issue #1:
It’s awful when someone dies so young, of course, no matter how talented he or she is, and our condolences go out to Bodenheim’s family. He was working on an Eternals one-shot with Kieron Gillen, which would have been very cool (I don’t know if Marvel will publish what he got done or if he got any of it done). Obviously, just the fact that he’s no longer with us is depressing, but as a comics fan, I’m also upset that he never became the superstar he could have become, and now he never will. So go find Red Mass for Mars or The Dying and the Dead and give his work a look. It’s quite excellent. Rest in Peace, Mr. Bodenheim.