Early Elementary

Later Elementary

Todd Comics

Fame Comics

Middle School

High School


The Dark Ages

Art School

© 1970-2002 Todd VerBeek
Fame Comics
A few years before DC Comics "made history" by killing off several major characters and revamping its universe, Todd did the same thing. Starting from scratch by killing off the 100+ "Todd Comics" characters he'd saddled himself with, he created a new set of superhero characters and a new venue for them. In a move that would later make things easier for upstart hack illustrator Todd McFarlane to make a splash, he abandoned the "Todd" trademark, and modestly called his series "Fame Comics". Each issue would feature a different combination of three characters from a team of 14, ensuring that each adventure would be unique. In theory. In fact, the plots tended to follow the same hackneyed formula popular in professional comics of the day, just with different threats and powers.

But it was during this time that Todd began to take a serious interest in representing the human figure realistically. From the first issue, hands always had fingers (5 of them), but at first arms and legs and torsos and heads were just generic approximations thereof, drawn from assumption, not reference. Then he began to render - tentatively at first - the bumps and bulges of human musculature. He'd stopped dating the issues, so it's difficult to gauge exactly how quickly it happened, but in pretty short order, his figures became remarkably more realistic. Underneath the spandex could be perceived deltoids, pectorals, sternomastoids, patellas, biceps, abdominals... and even penises. The growing body awareness of puberty clearly played a role in this. The poses became more inventive, and included some decent foreshortening. He even took a "comic book art" class, which increased his focus on the quality of the craft. He also began to experiment with color pencils for more subtle effects, such as skin tones.

This greater attention to detail was a mixed blessing, however. The absence of cover dates indicates that Todd was taking longer and longer to produce each book (a fact he didn't wish to advertise). Plus, there was homework to do, and the allure of real male bodies out there to look at. In an attempt to revive his own interest in the comics, Todd again killed off his cast and replaced them with an even smaller one (with traces of individual characterisation beginning to appear), but his perfectionism and his 14-year-old attention span, combined with increasing desire to appear more "mature", caused him to abandon them.

to the Middle School years