Lobo (Dell Comics)
Publication history 
Lobo starred in Dell Comics' little-known, two-issue series Lobo (Dec. 1965 & Sept. 1966), also listed as Dell Comics #12-438-512 and #12-439-610 in the company's quirky numbering system. Created by writer Don "D. J." Arneson and artist Tony Tallarico, it chronicled the Old West adventures of a wealthy, unnamed African-American gunslinger called "Lobo" by the first issue's antagonists. On the foreheads of vanquished criminals, Lobo would leave the calling card of a gold coin imprinted with the images of a wolf and the letter "L".
Tallarico in a 2006 interview said that he and Dell writer Arneson co-created the character based on an idea and a plot by Tallarico, with Arneson scripting it.
I had an idea for Lobo. And I approached D. J. Arneson and he brought it in and showed it to [Dell editor-in-chief] Helen Meyer. ... She loved it. She really wanted to do it. Great, so we did it. We did the first issue. And in comics, you start the second issue as they're printing the first one, due to time limitations. ... All of the sudden, they stopped the wagon. They stopped production on the issue. They discovered that as they were sending out bundles of comics out to the distributors [that] they were being returned unopened. And I couldn't figure out why. So they sniffed around, scouted around and discovered [that many sellers] were opposed to Lobo, who was the first black Western hero. That was the end of the book. It sold nothing. They printed 200,000; that was the going print-rate. They sold, oh, 10-15 thousand.
On May 19, 2006, Tallarico was bestowed the East Coast Black Age of Comics Convention's Pioneer Award for Lifetime Achievement, in recognition of his creating the first comic book to star an African-American. He was an honoree at the reception dinner at the African American Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Black comic-book stars 
Aside from characters featured in the single-issue, small-press niche publication All-Negro Comics in 1947, the first mainstream comic-book feature with a Black star, albeit not African-American, was "Waku, Prince of the Bantu", an African tribal-chief feature from Marvel Comics' 1950s predecessor Atlas Comics. This was one of four regular features in each issue of the omnibus title Jungle Tales (Sept. 1954 - Sept. 1955). Comic books' first known African-American superhero, Marvel's the Falcon, debuted in Captain America #117 (Sept. 1969). There would be no Black star of his or her own comic until 1972, with Marvel's Luke Cage, Hero for Hire, followed in 1973 by Marvel's Black Panther (an African superhero introduced as a supporting character in a 1966 issue of Fantastic Four) in Jungle Action.
See also 
- Lobo (1965 character) at Don Markstein's Toonopedia. Archived October 31, 2011.
- Lobo #1 (Dell, 1965 Series) at the Grand Comics Database
- "Tony Tallarico Interview". Coville's Clubhouse (column), Collector Times. August 2006. Archived from the original on May 41, 2010.].
- Watson, Rob (May 19, 2006). "For these comics creators, not just funny business African American gathering will teach nature of the industry.". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Archived from the original on July 2, 2011.
- "Archive for the 'Pioneers' Category", East Coast Black Age of Comics Con '10 (2010). WebCitation archive.
- Isabella, Tony (September 18, 2006). ECBACC. Tony's Online Tips (column), reprinted from Comics Buyer's Guide #1622. Archived from the original on October 31, 2011..