Sam Kieth

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Sam Kieth
Born (1963-01-11) January 11, 1963 (age 51)[1]
Nationality American
Area(s) Writer, artist
Notable works
The Maxx
Zero Girl

Official website

Sam Kieth (born January 11, 1963[1]) is an American comic book writer and illustrator, best known as the creator of The Maxx and Zero Girl.


Kieth first came to prominence in 1984 as the inker of Matt Wagner's Mage, and a year later as the inker of Fish Police. In 1989, he penciled the first five issues of writer Neil Gaiman's celebrated series The Sandman. He illustrated on two volumes of writer William Messner-Loebs' Epicurus the Sage, drew an Aliens miniseries for Dark Horse Comics, and drew a single issue of The Incredible Hulk (#368), which led to drawing numerous covers for Marvel Comics Presents.

The Maxx[edit]

In 1993, Kieth left Marvel to create the original series The Maxx for fledgling publisher Image Comics. The Maxx ran 35 issues, all of which were plotted and illustrated by Kieth (though William Messner-Loebs scripted #1-15), except #21, which was guest-written by Alan Moore.

In 1995, The Maxx was adapted as part of MTV's short-lived animation series MTV's Oddities, which also included Eric Fogel's The Head.

DC Comics[edit]

After taking a break from comics to pursue other interests, Kieth created the series Zero Girl for DC's Wildstorm imprint, along with its sequel, Zero Girl: Full Circle. He followed these up with the drama Four Women'.

Kieth then wrote and drew the five-issue series Batman: Secrets, featuring the Joker, and Batman/Lobo: Deadly Serious, a two-issue miniseries starting in August 2007. This was followed by 2009's Lobo: Highway to Hell, written by the band Anthrax's Scott Ian, and the painted story "Ghosts", which appeared in Batman Confidential #40-43. In 2010, Kieth wrote and illustrated the original hardcover graphic novel Arkham Asylum: Madness, which spent two weeks on the New York Times best-seller list, reaching number five.[2]

Other work[edit]

Ojo comprises the first, and My Inner Bimbo the second, in a cycle of original limited series or graphic novels to be published by Oni Press, which he has dubbed "The Trout-a-Verse". The cycle will concern the intertwined lives of Annie (Ojo),[3] Lo (My Inner Bimbo),[4] Dana, Nola, Otto, and others all connected by an encounter with an urban legend known as the Magic Trout.[5]

In the UK, he has contributed to 2000 AD's Judge Dredd and provided several covers for the Nemesis the Warlock reprint title.

Recently (2011), Sam Kieth has also started doing artwork for IDW's 30 Days of Night series.

Art books[edit]

IDW Publishing released the 48-page The Sam Kieth Sketchbooks: Vol. 1, followed by a second volume in August 2010.

Other media[edit]

In addition to helping produced The Maxx animated series for MTV, Kieth also co-wrote "No Smoking", the pilot to Cow & Chicken (created by his cousin, Dave Feiss) and directed the film Take It to the Limit for Roger Corman's Concorde-New Horizons [6]

Personal life[edit]

Kieth met his wife when he was 15 years old and she was 30. He reports that although they lived together, he did not speak openly about their relationship until he was 18 years old and it was legal.[7] Much of Kieth's work has dealt with complexities of age differences in relationships with his graphic novel "My Inner Bimbo" being heavily influenced by the early days of his relationship with his wife.



  • I Before E (collection of Kieth's short stories)
  • The Maxx
  • Friends of Maxx
  • Legs
  • Zero Girl
  • Zero Girl: Full Circle
  • Four Women (graphic novel revised)
  • Wolverine/Hulk
  • Scratch (featuring Batman)
  • Ojo
  • Batman: Secrets
  • My Inner Bimbo
  • Batman/Lobo: Deadly Serious
  • Sam Kieth Sketchbook, Vol. 1
  • Batman Confidential (issues #40-43)
  • Arkham Asylum: Madness Published 29 June 2010. ISBN 1-4012-2337-0
  • Sam Kieth Sketchbook, Vol. 2

Co-writer only[edit]

  • Popbot (original series illustrated by and co-written with Ashley Wood; features cameo by the Maxx)

Artist only[edit]

  • Adolescent Radioactive Blackbelt Hamsters (#6-9)
  • Mage (inker)
  • Epicurus the Sage (written by William Messner-Loebs)
  • The Sandman #1-5 (DC, 1989)
  • Aliens: Earth War (retitled Aliens, Book 3: Female War)
  • Marvel Comics Presents: issues #85-92, written by Peter David, reprinted as Wolverine: Blood Hungry, and #118-122.
  • Judge Dredd: I Was a Teenage Mutant Ninja Priest Killer (in Judge Dredd Megazine vol.1 #20, 1992)
  • Venom
  • Peter Parker: Spider Man
  • Lobo: Highway to Hell (written by Scott Ian)
  • 30 Days of Night
  • Batman: Through the Looking Glass
  • The Hollows (written by Chris Ryall)

In addition, Kieth has done cover-art/illustrations for numerous titles, including:

  • Nightmare on Elm Street
  • Marvel Comics Presents
  • Amazing Heroes
  • Wizard
  • Detective Comics
  • Marvel Tales
  • Zen: Intergalactic Ninja
  • Cadillacs and Dinosaurs
  • B-sides (also known as The Craptacular B-Sides)
  • Gay Comics


  1. ^ a b Comics Buyer's Guide #1650; February 2009; Page 107
  2. ^ 'New York Times' Bestselling Graphic Books, July 18, 2010
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Sam Kieth filmography at the Internet Movie Database". Retrieved 28 February 2014. 
  7. ^ Epstein, Daniel Robert (October 3, 2003). "Sam Kieth". Archived from the original on June 28, 2011.