Dennis Janke

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Dennis Janke
Born (1950-04-13) April 13, 1950 (age 71)
Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
Pseudonym(s)Z. Capistance[1]
Notable works
Superman: The Man of Steel
The Adventures of Superman
CollaboratorsJon Bogdanove
Jerry Ordway

Dennis Janke (born April 13,[2] 1950[3] in Cleveland, Ohio)[4] is an American comic book artist who was active in the industry from the mid-1980s to the mid-2000s, primarily as an inker. He is most well known for his work on the DC Comics character Superman, particularly his nine-year run as inker on Superman: The Man of Steel.

A freelancer, Janke worked for both DC and Marvel Comics during his career, penciling covers and stories here and there, but mostly focusing on "finish inking" over other artists' pencils. Janke has worked extensively with pencilers Jon Bogdanove and Jerry Ordway, and is a co-creator (with artist Ordway) of Bertron (who created Doomsday), and Mr. Z (best known from the Superman story "Time and Time Again"). With Mark Gruenwald and Paul Neary, Janke co-created Armadillo.

In his career, Janke has also worked on dozens of independent comic books[3] and underground comix, including his own self-published series, Flaming Baloney (published with James R. Blevins c. 1975).[5]



Janke earned his BFA from the Cleveland Institute of Art.[3]


Janke's first published work was a 1974 illustration in DC Comics' House of Mystery,[6] but his professional career took off a decade later when he was hired to ink Paul Neary on Marvel's Captain America, which he did for two years.

Moving over to DC Comics in 1987, Janke inked the final nine issues of Electric Warrior over Jim Baikie's pencils. Next, he inked the four-issue mini-series The Phantom, pencilled by Joe Orlando and written by Peter David. Around the same time he became the regular inker on The Adventures of Superman and Superman, mostly inking Jerry Ordway's pencils. He then spent nine years as the inker of Superman: The Man of Steel, mostly over Jon Bogdanove. (Bogdanove and Janke also illustrated many covers for the Steel solo title during this period.) As inker on Superman: The Man of Steel, Janke contributed to, and benefited from the success of, the best-selling 1992-1993 "The Death of Superman" story arc.[4]

Janke's final major run as an inker was for The Spectre in 2002–2003 (over Norm Breyfogle's pencils). Since 2003, Janke's published comics credits have been rare.

Janke is currently at work on a graphic novel.[7]

Personal life[edit]

Janke is an amateur poet.[7] He lives in Maine,[7] in a house he was able to pay for with royalties from his work on "The Death of Superman."[4]


As writer[edit]

As penciler[edit]

  • Adventures of Superman #496 (DC Comics, Nov. 1992) — also co-plot and inks
  • "Gangbuster of Suicide Slum," The Legacy of Superman #1 (DC Comics, Mar. 1993)
  • "Prologue: Communion," Doomsday Annual #1 (DC Comics, 1995) — also inks
  • "Epilogue: Requiem," Doomsday Annual #1 (DC Comics, 1995) — also inks

As inker[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Thompson, Don & Maggie. Comic-Book Superstars: Who is Who Among Comics Creators (Iola, Wis.: Krause Publications, 1993), p. 102.


  1. ^ Witzend #12 (Wonderful Publishing Company, 1982).
  2. ^ "Happy 66th Birthday, Dennis Janke!", The Comics Reporter (April 13, 2016).
  3. ^ a b c Janke entry, Who's Who of American Comic Books, 1928–1999. Accessed July 15, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c "witzend Contributors, Part 2," witzend, Volume 1 (Fantagraphics Books, 2014), p. 306.
  5. ^ "witzend Contributors, Part I," witzend, Volume 1 (Fantagraphics Books, 2014), p. 293.
  6. ^ "Dennis Janke - The Fan of Steel". Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  7. ^ a b c Janke bio, Inspiration for the Spirit website. Accessed July 15, 2016.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Captain America inker
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Electric Warrior inker
Succeeded by
N/A (series ended)
Preceded by
The Adventures of Superman inker
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Superman inker
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Superman: The Man of Steel inker
Succeeded by
Preceded by
The Spectre inker
Succeeded by
N/A (series ended)