Lou Mougin, a comic book writer and acclaimed comic book historian, has passed away at the age of 68
Lou Mougin, comic book writer, novelist and acclaimed comic book historian, has passed away at the age of 68 after a short illness.
Mougin is perhaps best remembered for his extensive comic book character histories in the 1980s in the pages of the comic book magazine, Amazing Heroes, during a period where there were sparse references available for the histories of comic book characters. Mougin's research skills helped him play a role in the original Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, and he later wrote a few comic book stories for Marvel, including the origin of Swordsman.
During the 1970s, Mougin got involved in the world of comic book indexes. Again, in those pre-internet days, reliable information about old comic books were very hard to come by, which led to the rise of independent indexes about a number of comic book characters. The two main indexers were George Olshevsky for Marvel comic book characters and Murray Ward for DC comic book characters. Mougin began to work for both of them on their projects.
Mougin also began to write historical articles for the Comics Reader, and that led to him doing the same for Amazing Heroes early in the 1980s, like this spotlight on Thor's history in early 1982…
Mougin would do dozens of these comic book histories, and fans loved them. Mougin would also do interviews for David A. Kraft's iconic Comics Interview magazine.
When Mark Gruenwald had launched his short lived, but influential, fanzine Omniverse, Mougin started corresponding with him, and when Gruenwald launched the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe in late 1982, had had Peter Sanderson enlist Mougin to write a couple of entries for the Handbook. Mougin's connection with Gruenwald also led to him writing some backups for What If…? that, due to What If…? dropping its backups, didn't see print until 1990's Inhumans Special #1.
Mougin also wrote a story for Avengers Spotlight #22 featuring the origin of Swordsman…
Mougin's indexing work became invaluable again with the birth of online indexes, and Mougin was a key early contributor to the Grand Comic Book Database, one of the greatest sources for information about comic books on the internet.
Mougin's reason for getting into indexes in the first place was his love of fan fiction. While writing fan fiction, he wanted to have the background of the characters that he was writing about, and thus he began doing indexes for himself to keep everything straight, for the sake of his fan fiction. His fiction writing eventually led to a long career doing independent comic book writing for Heroic, Claypool, Lucky Comics, Warrant, AC, Charlton Neo, InDellible, G-Man Comics and more. He wrote a number of stories for Warrant's The Creeps…
He also began writing pulp novels, as well. He released Crom the Barbarian: Zaltus War, and was in the early stages of a sequel novel.
Mougin kept up his comic book historian work, as well, including writing 2019's Secondary Superheroes of the Golden Age…
Mougin remained active in comic book fandom, and he had long been an invaluable resource for comic book history articles here at CBR, as well.
CBR Senior Writer Brian Cronin has been writing professionally about comic books for over fifteen years now at CBR (primarily with his “Comics Should Be Good” series of columns, including Comic Book Legends Revealed). He has written two books about comics for Penguin-Random House – Was Superman a Spy? And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed and Why Does Batman Carry Shark Repellent? And Other Amazing Comic Book Trivia! and one book, 100 Things X-Men Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die, from Triumph Books. His writing has been featured at ESPN.com, the Los Angeles Times, About.com, the Huffington Post and Gizmodo. He features legends about entertainment and sports at his website, Legends Revealed and other pop culture features at Pop Culture References. Follow him on Twitter at @Brian_Cronin and feel free to e-mail him suggestions for stories about comic books that you’d like to see featured at email@example.com!