Monday, February 8, 2016


"What does a Demon Hunter do? Everything he can to prevent Xenogenesis...the rebirth of a demon race here on earth! His name? Gideon Cross. He is a telepath."

The first Atlas Comic I recall picking up was Demon Hunter, remaining my favorite in their line-up. Unfortunately there was only one issue published, not that any of their titles has any lengthy runs. Being said, that did not end Rich Buckler using the character in other comics. Next to his art on Marvel Comics Black Panther (with the phenomenal Don McGregor of Sabre & Detectives, Inc. fame) and Deathlok (with the amazing Doug "Master of Kung Fu" Moench), this was easily some of Rich Buckler's finest work.

Empowered by a cult seeking to bring about Xenogenesis, Vietnam vet Gideon Cross was empowered with a shadow cloak and new abilities to serve their bidding. He turned against them, however, and became a one-man force against their evil. Unlike Dr.Strange or Dr. Fate, Demon Hunter was fighting a specific war against a specific evil.

Buckler was great laying out a page!

Demon Hunter #1  Fantastic Origin Issue!
"The Harvester of Eyes"
Script by creators Rich (Deathlok, Fantastic Four, All Star Squadron) Buckler & David Anthony (Comics Interview, Defenders) Kraft with art by Buckler inked by Frank (Captain America, Sherlock Holmes) Giacoia & P. Craig (Killraven, Elric, Night Music) Russell!
Indicia title is "Demon-Hunter" with a hyphen; cover title is "Demon Hunter".

Demon Hunter is next seen as Devil-Slayer in Marvel Spotlight, fighting Deathlok!

Last issue, Marvel Spotlight #33, written by Kraft, with art by Buckler, Mike Netzer, Arvell Jones & Klaus Janson.
The Defenders #58 written by Kraft with Ed Hannigan, Klaus Janson & Dan Green art.
Marvel Team-Up #111 written by J. M. DeMatteis with art by Herb Trimpe, Mike Esposito & Frank Giacoia.
One of the finest ever! Marvel Graphic Novel #1 "The Death of Captain Marvel" by the incomparable Jim Starlin.
The design of the character was carried on in Buckler's later Devil-Slayer at Marvel Comics, first appearing in Marvel Spotlight #33. His alter ego was soldier and hitman Eric Simon Payne. Devil-Slayer renounced the demon cult that granted him incredible powers and now stood against them. Their goal, Xenogenesis, the rebirth of a demon race on earth. I enjoyed him facing off with Rich Buckler's Deathlok. Devil-Slayer then went on to be featured in The Defenders #58-#60, #97-#101 & #110. He even went on to show up in Marvel Graphic Novel #1 "The Death of Captain Marvel."

Rich Buckler published magazine Galaxia #1 (and unpublished #2), featured the character Bloodwing. Again, this character is nearly identical to the Atlas Comics Demon Hunter. He was also known by the same alter ego, Gideon Cross. Too bad Galaxia #2, or Demon Hunter #2 for that matter, were never published.
Original splash page for Demon Hunter #1, featuring the dedication in the lower right hand corner!

Another tidbit has the story dedicated to “Buck Dharma and the boys” on the splash page!  And who is Buck Dharma and the boys?  Well that’s a reference to the band, Blue Oyster Cult, who inspired the creation of the Demon Hunter and the Harvester of Eyes! Remember their massive hit Don’t Fear The Reaper, also featured on a favorite TV series of mine, Supernatural

Live Large My Friends!

Thank You!

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