Some sad news to report this morning, as long-time comics and magazine writer and publisher David Anthony Kraft has passed away. The news of his passing was shared on his own Facebook page this morning by his wife, Jennifer Bush-Kraft, who said that they had both been suffering from COVID-19 pneumonia since April 28 and that her husband had succumbed to it yesterday morning.
David Anthony Kraft (known to fans as DAK) was born in 1952 and had a long journeyman career in publishing. He was originally a rock music journalist but found his way into the world of comics by becoming the editor of FOOM, Marvel Comics’ fan magazine, in 1976. After the magazine ended two years later, Kraft made the transition to becoming a comic book writer for Marvel.
His first big success as a comic book author was in writing “The Scorpio Saga” arc for The Defenders. From there, he went on to write such titles for Marvel as Marvel Super Special, Savage She-Hulk, Captain America, and Giant-Size Dracula. He became known for his continuing work on the character Man-Wolf and featured him in Creatures on the Loose, Marvel Premiere, and The Spectacular Spider-Man Annual #3.
In the early 1980s, Kraft started writing for DC Comics, authoring a run on World’s Finest Comics. Kraft’s unique sensibilities and approach to his characters really highlighted the more simple, yet fun and endearing decency of the pre-Crisis Batman and Superman.
Kraft’s real passion seemed to be in publishing and being a comics reviewer, which led him to found Fictioneer Books in 1974. This eventually led to the publishing of what Kraft became best known for, David Anthony Kraft’s Comics Interview, a comic book and pop culture magazine that ran from 1983 – 1995. The magazine was much-loved for being a prime pre-internet source of comic industry news, features, and reviews, while mainly being focused on extensive interviews with comic book creators.
Kraft was a popular and respected figure amongst his fellow creators in the comic industry, always earning acclaim for his tackling of deep themes and use of rock music references in his comics writing. His magazine David Anthony Kraft’s Comics Interview has stood the test of time as a pillar in comic book reporting and reviews, despite not having been published since 1995.
My friend, DAK, Dave Anthony Kraft, has caught the last train out. Besides publishing Comics Interview for many years, he helped finance Roger Slifer’s reprint of the Manhunter strip back in 1979. I shall always be grateful. Thanks for everything, DAK. Godspeed.
— Walter Simonson (@WalterSimonson) May 20, 2021
I’m sorry to report that, per his Facebook page and according to his wife, comics writer David Anthony Kraft (Defenders) has passed away from COVID related pneumonia. I never met him and have no further details, I was just a fan and wanted to pass on the sad news to other fans.
— Christos Gage (@Christosgage) May 20, 2021
Oh, man–terrible news. I was looking through David Anthony Kraft’s run on the Defenders just yesterday. That’s just awful. He was one hell of a talent. https://t.co/5qFgjfNV06
— Erik Larsen (@ErikJLarsen) May 20, 2021
Kraft is survived by his wife Jennifer, who has also been battling COVID-19 and we hope she is able to get well soon.
We would like to send our best wishes to the family and loved ones of David Anthony Kraft and encourage modern fans who may not be familiar with his work to seek it out. RIP DAK.