Tony DeZuniga (1941-2012)

Tony de Zuniga

We regret to report that artist Tony DeZuniga has passed away.

In his time, he made the wild west a little more wild, christening one of comics’ greatest antiheroes with the kind of scars only a mother (and countless readers) could love.

Born in the Philippines in 1941, DeZuniga first contributed to comics as a letterer for a weekly serial at age 16. He studied graphic design in America during the 60s before returning to the islands to pursue a career in advertising. He later journeyed back to New York where he made his name at DC and Marvel Comics during the 70s and beyond. He delivered stunningly visceral pencils and inks for titles like The Punisher, X-Men, Conan the Barbarian and even Star Wars.

But perhaps his most celebrated work was a collaboration with writer John Albano on that gnarly gunslinger Jonah Hex. He was there as artist from the very beginning in 1972’s All-Star Western #10 and returned nearly 40 years later for Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti’s wonderful Jonah Hex: No Way Back OGN. Pick up that recent tale or the classic stuff in the Jonah Hex Showcase edition and you’re in for a real treat.

DeZuniga may have been the first Filipino artist to find success at the Big Two, but he also made sure he wasn’t the last. He was a helping hand to many young talents from his native country, where he is lovingly remembered as “Mang Tony.”

Sadly, the artist suffered a severe stroke late last month in the Philippines, the condition worsened by the onset of pneumonia and an infection. The comics community scrambled to aid Tony and his family, but unfortunately the 71 year-old passed away today.

Thanks for blazing some wild trails for us readers and the many terrific Filipino artists who followed in your footsteps. That sunset’s all yours, Tony.





  1. Everyone go buy the Jonah Hex: No Way Back GN in tribute to this great creator. RIP

  2. He was a gifted creator and a fine contributor to the comics industry. I’ll look back on his work fondly for years to come; he left a lasting mark. My best wishes are with his family and friends as they adjust to their loss.

  3. There was a time when this man seemed to be working on every comic, so dedicated to his craft /art. I’d heard his was ill, but hoped he would recover. His work will always be there. R.I.P. Tony DeZuniga.

  4. I had the pleasure of meeting him after the Comic-Con last year. My wife’s best friend is his niece and he was staying at her parents’s house. So they invited me over to meet him. He was such a nice guy and had a great sense of humor. I asked him how he came up with the design for Jonah Hex…specifically his face and that weird mouth thing. He said that he was at the doctor’s office and saw one of those human anatomy charts, where half the person is cut in half to show the internal organ, muscles, etc. When I thought about it, I could see it. I just thought that was fascinating. Anyway, I bought some art off of him and he did a sketch for me too. I’m thankful that I got to meet him when I did and I’m really sad to hear that he has passed away. Rest in Peace.

  5. It’s amazing that something created on paper could become so real and full of character. Thanks Mr. DeZuniga for Jonah Hex!

  6. Jonah Hex Vol. 1 and Arak: Son of Thunder – Big part of my childhood. RIP Mr Dezuniga! you will be missed, but never forgotten.

  7. What sad news. At least he will live on in his great work

  8. RIP sir Tony. Proud to be Filipino.

  9. I grew up with Tony DeZuniga’s DC work in the Seventies – talk about a master craftsman and stylist, whether he was fully illustrating or ‘merely’ inking, his pages sang. Condolences to his family and friends.

  10. Mrs. Tina de Zuniga said Tony DeZuniga’s age is 79, not 71 as news sites have reported. Mang Tony did not want to disclose his real age when he was still alive.

  11. Our LCS had an art auction for his benefit last FCBD. This is very sad news.
    Thanks Sir Tony for paving the way for Filipino comic book artists today.

    Rest in peace.
    Thank you, thank you, and thank you.

  12. Sad news. Great artist and Jonah Hex is one of my favourite fictional characters of all time. RIP.

  13. Sending good thoughts to his family. I know I sound like an old fogey, but there are very few true craftsmen/artists such as Tony in the business today.

    The Jonah Hex showcase (even in black and white) is freaking amazing. Long live your memory Tony!

  14. R.I.P. Tony and thank you.

  15. another part of my childhood slips way…Tony D was a gifted artist and his work on Jonah Hex makes me smile today 30 years later…RIP Tony, you will be missed