Monday, February 15, 2010

Phantom Artist Profile- Ray Moore

Raymond S. Moore

Moore drew sixteen separate storylines for the dailies and eight separate storylines for the Sunday strip from 1936 until 1949 when he retired as the result of a war injury he received as a pilot during WWII.

Moore started as an art assistant to Phil Davis on Lee Falk's adventure strip Mandrake The Magician. When Falk realized he was not going to be able to handle drawing The Phantom on a regular basis, he hired Moore to take over the art chores.

Moore's period on The Phantom is known for it's moody and atmospheric- if sometimes simplified- quality.

Falk was pleased with Moore's work and was especially impressed with his ability to draw beautiful women. It's for this very reason that Falk wrote several stories featuring gangs of women criminals, such as "The Sky Band".

Mr. Moore passed away of natural causes in 1984.

(images swiped from Google images)


  1. I've just come home very late after a busy day and I'm just about nodding off onto the keyboard, but just quickly.........

    I really like Ray Moore's art. You can see some of his work on my blog if you click his label. However, I am quite certain at a glance that the third image in the post, the colour comic strip excerpt, is Wilson McCoy's work. He did work as Moore's assistant for a time, and there are examples of them collaborating (with McCoy probably uncredited - ?)... I don't know where that image came from on the 'Net, but even if Moore had a hand in it, it must have been minuscule if at all; it's McCoy's.

    I love the adventures Ray Moore drew... I wish he'd been able to do more.


  2. Anthony: The piece in question was definitely credited to Raymond Moore. It's dated 1941, which was before Moore left the strip but It's entirely possible that McCoy either inked the piece, or finished it for Moore, or did the piece uncredited in Moore's place (I mean, if the guy was injured in WWII as a pilot, he MUST have been busy between 1941 and 1945, right?).

    I agree, however, that the line quality is very much that of Wilson McCoy.

  3. Ray Moore's Phantom was the one I loved first. When I see the Phantom in my mind's eye (which I do often) it is always Ray Moore's work. Tracing the work backward, I discovered the glory of Falk, but it was Moore first.

    Thanks for posting. -- Mykal

  4. Cheers, Aaron.

    I will have to completely disagree with your source, on both date and credit. From layout/composition through to completed inking, that is McCoy. I can only give my honest opinion based on the evidence of my own eyes. Also, I doubt very much this is from 1941.. More like mid-40s at least.

  5. Anthony- Again, I'm not saying that you are incorrect about it being McCoy. However, I can make out the copyright date on the original comic and it says either 1941 or 1947 (it's a little fuzzy) and either way that makes it officially during the Ray Moore period. Which is probably why my source labelled it as by Moore. For the reasons outlined in my previous comment, it would be likely to have been at least finished by, if not just outright ghosted by, McCoy.

    Geez, I'm sorry I used that piece. ;)

    Seriously, I'll bow to your enthusiasm for McCoy and your greater familiarity with early Phantom art, I was just going by what it said on the website I lifted the thing from.