Who is Mr. Fox?

Gardner Francis Cooper Fox photo

Gardner Francis Cooper Fox was born on May 20, 1911, in Brooklyn, New York. He is an American writer best known for creating many comic book characters for Comics in the Golden and Silver Age. He is believed to have written one more than 4,000 comics stories.

On his eleventh birthday, Fox received The Gods of Mars and The Warlord of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs. These books sparked a lifelong love with fantasy fiction.

Mr. Fox is probably best known for writing comic books, but he also wrote over 150 paperback books.

Fox received a law degree from St. John’s College and joined to the New York bar in 1935. He practiced for around two years, but as the Great Depression continued. He would start out writing for comic books for DC Comics in 1937.

Debuting as a writer in the pages of Detective Comics. He was also a frequent contributor of prose stories to the pulp science fiction magazines of the 1940s and 1950s.

During July 1939, just two issues after the debut of the character Batman by artist Bob Kane and writer Bill Finger, Fox wrote the first of his several tales for that character. Mr. Fox’s significant contribution to the Batman character was inventing his utility belt.

During the mid-1950s, after Fredric Wertham’s publication of Seduction of the Innocent, the content of comics was changed and became subjected to the Comics Code Authority. DC editor Julius Schwartz began a renovate many of the companies characters, and Mr. Fox was one of the first writers called in to help.

joe kubert hawkman drawing pen ink golden age comic bookNotable works of his from the Golden Age are Doctor Fate, Flash, Hawkman, Justice Society of America, and Sandman. In the Silver Age, he worked on and co-created: Atom, Batgirl, Hawkman, Justice League of America, and Zatanna.

Fox stopped receiving work from DC during 1968 when the comics company refused to give health insurance and other benefits to its older creators. Fox, who had written many novels during the mid-1940s, began to produce books full time, using his name and several pseudonyms. He produced more than 100 in genres such as science fiction, espionage, crime, fantasy, romance, western, and historical fiction.

For Tower Books, he produced between thirteen and twenty-five “Lady from L.U.S.T.” (League of Undercover Spies and Terrorists) novels between 1968 and 1975 using the name Rod Gray. With Rochelle Larkin and Leonard Levinson, Fox collaborated under the pen-name Glen Chase to write the Cherry Delight, The Sexecutioner series.

paperback novel Italian Connection cherry delight glen chase gardner f fox sexecutioner kurt brugel

Other Pseudonyms Mr. Fox wrote under are Jefferson Cooper, Bart Somers, Paul Dean, Ray Gardner, Lynna Cooper, Larry Dean, Robert Starr, Don and Ed Warner and Michael Blake. Only to name a few.

Mr. Fox typically wrote three novels per year and in 1974 published an astonishing twelve stories.

Mr. Fox sights Harold Lamb and Talbot Mundy two influencers on his writing.

During 1967, Fox’s literary agent, August Lenniger, suggested that Fox donates his notes, correspondence, and samples of his work to the University of Oregon as a tax deduction. Fox gave over fourteen boxes of published and unpublished manuscripts dating back to the 1940s.

In 1985 he wrote briefly for Eclipse Comics, contributing to the science fiction anthology: Alien Encounters.

Gardner F. Fox died on Christmas Eve in 1986 in Jamesburg, New Jersey, at the age of seventy-five. He was survived by his wife Lynda, his son Jeffrey, his daughter Lynda, and four grandchildren.

My wish for this site is to revive the literary career of Mr. Fox and the massive amount of words. His vision was unique and sought to find new places in undiscovered countries.

  • Kurt Brugel – February 14th, 2017