I was browsing the 2006 Justice League issues, just admiring the cover work from Michael Turner. I clicked on issue zero as it is labeled as issue 1. I know, that is for another topic… anyway, I noticed that the cover artist is Aspen MLT Inc. I know this is Michael Turner as I can clearly see his signature on the cover. I go and check another cover that was done by Michael Turner, once again, Aspen MLT Inc. Weird, but maybe this is an odd thing that only applies to Justice League. Next thing I check is Superman/Batman. A series that Michael Turner had penciled and done cover art for. Once again, Aspen MLT Inc. and no Michael Turner. Is there a reason for this weirdness? I haven’t seen this with any other creator on DCUI.
My guess is, legally, the covers are credited to Aspen MLT, since they were produced by his studio.
I thought that too, but Aspen MLT is a company with many different artists and writers. For example, Jeph Loeb wrote a few comics for Aspen as did JT Krull who are both labeled correctly.
Also, does that mean Aspen owns all of the artwork for the interiors of Superman/Batman and not DC?
Hey there, thanks for the inquiry!
We’ll look into the specifics to see if there are any concrete answers to provide here. Sometimes licensing queries are a bit tight given what details can/can’t be shared, so we apologize ahead of time if we are unable to answer those items once we delve further into it.
I believe his estate (Turner passed away in 2008) owns Aspen MLT (in fact, the MLT are his initials), so you are essentially correct and it’s likely a copyright/IP issue, he would have assigned his art to Aspen MLT and they therefore credit it for his artwork versus credit him.
u/D4RK5TARZ if you like his art, you might check out Godfall, which is not yet on DCUI but should be soon but you can check out the Supergirl story that’s in Superman/Batman and is credited to Aspen MLT but is Michael’s work.
I have both of those trades on a shelf as well as some Aspen books and Witchblade.
I’ve only skimmed Aspen and Witchblade because I’m personally not that into cheesecake (I do love sexy art but I want a good story as well), but I know some friends and that generally people really like those - so good choices! I thought Godfall was probably one of the sexiest versions of Clark from that era and the action in it was really great. I haven’t read Superman Batman in forever but I know I loved almost all the early issues before Micheal Johnson became one of the writers and I do remember appreciating how the DC Animated movie also used Turner as an inspiration for the models in that movie the way they did for Public Enemies. I wish the DC Animated movies did more of that, Red Son was very generic overall as opposed to some of the actual work Dave Johnson did on interiors, and I don’t know what they were going for with the JSA movie, but the choices were more confusing than anything else!