Marvin A. "Marv" Wolfman is an award-winning American comic book writer. He is best known for his lengthy runs on The Tomb of Dracula where he created the character Blade and The Amazing Spider-Man. Wolfman is also known for writing the twelve issue limited series Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Marv Wolfman was born in Brooklyn, New York City, the son of police officer Abe and housewife Fay. He has a sister, Harriet, 12 years older. When Wolfman was 13, his family moved to Flushing, Queens, in New York City, where he attended junior high school. He went on to New York's High School of Art and Design, in Manhattan, hoping to become a cartoonist.
Wolfman was active in fandom before he broke into professional comics at DC in 1968. Wolfman was one of the first to publish Stephen King's In A Half-World of Terror in Wolfman's horror fanzine Stories of Suspense #2 (1965). A Half-World of Terror was a revised version of King's first published story, I Was a Teenage Grave Robber, which had been serialized over four issues (three published and one unpublished) of fanzine Comics Review that same year.
Wolfman's first published work for DC Comics appeared in Blackhawk #242 (1968). Marv Wolfman later began to write for the Teen Titans comics. When Wolfman wrote Teen Titans #20 (1969) he included an African American character which would have been DC Comics first black character. However, the DC Comics publisher, Carmine Infantino rejected the introduction of a black character and called in Neal Adams to rewrite and redraw the Teen Titans issue. In 1969 Wolfman and Gil Kane created an origin for Wonder Girl (who first appeared in 1965) which was published in Teen Titans #22 which also introduced her new costume.
In 1972 Wolfman and artist Bernie Wrightson co-created Destiny in Weird Mystery Tales #1 (July - August, 1972), a character which would later be used in the work of Neil Gaiman.
In 1972 Wolfman moved to Marvel Comics as a protege of then-editor Roy Thomas. When Roy Thomas stepped down Wolfman became the new editor. That same year Wolfman and artist Gene Colan started the comic book series The Tomb of Dracula and the following year he and Colan created the character Blade and introduced him into the Tomb of Dracula in issue 10.
In 1976 Marv Wolfman co-created the character Bullseye in Daredevil #131 with John Romita Sr. That same year Marv Wolfman and John Buscema created the character Nova (Richard Rider). In 1978 Wolfman launched a new Spider-Woman series. Wolfman redesigned the character giving her the identity Jessica Drew. Wolfman then succeeded Len Wein as writer of The Amazing Spider-Man and in the first issue her worked on (issue # 182) he had Peter Parker propose marriage to Mary Jane Watson who refused, in the following issue. In 1979 Marv Wolfman and Keith Pollard introduced the Black Cat (Felicia Hardy) in The Amazing Spider-Man #194.
The New Teen Titans
In the 1980's Marv Wolfman returned to DC after a dispute with Marvel. Teaming with penciller George Perez, Wolfman relaunched DC's Teen Titains. This new Teen Titains series added the Wolfman-Perez creations Raven, Starfire and Cyborg to the older team's Robin, Wonder Girl, Kid Flash, and Beast Boy. The New Teen Titains became DC's first new hit in years. Marv Wolfman also had a two year run on the Green Lantern series.
Crisis on Infinite Earths
In 1985, Wolfman and Perez launched Crisis on Infinite Earths, a 12-issue limited series celebrating DC's 50th anniversary. Featuring a cast of thousands and a timeline that ranged from the beginning of time, it killed scores of characters, integrated a number of heroes from other companies to DC continuity, and re-wrote 50 years of DC universe history in order to streamline it.
Wolfman was involved in the relaunch of the Superman line as well, reinventing Lex Luthor. During his time on the Adventures of Superman title he and Jerry Ordway introduced Bibbo Bibbowski and Professor Emil Hamilton.
Wolfman got into a public dispute with DC over a proposed ratings system, which led to his being relieved of his editorial duties by the company. DC offered to reinstate Wolfman as an editor provided he apologize for making his criticism of the ratings system public, rather than keeping them internal to the company, but he declined to do so.
Return to DC Comics
In the early 90's Wolfman once again started to write for the Batman comics and created the third Robin, Timm Drake in the series Batman: Year Three. Wolfman also returned to the Teen Titains series but eventually turned his attention to television and animation.
In the early 90's, Wolfman worked at Disney Comics. He wrote scripts for a seven part Duck Tales story as well as several others with the characters from the Mickey Mouse universe. He was editor of the comics section on the Disney Adventures magazine for the early years of the publication.
In 1997, on the eve of the release of the Blade movie, Wolfman sued Marvel Characters Inc. over ownership of all characters he created for them. On November 6, 2000 the courts ruled in Marvel's favor. In a non-jury trial, the judge ruled that Marvel's later use of the characters was sufficiently different to protect it from Wolfman's claim to copyright ownership.
Beast Machines: Transformers
In the late 1990's, Wolfman developed the Transformers TV series Beast Machines which aired on Fox Kids for two seasons from 1999 - 2000. Beast Machines was met with mixed reviews, as the show was praised for it's deep story, but was criticized for it's lack of action.
In the early 2000's Wolfman began writing in comics again and consulted with writer Geoff Johns on several issues of The Teen Titains. Wolfman wrote a novel based on Crisis on Infinite Earths, but rather than follow the original plot, he created a new story starring the Barry Allen version of the Flash. Wolfman also wrote the novelization of the movie Superman Returns. In 2006 Wolfman began to write for the Nightwing series. Marv Wolfman also wrote a mini-series starring the Teen Titain member Raven. In 2012 Wolfman revived his Night Force series and in 2015 he wrote a novelization to the video game Batman: Arkham Knight.
Wolfman is married to Noel Watkins. Wolfman was previously married to Michele Wolfman. They have a daughter, Jessica Morgan.
- Marv Wolfman also wrote the children's book, Spider-Man: The Long Arms of Dr. Octopus.