Don McGregor has become one of the foremost writers in comic books today. With almost thirty years of experience in the field, Don incorporates a deep understanding of human nature into his stories, blending humanity with humility and pain with glory.
He creates without compromise, making his characters’ heroics poignantly real.
Don has an intense desire to know, to dare and to care about what he writes and these attributes come through in his passionate style. McGregor began his comic writing career in 1969, creating his own series DETECTIVES INC. as a fanzine that he took to the annual New York Comic Convention.
It was after meeting publisher Jim Warren in hot debate at that convention that his comic writing career began, writing horror stories for Warren’s illustrated horror line of CREEPY, EERIE and VAMPIRELLA. After working as a proofreader, and eventually editor on several of MARVEL COMICS B&W line of comic/magazines, he was assigned to write the BLACK PANTHER in Marvel’s JUNGLE ACTION comics.
The “Panther’s Rage” series was the first mainstream comic to have an essentially all-black cast of comics, in 1973. Before that, the few comics that did have black leads were normally surrounded by a white supporting cast. In AMAZING ADVENTURES, WAR OF THE WORLDS, KILLRAVEN series, Don went from the horror genre and superheroes to writing one of the longest running science fiction comic titles, working with the incredible artistry of P. Craig Russell.
The series broke many of the barriers at Marvel during that time: a pregnant woman and a birth sequence had never been done, and the first inter-racial kiss in Marvel Comics history occurred in the pages of KILLRAVEN, among other provocative material.
Don also wrote LUKE CAGE, POWERMAN and MORBIUS, THE LIVING VAMPIRE in that time period, stories that explored drug dealing, political chicanery, loss of time and place.
He also created HODIAH TWIST in the story, ‘The Preying Mantis Principle.” His later work for Marvel, during the 70s, included adaptations into comic formats of Mark Twain’s “The Prince and the Pauper,” H.G. Welles’ “First Men In The Moon,” Wilkie Collins’ “The Moonstone,” and Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Pit And The Pendulum,” “The Tell-tale Heart,” and “The Cask of Amontillado.”
In the middle of the 1970s he started work on creating the historically important independent graphic novel, SABRE, that was aimed directly for the comic book store market.
Many people at the time thought he and Dean Mullaney, who started the publishing company ECLIPSE COMICS, with the printing of SABRE, were nuts to undertake such a project. The skeptics were positive the fans could not support a series. Today, the 20TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION of SABRE has just seen print!
In SABRE, all the taboos that were firmly entrenched at the major comics companies for heroic fantasy were obliterated. Among the series milestones, it was one of the first American comics to show a child being born, and to have two gay characters, Deuces Wild and Summer Ice, as regular members of the main cast. These SABRE issues drawn by Billy Graham are in the process of being worked on for a graphic novel collection in 2001. Audiences who never had a chance to experience them in their initial run, or never had the complete novel, can see what all the furor was about during the mid-1980s, where SABRE slashed through many of the stereotypes in comics!
During the 1980s, Don returned to his 1969 creation, DETECTIVES INC. and updated the series, leaving behind horror, superhero and heroic fantasy for the mystery genre and the diverse streets and boroughs of New York. A review in Whizzard Magazine, at the time, read, “This book has it all: nudity, homosexuality, bisexuality, abortion, poverty, race wars…and murder. Yet it
lacks the one thing that typical overground comics revel in…and that’s sensationalism.”
Ted Denning and Bob Rainier returned in the Gene Colan drawn DETECTIVES INC.: A TERROR OF DYING DREAMS, first published as a mini-series, and recently collected in a completely reshot and art restored graphic album, of which, Paul Bishop of the West Los Angeles Police Department , wrote: “Don McGregor is the crowned king of the graphic noir novel.
Rainier and Denning are characters who resonate with hard-boiled legacy—Raymond Chandler twisted by Jim Thompson.” This DETECTIVES INC. comic script was based on Don’s screenplay. He also directed the 2 Hr. 10 min. feature, of which clips were shown at the annual James Bond Weekends to tremendous applause!
During the early 1980s, Don worked with the extraordinary artist, Gene Colan, to produce two incredibly different kinds of titles. The first was RAGAMUFFINS, created and written by Don, about little kids growing up in the 1950s. It is publisher Dean Mullaney’s favorite book of all the titles Eclipse published during its reign. The RAGAMUFFINS series holds the distinction, also, of being the first comic printed in COLOR over an artist’s PENCILS!
Shortly after, Don and Gene did NATHANIEL DUSK for D.C. comics, a two mini-series dealing with a hard-boiled private eye in the 1930s, thoroughly researched so that on whatever date the story was taking place, the weather, the radio shows playing, the incidents in the city were accurate.