Dick Tracy Wiki
Joe Staton



Place of Birth:

North Carolina

Joe Staton is an American artist who works primarily in the field of comic books and sequential art. He became the primary artist of the Dick Tracy comic strip in 2011. He worked closely with writer Mike Curtis and a creative team that also includes Shelley Pleger and Shane Fisher.

Joe Staton retired from the strip in October of 2021. He returned for a Minit Mystery story in 2022.

Early Life and Education[]

Joe Staton was born in North Carolina, and grew up in the western part of Tennessee (not far from where Mike Curtis grew up). He began drawing for science fiction fanzines when he was 12 years old, and later earned a degree in Art from Murray State University in Kentucky.

Personal Life[]

Joe n Hilarie

Mr. Staton and his wife Hilarie have been together for over 40 years. Hilarie is a writer of textbooks and educational materials. She and Joe collaborate on comics for Boston Children's Hospital concerning children's medical issues, such as Crohn's and celiac.

Art Career[]

Joe Staton began drawing comics in 1971. He worked primarily for Charlton Comics, where he co-created the character E-Man with Nicola Cuti. He has worked for Marvel Comics, providing inks for The Avengers and The Incredible Hulk.

The majority of Staton's professional work has been at DC Comics, where he has worked on several titles, including LEGION, Green Lantern, Guy Gardner, Huntress, and various Batman projects.

In the mid-1990s, Staton illustrated the syndicated newspaper comic strip Mike Danger, which was written by Max Allan Collins.

Starting in 2000, he worked on approximately 100 issues of Scooby-Doo.

In 2005, Staton launched the webstrip Femme Noir, which was strongly influenced by both Dick Tracy and Will Eisner's The Spirit.

Achievements and Awards[]

TracyMan c

Staton (right) with a fan

In addition to E-Man, Joe Staton has co-creator credit for several popular characters, including two versions of Huntress and several members of the Green Lantern Corps, including Kilowog, Arisia, and the “bad-boy” version of Guy Gardner.

In 1983, Staton received an Inkpot Award at San Diego Comic Con which is given to individuals in recognition for their contributions to the worlds of comics, science fiction/fantasy, film, television, animation, and fandom services. Chester Gould had received the award in 1979, and Max Allan Collins had been awarded one the previous year.

In 1998, Joe Staton was the recipient of the Eisner Award for his work on World's Finest: The Superman-Batman Adventures.

In 2013, Staton received the Harvey Award for Best Syndicated Strip or Panel for Dick Tracy. He and the creative team received the same award in 2014 and 2015 as well, and they were nominated in 2016.

Dick Tracy Fan[]

Joe Staton has publicly stated his status a long-time fan of the Dick Tracy comic strip. He has expressed a fondness for the Empty Williams storyline, as well as the intricate Joe Period/Flattop Jr. plot from the 1950s.

Upon the death of artist Rick Fletcher, Staton submitted a sample of his work for consideration to take over as the artist on the strip. However, the job went to Dick Locher.

In 1990, Staton illustrated a Dick Tracy story written by Max Allan Collins for publication in the magazine Disney Adventures. The feature was not published in the magazine, but Collins later gave his permission for it to appear on the PLAINCLOTHES website.

Staton has attended several conventions, promoting his work on the strip and interacting with fans.


In April 2017, Staton took a brief hiatus from the strip to devote his attention to other projects. He was replaced as penciler by Shelley Pleger, an established member of the art team. When Staton retired from the strip in 2021, Pleger succeeded him.

Staton's retirement was commemorated with a special Sunday strip that depicted him and his wife with other members of the creative team.


  • Content
    There is no connection between Joe Staton the artist and the professional baseball player or noted biology professor of the same name.
  • Joe Staton provided art for the November 10th, 2013 installment of the Funky Winkerbean comic strip, which featured the cover of the fictional Starbuck Jones comic book.