Born: 13 April 1924
Died: 23 October 2016
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California
Best known as: Creator of those little Christian comic books
Jack T. Chick was the founder and president of Chick Publications, publishers of comic books that encouraged people to follow Jesus Christ and convert to Christianity as the only way to avoid a fiery eternity in Hell. Chick wrote and drew hundreds of comics, most of them simple stories of sinners seeing the errors of their ways -- though not always before it was too late. His comics posited a literal (and rather severe) God who expected worship and virtuous living from his subjects; boorish skeptics who laughed at religion inevitably ended up being sent to hell to be tormented by gleeful demons. Jack Chick's personal life was a well-guarded secret: according to his official biography, he served in World War II; he converted to Christianity in 1948 (though he was not affiliated with any church); and sometime in the late 1950s he began drawing comics as a way to spread the gospel. Chick's palm-sized tracts have been ubiquitous ever since, distributed anonymously in bus stations, laundromats and diners across America. In the 1970s, Chick began publishing regular-sized comics and hiring other artists, and by the 1990s his underground fame as a proselytizing cartoonist had grown to include an international audience and fan tributes on the internet.
Jack Chick was not without critics. His frequent attacks on other religions (especially Catholicism), homosexuality and rock music raised the ire of several religious and non-religious groups over the years. Many Chick Publications were banned in Canada as “hate literature.”
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