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Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Alex Niño, an accomplished Filipino comic book artist, also worked, for a time, with Action King Fernando Poe, Jr., doing some of FPJ's movie poster ads and layouts. Above,
"Tatak ng Alipin" (1975)- Stars Fernando Poe, Jr., Tina Revilla, Leila Hermosa, Josephine Garcia and Rosemarie Gil/ with Paquito Diaz & Leopoldo Salcedo/ Directed by Armando Herrera/ Movie poster ad by Alex Niño

Alex Niño/ 1964/ (Source- Gerry Alanguilan's The Philippine Comics Art Museum)

In 1965, Alex got a crack at novels when the late Clodualdo del Mundo commissioned him to illustrate the novel Kilabot ng
Persia for Pilipino Komiks. The novel suited Alex's style perfectly. More novels followed, almost all of them in the fantasy-horror genre: Dinoceras by Marcelo B. Isidro, Maligno by Amado S. Castrillo (Both for Redondo Komix), Tsangga Rangga for Mars Ravelo (Espesyal), Mga Matang Nagliliyab again for Isidro (Alcala Komix).

Santo Domingo- Story by Pablo S. Gomez/ Drawn by Alex Niño / 1972/ (Source- Randy Valiente's Malikhaing Komiks)

In 1966, Alex got the chance to write and illustrate his own comics-novel Gruaga, serialized in Pioneer Komiks. It enabled Alex to elaborate and experiment and produce stunning visual effects that were to be his trademark. He would revisit the world of Gruaga many times later in his career, most notably "The Dark Suns of Gruaga" Porfolio (1978).

Alex had developed a calligraphic style which gave his artworks a rhythmic and flowing quality. Even when he illustrated several novels by Pablo S. Gomez for the PSG Publications- novels in the drama genre which requires the usual, straightforward style- Alex was able to put to use the unique rendering style and achieve for each novel the individuality which he intended.

The prevailing drama trend in Philippine komiks-magazines however, denied Alex better public acceptance of his works. At the first opportunity, he grabbed the chance to illustrate for American comic books. He accepted commissions from such US Publishers as DC, Gold Key, Marvel, Educational Classics and Peterson. He pencilled the first Black Orchid story for DC and inked some of the Tarzan Sunday strips of the King Features Syndicate.

Among the numerous horror-mystery works for DC, outstanding were Captain Fear, Korak and Space Voyagers. For Marvel, he worked on Conan, Man-Gods, and the memorable (and controversial) story, Repent, Harlequin, Said the Tick Tock

In and out of comics since the early '90s, Nino last worked on the single-issue God the Dyslexic Dog in 2004. Four years later, Nino returned last September in a three-part miniseries Dead Ahead by Image Comics.

A History of Komiks of the Philippines/ 1985

Comic Book Artist Magazine Vol.2 #4, 2004

Philippine Comics Art Museum

Align Center
Thriller/DC Comics/ 1984

The Omega Men/DC Comics/ 1984

Dead Ahead (three-part miniseries)/ Image/ 2008-09

While Tony de Zuniga did most of FPJ movie poster ads and layouts in the 6os, it was Alex Niño’s turn in the 70s. Before working full-time abroad, Niño did several film projects with the Da King starting with Santo Domingo in 1972 up to Alakdang Gubat in 1976. Look closely to these ads as compared to the ones we're seeing today. These ads by Niño were executed beautifully. Thanks to FPJ for employing the services of komiks artists like de Zuniga and Niño. These poster ads were well-preserved and I seen it displayed years ago at FPJ studios.

Santo Domingo (1972)- Stars Fernando Poe, Jr., Boots Anson-Roa, Alona Alegre, Paquito Diaz and Max Alvarado/ with Lito ANzures, Bruno Punazalan, Vic Varrion & Frankie Navaja,Jr. / Directed by Celso Ad. Castillo/ Movie poster ad by Alex Niño

Left- Sto. Cristo (1973)- Stars Fernando Poe, Jr., Jeanne Young, Eddie Garcia, Paquito Diaz, Romy Diaz, Jose Ronulo, Lito Anzures, Victor Bravo and Max Alvarado/ Directed by Armando Herrera/
Movie poster ad by Alex Niño

Right- Dugo ng Bayan (1973)- Stars Fernando Poe, Jr., Alona Alegre, Aurora Salve, Paquito Diaz, Jose Romulo, Vic Diaz, Dencio Padilla, Nello Nayo and Zernan Manahan/ Directed by Armando Herrera/
Movie poster ad by Alex Niño

Left- Ang Pangalan: Mediavillo (1974)- Stars Fernando Poe, Jr., Evangeline Pascual, Dencio Padilla, Vic Varrion, Philip Coo, Lorna Tolentino, Nello Nayo, Ely Roque/ Directed by Armando Herrera/ Movie poster ad by Alex Niño

Right- Alupihang Dagat (1975)- Stars Fernando Poe, Jr., Elizabeth Oropesa, Paquito Diaz, Vic Diaz, Dencio Padilla, Mary Walter, Vic Varrion and Max Alvarado/ Directed by Ronwaldo Reyes/
Movie poster ad by Alex Niño

Alakdang Gubat
(1976)- Stars Fernando Poe, Jr., Marianne dela Riva, Paquito Diaz, Perla Bautista, Dencio Padilla, Jose Romulo/ Directed by Armando Herrera/ Movie poster ad by Alex Niño
"SUWAPANG" - Kuwentong Tapos
Katha't Guhit ni Alex
United Komiks/ 1970
(click images to enlarge)


"DAKILANG ARBULARYO" - Kuwentong Tapos
Sinulat ni Santi Flor
Guhit ni Alex
Kidlat Komiks/ 1971
(click images to enlarge)


Anonymous said...

Nice blog. Saludos

Anonymous said...


Nakita ko na yung bagong libro ni Alex Nino, yung published ni Manuel Auad sa San Francisco, What can I say ? HAYUUUUP TALAGA ! Galing ! he belongs up there at the top. We have to be proud of Alex as a Filipino.


Morningstar said...

Hey, thanks for this. Nino is one of the greatest. Salutes from Mexico.


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