Kurt Busiek (born September 16, 1960) is an American ComicBook writer noted for seamlessly blending [[UsefulNotes/TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks Silver Age]] sensibilities with modern storytelling expectations, all while deconstructing and reconstructing various storytelling tropes along the way. He is arguably most renowned for his work on the ''ComicBook/{{Marvels}}'' limited series and ''ComicBook/{{Thunderbolts}}'', as well as his acclaimed run on ''ComicBook/TheAvengers'', (all three for Creator/MarvelComics), and his own ''[[ComicBook/AstroCity Kurt Busiek's Astro City]]''. He is an unabashed fan of all comic books, and has a knowledge of canon and character history that borders on uncanny.

Busiek's work has won numerous awards in the comics industry, including several Harvey Awards for Best Writer and several Eisner Awards. He's also a repeat winner and regular nominee of Comics Buyer's Guide Award for Favorite Writer.

He is a regular collaborator with artist Alex Ross, who will often paint covers -- or entire issues -- of Busiek's work. In junior high school he made friends with Creator/ScottMcCloud, creator of ''ComicBook/{{Zot}}'' and ''ComicBook/UnderstandingComics'', and Scott has stated that it was Busiek who first got him interested in comics.

His website is [[http://busiek.com/ here.]] He also has a page on Formspring, located [[http://www.formspring.me/KurtBusiek here]].

!!Works created or heavily influenced by Kurt Busiek include:

* ''[[ComicBook/AstroCity Kurt Busiek's Astro City]]''
* ''ComicBook/TheAutumnlandsToothAndClaw''
* ''ComicBook/{{Marvels}}''
* ''ComicBook/{{Thunderbolts}}''
* ''Comicbook/UntoldTalesOfSpiderMan''
* ''ComicBook/TheAvengers''
* ''ComicBook/IronMan''
* ''Shockrockets''
* ''ComicBook/RedTornado'' (first limited series)
* ''Franchise/WonderWoman''
* ''[[ComicBook/JLAAvengers JLA/Avengers]]''
* ''ComicBook/PowerCompany''
* ''ComicBook/Trinity2008''
* ''Ninjak''
* ''ComicBook/{{Arrowsmith}}''
* ''Superstar''
* ComicBook/ConanTheBarbarian (Dark Horse version)

!! Tropes featured in Kurt Busiek's works include:

* ArcWelding
* ArmedWithCanon: By the time Busiek finished his run on ''The Avengers,'' he had managed to RetCon almost the entire [[UsefulNotes/TheDarkAgeOfComicBooks Dark Age of Comic Books]] history of the team (his retconning of [[DorkAge The Crossing]] amounted to several antagonists ''[[ActuallyADoombot were impostors]]'').
* BeastOfBattle: ''Arrowsmith'' has a version of UsefulNotes/WorldWarI fought with various fantasy creatures.
* ChurchOfHappyology: The Triune Understanding cult in his run on ''ComicBook/TheAvengers'' was clearly supposed to represent this.
* ContinuityNod: Busiek ''loves'' to put Continuity Nods in all of his works, thanks to his encyclopedic knowledge of comic book history. Arguably, his most ambitious effort to date was ''ComicBook/AvengersForever'', which attempted to reconcile ''every single plot thread'' of the Avengersí convoluted past.
* ContinuityPorn
* CreatorBacklash: At conventions, Busiek accompanies his signature on copies of ''Spider-Man/X-Factor: Shadowgames'' with the refrain, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry..."
* CrypticBackgroundReference: Most prevalent in the early issues of his original works, such as ''ComicBook/AstroCity'' and ''Arrowsmith''. There are constant references to heroes, villains, and incidents that the readers have not seen yet -- and sometimes might never see.
* DayInTheLife[=/=]ADayInTheLimelight: Often appears when Busiek writes an ongoing series, and is a regular staple of ''ComicBook/AstroCity''.
* {{Deconstruction}}
* DoingItForTheArt
* DorkAge: Invoked in the third issue of ''[[ComicBook/JLAAvengers JLA/Avengers]]'', when the [[Franchise/JusticeLeagueOfAmerica Justice League]] and ComicBook/TheAvengers ask to see their worlds the way they should be, instead of their idealized [[UsefulNotes/TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks Silver]] and [[UsefulNotes/TheBronzeAgeOfComicBooks Bronze]] Age versions. Each character sees the {{Face Heel Turn}}s, {{Heroic Sacrifice}}s, {{Suspiciously Similar Substitute}}s, and WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity that they will experience in the "correct" universes. They are '''horrified.''' However, it's important to note that they decided to return the worlds to the way they were, because they cannot just pretend it didn't happen.
* FallingIntoTheCockpit
* HumansAreSpecial: Spelled out in Busiek's ''ComicBook/TheAvengers'' run -- ''everything that has happened'', from Thor's ability to open portals getting stolen to killing the Supreme Intelligence was an effort by Immortus to keep humans on Earth. Why? Because if humans were ''allowed'' to reach and colonize space, they would quickly conquer it.
* InCaseYouForgotWhoWroteIt: Not only is ''ComicBook/AstroCity'' properly titled ''Kurt Busiek's Astro City'', but the major television station in the series has the callsign "KBAC".
* IneptMage: The hero of Busiek's ''The Wizard's Tale'' is fearfully inept, partly because he knows he is supposed to be evil and can't pull it off.
* IstanbulNotConstantinople: ''Arrowsmith'' had the alternate earth version, with DividedStatesOfAmerica, and a war between Prussia and Galia.
* PowersAsPrograms: Subverted in Busiek's arc in ''Action Comics'', where an intergalactic Auctioneer kidnaps a bunch of heroes with the intent of selling them to collectors. On his ship, everyone lost their powers. {{Superman}} figured that since everyone's powers came from different sources, that they were being blocked mentally. He breaks the block by putting himself in mortal danger (for a normal human) and is protected by his invulnerability. Since he knows it's a lie, the mental block is broken.
* {{Reconstruction}}
-->'''Busiek:''' "It strikes me that the only reason to take apart a pocket watch, or a car engine, aside from the simple delight of disassembly, is to find out how it works. To understand it, so you can put it back together again better than before, or build a new one that goes beyond what the old one could do. We've been taking apart the superhero for ten years or more; it's time to put it back together and wind it up, time to take it out on the road and floor it, see what it'll do."
* ReedRichardsIsUseless: Deliberately invoked in ''ComicBook/AstroCity''.
* TheReveal: Perhaps the best executed twist in comics is the end of ''ComicBook/{{Thunderbolts}}'' #1, in which the titular team is revealed to actually be [[spoiler:The Masters of Evil]]. What's ''really'' impressive is how far they went to keep secret the fact that there even ''was'' a secret. Creator/PeterDavid, as a favor to Busiek, even had the solicitations changed for the Hulk issue in which the Thunderbolts first appeared in order to keep the secret under the rug.
* ScheduleSlip: Occurred for nearly a decade due to mercury poisoning; this mainly affected his work on ''ComicBook/AstroCity'', and eventually caused the title to go from a regular monthly schedule to periodic limited series as a result.
-->'''Busiek:''' "I'd spend days at a time unable to concentrate enough to write, and when it cleared a little bit, I'd have to get as much done as quickly as possible in order to stay on schedule."
* SelfDeprecation: Done in Busiek and Erik Larsen's early-2000's resurrection of ''ComicBook/TheDefenders''. In addition to portraying its principal characters as supreme {{Jerk Ass}}es who eventually decide to take over the world so it won't ''need'' to be defended (and, more importantly, so they won't have to deal with one another), the series invoked StylisticSuck via references to Marvel's incredibly goofy [[UsefulNotes/TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks Silver Age]] giant monster comics, and one of its covers proudly boasted a Wizard Magazine quote proclaiming ''The Defenders'' to be "the worst comic ever produced."
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism: Busiek's works tend towards the Idealistic side of the scale, with heroes who are noble and selfless models that the citizens admire. While he does veer into cynicism and disgrace at times, in the end idealism wins, and even former criminals can redeem themselves if they try. In his non-super-hero works however, this expectation is sometimes brutally shattered, such as ''Arrowsmith'', where the lead character realizes no side of the war is living up to their ideals and millions of innocents are suffering. Some of his prose super-hero work has also gone extremely dark and cynical, most notably in a short story where a scientific genius and her ex-boyfriend are emotionally and psychologically manipulated into devastating, ultimately fatal series of super battles by a slick ad man hoping to increase tourist revenue. ''The Autumnlands'', his darkest fantasy work to date, is not free from moments of hope, humor, and whimsy, but also shows a very bleak and realistic depiction of the effects of violence, racism, classism, and pragmatism, with none of the protagonists being completely in the right and none of the antagonists without a valid point or two.
* StarMakingRole: ''ComicBook/{{Marvels}}'' did this for both Kurt Busiek and Alex Ross.