Friday, July 29, 2016

Elliot S! Maggin and Bill Finger

As a person who turned superhero geek in the '70s (right around the time I was born), onetime Superman writer Elliot S! Maggin is part of my DNA (DC nerd algorithm). He is also a graduate of Brandeis University, as I went on to be. We've never met in person but we've been in touch online and I consider him a friend.

Elliot was the living recipient of the 2016 Bill Finger Award for Excellence in Comic Book Writing. Regrettably, I was not there to see him accept the honor but found his remarks inspiring.
I was especially touched to see that Elliot referred to Bill as "Bill the Boy Wonder."

More importantly, Elliot used the platform to call for an end to work-for-hire arrangements (in which creators get a one-time fee for their creativity, no matter how successful their work becomes). This, of course, is an issue often at the heart of the Bill Finger story, though not always properly so. (At the time of Batman's creation in 1939, Bob Kane was freelancing for National Periodicals, the company that would become DC Comics, but he and Bill created Batman on spec. Earlier, I touched on possible implications of this.)

Congrats on the award, Elliot. Thank you for your contributions to superhero culture...and now, for your contribution to creators' rights.

No comments: