Maggin And Hughes To Be Honored With This Year’s Bill Finger Award
Since 2005, the Eisner Awards have handed out the Bill Finger Award For Excellence In Comic Book Writing. Named for the often unsung co-creator of Batman, it functions as something of a lifetime achievement award for writers, honoring the contributions of creators like Jerry Siegel, Otto Binder, Steve Gerber, Bill Mantlo, Harvey Kurtzman, and more. And this year, when the awards are presented in San Diego for Comic-Con International, they'll be going to two of the the true greats of the Silver and Bronze Ages.
Well known for his habit of punctuating his middle initial with an exclamation point ("Elliot S! Maggin"), Maggin was a mainstay at DC in the '70s and '80s, and provided some of the greatest Superman stories of all time, including the classic "Must There Be A Superman?"
His greatest work, however, may have been Miracle Monday, a novel released in 1980 that saw Superman standing against the greatest evil the world had ever known and ultimately defeating it by staying true to himself. It's a battle that affected the world so much that the entire world felt a little bit better, and Superman fans have adopted Maggin's fictional Miracle Monday holiday --- the third Monday in May --- as an unofficial celebration of both Maggin's work and Superman in general.
Hughes had a career that spread across the entire comics industry until his death in 1974. Under a truly staggering number of alliterative pseudonyms, he was one of comics' most prolific writers, but it was as Shane O'Shea that he teamed up with artist Ogden Whitney for their most beloved creation: Herbie Popnecker, alias the Fat Fury. With storytelling that was decades ahead of its time and holds up as some of the weirdest, funniest surreal humor the medium has ever seen, Hughes' work on Herbie marks a true high point.
For more information, check out Hughes and Maggin's bios at Comic-Con International.