Bill Finger will probably never get his due for co-creating Batman, but maybe DC shouldn't pretend no one cares.
We have talked about Bill Finger many times in the past. If you recall, we wanted him to get his own Google doodle. No dice. And one artist released a stinging comic strip about just how empty Batman's world would have been if Bob Kane had tried to bring him to life alone.
And with the new TV series Gotham getting its first trailer, it's only natural that the topic of Bill Finger getting his proper due would come back up. After all, Finger was the one who named Batman's city, along with a lot more.
As it happens, there was a The Men Who Made Batman panel at WonderCon recently where one fan asked the panel, point blank, why Finger continues to go uncredited and his estate unpaid.
It didn't go over well, but the quote people remember comes from DC’s Larry Ganem, who said, “We cherish what Bill Finger did and his contribution to creating Batman, and we’re all good with Finger and his family.”
Hmmmm ... no credit, no pay -- SOUNDS GOOD TO ME.
It turns out Bill Finger's granddaughter, Athena Finger, wasn't terribly thrilled.
75 years of Batman! No one could have predicted the longevity and the continued relevance of this comic book hero that has become a cultural icon when my grandfather, Bill Finger, collaborated with Bob Kane back in 1939. My grandfather has never been properly credited as the co-creator of Batman although was an open secret in the comic book industry and is widely known now. It is now my time to come out of the shadows and speak up and end 75 years of exploitation of my grandfather, whose biggest flaw was his inability to defend his extraordinary talent. Due to what I feel is continued mistreatment of a true artist, I am currently exploring our rights and considering how best to establish the recognition that my grandfather deserves.
Now, on the one hand, even Bob Kane acknowledged that Finger deserved credit, saying, "I often tell my wife, if I could go back fifteen years, before he died, I’d like to say, ‘I’ll put your name on it now. You deserve it.'"
On the other hand, officially crediting Finger could leave DC vulnerable to some serious lawsuits. So ... don't count on it happening. Ever. Although we certainly wish Athena well in her attempts to see one of the greatest injustices in comics set to rights.
(via Bleeding Cool)