Bob Haney and Del Connell are the writers selected to received this year’s Finger Award. The Finger Award is presented each year to writers, one living, one dead, who for whatever reason, have not received the recognition they should have for their creative efforts. It’s named for Bill Finger, who created much of the Batman mythos we see today while Bob Kane got the credit.
Bob Haney began writing comic books in 1948, freelancing for a wide array of publishers, including Fawcett, Standard, Hillman, Harvey, and St. John. In 1955 he began a long association with DC Comics, where he wrote hundreds of scripts in the genres of war, western, mystery, romance, and of course, superheroes. He is best remembered for his work on The Brave and the Bold, The Unknown Soldier, Teen Titans, Aquaman, World’s Finest Comics, and especially Metamorpho, which he co-created with artist Ramona Fradon, and The Doom Patrol, which he co-created with writer Arnold Drake and artist Bruno Premiani. Haney retired from comics in the late 1980s and passed away in 2004.
Del Connell began working as an artist at Disney Studios in 1939 and soon segued into the story department. He contributed to many shorts and features, including The Three Caballeros and Alice in Wonderland. He began writing Dell Comics for Western Publishing Company as a freelancer in 1950 and joined its editorial staff in 1954, though he continued to be the firm’s most prolific writer. Among the many comics he originated were Super Goof, Wacky Witch, The Close Shaves of Pauline Peril, and Space Family Robinson, which was adapted into the popular TV series Lost in Space. He eventually became editor-in-chief of the West Coast office of Western Publishing’s comic book division until it ceased activity in 1987. For over twenty years, he also wrote both the daily and Sunday editions of the Mickey Mouse newspaper strip. Del, at age 94, will be on hand to accept his award.
The selections were made by a blue ribbon committee consisting of writer/historian Mark Evanier, Charles Kochman (executive editor at Harry N. Abrams, book publisher), cartoonist/historian Scott Shaw!, writer Kurt Busiek, and writer/editor Marv Wolfman.
The awards will be presented on the evening of July 22 during the Eisner Awards ceremony at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel. The 2011 awards are underwritten by Comic-Con International. DC Comics is the major sponsor; supporting sponsors are Heritage Auctions and maggiethompson.com.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.