Home News Awards SDCC ’19: The Eisner Awards – LIVE!

SDCC ’19: The Eisner Awards – LIVE!

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And once again, comics’ biggest awards night; the Oscars of Comics, if you will, is upon us. Yes, that’s right, it’s time for the Eisner Awards and starting at 11pm eastern/8pm pacific we’ll be running down all the winners as they’re announced along with any other major happenings and to-dos so long as I can catch them with my furious typing fingers.

Will it be another big year for Tom King and Mitch Gerads? The duo is once again up for the respective awards they won last year for the critical darling Mister Miracle. Could it be a big night for a cartoonist like Jen Wang, whose The Princess and the Dressmaker earned a nomination for Best Writer/Artist? Might Inio Asano take the Best International Edition – Asia category for the incredible Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction? The competition is fierce all around and every category could be anyone’s game. We’ll let you know whose names are inside each envelope just as soon as they open!

  • Jackie Estrada has arrived to describe the process, giving a nice preamble for those unaware about how the process works (there’s a nominating committee who choose the nominees from submissions and then those nominees are voted on by those eligible to do so per the Eisner’s rules)
  • The actors from Reno 911, in full costume, have arrived as the “security” overseeing the results of the votes.
  • Some nice Super Troopers references have been peppered in…Thomas Lennon said they won’t begin until Billy Tucci gets back from the bathroom.
  • Bill Morrison, Kayre Morrison and Anina Bennett are out to present the first award which is for Best Lettering
  • The great Todd Klein wins for a litany of work that includes Black Hammer: Age of Doom, the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The Tempest.
  • Klein says he’s usually quick, but he wants to take a little longer this time to provide some context regarding the letterers task within group comics.
  • Best Digital Comic is now being presented by Kayre Morrison
  • Umami by Ken Niimura wins Best Digital Comic, Chris Butcher is up to accept! Ken is in Japan, maybe sleeping or perhaps following this live-blog! Who knows?
  • Bill Morrison is is delivering the award for Best Webcomic
  • The Contradictions by Sophie Yanow will be taking home this award!
  • Yanow delivers an acceptance speech that relays her first experience at Comic-Con and how she found her people here.
  • Ernie Hudson!! and Phil LaMaar!! are up to present next. LaMaar asks Ernie if he’s a god. To which Ernie responds “…yeah!”
  • They’re presenting the award for Best Writer, a STACKED category this year as per usual
  • And the award goes to Tom King, winning his second straight Best Writer Eisner
  • King provides his thanks to his collaborating artists and dedicates the award to his wife and children
  • And now Best Writer/Artist is up! Big screams for Jen Wang…
  • …who wins the award for Best Writer/Artist for The Prince and the Dressmaker.
  • Wang says she didn’t expect to win, but gives thanks to all the librarians and the teachers who supported the book. She says they’re one of the reasons comics are doing so well right now
  • It’s time for Best Cover Artist to be presented
  • Jen Bartel wins for her work on Blackbird and Submerged
  • Bartel says she has nothing prepared, because she truly did not expect to win. But she said 4 years ago she was working a day job and didn’t think there was a place for her in comics…clearly that’s not the case!
  • Eddie Campbell and Audrey Niffenegger are out next to present the International awards
  • Best US Edition of International Material is first…
  • And the award goes to Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked The World by Penelope Bagieu
  • Bagieu is here in person to accept, giving her thanks to everyone at First Second and everyone back at home. She gives her appreciation to all voters for highlighting a book that focuses on bad ass women in these terrible times for women
  • Now we move over to Best US Edition of International Material – Asia
  • Listening to Eddie trying to say Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction is a wondrous experience
  • Tokyo Tarareba Girls by Akiko Higashimura is taking home the prize
  • Best Humor Publication is the next award up for grabs
  • Giant Days by John Allison, Max Sarin and Julia Madrigal is your winner
  • Cas Anvar is out to present the next slate of award, Thomas Lennon needles him to do his R’as Al Ghul voice (he plays him in the Batman/TMNT animated film)
  • Lennon is now remniscing on his days playing Batman’s doctor in The Dark Knight Rises (remember that? I sure do!)
  • Anvar is presenting the award for Best Publication for Early Readers
  • Johnny Boo and the Ice Cream Computer by James Kochalka is your winner
  • Kochalka thanks Chris Staros at Top Shelf and Lee (whose last name he can’t recall), but he’s so grateful that Johnny Boo has always been there for him in tough times.
  • Best Publication for Kids is next
  • The Divided Earth by Faith Erin Hicks wins…Hicks immediately runs and tells everyone that she loves The Expanse and ships Anvar’s character with another character on the show
  • Best Publication for Teens is next, moving up the age bracket
  • And your winner is…no surprise at this point…The Prince And the Dressmaker, with Jen Wang scoring a second prize for the night
  • The Bill Finger Award for Excellence in Comic Book Writing is the next award to be presented. The chairman of the committee for this award, Mark Evanier has taken the stage with Bill Finger’s niece, dropping an Reno 911/ICE joke that doesn’t land as well as expected…”first Mad Magazine, now this!” he jests
  • E. Nelson Bridwell is the first recipient, with Paul Levitz out to accept on his behalf…Levitz shares some wonderful remembrances of Bridwell and his incredible intellect and creative thinking
  • “he was a gentle man…and the first comics fan to become a working comics professional”
  • A personal note, Bridwell created the origin of the Legion of Super-Heroes and for that alone, my own appreciation for his work is immense
  • Mike Friedrich is the next honoree, with a resume that’s impossible to capture in the confines of this blog
  • Friedrich is up to accept and shares his appreciation for Bill Finger and how the unfairness of how he was treated throughout his career was something that motivated many of the actions he took in his own
  • He reminisces a bit about his time on Justice League of America and great editors and collaborators he worked with
  • Grey Delisle-Griffin is the next presenter, first to present the award for Best Comics-Related Periodical/Journalism
  • The winner is…. a tie!!!…Back Issue! and PanelxPanel share the award this go-round. John Morrow is out to accept for Back Issue! while Tiffany Babb accepts for PanelxPanel
  • Best Comics-Related Book is next with Drawn to Purpose: American Women Illustrators and Cartoonists by Martha H. Kennedy winning the prize.
  • And now we’ve moved on to Best Academic/Scholarly Work
  • Sweet Little C*nt: The Graphic Work of Julie Doucet by Anne Elizabeth Moore is your winner
  • The Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award is next, with his daughter Ruth out to present. Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, a comics creator who has done incredible work with his character La Borinquena, a cultural phenom in Puerto Rico representing the island’s patriotism. His ongoing activism for Puerto Rico is incredible and the funds he and his partner have raised with his original character has gone towards creating a grants program that awards micro-grants to organizations within Puerto Rico. A pair of real heroes.
  • He delivers a fiery speech, citing the famous Captain America punching Hitler cover as what comics are all about. “I am a social justice warrior!”
  • Lisa Wood (known by many of you as Tula Lotay) the founder of the Thought Bubble festival, is the next recipient for her community benefit work as an extension of the festival. That work includes free literacy and art programs for the underprivileged.
  • The Reno 911 pair is back out, to announce the winner of Best Penciller/Inker
  • Mitch Gerads wins his second Best Penciller/Inker award in a row. It’s a real night of repeats for the Mister Miracle creative team! Gerads among his thanks shares his appreciation for Jamie Rich, who calls “the best editor in comics, bar none”
  • The award for Best Coloring is next
  • Matt Wilson wins for his work on Black Cloud, Paper Girls, The Wicked + The Divine, etc…Nick Lowe is out to accept. An exciting win for a local pal! Matt specifically has Nick share his admiration for the late Justin Ponsor, one of Matt’s inspirations
  • This is his second Eisner win, his first came in this category in 2017
  • Best Painter/Multimedia Artist is next in the queue
  • Dustin Nguyen takes home the award for his work on Descender
  • He wasn’t present when he won this award last year, so now he’s got a list to run down in his thank-yous
  • It’s now Will Eisner Hall of Fame time!!! The legendary Sergio Aragones once again presents this year’s inductees.
  • The four automatic inductees are the first to be honored. The incredible Jim Aparo is first, with his children out to accept. Today sadly marks the 14th year since his death
  • June Tarpe Mills of Miss Fury fame is the second automatic inductee. Her nephew accepts on her behalf. Mills was a pioneer, whose work predated that of the Marstons on Wonder Woman by a number of months
  • The third is Dave Stevens, the creator of The Rocketeer among a number of classics. His sister accepts on his behalf
  • The final inductee in this automatic slate is Morrie Turner, the first syndicated black cartoonist and the man behind the great strip Wee Pals. His granddaughter accepts
  • Now it’s time for the inductees chosen by the voters…the first…Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez. Never has anyone drawn a finer Superman or Wonder Woman for my money
  • Jenette Kahn, former President of DC Comics and an incredible trailblazer, is the next inductee
  • Kahn highlights the work she, Paul Levitz, Dick Giordano and others accomplished during her 27 years in the top spot. She also gives a special shout-out to the team at MAD
  • Speaking of Paul Levitz, he’s the next inductee chosen by the voters – a personal hero of mine, whose imagination sparked my own for years on end.
  • Much like Khan, Levitz relays a wonderful remembrance of their work together. Together they made DC “the most innovative comics publisher on a business and creative level”
  • Wendy and Richard Pini of Elfquest fame, and pioneers in self-publishing, are the next inductees
  • “It’s been an amazing 40 year journey” Wendy says
  • Richard calls Wendy a genius, and that the award is really hers. “I’m the luckiest guy in comics to have worked with Wendy all these years”
  • The fifth inductee is Bill Sienkiewicz!!!! He calls it “very encouraging” to great laughs, but also “very appropriate” to even bigger laughs. Citing his bifurcated thoughts: “Legion isn’t just a tv show!”
  • “It’s encouraging to see that there are so many more people in this business now who have names more difficult than mine!” he says
  • He emphasizes his honor to be a part of a comics community that is hosting such stellar work by an increasing number of women, people of color and the LGBTQ community
  • Joe Ferrara has stepped out to hand out the Spirit Of Comics Retailer Award
  • La Revisteria in Buenos Aires is this year’s recipient
  • David Walker and Sanford Greene are on the stage to hand out the award for Best Archival Collection/Project Strips
  • Star Wars: Classic Newspaper Strips vol 3 by Archie Goodwin and Al Williamson, edited by Dean Mullaney is your winner
  • Next is Best Archival Collection/Proect – Comic Books, with some really exciting nominees here
  • Bill Sienkiewicz’s Mutants and Moon Knights…And Assassins…Artifact Edition edited by Scott Dunbier wins!
  • Even Bill is struggling with the title of the book, hilariously
  • Dunbier dedicates this win to his sons Alex and Sam
  • Best Publication Design is the third award they’re handing out
  • The award goes to Will Eisner’s A Contract with God: Curator’s Collection designed by John Lind
  • And we’ll pause this blog for the In Memoriam
  • Maurice Lamarche, the voice of Brain, is the next presenter, here to give out the award for Best Short Story
  • The Talk of the Saints from Swamp Thing Winter Special wins! Another award for Tom King, along with one for Jason Fabok. What a year for King!
  • Best Single Issue/One-Shot is next
  • Chip Zdarsky’s Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #10 is your winner. Zdarsky recalls the last time he was up on this stage, winning for Sex Criminals, where he set the record for number of dildo references in an acceptance speech
  • “I’d like to thank my wife…but she’s not really a fan”, Chip says.
  • Best Anthology is about to be awarded
  • Puerto Rico Strong edited by Marco Lopez, Desiree Rodriguez, Hazel Newlevant, Derek Ruiz and Neil Schwartz wins the prize
  • Desiree Rodriguez accepts and urges support for librarians and educators
  • William Stout, adorned in a Rocketeer shirt, is here to give out the Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award (Dave Stevens was the first winner)
  • Lorena Alvarez, writer/artist of Hicotea and Nightlights, wins. She is from Columbia and could not be here, but sends in her acceptance speech for Stout to share
  • Raina Telgemeier and Alitha Martinez step out to the stage to give out the award for Best New Series
  • Gideon Falls by Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino is your winner. This is the second Best New Series prize that Lemire has won, having picked up the same prize for Black Hammer two years ago
  • Best Limited Series nominees are being read
  • Maybe not a surprise at this point, but Mister Miracle wins and completes a pretty hefty sweep of their categories.
  • Gerads thanks Jack Kirby, and hopes he’s looking down with some level of enjoyment at their work
  • And now it’s time for Best Continuing Series
  • The winner is Giant Days, a nice send-off for the series! Heidi calls it an upset on twitter, but this one has been a long time coming I think.
  • Tom Lennon and Ben Garant are out making Flashpoint jokes…at this hour, I’m not sure I have the patience.
  • Best Adaptation From Another Medium is the first of this last section of nominees
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, in Frankenstein: Junji Ito Story Collection is your winner. One of the few horror comics creators whose work truly frightens me.
  • Best Graphic Album – Reprint is next
  • The Vision hardcover by Tom King, Gabriel Hernandez Walta and Michael Walsh wins. I can’t emphasize this enough, a huge night for Tom King written works.
  • Best Reality-Based Work is won by Box Brown’s Is This Guy For Real? The Unbelievable Andy Kaufman
  • Best Graphic Album – New, I believe the last award for the night, is about to be given out
  • My Heroes Have Always Been Junkies by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips wins. Brubaker is up to accept. He immediately thanks Tom and Mitch for not making Mister Miracle an original graphic novel.

And folks, with Jackie Estrada coming out on stage one more time to close things down, it’s time to call it a night. In summary, Eisner sure does love Tom King! Congrats to all the winners and nominees, it’s been another incredible year for comics and it’s been my pleasure to share another great Eisner Awards with you. Thank you for being here for our live-blog, and stay tuned for more great content from The Beat through the weekend.

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