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.
― Athena Finger (May 7, 2014)
Now that my longtime friend and collaborator is gone, I must admit that Bill never received the fame and recognition he deserved. He was an unsung hero… I never thought of giving him a by-line and he never asked for one.
This year marked the 75th anniversary of DC Comics’ 2nd most important property (and currently the most popular) Batman, and the 100th birthday of co-creator Bill Finger. Given the poor treatment he’s received over the years from a publisher with a terrible reputation among other creators (see last year’s post on Superman), and collaborator Bob Kane, I’m glad that he finally received at least a very belated, and posthumous, co-creator credit and an award earlier in the year. Baby steps towards righting a wrong.