Comic Creator Bill Messner-Loebs is Homeless, and You Can Help

GameStop, Inc.
Bill Messner-Loebs

Photo courtesy Grand Rapids Comic Con.

As I was perusing Twittter today I came upon a story that broke my heart. It seems that fan-favorite writer William Messner-Loebs and his wife Nadine are living out of their car while he works a few hours a week at Panera and picks up janitorial work. A staple in the comic industry for a time, Bill has written some of the biggest titles for DC, Image, and others. Wonder Woman, The Flash. The Maxx. The list goes on.

This is a tragedy. A man who was once a millionaire due to MTV’s animated The Maxx series, and who was recently credited in the box-office smash Wonder Woman is now homeless.

From the Fox 2 Michigan article:

Meanwhile, he took ‘Jonny Quest’ from the ‘60s TV show and turned it into a 31 issue series and his talent grabbed the attention of DC Comics. In the late 80s when they pegged him to work on ‘The Flash’, then ‘Wonder Woman’ and ‘Thor’.

The road was long and prosperous for Bill and it all peaked in 1993 when MTV took his book ‘The Maxx’ and turned it into a series. The checks were large and the acclaim was far reaching. Life was good.

And then, it wasn’t.

After ‘The Maxx’, Bill and his wife Nadine moved into a nice home. But life happens and disease spares no one. Bill’s mom got sick. Then his wife got sick. Like any house, there were issues that required money to fix. Before he knew it, his Maxx money was more like minimum money.  September 2001 was when he finally lost the house and was evicted.  The date? September 11, 2001.

The story goes on:

So now Bill goes from church to church with his car as the placeholder in between. He works part time for Panera and just recently started picking up janitorial work at one of the churches.

He said he works about 16-20 hours a week, which is good, but when you sprinkle in the inconvenience of being homeless, it doesn’t leave him much time to draw. That sucks because damn, Bill is good. He’s innovative: back in 1991 he introduced one of the first gay characters into the DC universe. Until he took the ‘Pied Piper’ and relaunched him as gay, the only homosexual comic book characters were flawed people who could be “fixed”. But in 1991 Bill took a chance, when that type of thing was a little harder to pull off.

He developed a ‘Wonder Woman’ character named Artemis who is rumored to pop up in Wonder Woman 2. He even developed a homeless character for a comic book series called Bliss Alley, that he wrote before he became homeless. How’s that for ironic?

This creator who has breathed life into so many characters I love is living out of his car while those same characters are making millions on the big screen. At the same time other creators are using gofundme accounts to pay medical bills. Others are working full-time jobs on top of their comics work.

It’s the sad state of this industry that leaves artists, writers, colorists, and others with no safety net in case of emergency. I’ve heard it said that nobody gets into comics for the money, but surely if these companies are making so much off of adaptations of their properties the creators who’ve given so much of themselves to make those properties bankable deserve a little something to put away for a rainy day.

I don’t know what the answer is, but we should do better. For Bill and Nadine, and all of the people who’ve created these tales of heroism that we are so passionate about. We need sweeping changes to this industry, but until that happens it’s up to us.

If you want to help you can contact the Fox 2 writer Derek Kevra at [email protected] or donate to the Hero Initiative. You can also donate to the Severe Weather Network, who’ve been helping the homeless in Livingston, including Bill and Nadine. Bill has given us so much, it’s time to give something back.

 

Anytime Costumes

Leave a Reply

Animation/Anime Interviews Animation/Anime News Animation/Anime Reviews Film/TV Interviews Film/TV News Film/TV Review
John Carpenter's Vampires Blu-ray
Now On Blu-ray: Scream Factory Revives the John Carpenter’s Overlooked ‘Vampires’

As the works of John Carpenter, especially his wrongly maligned late-period...

Yesterday Blu-ray
Now on Blu-ray: Danny Boyle’s Beatles Homage ‘Yesterday’ Asks Questions It Doesn’t Want to Answer

The Beatles were a force of nature, a hurricane of sound...

Madness in the Method
Very A-Mewes-ing – Madness in the Method Review

Jason Mewes masterfully balances showing a completely new side to himself...

Event News Event Reviews
Adam Rocha Celebrates the Silver Anniversary of the San Antonio Film Festival

The San Antonio Film Festival (SAFilm) is celebrating 25 years of ...

Legion M President, Jeff Annison Talks about All the SDCC 2019 Festivities

Legion M is the only fan owned film studio that brings...

Viz Media SDCC 2019: Seis Manos and more!

Announced earlier this year (click here), Seis Manos is an upcoming...

Enabled Gaming Gaming News Gaming Reviews
Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG Legendary Duelists Magical Hero Will Open 2020

Dark Magicians are getting new tricks in Legendary Duelists Magical Hero coming...

John Wick Hex
Create the Legend of John Wick in John Wick Hex

Create the Legend of John Wix and be John Wix before...

Battle for the Grid Season 2
Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid Season 2 Now Available on Consoles

Power Rangers: Battle for the Grid Season 2 now available on...

Comic Creator Interviews Comic/Graphic Novel News Comic/Graphic Novel Reviews Manga News Manga Reviews Novel/Novella Author Interviews Novel/Novella News Novel/Novella Reviews
Neon Future Interview with Founder & Writer

A few months ago at WonderCon 2019, I had the honor...

Blue Bastion
Help Bring the World of Blue Bastion to Life

Live now on Indiegogo, help bring the rich and wondrous world...

impact theory
Impact Theory Founder – Tom Bilyeu

Tom Bilyeu is the CEO and co-founder of Impact Theory, an...

Apparel/Personal Maintenance News Apparel/Personal Maintenance Reviews Entertainment Product News Entertainment Product Reviews Food/Beverage Reviews Hardware News Hardware Reviews Mystery Box News Mystery Box Reviews
Blue Yeti Nano Microphone Review

We have been playing with the Blue Yeti Nano for a...

Wrestle Crate Pre-Christmas Unboxing

    Welcome to our first unboxing of Wrestle Crate, this...

Eagle Eyes
Protect Your Eyes with Eagle Eyes Glasses – Eagle Eyes TV Kit Review

Eagle Eyes TV Kit review – Feel the difference and get...

Arena Football Automotives MMA, Kick Boxing & Boxing Professional Wrestling
Ken Shamrock Shows His ‘Valor’ With VBK 1 This Fall

The Most Dangerous Man in the World, Ken Shamrock is a...

‘Pitbull’ vs. Archuleta and Machida vs. Mousasi Headline Bellator’s Return to L.A. on Sept. 28

  LOS ANGELES – The opening round of the Bellator Featherweight World...

UFC Featherweight Contender, Brian Ortega Talks about Health and Recovery

Brian Ortega is one of the baddest fighters in the UFC....

Adult Continuity Comics on the Can Cultural Junk Drawer Future Comic Rock Stars Is That Racist? Revisiting the Reviled THAT'S NOT ROTTEN! The B-Reel The Cantina Scene This Week in Crowdfunding What the HELL Did I just...?
Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Emissary of Death: AFTERMATH

The aftermath of John Wick's rampage; Dumbledore and Voldemort have a...

Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Emissary of death: AFTERMATH!

The aftermath thickens...

Machina Corpse Kickstart Campaign

Machina Corpse launches a Kickstarter!

Gaming Uncensored Toon-In-Talk
Episode 33: Jerry Beck

Join Whitney Grace in this blast down memory lane with an...

Episode 32: Mathew Klickstein

I’m back and done explaining about the current state of my...

Episode 31: Interview With Myself

I wanted to offer more details about my hiatus.  In episode...

Music Interviews Music News Music Reviews
Comedy Duo Ben Giroux and Jensen Reed Take Us, ‘Back To The 80s’

Two of the funniest men in show business, Ben Giroux (Hart...

James Maslow ‘Rush’es the Stage to Perform at Super Girl Surf Pro on Sunday

James Maslow is an American singer, actor and songwriter best known as the star of...

Jason Lazarus Talks about Composing the Music for ‘Teen Titans Go! vs Teen Titans’

Jason Lazarus is a Los Angeles based composer for film, television, and...