Will Eisner’s importance to the comic medium can never be downplayed. From the very beginning he was treating comics with the respect that many still don’t believe they deserve. Will was integral to the medium, by not only creating lasting characters, but also creating the first Graphic Novel, and spurring other creators to go out on a limb and create more mature comics.
He was an inspiration to generations of creators, fans, and retailers, as well as a sort of good will ambassador for the medium for almost seventy years. He not only loved comics, but truly believed in the medium, and coined the term sequential art as a way of uplifting it. There is good reason why our industry’s biggest award is named after him.
It is not hyperbole to say that the comic industry would not be what it is today without his lasting touch, and comics are better for having him. Sadly, he passed away in 2005 due to complications from open heart surgery, but his legacy lives on with Will Eisner Week.
There will be celebrations held around the world to honor Will, and all he gave to this industry the first week in March. The Savannah College of Art and Design, Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco, the Glasgow International Film Festival, Columbia University, the Art Institute of Portland, Emerald City Comic Con, Wizard World Sacramento, and more have events planned to show why Will Eisner still matters. To see the full list, go to http://www.willeisnerweek.com, and have a happy Will Eisner Week!