The 33rd Annual Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, sponsored by comiXology, were presented at a virtual ceremony hosted by Phil LaMarr (Samurai Jack, Futurama) as part of Comic-Con@Home, crowning cartoonist and lecturer Gene Luen Yang as the top winner with three awards: Best Publication for Kids and Best Adaptation from Another Medium for Superman Smashes the Klan (published by DC, with art by Gurihiru) and Best Publication for Teens for Dragon Hoops (his graphic novel published by First Second/Macmillan).
Multiple Eisners also went to writer Ed Brubaker for Best Graphic Album–New for Pulp (with artist Sean Phillips; published by Image) and Best Digital Comic for Friday (with artist Marcos Martin; Panel Syndicate); Matt Fraction and Steve Lieber for Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen (Best Limited Series and Best Humor Publication; DC); Simon Hanselmann for Best Graphic Album–Reprint for Seeds & Stems (Fantagraphics) and Best Webcomic for Crisis Zone; Junji Ito for Remina (Best U.S. Edition of International Material—Asia and Best Writer/Artist; VIZ Media); Stan Sakai for Usagi Yojimbo (Best Continuing Series and Best Lettering; IDW); and Adrian Tomine for The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Cartoonist (Best Graphic Memoir and Best Publication Design; Drawn & Quarterly).
The winningest publisher was DC (five), followed by Fantagraphics (four), IDW (four), Image (three), Abrams, Drawn & Quarterly, Insight Editions, Pennsylvania State University Press and VIZ Media (two each).
Sergio Aragonés presented the Hall of Fame Awards. The Judges’ Choices were Thomas Nast, Rodolphe Töpffer, Alberto Breccia, Stan Goldberg, Francoise Mouly and Lily Renée Phillips. The 2021 inductees chosen by the voters were Ruth Atkinson, Dave Cockrum, Neil Gaiman and Scott McCloud. Mouly, Gaiman and McCloud all accepted their awards via video. Also in videos, Goldberg’s son Steve accepted on his behalf, Phillips’ son Rick accepted for her (along with a thank you from the just-turned-100 Lily Renée herself) and Cockrum’s wife Paty represented her late husband.
The Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award was presented by Bob’s daughter, Ruth Clampett, to Mike and Christine Mignola.
The Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award went to Laughing Ogre in Columbus, Ohio, owned by Chris Lloyd.
You can watch the full ceremony here. The winners in all 32 categories are:
Best Short Story | “When the Menopausal Carnival Comes to Town” by Mimi Pond, in Menopause: A Comic Treatment (Graphic Medicine/Pennsylvania State University Press)
Best Single Issue | Sports Is Hell, by Ben Passmore (Koyama Press)
Best Continuing Series | Usagi Yojimbo, by Stan Sakai (IDW)
Best Limited Series | Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen, by Matt Fraction and Steve Lieber (DC)
Best New Series | Black Widow, by Kelly Thompson and Elena Casagrande (Marvel)
Best Publication for Early Readers (up to age 8) | Our Little Kitchen, by Jillian Tamaki (Abrams Books for Young Readers)
Best Publication for Kids (ages 9-12) | Superman Smashes the Klan, by Gene Luen Yang and Gurihiru (DC)
Best Publication for Teens (ages 13-17) | Dragon Hoops, by Gene Luen Yang (First Second/Macmillan)
Best Humor Publication | Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen, by Matt Fraction and Steve Lieber (DC)
Best Anthology | Menopause: A Comic Treatment, edited by MK Czerwiec (Graphic Medicine/Pennsylvania State University Press)
Best Reality-Based Work | Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio, by Derf Backderf (Abrams)
Best Graphic Memoir | The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Cartoonist, by Adrian Tomine (Drawn & Quarterly)
Best Graphic Album—New | Pulp, by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (Image)
Best Graphic Album—Reprint | Seeds and Stems, by Simon Hanselmann (Fantagraphics)
Best Adaptation from Another Medium | Superman Smashes the Klan, adapted by Gene Luen Yang and Gurihiru (DC)
Best U.S. Edition of International Material | Goblin Girl, by Moa Romanova, translation by Melissa Bowers (Fantagraphics)
Best U.S. Edition of International Material—Asia | Remina, by Junji Ito, translation by Jocelyne Allen (VIZ Media)
Best Archival Collection/Project—Strips | The Flapper Queens: Women Cartoonists of the Jazz Age, edited by Trina Robbins (Fantagraphics)
Best Archival Collection/Project—Comic Books | The Complete Hate, by Peter Bagge, edited by Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics)
Best Writer | James Tynion IV, Something Is Killing the Children, Wynd (BOOM! Studios); Batman (DC); The Department of Truth (Image); Razorblades (Tiny Onion)
Best Writer/Artist | Junji Ito, Remina, Venus in the Blind Spot (VIZ Media)
Best Penciller/Inker | Michael Allred, Bowie: Stardust, Rayguns & Moonage Daydreams (Insight Editions)
Best Painter/Multimedia Artist (interior art) | Anand RK/John Pearson, Blue in Green (Image)
Best Cover Artist | Peach Momoko, Buffy the Vampire Slayer #19, Mighty Morphin #2, Something Is Killing the Children #12, Power Rangers #1 (BOOM! Studios); DIE!namite, Vampirella (Dynamite); The Crow: Lethe (IDW); Marvel Variants (Marvel)
Best Coloring | Laura Allred, X-Ray Robot (Dark Horse); Bowie: Stardust, Rayguns & Moonage Daydreams (Insight Editions)
Best Lettering | Stan Sakai, Usagi Yojimbo (IDW)
Best Comics-Related Journalism/Periodical | Women Write About Comics, edited by Nola Pfau and Wendy Browne, www.WomenWriteAboutComics.com
Best Comics-Related Book | Invisible Men: The Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books, by Ken Quattro (Yoe Books/IDW)
Best Academic/Scholarly Work | The Content of Our Caricature: African American Comic Art and Political Belonging, by Rebecca Wanzo (New York University Press)
Best Publication Design | The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Cartoonist, designed by Adrian Tomine and Tracy Huron (Drawn & Quarterly)
Best Digital Comic | Friday, by Ed Brubaker and Marcos Martin (Panel Syndicate)
Best Webcomic Crisis | Zone, by Simon Hanselmann, https://www.instagram.com/simon.hanselmann/