DC Comics ruled the 16th annual Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, with projects and creators from DC titles involved in half of the award winners. The gala ceremony was held on July 23, 2004, in the Ballroom at the San Diego Convention Center. Dark Horse took home four Eisners. The only other publisher with multiple Eisners was Top Shelf.
Sergio Aragonés presented the Hall of Fame Awards. The judges choice awards went to Otto Binder, John Stanley, Kazuo Koike and Goseki Kojima. The four elected inductees were Al Capp, Jules Feiffer, Don Martin and Jerry Robinson. Robinson was on hand to accept his award in person.
Besides Aragonés, Eisner presenters included Bill Plympton, Dave Gibbons, Walter and Louise Simonson, Bill Willingham, Eric Shanower, Eric Powell, Stan Sakai, and Bruce Jones and April Campbell. The MC for the evening was Eisner administrator Jackie Estrada, and Will Eisner was on hand to congratulate all the winners.
Pulitzer Prizewinning author Michael Chabon (THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF KAVALIER AND CLAY) kicked off the evening with a keynote speech in which he issued a call to comic creators and publishers to do comics for kids that actually appeal to children and contain all the elements that excited todays creators about comics when they were kids.
Among the other awards given out over the evening were the Comic-Cons Clampett and Manning awards. The Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award, presented by Clampetts daughter Ruth, went to Mimi Cruz Carroll, co-owner of Night Flight Comics in Salt Lake City, for her efforts in using comics for literacy and her involvement in childrens advocacy. The Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award went to Eric Wight, artist on The Passing of the Key, which appeared in MICHAEL CHABON PRESENTS: THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF THE ESCAPIST #1.
A complete list of this years Eisner recipients follows.
2004 Eisner Award Recipients for material published in 2003
Best Short Story"Death," by Neil Gaiman and P. Craig Russell, in THE SANDMAN: ENDLESS NIGHTS (Vertigo/DC)
Best Single Issue (tie)CONAN THE LEGEND #0, by Kurt Busiek and Cary Nord (Dark Horse)THE GOON #1, by Eric Powell (Dark Horse)
Best Serialized StoryGOTHAM CENTRAL #610: "Half a Life," by Greg Rucka and Michael Lark (DC)
Best Continuing Series100 BULLETS, by Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso (Vertigo/DC)
Best Limited SeriesUNSTABLE MOLECULES, by James Sturm and Guy Davis (Marvel)
Best New SeriesPLASTIC MAN, by Kyle Baker (DC)
Best Title for a Younger AudienceWALT DISNEY'S UNCLE SCROOGE, by various (Gemstone)
Best Humor PublicationFORMERLY KNOWN AS THE JUSTICE LEAGUE, by Keith Giffen, J. M. DeMatteis, Kevin Maguire, and Joe Rubinstein (DC)
Best AnthologyTHE SANDMAN: ENDLESS NIGHTS, by Neil Gaiman, Dave McKean, P. Craig Russell, Miguelanxo Prado, Barron Storey, Frank Quitely, Glenn Fabry, Milo Manara, and Bill Sienkiewicz; co-edited by Karen Berger and Shelly Bond (Vertigo/DC)
Best Graphic AlbumNewBLANKETS, by Craig Thompson (Top Shelf)
Best Graphic AlbumReprintBATMAN ADVENTURES: DANGEROUS DAMES AND DEMONS, by Paul Dini, Bruce Timm, and others (DC)
Best Archival Collection/ProjectKRAZY AND IGNATZ, 19291930, by George Herriman, edited by Bill Blackbeard (Fantagraphics)
Best U.S. Edition of Foreign MaterialBUDDHA, VOLS. 1 AND 2, by Osamu Tezuka (Vertical)
Best WriterAlan Moore, THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN, PROMETHEA, SMAX, TOM STRONG, TOM STRONG'S TERRIFIC TALES (ABC)
Best Writer/ArtistCraig Thompson, BLANKETS (Top Shelf)
Best Writer/ArtistHumorKyle Baker, PLASTIC MAN (DC); THE NEW BAKER (Kyle Baker Publishing)
Best Penciller/Inker or Penciller/Inker TeamJohn Cassaday, PLANETARY, PLANETARY/BATMAN: NIGHT ON EARTH (WildStorm/DC); HELLBOY WEIRD TALES (Dark Horse)
Best Painter/Multimedia Artist (interior art)Jill Thompson, "Stray," in THE DARK HORSE BOOK OF HAUNTINGS (Dark Horse)
Best ColoringPatricia Mulvihill, BATMAN, WONDER WOMAN (DC), 100 BULLETS (Vertigo/DC)
Best LetteringTodd Klein, DETECTIVE COMICS (DC); FABLES, THE SANDMAN: ENDLESS NIGHTS (Vertigo/DC); TOM STRONG, PROMETHEA (ABC); 1602 (Marvel)
Best Cover ArtistJames Jean, FABLES (Vertigo/DC); BATGIRL (DC)
Talent Deserving of Wider RecognitionDerek Kirk Kim (writer/artist, SAME DIFFERENCE AND OTHER STORIES)
Best Comics-Related PeriodicalCOMIC BOOK ARTIST, edited by Jon B. Cooke (Top Shelf)
Best Comics-Related BookTHE ART OF HELLBOY, by Mike Mignola (Dark Horse)
Best Publication DesignMYTHOLOGY: THE DC COMICS ART OF ALEX ROSS, designed by Chip Kidd (Pantheon)