Nominations for the 2013 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards are in.  I’m not going to run through them all, you can find them everywhere, but it is worth nothing that Marvel, DC, and superheroes in general were not well represented this—after last year, when several noms when to Daredevil and some of the new 52 titles.  Chris Ware’s Building Stories, Ed Brubaker/Sean Phillips’ Fatale, and Matt Fraction/David Aja’s Hawkeye all got five nominations each.  Fantagraphics’ comics got the most nominations for any one publisher’s inventory, with Image coming in second.  DC got only one(!) nomination, for JH Williams’ Batwoman covers.  Maybe this will wake them up: The new 52 sucks.
For best ongoing book, the five nominations went to:
  • Fatale, by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (Image)
  • Hawkeye, by Matt Fraction and David Aja (Marvel)
  • The Manhattan Projects, by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra (Image)
  • Prophet, by Brandon Graham and Simon Roy (Image)
  • Saga, by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples (Image)
Wow.  Four image books.  Fatale is on my “to read” pile, but I’m having trouble getting into it.  Same with Manhattan Projects.  Saga and Hawkeye are both excellent (but Saga is the clear winner).  I’ve read several issues of Prophet, and I just don’t get why it’s so great.
Best new series nominations were pretty similar:
  • Adventure Time, by Ryan North, Shelli Paroline, and Braden Lamb (kaboom!)
  • Bandette, by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover (Monkeybrain)
  • Fatale, by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (Image)
  • Hawkeye, by Matt Fraction and David Aja (Marvel)
  • Saga, by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples (Image)
Again, Saga is the clear winner in my book, but Hawkeye is very good as well. 
For best writer, we have:
  • Ed Brubaker, Fatale (Image)
  • Matt Fraction, Hawkeye  (Marvel); Casanova: Avaritia (Marvel Icon)
  • Brandon Graham, Multiple Warheads, Prophet (Image)
  • Jonathan Hickman, The Manhattan Projects (Image)
  • Brian K. Vaughan, Saga (Image)
  • Frank M. Young, The Carter Family (Abrams ComicArts)
I’m sure you sense a pattern here: Vaughan should take it.  He’s excellent.  I’m at the point where I will buy anything with his name on it, period.
Best penciller nominees are:
  • David Aja, Hawkeye (Marvel)
  • Becky Cloonan, Conan the Barbarian (Dark Horse); The Muse (self-published)
  • Colleen Coover, Bandette (Monkeybrain)
  • Sean Phillips, Fatale (Image)
  • Joseph Remnant, Harvey Pekar’s Cleveland (Zip Comics/Top Shelf)
  • Chris Samnee, Daredevil (Marvel); Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom (IDW)
This is the toughest one for me.  I haven’t seen Remnant’s work, and I’m not a big Bandette fan, but the others are all amazing.  Samnee’s work on Daredevil #25 should go down in history as the single greatest comic of 2013.  Phillips is always great–although I’m not seeing anything really “new” on Fatale, so we can maybe eliminate that one.  Cloonan’s work is breathtaking, and frankly is the only reason I’m reading Conan.  But David Aja, month-in and month-out, has done some truly innovative and hilarious work on Hawkeye.  I’d give it to him.
Other notes and observations: Adventure Time (KABOOM) got nominations in the kid/teen/humor categories, and my kids like it.  Eric Shanower and Skottie Young’s latest Oz adaptation (Marvel) also got a few nods—and I highly recommend it to anyone trying to get kids 6-12 into comics.  It’s beautiful work, and fun for adults to read as well.
The other awards don’t interest me as much, but I encourage you all to go buy some of the comics above.  Hell, go buy any comic!

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