On Saturday September 21 will be celebrated the Day of Batman, a celebration led by the publishing house that launches its comics and owner of the character, DC Comics This year will be a special celebration, because the Dark Knight turns 80, those that have elapsed since it appeared on March 30, 1939 in the number 27 of the magazine Detective Comics, accompanied by the famous firm "by Bob Kane ” with the largest letter O. A triumph for one of the great liars in the history of the comic.
Kane met at school, as a child, the teacher Will Eisner, and under his umbrella began in the world of comics. At the beginning of 1939, the success of Superman made the National Publications publishing house (embryonic company of DC Comics) look for a superhero at the height. Kane, who was collaborating there, promised on a Friday that Monday would bring them one. He went home and drew Batman, a man with a mask, rigid wings and red tights. Just in case, he called a collaborator, Bill finger, whom he had met at a party - although they went to school together - and Finger changed the design: flexible cape, gloves, hood with pointed holes and pointed ears, suit in gray and black ... That Monday, Kane entered in National Publications with the promised sketch and signed a contract in which he secured the property rights of the character and forced the publisher to always publish the famous “by Bob Kane”.
Finger scripted Batman's first story. It obscured his character. He created the name of Bruce Wayne, the murder of his parents, the batcave and the batmobile, invented the Joker, Robin, Enigma, Catwoman, the Scarecrow, Commissioner Gordon. He baptized Gotham City, devised the nickname of the Dark Knight. Together with Finger, writers and cartoonists were added, all anonymous. Kane only participated in the birth of Two Faces.
In 1965 the first Comic-Con with professionals was held in New York. And there, invited by experts, appeared for the first and last time in public Finger, who told his story. Of course, Kane counterattacked, and DC Comics supported him: they were preparing the television series, it was not the time to raise doubts about Kane's myth. Finger's name, which had stopped writing comics in 1961 and had been devoted to television, faded; He remained for the story only as the scriptwriter of two chapters of the Batman series. He died in 1974, in Manhattan, at 59. He found his body one of his last friends and his co-writer in the series Batman, Charles Sinclair
Everything would have been forgotten, if a writer, Marc Tyler Nobleman - "fan of the first creators of superheroes", he says by email -, would not have crossed his steps with Finger, after writing about Superman's parents (Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, who pleaded several times unsuccessfully to recover the intellectual rights of its creation). "I took it as a crusade that will accompany me for the rest of my life," he says. “Batman's soul is Finger. Remember that Kane never wrote a story. ” Nobleman interviewed creators friends of Finger as Sinclair or the second wife of the screenwriter, found the recording of an interview with him of 1972, even spoke with the co-writer with whom Kane - who died in 1998, became the showman of Batman— made his biography, and to whom he recognized his wrongdoing.
After years of research, in 2012 Nobleman published his discoveries in the book Bill the Boy Wonder The author continued his fight, but DC (now part of Time-Warner) was shielded in the 1939 contract with Kane to not include Finger. In addition, Batman is no longer a comic, but the face of an audiovisual empire. There were no direct heirs to plead for intellectual rights. His only son, a chef named Fred Finger, known in the New York gay scene, died in 1992 of AIDS.
Until Nobleman found Fred's cousins, who told him that the cook had a daughter. There Athena Finger entered the story, although she knew her grandfather's story, she never knew where to investigate. With Nobleman's material, the granddaughter pressed DC, and in 2013 she began participating in the Comic-Con to talk about her grandfather. On September 18, 2015, Time-Warner finally relented, and since the premiere of Batman v Superman: the dawn of justice (2016) Finger's name comes out next to Kane's. Nobleman's adventures are reflected in the documentary Batman & Bill, that the TCM channel broadcasts on September 21. "Even so," says the writer, "DC has not given Finger the recognition and homage he deserves."
In a few weeks they are released Joker —Winner of the Venice festival— and the television series Pennyworth, Titans and Batwoman. It is the Batman year, although curiously in the audiovisual Batman will not appear active. Despite this, Nobleman says: "Bill would be proud of every story that emerged in the shadow of his hero."
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