Making Will Eisner Dizzy in His Grave — Two Terrible Versions of The Spirit

While there are other people who qualify for the title, it isn’t hyperbole to say that Will Eisner is one of the greatest comic book artists in the history of the world. Co-founder of the Eisner-Iger Studio that produced a ton of comic strips and comic books in the 1930s, Eisner was hired in 1939 by Quality Comics to create a sixteen-page Sunday supplement to the comic strips section that would tell full-on comic-book style stories. Eisner created a masked hero who fought crime nicknamed “the Spirit.” The Spirit quickly became hugely popular throughout the 1940s, and it ran in Sunday newspapers until 1952.

Lots of attempts were made to bring the Spirit to radio, film, and television, but only two actually made it to the screen, only one of which aired in Eisner’s lifetime: a pilot for a TV show in 1987 that wasn’t picked up, and a ...