Please help comics writer and artist William Messner-Loebs and his wife stay in their home. Illness and injuries have left them in dire financial straits, and they’re facing eviction.
His run on The Flash is one of my favorites. The character work on Wally West from when he started to when he finished was amazing, and he made me think about a lot of social issues as a teenager that I might not have encountered until later.
Clifford Meth is managing a new crowdfunding campaign to help them. he writes:
Bill Messner-Loebs’s work in comics was beloved by fans for many years, but the circumstances of his life—illness and injuries—have conspired to make things financially quite difficult.
Recently out of the hospital, Bill and his wife are now facing eviction. You can read the brutal details of his medical and legal situation in his own eloquent and painfully personal words on his Facebook:
Facebook: William Messner-Loebs
I implore you to help this kind and gentle soul. He’s endured a terrible episode and needs human kindness and generosity now. Thank you, and may God bless our efforts together.
A couple of weeks ago we wrote about William Messner-Loebs’ struggle with homelessness. You may remember him as the writer on The Flash during the late 1980s and early 1990s, who took over Wally West’s series and began a coming-of-age story that would play out over the next few years, as well as two years’ worth of Impulse stories later in the decade.
A gas leak at his home last year left it unlivable, and he and his wife have been living out of their car and in shelters since then. The comics industry has largely passed him by, so he’s been picking up odd jobs as a janitor and delivering food to pay off debt from health issues and to make ends meet.
His stories were infused with social awareness: Marginalized people like gay supervillains and (ironically) the homeless. Women scientists being gaslighted by their peers. Estranged families trying to reconnect. Big business dumping toxic waste in small towns. When Impulse’s hometown was threatened by a flood, all the local supervillains pitched in to help. Nobody stopped laying sandbags to attack each other.
There was a strong theme in all of his stories that people need to help each other, not turn a blind eye or tear each other down. And now it’s our chance to help him. The article last month linked to a crowdfunding campaign for the shelter they’ve been relying on. Now there’s a personal GoFundMe campaign that will go directly to Bill and Nadine Messner-Loebs. I’ve contributed, and I hope you will too.
William Messner-Loebs, the writer who set the tone for Wally West’s long journey to adulthood in his three-year run on The Flash back in 1988-1992, has fallen on hard times. The home he and his wife lived in was damaged by a gas leak last year and declared “unlivable,” and they’ve been living out of their car. He’s been doing odd jobs – janitor, Panera, etc. – trying to make ends meet.
Reporter Derek Kevra chronicles Bill Messner-Loebs’ heyday in comics during the 1980s and 1990s, then troubles in the early 2000s as work dried up just as illness and bills led to eviction. Help from the Hero Initiative and a fan campaign to get publishers to hire him again helped them get back on their feet, and they bought the home that they lived in until last year. Between interviews, Kevra dug out his old comic collection and found just how many of them had Messner-Loebs’ name on them.
The couple was recently approved for a housing voucher, and they’re looking for a new home. The Hero Initiative has gotten in touch as well. They’ve been relying on the Severe Weather Network this winter, as it’s the only emergency housing in the area. You can contribute to the SWN’s goFundMe page, or to help Bill and Nadine directly, you can contact Derek Kevra through fox2newsdesk at foxtv.com.
It’s being reported that one of the creators of the 1990s Flash TV series, Paul DeMeo, passed away a few days ago. He and his writing partner, Danny Bilson, produced and wrote for the original television series, and later they reunited to write the Bart Allen comic series The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive.
There are no details available at this point, and even DeMeo’s age seems to be unknown, but the passing of a man who co-created the original television series and ultimately influenced the current one is worth noting. May he rest in peace, and we at Speedforce offer condolences to his family and friends.
Created by Mort Weisinger and debuting in More Fun Comics #71 (1941, less than two years after Flash Comics #1), Johnny Quick and his “3X2(9YZ)4A” speed formula enjoyed a 13-year run between More Fun and Adventure Comics. He even outlasted the Jay Garrick Flash, staying in publication in solo stories through 1954. A speedster who occasionally took to the skies, his secret ID of Johnny Chambers was a newsreel photographer.
Between 1941 and 1948, the artist behind the majority of Johnny Quick’s adventures was Mort Meskin. Sometimes listed as Mort Morton, Jr., Meskin is credited on 57 Johnny Quick stories, according to DCIndexes.com. DC reprinted six of those stories between three issues of the 1956-1985 Flash series, a separate Flash 100-Page Giant, an issue of Most Dangerous Villains, and a 2001 “Millennium Edition” reprint of More Fun #101.
Artist Paul Ryan passed away this weekend, at the age of 66. He was the regular artist on The Flash for two years in the late 1990s, working with Waid/Augustyn on such stories as “Presidential Race,” “Flash of Two Cities” and “Hell to Pay” and with Morrison/Millar on “Emergency Stop” and “The Human Race.”