The Joe Shuster Awards are Canada’s national award recognizing outstanding achievement in the creation of comic books, graphic novels and webcomics. The awards are named after pioneering Toronto-born artist Joe Shuster who, along with writer Jerry Siegel, created the iconic super-powered hero, Superman. The 15th annual Joe Shuster Awards were presented in Guelph, ON on Saturday, September 14th.
Outstanding Writer: Chip Zdarsky for “Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man” and “Marvel Two-in-One” (Marvel Comics).
Outstanding Artist: Karl Kerschl for “Isola” (Image Comics).
Outstanding Cartoonist: Emily Carroll for “Beneath the Dead Oak Tree” (Shortbox), a 28-page comic starring “aristocratic foxes in wigs,” which explores “the futility and heartbreak one can run into when dealing with vengeance.”
Comics for Kids Award (The Dragon Award): Julien Paré-Sorel for “Aventurosaure 1. Le Réveil de Rex” (Presses Aventure), the first installment of a graphic novel series about Rex, a young blue dinosaur who dreams of becoming the greatest adventurer of all time.
The Gene Day Award for Self-Publishing: Jamie Michaels and Doug Fedrau for “Christie Pits,” a graphic novel exploring the Christie Pits riot that took place in Toronto on August 16, 1933.
The Gene Day Award for Anthology Collection: “Wayward Sisters: An Anthology of Monstrous Women,” edited by Allison O’Toole (TO Comix Press). This anthology features stories of female and non-binary monsters, like “undead motivational speakers, vengeance demons compelled to hunt family, and a gentle T. Rex who just wants to be loved.”
The T.M. Maple Award: Jennifer Haines, retailer at The Dragon comics stores in Guelph, Ontario, founder of the Comics in the Classroom initiative, and advisor to the Joe Shuster Awards since 2004. She served on the jury of this year’s Eisner Awards.
Harry Kremer Award for Outstanding Comic Book Retailer: Variant Edition Comics, Edmonton, Alberta, and The Dragon in Guelph, Ontario.
Hall of Fame Inductees:
- Al Hewetson (1946-2004), a Scottish-Canadian writer and editor of American horror-comics magazines. He was best known for writing for Skywald Publications during the 1970s, where he penned over 500 “Horror-Mood” stories for their magazines.
- Gerhard (b. 1959), an Edmonton artist best known for the elaborately detailed background art in Dave Sim’s “Cerebus the Aardvark.”
- Dale Keown (b. 1962), an artist whose credits include collaborating with Peter David on “The Incredible Hulk,” and his creator-owned Image series “Pitt.”
- Ken Lashley (b. 1967), an artist who has freelanced for DC, Marvel, Hasbro, Lucasfilm and more.