You all know the greats (probably). You all have a few you think get too much credit (probably). I know I could name several in either category. But who are the writers you think get too little recognition for great work? Who do you think needs to show up on more top 10 lists? Whose storylines had more impact than anyone gives them credit for? Here’s the place to proselytize.
The one who got me thinking about this (who’s reasonably well-known, but not given nearly enough credit for how absurdly prolific and influential he was) is Chuck Dixon. He was the main writer on, like, six different Batman-related titles through most of the '90s, and is at least partially responsible for some of the most exciting and influential stories of that period, especially in terms of fleshing out the supporting cast and non-Bruce Bat-Family members. And, in terms of the writing itself, he had some quirks, but he’d always deliver a good mix of action, character drama, and a sense of humor. I’d rank him with Finger and O’Neil as one of the most influential writers to ever work on the bat-books, but he seems to always get left off of lists of the greats.
Frankly, even Bill Finger himself is sometimes undervalued. Sure, most comic readers know he created Batman (at least, those who know about the fiasco with Bob Kane pretty much taking credit for Finger’s work), but he also created Commissioner Gordon, the Batcave, Wayne Manor, Gotham City, Robin, the Joker, the Penguin, the Riddler, Catwoman, Two-Face, the Scarecrow, Clayface, the Mad Hatter, and Hugo Strange, and that’s just what I could find from a quick search around the wiki. He created Batman in 1939 and was still a regular writer as late as 1965, a far longer tenure than just about any writer other than Gardner Fox (who was also a regular Batman writer as far back as Detective Comics #29 and worked on the character up through 1968).
So, who are your underrated favorites, and what series/runs/stories/issues of theirs should the rest of us read?