5. Grant Morrison
Morrison is very hard to pin down by description. He's obviously the most active person in comics today on this list, but the more I think about it, the harder Morrison is to get ahold of. He's cultivated this incredible persona, and yet, he's a major mainstream comic book writer. He's thought of as being completely out there, but has done his share of very accessible work on household names like Batman and the X-Men. Then there's the speech above where he tells us with sincerity that he's traveled to alien worlds.
4. Jack Cole
He's primarily known today as the creator of Plastic Man, but that's selling Cole a little short. A master of all styles, he could draw funny or he could draw serious. He's also the originator of the Playboy cartoon style, appearing in the 5th issue of the magazine and imitated every since. From the late 30's through his death in 1958, Cole worked on dozens of comic book titles, and was a very well regarded artist. Then, in 1958, he told his wife he was going to pick up the paper, drove off, bought a gun, and shot himself. He mailed a suicide note to both his wife and Playboy publisher, Hugh Hefner, and the contents of those letters have never been disclosed. His wife never spoke about it, with his family, or Hefner, and remarried a year later.
3. Dave Sim
No one did what Dave Sim did. He started a comic book on his own, Cerebus, ostensibly about a barbarian aardvark, self-published it, declared it would go for 300 issues, and followed through. Along the way, he became known as one of the most talented cartoonists working, creating a massive volume of critically acclaimed work, and then things got a bit odd. At a certain point, Sim's oddly anachronistic views on women, politics, religion, and more took over. To people who came along later, Sim became a bit of a one note joke, but the story is much more interesting than than, and discounts what is a monumental acheivement in comic book creation. These days, Sim is back to self publishing the singularly enigmatic series, Glamourpuss. Since it's hard to even give adequate context in this space, I recommend you read this if you want to know more.
2. Alan Moore
Alan Moore changed mainstream superhero comics in such a way that nearly 30 years later, no one has been able to keep up, or surpass his legacy. Responsible for more "Comics Aren't for Kids Anymore" headlines than anyone else in comics, Moore was able to create comics that both pressed all boundaries, and resonate with audiences for decades. But he's also become a bit of a puzzle to newer readers, who dismiss him as the cranky guy who calls himself a Wizard; a weird guy who's been working on some unfinished novel for a very long time. Moore hasn't helped that vision of himself very much, giving cranky interviews, and holding massive (if not somewhat justified) grudges against both Marvel and DC, and publicly declaring himself done with them several times. None of that changes the fact that comics have been chasing Alan Moore's success for a very long time, and have yet to catch up.
1. Steve Ditko
It's not that Steve Ditko is so odd as much as the fact that we just don't know, because he won't tell us. The co-creator of Spider-Man, Ditko is a proper comic book legend. Moving on to create Doctor Strange, and several other less known characters, Ditko has assured his legacy in the comic book world. It would be great to hear what he thinks about all of it though, wouldn't it? Maybe, but he's not talking. Long ago, Ditko declared that he doesn't do appearances or interviews. His work stands on its own, and that should be enough. The only image of him is a self portrait of him sleeping at his desk from a Marvel comic he did in the 60's. It's oddly honorable, really, but at the same time, makes him into such an anomaly that people don't know what to make of it. Ditko actually worked in mainstream comics up through the late 90's and for quite some time has also published all sorts of work based on his views on objectivism, as espoused by Ayn Rand, such as his Mr. A comics. He wants nothing to do with any of the Spider-Man success, and we will probably never know why.