Harvey Kurtzman wrote, edited and drew popular titles like Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat for notorious publisher EC Comics. In a departure from their lurid line of crime and horror comics, Kurtzman created the satirical Mad in 1952. EC Comics soon fell victim to the hysterical crusading of politicians, child psychologists and religious zealots when the Comics Code Authority effectively banned most of their titles. Kurtzman's Mad persevered, and ironically became the instrument that indoctrinated an entire generation in the principle of art in the service of degenerate discourse - laying the foundation for the cultural upheaval of the 1960s.
Kurtzman's many contributions to midcentury American humor are explored at length by Schelly, with insightful interviews of Kurtzman collaborators like Hugh Hefner, Al Feldstein, James Warren, R. Crumb, Jack Davis, Gilbert Shelton, and more. Episodes like the FBI investigation during the McCarthy Era and his litigation with EC publisher Bill Gaines are detailed for the first time.
Don't miss the debut of this amazing publication with a slide talk, exhibition and book signing on April 11 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM. This event coincides with the colorful Georgetown Second Saturday Art Attack featuring visual and performing arts presentations throughout the historic neighborhood.
Mark your calendars for the return of incomparable cartoonist Daniel Clowes on Saturday, April 18 with the world premiere of The Complete Eightball, followed a week later by provocative Seattle artist Josh Simmons on April 25. Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street (at Airport Way S.), minutes south of downtown Seattle. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
Bill Schelly presents Havey Kurtzman: The Man Who Created Mad Slide talk, exhibition, and book signing Saturday, April 11, 6:00 to 9:00 PM Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery 1201 S. Vale Street | Seattle | 206.658.0110 Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM
"EC Comics' output of crime, horror, and war comics have been reprinted and collected multiple times, but never like in Fantagraphics’ new 'EC Comics Library,' which repackages some of the most influential comics ever published in writer/artist-driven volumes, printed in black and white." – The A.V. Club
"Fantagraphics' current series of handsome hardcovers makes familiar material fresh by focusing on individual artists… it's never been easier to appreciate the contributions of these iconic inkslingers." – Chicago Tribune
"Fantagraphics has been inventing unique ways to publish [this] treasure trove of '40s and '50s crime, horror and war comics." – The Toronto Star
Here is our finalized cover art showing off that classic, ominous Ingels linework. The book will collect over two dozen horror stories, along with our usual extras of commentary, essays, and biographical details from EC experts.
Featuring: Johnny Craig's complete crime and horror stories from Crime SuspenStories and The Vault of Horror, twenty-five legendary horror stories from "Ghastly" Graham Ingels, Al Feldstein's solo science fiction from Weird Science and Weird Fantasy, and twenty-two EC science-fiction gems illustrated by Jack Kamen. Plus essays and notes by EC experts! A great gift for Father's Day or for the genre-fiction fan in your life.
Time to sync your watches at 3....2.....1....set! The newest EC Comics Library book, Spawn of Mars and Other Stories, is now available at comiXology for when you're jet-setting around the stars. Wallace (Wally) Wood fans love his sleek, preternaturally lush art, but they especially love the wonderment of his spectacular science fiction. This highly anticipated mouth-watering collection features over two dozen stories brimming with Wood's meticulously detailed, genre-defining brushwork-all save the one Wood wrote himself on the typewriter of EC editor Al Feldstein. And with titles like "Spawn of Mars," "The Dark Side of the Moon," "A Trip to a Star," "The Invaders," "The Secret of Saturn's Ring," and "The Two-Century Journey," how can you go wrong? This is EC science fiction at its finest. Like every book in the Fantagraphics EC line, Spawn of Mars and Other Stories features essays and notes by EC experts on these superbly crafted, classic comic book masterpieces.
So set your ship on auto-pilot (as long as you're not in a meteor field) or tell your captain you'll be planet-side for a little while longer to enjoy all 240 pages of fun for only $22.99.
"Wood's work seemed like snapshots of a lush and vibrant reality where even madmen, monsters and mayhem possessed a stately grace. There might be pandemonium but, oddly, the panic never seemed to reach the eyes of Wood's regal heroes." - Geoff Boucher, The Los Angeles Times
"Legendary artist [Wally] Wood mastered every comic-book genre - humor (he was one of Mad's first artists), horror, superheroes, war - but is best known for the 1950s science-fiction stories he drew for EC Comics, in which, one commentator noted, he 'began drawing things into panels that no human being seemed capable of before.' His heroic spacemen, intricate rocket ships, and frightening aliens embodied classic space opera, and his influence remains visible in the work of many leading comics artists today." - Gordon Flagg, Booklist
You'll want to sit down for this one, EC Comics fans (the better to flail all four limbs in fervent joy). We know you've been asking about our next boxed set of EC Comics... And here it is! We are proud to show off the slipcase design for our next 4-volume bundle, which will collect Fall Guy for Murder, Child of Tomorrow, Zero Hour, and Sucker Bait into one beautifully packaged box set.
This week's comic shop shipment is slated to include the following new titles. Read on to see what comics-blog commentators and web-savvy comic shops are saying about them (more to be added as they appear), check out our previews at the links, and contact your local shop to confirm availability.
224-page black & white 7.75" x 10" softcover • $24.99 ISBN: 978-1-60699-808-3
"Foolbert Funnies is a definitive collection of comic art by one of the quirkiest and most intriguing artists to emerge from undergrounds. As a former college art professor, Frank Stack brought a unique approach to his art, blazing his own trail. And what could be more appropriate for an underground comics cartoonist than that?" –Jason Sacks, Comics Bulletin
216-page black & white 7.25" x 10.25" hardcover • $29.99 ISBN: 978-1-60699-805-2
"…the reason I'm almost guaranteed to eventually pick this up: shelf porn. I'd probably buy 'Wally Wood sci-fi reprints' as a digest, but this is going to eventually look so damn good on the oversized shelf. It's the smuggest reason to buy anything ever, but I don't care." –Jim Dandendeau, Topless Robot
Wallace Wood fans love his sleek, preternaturally lush art, but they especially love the wonderment of his spectacular science fiction. This highly anticipated mouth-watering collection features over two dozen stories brimming with Wood’s meticulously detailed, genre-defining brushwork—all save the one Wood wrote himself on the typewriter of EC editor Al Feldstein. And with titles like "Spawn of Mars," "The Dark Side of the Moon," "A Trip to a Star," "The Invaders," "The Secret of Saturn's Ring," and "The Two-Century Journey," how can you go wrong? This is EC science fiction at its finest. Like every book in the Fantagraphics EC line, Spawn of Mars and Other Stories features essays and notes by EC experts on these superbly crafted, classic comic book masterpieces.
The 1950s were also a launching pad for some of the greatest comic book artists in history, many of whom worked for EC—including Wallace Wood, whose hypnotically detailed, lushly expressive brushwork brought to life menacing thugs, ominous cityscapes, and small-town America, as well as Everymen grappling with profound moral issues—not to mention some of the most heart-stoppingly beautiful women ever to sashay across a comic book page.
Like every book in the Fantagraphics EC line, Spawn of Mars features extensive essays and notes on these classic stories by EC experts—but the real "meat" of the matter (sometimes literally, in the grislier stories) is supplied by these often lurid, sometimes downright over-the-top, but always compelling and superbly crafted, classic comic-book masterpieces.
Now soaring through the air waves and wifi networks to land safely on your digital reading device is ACES HIGH illustrated and some written by George Evans. This EC Comics Library is filled from wing tip to landing equipment with aviation war stories, including the titular comic of the same name, now available digitally thanks to comiXology. As a bonus, we present a rarity: Evans's never-before-reprinted 3-D story of World War I ace Frank Luke (in regular, easy-on-the-eyes 2-D). This volume also includes numerous Evans crime and shock stories, including "As Ye Sow...," "...My Brother's Keeper," and "Cadillac Fever." Other war stories, many done in collaboration with Harvey Kurtzman, include "Napoleon!" and "Flaming Coffins" (which Evans wrote, about the inherent perils of WW I aircraft). Like all books in the Fantagraphics EC line, Aces High features essays and notes by EC experts on these superbly crafted, classic comic book masterpieces.
With 210 pages of adventure, this $22.99 collection of masterwork comics with thrill you. The perfect digital comics for EC fans and WWI enthusiasts during the centennial of the Great War.
"All of these books are essential purchases for comics fans... These are the books that best show off how EC took genre stories seriously, striving to create comics that didn't treat readers as naive or ignorant." - The Los Angeles Times
"...I am not only appreciative...but also very impressed. [The books] are spectacular packages of their featured artist and their stories." - Al Feldstein