Tag Archives | EC Comics

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A Ray in the Night

I met Ray Bradbury in a dark basement in the suburbs of Long Island. He hit me on the head with a tremendous force and sent me reeling backwards through a plywood door and into an old washing machine. I sat stunned on the floor of my mother’s laundry room, listening to the growl of […]

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Tell Me a Story

Tell me a story about pirates or gladiators or war. I want to hear about damsels in distress and adventure in the Old West and perhaps a jungle expedition on the side. Back in the 50s, I could have found all of these tales under one title: EC Comics.  The short sequential stories had pizzazz […]

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Preserved Wood

Legendary comic-book artist Wallace Wood’s life came to a tragic end with his suicide in 1981, putting a .44 magnum to his temple in a shabby Van Nuys, California, apartment at the age of 54. Wood, who made a name for himself in the 1950s with an astounding body of work for EC Comics on […]

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Having an Impact

After the debacle of the Senate hearings on juvenile delinquency and the EC comic-book witch-hunt, Bill Gaines had to drastically revise his publishing line, since the newly instituted Comics Code forbade practically all of the titles he had previously been offering, with words like “horror,” “crime,” and “shock” now strictly forbidden. Gaines’ more adult-oriented “New […]

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The Neat Job

The Glamorous and The Grisly

EC Comics were released in a different era. You can flip the page and go from slinky dresses to swank mansions and fancy décor to splattered blood and diced body parts. My stack of comics today is sadly lacking in this area. Few characters dress with such Madmen-esque style in the modern day of jeans […]

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EC Comics and the Comics Code Authority: Reduction of the Innocent, Part III

Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions While other publishers provided testimony during the Senate hearings, the two central figures in the debate were Wertham and Gaines. Wertham, a respected psychiatrist, had impressive credentials, and he was seen as an expert in the field of comics and juvenile delinquency. Gaines, by contrast, was the most outspoken of […]

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Give Everyone EC Comics

We all know people who haven’t read any comics. For some it’s a willful, snobby refusal to read books full of pictures. If you have the will to try to get those people to see the light, you’re a better (and more patient) person than me. A lot of people just don’t know where to […]

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The worst kind of muckraking masquerading as science, Wertham's book saw perversion lurking in every panel.

EC Comics and the Comics Code Authority: Reduction of the Innocent, Part II

  Mad, Bad, and Dangerous to Know Toward the end of M.C. Gaines’ time at EC Comics, he had rebranded the humor comics with an “Entertaining Comics” logo. When Bill Gaines took over the company upon his father’s demise, he continued to advertise “Educational Comics” in the back of his publications, but publishing “Entertaining Comics” […]

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When EC Comics was at its height, it became the target of hysteria about the effects of horror and crime comics on kids. Take a look at this “news” report from the time. Even stranger: The director of this segment? Irvin Kershner, who would a couple of decades later go on to direct THE EMPIRE […]

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Crypt of Terror #19 - Al Feldstein - If it looks like a ghost ship and appears out of nowhere, consider not boarding.

Horror Comes With a Lot of Exclamation Points

Confession: I’m a wimp. I avoid most horror movies and slashers and Stephen King books like the plague. For whatever reason, I scare easily. I carry whatever I’ve seen or read with me, and next thing you know, I’m insisting more lights be left on at night. I don’t enjoy the sensation of being frightened. […]

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Welcoming the Future, Treasuring the Past.