Friday, October 24, 2014

Poe 1951, Pt. 1

(Continued from Poe 1947, Pt. 5)


EC (Entertaining Comics) remains one of the most famous-- or infamous, depending on your point of view-- comics publishers of the 1950s.  During a period where a virtual witch-hunt erupted over violence in "children's" literature, they were at the center of it.  The Comics Code Authority-- a self-governing industry organization put together by several of the bigger publishers, while allegedly aimed at "cleaning up" the image of comics in general, in many ways was instead designed specifically to put EC-- their biggest competitor-- out of business!  This kind of behavior and attitude never fails to get me incensed in the extreme.

Aside from THE VAULT OF HORROR and TALES FROM THE CRYPT, their 2 "horror" books, both of which had feature films based on them in the early-1970s, was CRIME SUSPENSTORIES, their own foray into the "violent crime" category.  It was actually the cover of one issue of CSS that caught the most hell when it was used as evidence of how "depraved" the company's output was.

It's perhaps fitting that after CLASSICS ILLUSTRATED #84 (June 1951), that Gilberton never tackled Poe again, and the author's works instead began appearing with never-ending frequency in other company's "horror" books.

Here we have an example of a classic story "freely" adapted.  The source material is plainly obvious, but many changes have been made.  This kind of thing can alternatively be a matter of frustration for "purists", or a joy to those who are able to enjoy a finished work on its own terms.

I'm including a link to another blog which takes a look at the
changes made to the story, which started life as an adaptation
of  Poe's "The Cask of Amontillado".

cover by JOHNNY CRAIG   (EC  /  February-March 1951)
"BLOOD RED WINE"  (adapted from "The Cask Of Amontillado")  Version 1
adaptation by Albert B. Feldstein  /  art by GRAHAM INGELS  /  Page 22
(Continued in Poe 1951, Pt. 2)

Copyright (C) the various publishers.

Scan of CRIME SUSPENSETORIES #3 from the Heritage Auctions site
Scan of CRIME SUSPENSTORIES #3 interiors from "Pappy"
Scan of CRIMESUSPENSTORIES #3 reprint cover
     from Dr. K's 100 Super Spectacular Pages blog
     from the My Comics Shop site

Restorations by Henry R. Kujawa
Special thanks to "Pappy"!!!

For more:
Read about Edgar Allen Poe at Wikipedia.
Read about EC Comics at Wikipedia.
Read about Johnny Craig at Wikipedia.
Read about Johnny Craig at the Lambiek site.
Read about Albert B. Feldstein at Wikipedia.
Read about Graham Ingels art at Wikipedia.
Read about Graham Ingels at the Lambiek site.
See more of Graham Ingels' work at the Comic Art Fans site.

Read about THE CASK OF AMONTILLADO at Wikipedia.
Read the complete story at the site.
Read Dr. K's article
     "EC Comics and the Improvement Theory of Literary Criticism"
     at Dr. K's 100 Super Spectacular Pages blog!

Read the ?? CASK OF AMONTILLADO adaptation!

See my Edgar Allan Poe overview at this very blog!