Friday, January 30, 2015

Poe 1974, Pt. 1

(Continued from Poe 1973, Pt. 4)

SCREAM  4
"THE OBLONG BOX"

Skywald Publications was the work of Sol Brodsky & Israel Waldman.  While they had a small run of color comics designed to imitate Marvel, their biggest output and claim to fame were their B&W "Horror-Mood" magazines, done very much in the mode of James Warren's CREEPY and EERIE.

Al Hewetson, a writer & editor, soon joined the company and eventually became full editor when Brodsky returned to MarvelHewetson determined to give Skywald's horror line a more "literate" feel than Warren's had, resulting in, among other things, no less than 19 Edgar Allan Poe adaptations between 1972-75.

Here we come to the 4th of these...  "The Oblong Box".  This was the 2nd comics version of this story, coming 29 YEARS after McComb's CROWN COMICS #1 (Spring'45).  Boy, it took long enough!

This would be the 2nd of 3 consecutive Poe stories with art by "Maro Nava".  As it turns out, quite a few artists who worked for Skywald used psudonyms, because James Warren didn't want "his" artists working for anybody else!  Somehow, I couldn't quite tell under all the "effects" on "House Of Usher"-- but on THIS story, it suddenly became very clear!  "Maro Nava" was none other than Jerry Grandenetti !!

I imagine anyone reading this after having seen the American International Picture film with Vincent Price must have been surprised or confused, as that film has pretty much NOTHING to do with the original story.  By comparison, I've found 2 completely different radio adaptations, both of which managed to at least use the short story as their basis, while adding a lot of additional material on the way.  Be sure to check them out at the links at the bottom.

SCREAM  4
cover by FRANCISCO JAVIER GONZALEZ VILANOVA
     (Skywald Publications  /  February 1974)
"THE OBLONG BOX"  /  Version 2
adaptation by Al Hewetson  /
art by JERRY GRANDNETTI  (as "MARO NAVA")  /  Page 14
Page 15
Page 16
Page 17
Page 18
Page 19
Page 20
Eternity Comics, for a few years, was a very successful small publisher, who split their output between a number of original series, licensed series, and reprints of old comics.  This included quite of few of the Poe stories from Skywald!

EDGAR ALLAN POE:  
     THE MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH And Other Stories #1
cover by BROOKS HAGAN  (Eternity Comics  /  December 1988)
(Continued in Poe 1974, Pt. 2)

Copyright (C) Skywald Publishing

Scan of SCREAM #4 cover from The Horror-Mood blog.
     Special thanks to George E. Warner.
Scans of SCREAM #4 interiors from the Back From The Depths blog.
     Special thanks to Ghastly McNasty.
Scan of THE MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH And Other Stories #1
     from my collection.

Restorations by Henry R. Kujawa

For more:
Read about Edgar Allen Poe at Wikipedia.

Read about Skywald Publications at Wikipedia.
Read about Sol Brodsky at Wikipedia.
Read about Al Hewetson at Wikipedia.
Read about Fracisco Javier Gonzalez Vilanova at Lambiek.
Read about Jerry Grandenetti at Wikipedia.

Read about The Weird Circle radio show at Wikipedia.
Read about The CBS Radio Mystery Theater at Wikipedia.

Read about THE OBLONG BOX at Wikipedia.
Read the complete short story at the About.com Classic Literature site.
Hear The Weird Circle OBLONG BOX radio episode!
Hear the CBS Radio Mystery Theatre OBLONG BOX episode! 

Read the Alex Blum OBLONG BOX adaptation!
Read the Jerry Grandenetti OBLONG BOX adaptation!

See my Edgar Allan Poe overview at this very blog!