Friday, December 19, 2014

Poe 1965, Pt. 7

(Continued from Poe 1965, Pt. 6)


And now we come to what I feel is the real "golden age" of POE comics!

Warren was the small empire of magazine publisher James Warren.  Starting out with AFTER HOURS (one of many PLAYBOY imitations) and FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND (the work of editor Forrest J. Ackerman), which celebrated horror and science-fiction movies (old and new), the company made its first stab at ressurecting the dead genre of horror comics with a number of short adaptations of movies.  When these went over big with fans, it was decided to look into expanding in that direction with an entire magazine of horror comics.

CREEPY was the first result.  Freed from constrictions of the Comics Code due to its B&W magazine format, editors Russ Jones and Archie Goodwin managed to recruit the cream of the old EC artists, including Jack Davis, Joe Orlando, Al Williamson, Angelo Torres and Reed Crandall, as well as Gray Morrow and Frank Frazetta.  After doing his final comics story in CREEPY #1, Frazetta switched over to cover paintings, carving an entire new career for himself in the process.

Mixed in with new stories were a nice spattering of adaptations of classic works, among them those of Edgar Allan Poe.  In the late 60s, 6 of these appeared, the first 3 in CREEPY, the other 3 in its brother magazine, EERIE.  I feel safe in saying that despite the high caliber of some of the versions seen before this, these may have to rank among the BEST ever done.

First up...


     This was the 7th comics version of this, following...
Charlton's YELLOWJACKET COMICS #6 (Dec'45),  
EC's THE HAUNT OF FEAR #15 [1] (May-Jun'50), 
Gilberton's CLASSICS ILLUSTRATED #84 (Jun'51),  
EC's THE HAUNT OF FEAR #20 (Jul-Aug'53), and
Charlton's WIN A PRIZE #1 (Feb'55),
     ...the last one 10 years earlier.

Funny enough, the cover painting COULD be an illustration of the climactic scene in Poe's "House Of Usher".  ENJOY!

cover by FRANK FRAZETTA   (Warren  /  [June] 1965)
"TELL-TALE HEART!"  /  Version 7
Adaptation by Archie Goodwin  /  Art by REED CRANDALL  /  Page 9
Page 10
Page 11
Page 12
Page 13
Page 14
Page 15
Page 16
I've noticed a trend in adaptations over the years to either add more personal drama, or tack on "poetic justice" at the end, to ensure a criminal gets what's coming to him, in case they didn't in the original.  It seems a bit odd here, therefore, that while the murderer was caught in the original short story, in this comics version, he winds up committing suicide on top of that.

Warren ran into some financial difficulties in the late 60s, resulting in the loss of most of his best talent and a 2-year period where both CREEPY and EERIE consisted of at least 50% reprints of material that wasn't that old yet.  "Tell-Tale Heart!" was reprinted only 32 months after its original appearance.

cover by VIC PREZIO   (Warren  /  February 1968)
Like many American publishers, Warren stories were reprinted by a wide
variety of publishers overseas, usually in a jumbled, chaotic, haphazard way.
VAMPUS was a Spanish version of CREEPY...

(Ibero Mundial De Ediciones  /  Spain  /  November 1971)
Here's one from Finland...

cover by MANUEL SANJULIAN   (Semic  /  Finland  /  [December] 1973)
At the height of the early-70s horror comics boom, there were several different publishers fighting for sales.  Warren's main competitor was Skywald, who during that period did no less than 19 POE adaptations.  As it happens, Warren's version of "Tell-Tale Heart" was reprinted again ONE month after Skywald did a new version.  By the end of 1974, thanks mostly to Marvel's B&W horror line, Skywald went under, and about the same time, Warren decided to do a whole new series of POE adaptations, most of them the same ones Skywald had just finished doing, but with different artists.

cover by KEN KELLY   (Warren  /  September 1974)
In the mid-70s, Warren published a short run of a full-color reprint magazine, testing the waters for a higher-class publication.  Allegedly, Warren stole the name from one intended for use by Marvel's publisher... apparently to get back at him for trying so hard to drive him out of business by flooding the newsstands with low-quality B&W magazines.  The 4th issue included the 4th appearance of this version of "Tell-Tale Heart" in America, this time IN COLOR!  Rather redundant for art designed to be in B&W, but there it is...

cover by RICHARD CORBEN   (Warren  /  1976)
"TELL-TALE HEART!"  /  Version 7
Adaptation by Archie Goodwin  /  Art by REED CRANDALL  /  Page 35
Page 36
Page 37
Page 38
Page 39
Page 40
Page 41
Page 42
cover by FRANK FRAZETTA   (K.G. Murray  /  Australia  /  June 1978)
Here we have the 1st of 5 reprint collections using the same cover (more or less).  This book collects 15 various Warren POE stories by a variety of artists, from from 1965-1976.

cover by RICHARD CORBEN   (Toutain Editor  /  Spain  /  1980)
A year later, the German edition only included 10 of the 15 stories, and assembled those in a completely different order!

cover by RICHARD CORBEN   (Volksverlag  /  Germany  /  1981)
A sample page of the story in German!
Semic Press was at one point the largest comics publisher in Sweden.  Here they did a "CREEPY SPECIAL" that reprinted 15 Warren POE stories from 1965-1976.  Oddly enough, the cover was a reprint of one that had been used by another publisher on an all-Richard Corben collection!

cover by RICHARD CORBEN   (Semic Press  /  The Netherlands  /  1982)
Dark Horse started as a small "independant" comics publisher in the early 80s "direct market" boom, and remains, currently, one of the FEW survivors of that brief, glorious period. In 2008, they began a series of reprints of CREEPY and EERIE, licensed from James Warren, who had gotten back the rights to those series following a lawsuit with Harris Comics, who had earlier acquired them via a bankruptcy auction.  "Tell-Tale Heart" made its 5th appearance in the 1st collection!

cover by FRANK FRAZETTA   (Dark Horse  /  August 2008)
Copyright (C) Warren Publishing.

Scan of CREEPY #3 from the Heritage Auctions site.
Scans of CREEPY #3 interiors from The Golden Age blog.
Scan of EERIE #13 from the Heritage Auctions site.
Scan of VAMPUS #3 from the Tebeosfera site.
Scans of SHOKKI #12 / 1973 from the Muuta.Net site.
Scan of CREEPY #65 from the Heritage Auctions site.
Scan of COMICS INTERNATIONAL #4 from the Heritage Auctions site.
Scans of COMICS INTERNATIONAL #4 interiors
     from the Diversions Of The Groovy Kind blog.
Scan of CREEPY #27 (K.G. Murray) from the AusReprints site.
     from the Whakoom site.
Scan of EDGAR POE from the site.
Scan of EDGAR POE interior page from the Monster Magazine World blog.
Scans of the CREEPY SPECIAL from the site.
Scan of the Catalan EDGAR ALLAN POE from my collection.
Scan of CREEPY ARCHIVES Volume One from the GCD site.

Restorations by Henry R. Kujawa

For more:
Read about Edgar Allen Poe at Wikipedia.

Read about James Warren at Wikipedia.
Read about Warren Publishing at Wikipedia.
Read about Frank Frazetta at Wikipedia.
Read about Archie Goodwin at Wikipedia.
Read about Reed Crandall at Wikipedia.
See more of Vic Prezio's art at the Saved From The Paper Drive blog.
Read about Ken Kelly at Wikipedia.
Read about Richard Corben at Wikipedia.
Read about Semic Press at Wikipedia.

Read about INNER SANCTUM MYSTERY at Wikipedia.
Read about Boris Karloff at Wikipedia.
Read about THE WEIRD CIRCLE at Wikipedia.
Read about James Mason at Wikipedia.
Read about Basil Rathbone at Wikipedia.
Read about Vincent Price at Wikipedia.
Read about THE CBS RADIO MYSTERY THEATER at Wikipedia.
Read about Fred Gwynne at Wikipedia.

Read about THE TELL TALE HEART at Wikipedia.
Read the complete short story at the Xroad.Virginia.Edu site.

Hear the Boris Karloff INNER SANCTUM MYSTERY episode!
Hear the WEIRD CIRCLE radio episode!
See the James Mason cartoon short!
Hear the Basil Rathbone recording!
See the Vincent Price performance!
Hear the Fred Gwynne CBS RADIO MYSTERY THEATER episode!

Read the Rudy Palais TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Johnny Craig TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Jim Lavery TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the George Evans TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Graham Ingels TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!

Read the Jack Kirby / Jerry Robinson TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Reed Crandall TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Nico Rosso TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Gino Dauro TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!   (coming soon!)
Read the Tom Palmer TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!

Read the Ricardo Villamonte TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Mike Ploog TELL-TALE HEART parody!
Read the Alberto Breccia TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Guido Del Carpio Rivera TELL-TALE HEART illustrated story!
     (coming soon)

Read the Don McGregor / Yong Montano TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!
Read the Vilmar Rodrigues TELL-TALE HEART illustrated story!
Read the Pablo Marcos TELL-TALE HEART illustrated story!   (coming soon!)
Read the Jesus Blasco TELL-TALE HEART adaptation!

See my Edgar Allan Poe overview at this very blog!

(Continued in Poe 1965, Pt. 8)

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