NOW AGE BOOKS 64-2693 / THE BEST OF POE
"THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM"
Since Gilberton's CLASSICS ILLUSTRATED went belly-up in the late 1960s,
a few other publishers had decided to fill the void. First you had Editorial Bruguera in Spain with their marvelous JOYAS LITERARIAS JUVENILES ("Literary Youth Jewels"), which ran some 270 titles between 1970-83. The only problem there was, only 32 out of those 270 comics were ever translated into English.
Then you had Pendulum Press and their NOW AGE BOOKS, edited by Vincent Fago, which did at least 20 books between 1971-77, some of which, like their Spanish counterparts, had begun life as serials in children's magazines before being reprinted in book form. The only "problem", from my point of view, is that although these books originated in New York, every single one of them was illustrated by artists from the Phillipines. (Can you say... "OUT-SOURCING" ??) All 3 of these lines (Gilberton, Bruguera, Pendulum) have been reprinted multiple times over the years.
Since Marvel began doing their own versions of Classics, it may have seemed like a race to see which publisher would do POE first. They each wound up doing one book apiece; Marvel's had 3 stories, Pendulum's had 4. Versions of 2 of the stories appeared in BOTH books!
First up: "THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM".
This was the 13th comics adaptation of this story, following...
Charlton's YELLOWJACKET COMICS #3 (Nov'44),
Gilberton's CLASSICS ILLUSTRATED #40 (Aug'47),
Marvel's SPELLBOUND #2 (Apr'52),
Youthful's BEWARE #10 (Jun'52),
Ziff-Davis's NIGHTMARE #2 (Fall'52),
Continental's CLASSICOS DE TERROR #9 (1960),
Temporae's EL MONJE LOCO #40 (Sep 4, 1968),
Skywald's SCREAM #2 (Oct'73),
Warren's CREEPY #69 (Feb'75),
Valenciana's SOS #1 (Feb'75),
Novaro's CUENTOS EDGAR ALLAN POE (1975), and
Marvel's MARVEL CLASSICS COMICS #28 (May'77)
...released the SAME year. This Pendulum version was exactly ONE-THIRD the length of Don McGregor's!
The artist for this one is Gerry Talaoc. I know nothing about him, except that I thought he may have been one of the WORST inkers who ever worked for Marvel (and that's saying a LOT). Oh well, here we go...
I have no idea who did the cover of the book, but this image took MONTHS of searching before it turned up online! It also wound up being one of the most involved restoration jobs I've done in this entire mammoth POE project!! (Meaning, it took a HELL of a lot of work to get it to look this good.)
One other thing besides the use of cheap foreign labor putting hard-working talented DOMESTIC craftsmen out of work bugs me. NOWHERE in the books-- and NOWHERE on the website of Saddleback Publishing (who are doing the current reprints, in color, as "prestige format" books) do they mention their many "Classics" comics are REPRINTS-- who they were originally published by and when-- nor any of the names of the writers or artists who created the comics. They may be striving to improve literacy among young readers, but they're setting the comics business back by DECADES.
NOW AGE BOOKS 64-2693
cover by ?? (Pendulum Press / 1977)
Adaptation by Naunerle Farr / Art by GERRY TALAOC / Page 7
THE BEST OF POE PC33
cover by GERRY TALAOC (Academic Industries, Inc. / 1984)
In 2007, Saddleback Publishing, Inc. finally reprinted Pendulum Press's version as part of their "Illustrated Classics" series, using the painted cover format designed for the ill-fated 1990 reprint series. Thanks to their total lack of any kind of credits, I have no idea who did the cover painting.
THE BEST OF POE SP-8840
cover by ?? (Saddleback Publishing, Inc. / 2007)
Scan of 1977 THE BEST OF POE cover from the Open Library / Archive.org site.
Scan of 1984 THE BEST OF POE cover from the My Comics Shop site.
Scans of 2007 THE BEST OF POE covers from the Saddleback Publishing site.
Scans of the 2007 THE BEST OF POE interiors from the Slideshare site.
Restorations by Henry R. Kujawa
Read about Edgar Allen Poe at The Poe Museum site.
Visit the Saddleback Publishing website.
Read about THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM at the Spark Notes site.
Read about THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM at the Cliff Notes site.
Read about THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM at the Shmoop site.
Read the complete story at the Poe Stories site.
See the PENDULUM Gallery of Illustrations.
Hear the Basil Rathbone PIT AND THE PENDULUM recording!
See the Vincent Price PIT AND THE PENDULUM performance!
Hear the Henry Hull SUSPENSE episode! (ep. 24 / 1-12-1943)
Hear the Jose Ferrer SUSPENSE episode! (ep. 273 / 11-28-1947)
Hear the Vincent Price SUSPENSE episode! (ep.724 / 11-10-1957)
Hear the Raymond Burr SUSPENSE episode! (ep.805 / 6-7-1959)
Hear the Tony Roberts CBS RADIO MYSTERY THEATER episode! (3-4-1975)
Read the Gus Schrotter PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the August M. Froehlich PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the Russ Heath PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the Doug Wildey PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the Everett Raymond Kinstler PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the Gedeone Malagola PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the Ruben Lara Romero PENDULUM adaptation!
See the Pablo Marcos PENDULUM tribute!
Read the Ricardo Villamonte PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the Jose Ortiz PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the De La Rosa PENDULUM adaptation! (coming soon!)
Read the Guido Del Carpio Rivera PENDULUM illustrated story!
Read the Don McGregor / Rudy Mesina PENDULUM adaptation!
Read the Gerry Talaoc PENDULUM adaptation!
See my Edgar Allan Poe overview at this very blog!
Saddleback Publishing's CLASSICS are currently in print--
go to the SADDLBACK PUBLISHING site to BUY your own copies!!!
(Continued in Poe 1977, Pt. 7)