Even among a roster of talents that includes several industry legends, Johnny Craig's work with EC Comics stands out. An artist who usually wrote his own stories, he produced clean and lively pages that brought his shocking, poetic yarns to life, and as the premier cover artist for the publisher, Craig's jolting imagery for Vault Of Horror, Tales From The Crypt and Crime SuspenStories frequently provided a fitting introduction to the taut, disturbing tales that laid in wait inside.
Unfortunately, it was his brilliance on those covers that led to his widespread vilification. Born April 25, 1926, today we take a moment to appreciate the work of the late, great Johnny Craig.
On April 21 1954, William M. "Bill" Gaines, publisher of Entertaining Comics, spoke at the Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency to defend his comic books against accusations of indecency and the perversion of minors. Some say as a direct result of his testimony, comic books were irreparably damaged. But no matter the result, Bill Gaines should be applauded simply for being willing to stand up and be counted.
Illustrator supreme. Inker extraoardinaire. Member of the Eisner Hall Of Fame. Al Williamson's skill was matched only by his imagination, and in a career that spanned seven decades, he established himself as not just one of the greatest artists the comics industry has ever seen, but one of the most sympathetic and versatile collaborators, who brought an extra element of inspiration to everything he touched, and helped those around him to achieve new heights.
He's drawn absurd animal comics, invented innumerable impossible items, and been responsible for mutilating the back covers of many millions of magazines. He's won the highest honors that the medium of comics has to offer, authored best-selling books, and appeared in more issues of Mad Magazine than any other contributor. He's Al Jaffee, one of America's best-known and most beloved cartoonists, and this past weekened marked his 95th birthday.
Horror. Crime. Science Fiction. War. Suspense. Oddball humor. Incisive writing. Eye-popping art. These are the elements that made EC Comics irresistible to readers of the 1950s. Their titles were produced by some of the finest creators the comic industry has ever seen.
When the bubble burst, and EC's line of comics fell before a squalling mob of censors, Senators, sinister psychiatrists and simple-minded puritans, one series managed to escape, transform itself into a full-size black-and-white magazine, and go on to turn American culture upside-down with its cleverly absurd approach to humor. And through it all, there was one constant figure lurking behind the scenes: publisher, co-editor, troubleshooter, troublemaker, and visionary William M. Gaines.
The Comics Code Seal of Approval, adopted on this day on 1954 by the Comics Magazine Association of America, is an instantly recognizable image to generations of comic readers. Its modest black-and-white brand adorned the covers of countless mainstream comic books for the better part of six decades, assuring buyers that the contents of their favorite title had met with some not-entirely-clear standards of suitability, and serving as a lingering reminder of an era when comics has been considered a serious threat to society.
Everyone loves comic book trivia, but with 75 years of superhero comics behind us right now, there’s always some new obscure fact to learn. That’s why ComicsAlliance is going deep into the minutiae of your favorite characters in our continuing video series. You think you know comics? Well, here’s a few things you might not know!
Welcome back, boils, ghouls, and gender non-boo-nary, to our series of videos celebrating spine-tinglingly spooky comics! In the 1950s, EC Comics ruled the roost with its expertly written and drawn combination of sci-fi, war, suspense, and, most notoriously, horror comics. The unholy trinity of creep-hosted horror jams was Vault of Horror, Haunt of Fear, and, the one best known today, Tales from the Crypt. Enter the crypt quietly, my dear fiends, and learn the secrets and history of the comics that millions of kids loved and that Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-Tenn.) hated so much.
When discussing the greatest comic artists of all time --- or at least those who worked in mainstream American comics --- there are a few names that tend to be listed right at the top: Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Alex Toth, Will Eisner… and the man who was born on this day in 1927, Wallace Allan Wood.
Try to picture the prototypical Mad magazine cover in your mind. There's a good chance that whatever you're imagining is in the style of cartoonist Jack Davis, who announced his retirement today at the age of 90.
Each weekday, ComicsAlliance brings you a carefully selected variety of links from around the web about comics and comics-related media, including movies, video games, toys, and whatever else might be worth noting. Quite frankly, these are items you may just need to know about to have a productive day. Take a look at today's hand-picked links after the jump.
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