Weird Science-Fantasy

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Weird Science-Fantasy
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Publication information
Publisher EC Comics
Schedule Quarterly(1954)/Bimonthly(1955)
Format Anthology
Genre
Publication date March 1954 - May/June 1955
Number of issues 7
Creative team
Creator(s) William Gaines
Al Feldstein

Weird Science-Fantasy was an American science fiction anthology comic, that was part of the EC Comics line in the early 1950s. Over a 14-month span, the comic ran for seven issues, starting in March 1954 with issue #23 and ending with issue #29 in May/June 1955.

Origin[edit]

The comic, published by Bill Gaines and edited by Al Feldstein, was a merger of two previous bi-monthly titles, Weird Science and Weird Fantasy, which ran from 1950 to 1953, both ending at issue #22. Because of the losses suffered from those two comics, Gaines and Feldstein combined the two into a single comic, published quarterly and priced at 15 cents. The price would be lowered back down to 10 cents after the first two issues. The comic reverted to a bi-monthly schedule with issue #27 in January/February 1955. In the summer of 1955, there was yet another title change as Weird Science-Fantasy became Incredible Science Fiction for the final four issues.

Artists and writers[edit]

Cover illustrations were by Feldstein, Wally Wood, Al Williamson and Frank Frazetta. Artists who drew stories for this EC title were Feldstein, Wood, Williamson, Frazetta, Joe Orlando, Bernard Krigstein, Angelo Torres, George Evans, Reed Crandall and Jack Kamen. Writers included Feldstein, Gaines, Harlan Ellison (who contributed a single story in issue 24), Otto Binder, Jack Oleck, and Carl Wessler.[1]

The final issue featured a cover by Frank Frazetta originally intended for a Famous Funnies cover illustrating Buck Rogers, but it was considered too violent for that comic book. Gaines bought the rights to use the cover (the only instance at EC where Gaines bought only the rights to the art, and not the art itself), and it was used with some minor revisions. The cover was later described by publisher Russ Cochran as "the most outstanding cover ever put on a comic book".[2]

Stories and themes[edit]

Issue 26 was a special issue about real reported encounters with flying saucers. Feldstein worked with Major Donald Keyhoe, a former marine pilot who was considered the leading popular writer on the subject at the time.[2]

Influences and adaptations[edit]

As with the other EC comics edited by Feldstein, the stories in this comic were primarily based on Gaines reading a large number of science fiction stories and using them to develop "springboards" from which he and Feldstein could launch new stories. Specific story influences that have been identified include the following:

Other stories were authorized adaptations, sometimes with the active participation of the original author. Otto Binder adapted some stories that he and his brother Earl had published in the 1940s. This included "The Teacher From Mars" (#24) and the three-part Adam Link series that appeared in issues 27 through 29.[4]

"The Flying Machine" (#23) and "A Sound of Thunder" (#25) were official adaptations of short stories by Ray Bradbury.[5]

Issue guide[edit]

# Date Cover Artist Story Story Artist
23 March 1954 Wally Wood The Children Wally Wood
Fish Story Al Williamson
The Flying Machine Bernard Krigstein
Fair Trade Joe Orlando
24 June 1954 Al Feldstein ...For Posterity Wally Wood
The Teacher From Mars Joe Orlando
The Pioneer Bernard Krigstein
Upheaval! Al Williamson
25 Sept 1954 Al Williamson Flying Saucer Report Wally Wood
A Sound of Thunder Al Williamson
Bellyful Bernard Krigstein
Harvest Joe Orlando
26 Dec 1954 Al Feldstein Special UFO Issue Wally Wood
Joe Orlando
Reed Crandall
George Evans
27 Jan/Feb 1955 Wally Wood Adaptability Wally Wood
Close Shave Reed Crandall
4th Degree Jack Kamen
I, Robot Joe Orlando
28 March/April 1955 Al Feldstein The Inferiors Wally Wood
Lost in Space Al Williamson
Round Trip Jack Kamen
The Trial of Adam Link Joe Orlando
29 May/June 1955 Frank Frazetta The Chosen One Wally Wood
Vicious Circle Al Williamson
Genesis Reed Crandall
Adam Link in Business Joe Orlando

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Von Bernewitz, Fred and Geissman, Grant. Tales of Terror: The EC Companion (Gemstone Publishing and Fantagraphics Books, Timonium, MD & Seattle, WA, 2000) p. 141-142
  2. ^ a b The Complete EC Library: Weird Science-Fantasy Volume 1. Russ Cochran. 1982. 
  3. ^ Von Bernewitz, Fred and Geissman, Grant Tales of Terror: The EC Companion (Gemstone Publishing and Fantagraphics Books, Timonium, MD & Seattle, WA, 2000) p. 141-2
  4. ^ Von Bernewitz, Fred and Geissman, Grant Tales of Terror: The EC Companion (Gemstone Publishing and Fantagraphics Books, Timonium, MD & Seattle, WA, 2000) p. 227
  5. ^ Von Bernewitz, Fred and Geissman, Grant Tales of Terror: The EC Companion (Gemstone Publishing and Fantagraphics Books, Timonium, MD & Seattle, WA, 2000) p. 226