Weird Science-Fantasy


Weird Science-Fantasy

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title=Weird Science-Fantasy


caption=Wally Wood cover, issue #23 (1954)
schedule=Quarterly(1954)/Bimonthly(1955)
format=Anthology
publisher=EC Comics
date=March 1954 - May/June 1955
issues=7
writers=
artists=
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creators=William Gaines
Al Feldstein

Weird Science-Fantasy was a 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

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 back 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

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. [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]

The final issue featured a cover done by Frank Frazetta that was originally intended for a Famous Funnies/Buck Rogers cover, but was considered too violent for that comic. Bill 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 for the cover, with some minor revisions made. The cover was described by eventual EC reprint publisher Russ Cochran as "the most outstanding cover ever put on a comic book". cite book | year=1982 | title=The Complete EC Library: Weird Science-Fantasy Volume 1|publisher=Russ Cochran| language=English ]

Well Known Stories and Themes

Issue 26 was a special issue focused entirely on real life encounters with flying saucers. For this issue Feldstein worked with Major Donald Keyhoe, a former marine pilot who was considered the leading popular writer on the subject at the time. cite book | year=1982 | title=The Complete EC Library: Weird Science-Fantasy Volume 1|publisher=Russ Cochran| language=English ]

Influences

Issue 23's "The Flying Machine" and issue 25's "A Sound of Thunder" were official adaptions of Ray Bradbury short stories. [Von Bernewitz, Fred and Geissman, Grant "Tales of Terror: The EC Companion" (Gemstone Publishing and Fantagraphics Books, Timonium, MD & Seattle, WA, 2000) p. 226]

Otto Binder, a writer for EC adapted some stories that he and his brother Earl had originally published in the 1940's. This included issue 24's "The Teacher From Mars" and the three part "Adam Link" series that appeared in issues 27 through 29. [Von Bernewitz, Fred and Geissman, Grant "Tales of Terror: The EC Companion" (Gemstone Publishing and Fantagraphics Books, Timonium, MD & Seattle, WA, 2000) p. 227]

In addition to the Bradbury stories, other specific story influences that have been found include the following: [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]

*"Adaptability"(issue 27) - Robert Heinlein's "The Universe"
*"The Inferiors"(issue 28) - Murray Leinster's "The Lost Race"

Issue Guide

References


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