Thursday, July 14, 2011

Singe Issue Hall of Fame: Eerie #7

Sure, there are plenty of Hall of Fame contenders from the early Warren years, but this one is perhaps the cream of the crop (aside from the untouchable Creepy #1). Reading through the credits alone is enough to give a comic book fan chills. We start with a gorgeous Frazetta painting. It's different from much of his work; darker and more subdued. I love it. Inside you'll find story after story written by the late, great Archie Goodwin. They are all strong but highlights for me include Witches' Tide with phenomenal work by the recently deceased Gene Colan. I'm also a fan of the black comedy masterpiece The Fly with superb grey tone work by Steve Ditko. Finally, special attention should be paid to The Defense Rests by Johnny Craig. It's a fine example of dialogue-free funnybook storytelling. A classic.


Benoît Leblanc said...

I've been thinking of getting of the Eerie or Creepy reprint books. I take it they're worth the investment?

Four-Color Kid said...

Oh yes!
Especially the first few volumes IMHO. After the first 20 issues or so, the quality of the artists involved dropped a little IMHO. But the early issues saw some of the best work I have ever seen by Steve Ditko. His layout work was awesome, but it is in his finishing that Ditko blew my mind on his Warren work, lots more detail and technique that most of his comicbook work.

Reed Crandall is another great artist that did some of his best work for Warren's magazine, each panel having the quality of a masterfully crafted woodcut engraving.

Some of Alex Toth most accomplished art, top notch Gene Colan, some Neal Adams, Wally Wood, Gray Morrow, etc. The list of contributing artists reads like a Hall of Fame of the greatest artists this artform ever offered, most doing their best artwork ever.

And the writer of most stories in these early issues was none other than the great late Archie Goodwin.

You can't go wrong Benoît. IN fact, if you love this artform, you owe it to yourself to get at least the first 4 volumes or so of the EERIE and CREEPY archives.

The only artist that didn't give his all best for those early issues (and I know I will make a few people mad at me on this, but I have to say what I truly think): Frank Frazetta. His covers on those early issues are not his best work IMHO. If you compare his Warren work with his classic fantasy covers he did for Conan and other sword & sorcery novels, they are not on the same level. I always got the impression that, when they were assembling the first few issues of the magazines, they went to Frazetta and asked him if he didn't have any unsold or even rejected art that they could use. Harsh, i know. Sorry if I offended anyone. Frazetta is a god, but not for his Warren work.

Four-Color Kid said...

I will say thought that this particular cover to EERIE #7 is pretty good but a bit lazy (more than half the cover is all black). Frazetta did 3 or 4 covers for Warren that I really liked. But again, he didn,t always give it his full effort.

Benoît Leblanc said...

Thanks, FCK! That was very helpful!

Scott M said...

I owned too many (but not all) of the original mags to invest in the collections, but I sure am glad they started compiling those.

I agree that Frazetta's best stuff is away from Warren - but I like this one and the blackness. How much more black could it be? The answer is none. None more black.