Friday, June 17, 2022

Today in Comics History, June 17: Happy birthday, Wally Wood!

Born on this day in 1927: comics artist, writer, publisher Wally Wood, one of EC's greatest creators (Weird Fantasy, Weird Science, Tales from the Crypt, Shock SuspenStories, Two-Fisted Tales, Aces High and others) and a major figure at Marvel (Daredveil, Astonishing Tales, Tower of Shadows, more), DC (All Star Comics, The Unexpected, All-American Men of War, etc.), Warren (Creepy, Ererie, Blazing Combat, Vampirella, others) and in commercial art. He co-created Stilt-Man, THUNDER Agents and NoMan, Tigra, Power Girl, the Ani-Men, Sally Forth and Cannon — plus the famous "22 Panels That Always Work"!

from "Flight into Fear!" in Tower of Shadows #5 (Marvel, May 1970); script, pencils, and inks by Wally Wood; letters by Sam Rosen

(That splash panel was later used as part of a cover illustration for a Marvel trade that definitely needs to be brought back into print):

Wood narrates a tale to send thribbles up your spine!

from "Flight into Fear!" in Tower of Shadows #5

He was also instrumental in the evolution of Marvel's Daredevil, and we can only wonder what direction the early issues of the man without fear might have taken without Stan Lee's usual dismissal of artist story input.

from Jack Kirby: The Epic Life of the King of Comics (Ten Speed, July 2020), script and art by Tom Scioli

Radio comedian Judy Canova is on a man-hunt, baby, and she's already captured Woody (with Sid Check, Victor Fox, and Joe Orlando) and is about to net Martin Thall!

cover of Judy Canova #3 (Fox, September 1950), pencils by Joe Orlando, inks by Wally Wood

Wood and the EC staff wish you a Merry Christmas!

from "The Night Before Christmas" in Panic #1 (EC, February 1954), pencils and inks by Bill Elder, colors by Marie Severin, letters by Jim Wroten

Wood and the whole dang EC Bullpen here in the original art for an EC subscription ad by Will Elder:

"The Board of Educational Comics" EC subsciption advertisement by Will Elder
(Click picture to adult-education-size)

1952 Me: "Eh, of all the comic books EC is publishing, this MAD book is surely going to be the first one cancelled."

house ad for MAD from EC comics dated September 1952

Did Wally Wood bring his brilliance to MAD Magazine? OH YEAH HE DID

from "Superduperman!" in MAD #4 (EC, April 1953), script by Harvey Kurtzman, pencils and inks by Wally Wood, colors by Marie Severin, letters by Ben Oda

from MAD #41 (EC, September 1958)

"Woody's building a rocket ship in his basement." The EC creative get name-checked in a humorous 1953 text story.

"The EC Caper" in Crime SuspenStories #15 (EC, February 1953), text by Al Feldstein

They didn't give him great seats, but Wood was at the biggest boxing match in the history of DC Comics. Can you find him?

cover of All-New Collectors' Edition #C-56 (DC, March 1978), layout by Joe Kubert, pencils by Neal Adams, inks by Neal Adams (?) and/or Cory Adams (?), logo design by John Workman
(Click top picture to GOAT-size)

We wish you a happy birthday - and we wish you peace, Wally Wood.

from "My World" in Weird Science #22 (EC, November 1953), script by Al Feldstein, pencils and inks by Wally Wood, colors by Marie Severin, letters by Jim Wroten

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