MARKLEY’S FEVERED BRAIN: REED CRANDALL – A brilliant YOU ought to understand

This publish is Filed Under:

Home page Highlights,
Interviews as well as Columns,
Product evaluations

Wayne Markley

by Wayne Markley

I very first found Reed Crandall’s work in an old Superman 100 page spectacular (1973) that reprinted golden age Doll guy as well as Black Condor stories from high quality Comics from the 1940s. I had no concept who this man was, however even then, I might tell this was an artist who was so much much better than those other guys, even if the story was a reprint. (These old 100 page specials were part of what made me so fascinated by comic book history). At the time I was uninformed of comic book stores, conventions, or even cost guides so I had no genuine method to find much more about this Crandall guy, other than I truly liked his art.

Over the years as my tastes altered as well as I found exactly how broad the world of comic books were as well as exactly how much history there was to be discovered. I likewise discovered out exactly how excellent Reed Crandall was. I found that while his Black Condor was good, his later work in EC Comics as well as other locations was just downright amazing. like numerous of the artists from the golden Age, while numerous had potential, a few would grow into masters over time like Jack Kirby, whose work in the’ 40s truly did not match as much as the grandeur of his work in the ‘60s as well as ‘70s. Reed Crandall’s work in the ‘40s on Black Condor, Doll Man, a range of short stories for a number of places, as well as his many well-known run, DC’s war book Blackhawk, were all great as well as clearly stood above many of his contemporaries, his later work would put him in the pantheon of greats to me, together with Hal Foster, Doug Wildley, Alex Raymond, etc. Sadly, for many of the last 75 years outside of a few reprints as well as a hardcore fan base (alas small) Crandall never truly got the interest he deserved. just recently that has changed. TwoMorrows has released a lovely biography/tribute to him full of illustrations as well as stories. There is likewise a collection of his EC work from Fantagraphics. plus there are at least two collection of his work from little press publishers, which are not offered with conventional comic book stores, however are worth browsing out (alas Amazon may be your finest chance to get these books).

Reed Crandall: Illustrator of the Comics

Reed Crandall: Illustrator of the Comics is a large tome written by Roger Hill. This book is a loving as well as truthful look at the profession of Reed Crandall. This 256 page hardcover book covers whatever about Reed from his early comic book work on the titles already mentioned, in addition to on the Ray as well as Uncle Sam to his portrait as well as landscapes done later in life. It likewise covers his work at EC Comics where he did practically every genre you can possibly imagine from horror to science fiction to war to criminal offense to pirates. He would later relocation onto Warren publications where he continued his fantastic work in the pages of weird as well as Eerie, as well as a few of his finest stories can be discovered in the pages of Blazing Combat. He likewise returned to the super-hero world in the 1960s working on Wally Wood’s fondly remembered, however never reproduced, (though there have been various attempts) Thunder Agents. This book is full of never before seen art from all of Crandall’s career, from the earliest days to some amazing pieces of his non comic book art that I have never seen before. It is likewise full of pictures as well as a comprehensive biography of his life, which was both full of adventures as well as ends in tragedy. This is a excellent checked out if you are thinking about a great biography, the history of comics, or just some amazing art. It is a bit on the pricy side, however it is a hardcover than ought to be on any type of art fan’s shelf as Reed Crandall was an artist’s artist.

The High expense of dying as well as other Stories

Over the last few years Fantagraphics has been extremely releasing some good hardcover reprints of all of the traditional pre-code EC Comics material. While these stories have been reprinted various times throughout the years what makes these different is they are reprinted in black as well as white, as well as the stories are collected by artist, not title. This there are two volumes of Wally Wood, there are collections of George Evens, Jack Davis, Harvey Kurtzman, etc. one of the volumes that stands out, as well as especially for the functions of this blog, is The High expense of dying as well as other Stories, which features Reed Crandall’s stories from the pages of EC Comics. Reprinted right here there are 21 of Crandall’s finest stories. I do not believe this is all of his EC work, however it is much more than sufficient to strike you away for months. right here you will discover whatever from an adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s silent Towns, to the Kidnapper which is a brutal story about a missing baby, to the title story, The High expense of Dying, which is the tale of a option that nobody ought to ever have to make. While practically any type of EC book is worth having just for the storytelling, these stories as illustrated by Reed Crandall, who was in his prime here, are the top of his game.

The lost Art of Ray Willner: The Adventures of Robin Hood

Next is an strange discover that is not offered in comics book stores as well as is not associated to Reed Crandall, ever though he did do it. It is called The lost Art of Ray Willner: The Adventures of Robin Hood. I was not familiar with Ray Willner or the comic, The Adventures of Robin Hood. There have been various Robin Hood comics over the years, however this I had never seen or truly heard off. It turns out it was done as a promotion comic for the brown shoe business in 1956 as well as lasted 14 issues. Ray Willner, a extremely skilled illustrator himself, worked together with Reed Crandall on this series that is spectacular as well as entertaining. The stories are in the conventional Robin Hood vein, however the art is heads above any type of other handle Robin Hood as well as his merry men. Willner as well as Crandall are able to take the pageantry as well as grandeur that Hal Foster caught in cost Valiant as well as transfer it to Sherwood Forest. Yes, it is that beautiful. The stories are really likewise rather great as well as the art just takes it to the next level. Sadly, the brown show business dropped this job in the wake of the comic debate of the 1950s. I was thrilled to find this gem, which is published by the fine people over at photo This Press. It is well worth the money to get this unusual collection of an artist I was not familiar with working together with one of my preferred artists to tell some fantastic stories. I ought to likewise mention exactly how top notch the production on this book is. whatever from the paper stock to the colors are pitch ideal as well as they really have provided this unusual material the interest as well as respect it deserves.

Firebrand: His total Adventures

Speaking of little press publishers, produce area Independent Publishing, which once again are not offered in comic book stores, have reprinted a number of golden Age comics in different formats, including the total Reed Crandall Black Condor, as well as the total Firebrand: His total Adventures from authorities Comics #1-13. To me, Firebrand is an okay series originally published by high quality Comics in the 1940s. This is not Crandall’s finest work as you can see exactly how he is developing, however not there yet (again similar to early 1940s Kirby work). however these collections are fascinating reads as well as looks into the advancement of a master. By no implies anywhere as great as his EC work or Warren or Robin Hood, this is an fascinating look into history. Unlike photo This Press, these books do not have the outstanding production values as well as care that the Robin Hood book does. They are neat to read, however not if you are searching for top notch reproduction as well as care in your reprint material.

This wraps it up for this time. In my mind, Reed Crandall was a brilliant who gets bit of the interest he deserves. While I wholeheartedly praise TwoMorrows for publishing this book about his life as well as work, I likewise discover it unfortunate that the two others books are so difficult to discover in the world of comic books (which has much more to finish with distribution as well as retail stores than publishing). I would extremely suggest any type of or all of these books to any type of comic art fan, particularly the Robin Hood book that is just lovely as well as seldom seen. I would think about this a excellent checked out for fans of Hal Foster’s prince Valiant material. All I have written right here is my viewpoint as well as does not show the thoughts or opinions of Westfield Comics or their employees. have you see or checked out these books? are there much more talents available like Reed Crandall that have been lost to history? (Lou fine concerns mind). who would you suggest? I can be reached at MFBWAY@AOL.COM or on Facebook at Wayne Markley. I look ahead to hearing from you. As always…

Thank you.

Leave a Comment