Sunday, March 17, 2013

Missing EC

Saturday Leftover Day.

By 1956 the once mighty Lev Gleason empire was crumbling. His crime books Crime Does Not Pay and Crime And Punishment had not survived the arrival of the comic book code and the reslting backlash for hooror and crime books. All he had left were a couple of kids books, some westerns and his long running romance book Boy Loves Girl. Over at he comics museum two scanners are uploading almost all of the issues of ths title (and it's predessor Boy Meets Girl from books donate by Jim Vandeboncoeur Jr. For the next to last issues, Gleason got himself some Leroy lettering and called the book a New Trend book. Leroy lettering was used in all of the EC books which were called part of... you've guessed it, a new trend. All of these books had long gone, EC being one of the first casualties of the comic book witch hunt of the mid fifties. Even their comics code friendly follow up New Direction titles had stopped. But still Gleason must have thought there must be some fans out there would have been missing them.

Ig they did, they were treated by the standard romance fare of the period. But two of these stories were drawn by Bill Walton doing his best Alex Toth impression (even more than usual). The result is a remarkable book, I would love to share. The wo other stories in this book, one of which is drawn by romance regular An Brewster, have been inked in the same sober Toth style, which makes me think that Mike Peppe was involved in the inking of all these stories, maybe even an editor. His style is visible in other books of this series as well, but never more so than in these two stories.

Looking into the Gleason books I found two other Bill Walton stories with Leroy lettering in an Alex Toth style in Crime And Punishment #72 from April 1955. These are from about a year earlier and even has Leroy lettering in the balloons. So there may be even more out there, although all of th Walton stories I have seen in Boy Loves Girl in 1955 and 1956 didn't.

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