Saturday, November 20, 2021

Under Pressure

 Sunday Al Williamson Surprise.

This week we have another 'extra' story Williamson did for Stan Lee, but not written by him. It apparently was just another one from the stack of scripts on his desk, this time for a post-code horror story. We call them horror, but by then they were just little fantasy stories. Many of them without a scare or a twist. The best you could hope for as a reader was, that they were drawn beautifully and this one certainly fits the bill. Nit only is it full of beautiful sea creatures, the rendering Williamson provided was unseen at the times. He seems to have left the Frazetta inspired illustration style and found a very fancyful way of rendering textures that is completely of the comics. Williamson would reintriduce these tricks when he started inking for Marvel later in life. It is often seen as a coda to his more impressive career as a oenciller and storyteller, but in dloing so he broadened the range of what comic book art could look like, influencing many.

The job numbers in these stories tell us that Williamson was doing them at a high rate. With the huge amount oif books Marvel was publishing, they were using about 200 to 300 stories (and therefore job numbers) every two months. On average Williamson's job numbers (while not published sequentially) indicate he was doing about one every 100, so he may have been working at a rate of one story a week. Some job numbers are so close together, that you can assumed he picked up two stories at once. And in this period he even seems to have picked up the pace, illustrating H-918, J-7, J-12, J-53, J-338, J-381, J-444, J-471 and J-468.

1 comment:

jhegenbe said...

Wow page 3 - breaking the panel border. Rare for Al.