Written by Gardner Fox, Al Feldstein
Artwork by Johnny Craig, Sheldon Moldoff, Henry Kiefer,
Ed Walden, Ann Brewster, Stan Ashe, Marie Severin
Foreword by Brian Michael Bendis/ Cowl by Johnny Craig
Printed by Darkish Horse Comics/EC Comics
Quantity Certainly one of Crime Patrol, reprinting points 7-11 from 1948 and 1949, is the most recent in Darkish Horse’s frequently spectacular EC Archives sequence.
What makes this specific quantity both a little bit of a deal with or a little bit of a let-down, relying on one’s degree of EC fannishness, is that its Pre-Development tales aren’t, as a rule, notably good.
It’s not that they’re unhealthy, although. They only aren’t the top-of-the-line stuff one expects to seek out printed underneath the EC colophon.
However, hey! Everyone’s gotta begin someplace.
Whereas these tales will not be prime EC, one can begin to see the higher stuff getting nearer.
The prolific Gardner Fox—finest recognized, most likely, for his work on The Justice Society of America and, later, the Justice League of America, too, is current right here with quite a few tales. Fox was undeniably the most effective comics writers of his day. Artist H.C. Kiefer turns up for a few tales, as properly. Kiefer was an excellent artist, if not, for my part, as much as the lofty requirements EC would quickly set for comics. Ed Waldman, Ann Brewster, and Howard Larsen are completely serviceable artists discovered within the guide, though the truth that I’m fairly positive I’d by no means heard of any of them earlier than could point out their lack of long-term success within the area.
On extra acquainted floor, we even have artist Sheldon Moldoff—finest often known as Batman’s ghost artist within the Fifties and early Sixties (in addition to being the person who claimed to have urged horror comics to Invoice Gaines within the first place!). At EC, Moon Woman was Moldoff’s predominant task and he moved on earlier than the height years.
Lastly—and to me the best possible half—we get early, creating work, each as writers and artists, from soon-to-be EC editors Al Feldstein and Johnny Craig. Neither man is kind of but the grasp of the shape he would turn out to be, however Craig, particularly, is properly on his manner, his easy model lending itself simply to the sort of story already.
And talking of forms of tales, there are literally a few very early horror tales right here, though nowhere close to as ghoulish as what was to come back. “The Werewolf’s Curse,” drawn by Larsen, isn’t unhealthy in any respect. There’s additionally one with an enormous inexperienced would-be killer octopus. A second story contains a man truly referred to as the Octopus, though I wasn’t positive if he was some form of monster or a super-villain sort in a inexperienced go well with.
Most enjoyable are the early tales that characteristic eccentric heroes who’re precise members of the title “Crime Patrol,”—freewheeling worldwide detectives and spies corresponding to Captain Crime, Van Manhattan, Madelon, and the Chessmen! Apparently straight violent “true crime” tales introduced extra mail, although, so these loosely-connected sequence characters disappeared shortly sufficient.
Backside line: I’m nonetheless not thrilled with this sequence’ coloring, and the tales are principally simply so-so, however EC followers will admire the early take a look at two of a very powerful members of the best comedian guide bullpen ever.
So, for the correct viewers, this guide is alternative! And for that exact group: