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The Warren Companion Paperback – August 19, 2001
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To be fair, there is quite a detailed and informative text-only article devoted to them, but relogated to the very final appendix of the book. Sadly this seems to follow suit with the perceptions that have ghettoized them as somehow second-class, or so homogeneous that one artist's work was indistinguishable from another. If you know their work, however, nothing could be further from the truth. The Spanish artists had mastered the art of B&W composition in a way that equals the highest achievements in Film Noir or photography. These were serious commercial artists with an adult sensibility so above the next generation of 80's kids who learned to draw only from comic books, that it's hard to describe. And, like anything, as you become accustomed to a body of work, you begin to see how individual each creator's work was. How incomparable Fernando Fernandez was in his control of light and composition with the simplest of lines, how Ramon Torrents achieved almost puzzle-like effects as he framed his photorealistic figures within intricate and ornate Art Nouveau patterns, and of course the incredible women of "Vampirella's" signature artist Jose Gonzales, as well as the great Esteban Moroto, both of whom brought a distinct European sensuality to their subjects. And there were many others (such as Jose Bea, Felix Mas, and Luis Garcia) whose work, for me, often surpassed even our very best comic illustrators. Not to mention Enrich Torres and Manuel Sanjulian, who carried on in Frazetta's tradition of providing evocative cover paintings in league with the very best paperbacks and movie posters of the day. Unfortunately you'll see almost no examples of this in the book.
For me, the levels of quality and creativity that the Spanish artists achieved in the first half of the 1970's has never really been equalled since. American comic book art has certainly improved since the 1980's, and there are some wonderful examples on the shelves every month, but the fact that the legacy of the Spanish artists has almost completely disappeared is very sad. So, THEN, to have a book explicitly about Warren comics that does not even integrate their efforts, or even provide more than a handful of examples, was a severe let-down. It seems like this book is out of print now. I only hope that the next one that attempts to tell the story of Warren comics will better recognize the impact and experimental achievements of the Spanish artists on the medium. Or maybe it's time to give them their own book! Taschen, are you listening?
Incidentally, I cringe when I see "New and Used" sellers on Amazon charging over $200 for a book like this. I found mine, THIS year, at cover price, in an old comic book store. Keep an eye out for it. It's not worth $200. but, even with its missing Spaniards, there's still a great amount of information here.
Was quite young when the legendary horror movie magazine 'Famous Monsters of Filmland' hit the newsstands, Warren Publications suddenly took the comic world by storm. Six years later in 1965 CREEPY #1 stunned, delighted and terrified its young readers. They were filled with compelling tales of terror exquisitely illustrated by many of the best artists of the day. The magazine proved to be just the tip of the iceberg of horror.
As Warren Publishing went on to produce some of the finest comic book stories in the history of the genre. In the pages of CREEPY, EERIE, VAMPIRELLA, BLAZING COMBAT, HELP!, THE SPIRIT, COMIX INTERNATIONAL, 1984, THE ROOK and many more, readers discovered extraordinary artists and writers coming together to create more extraordinary work. Sadly to say in 1983 the company suddenly disappeared from the planet.
In 1999, Comic Book Artist magazine published the most comprehensive history of the oft-neglected company to date in its Eisner Award winning fourth issue. But, until now, the riveting story of Warren Publishing was incomplete.
In addition to reprinting the contents of CBA #4, this volume contains many new interviews, features, articles, and the most comprehensive and exhaustive checklist ever complied on Warren Publishing's incredible output.
For product description and editorial review check this out on the Amazon site above my review.
* 'FEATURES INCLUDE' *
1. JAMES WARREN and his Empire of Horror
2. NEAL ADAMS takes aim on "ThrillKill"
3. "In Deep" with RICH CORBEN & BRUCE JONES
4. Bravo for adventurous ace artist ALEX TOTH
5. A "Spirited" conversation with WILL EISNER
6. The Muck Monster-maker BERNIE WRIGHTSON
7. AL WILLIAMSON reveals his "Success Story"
8. HARVEY KURTZMAN offers up some "Help!"
9. Lots of "Give and Take" with RUSS HEATH
10.The Weezie Way with LOUISE JONES SIMONSON
11,JIM STENSTRUM spins his Nuclear Hit Parade
12.The years of 1984 & beyond with WILLIAM DUBAY
13.JOHN R. COCHRAN gets "Disenfranchised"
14."Captain" FLO STEINBERG, A.M.(After Marvel)
15.DAN ADKINS is "Overworked" and underpaid
16.NICK CUTI's POW!-WOW with WALLY WOOD
17.Thumb's Up: ANNE T. MURPHY on ARCHIE's comics
18.ANGELO TORRES' "Howling Success" - and MORE!
Highly recommend - if you love comics, adore horror, or just interested in the career of a true American original - with an inclusive most comprehensive detailed check list on the entire 20 year comic output of Warren Publications - complete with artist/writer cross reference and character /serial index - Great read for the over the top fan, who wanted to know everything about Warren Magazine Empire.
Total Page: 288 Pages ~ TwoMorrows Publishing #ISBN-13: 978-1893905092 ~ (July 1, 2001)