Friday, September 26, 2014

Review- WAR AGAINST CRIME ANNUAL VOL. 2


WAR AGAINST CRIME ANNUAL VOL. 2 (Gemstone, 2000; Softcover)
Collects War Against Crime Nos. 6-11 (cover dates April/May, 1949- February/March, 1950)
Writers: Al Feldstein, Harry Harrison*, and other unidentified writers.
Artists: Johnny Craig, Ed Waldman, Al Feldstein, H.C. Kiefer, Graham Ingels, Rudy Palais, John Alton, Fred Peters, Harry Harrison*, and George Roussos.
*Maybe. See GCD for #11 for details.

I love old school crime comics. The gangsters, the Tommy guns and the slang and fashions of the day are way cool. Old school criminals were snappy dressers. No pants around their knees, no sir. 
Beginning with issue #10 EC began inserting The Vault Of Horror, and within a few months the fortunes of EC Comics would change. History was about to be made. While EC was not the first to the Horror comics party, they were the best. They are still the best in my opinion.
 It's hard to pick favorites in this book because I enjoyed all of the stories equally. War Against Crime is a well written, well drawn comic book which make so many modern comics laughable by comparison.
Junk Food For Thought rating: 4.5 out of 5.

http://www.instocktrades.com/search/ec

The OCD zone- If you do not know what an EC Annual is, then pull up a chair and I'll give you the skinny on these great books. Gemstone overprinted their single issue reprints in the '90s with an eye toward selling their own back issues. They re-purposed this overstock by trimming and gluing 5 entire issues into a cardstock cover. While this is not technically a trade paperback (it has no ISBN), it is squarebound and has the title on the spine. Close enough for Rock and Roll in my book.

DVD-style Extras included in this book: None.
Linework and Color: All linework is superb except for Rise And Fall Of Blackie Archer in #8. That one had some linework work done to it, which means that this one is one of only a handful of EC stories where there was no access to original artwork. While it is a serviceable restoration it could be better.
The color palette is faithful to the original issues with the exceptions of the occasional horrid gradient shade and the covers. Marie Severin recolored the covers all for the EC Library sets, and those same versions are found here. The handful of gradients toward the end of the book were due to the fact that the reprint line was winding down and it was cheaper and easier than doing it right. There aren't many, but man can my trained eye spot that crap. Unfaithful gradient shades are -10% enjoyment on The OCD scale.
Paper stock: Mando paper, which is basically glorified pulp paper. Pro- It feels like real comic book paper, because it is. Con- It makes me lay awake at night counting ceiling fan rotations because I am afraid that I can hear it disintegrating.
Binding: Perfect bound. The glue is creaky on this one, and I may have to apply some library binding glue to my copy since the cover separated from the top of the book a little. Remember kids, always use acid free library glue. Ask a parent for permission before starting.
Cardstock cover notes: Decent thickness to the cardboard, minimal coating. 

3 comments:

  1. hey what happened to your "Marvel/Disney and Kirby Estate reach settlement." post?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It went into the ether. I typically refrain from flavor of the moment "fanboy" commentary and posted it on the fly. A few hours later I thought about it and deleted it. I stand by everything that I wrote in, so if you have it printed keep it. It is a magically delicious "withdrawn" post, making it more valuable to collectors.

      Delete
    2. "if you have it printed keep it. It is a magically delicious "withdrawn" post, making it more valuable to collectors"

      yeah right.

      Delete