Wednesday, February 08, 2006

EC - Trip Into the Unknown (Kurtzman)

Trip Into the Unknown
art by Harvey Kurtzman, story by Al Feldstein(?)
Weird Fantasy #13[#1] (1950)

According to the notes in TALES OF TERROR Feldstein says that this story might be one of the Gaines/Feldstein stories, though he isn't sure. If so it would be one of the only ones drawn by Kurtzman. In terms of story it's always hard to tell how much leeway to give EC stories with major cliches, since in some cases they're the ones who came up with the cliches, or at least were among the first to use them. The twist ending in this one is the case, with an exploration spaceship landing on a world with the ruins of a once advanced civilization of giants, now reduced to savages. Yeah, you can guess the rest.

Kurtzman's art rises above the story, especially the early part of the story with some good use of close-ups and sound effects to make the launch dramatic and the pages of the crew of the ship getting used to zero gravity. I also liked the panels of the now-savage aliens, which has some funny bits.

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