EC Archives: Two-Fisted Tales Volume 1, written by Harvey Kurtzman, drawn by various, published by Gemstone Publishing.
For this week’s graphic novel of the week, Tripwire has chosen a slice of classic vintage comics reprint. This hardcover represents the first six issues of EC’s Two-Fisted Tales, originally published back in 1950 and 1951. The array of artists here is staggering: apart from Kurtzman himself, you have the likes of Wally Wood, Johnny Craig, John Severin and Will Elder and many more. Two-Fisted Tales, like its stablemates, was an anthology title, one that focused on the idea of adventure. So we have stories set in the Second World War, the sixteenth century, the Battle of Agincourt and the dying days of the Roman Empire. Even though every story here is pretty pulpy, many of them are lifted by the elegance and simplicity of the artists whose work is arguably among the best ever published in comics history. Work by people like Wally Wood, who was a genius at telling stories, and the graphic beauty of John Severin meant that these six to eight page stories are packed with characterisation and plot. For people interested in comics history, this volume is a must-read.