Pulp Cover Friday
Welcome to Pulp Cover Friday. I intend to keep these entries short on text and long on pictures, but for this first one I’m going to start off with a few introductory words. Or paragraphs.
One of my long-term side projects is a study of American science fiction magazines of the 1950s. When it’s complete I’ll have a manuscript called “A Critical History of American Science Fiction Magazines of the 1950s,” but in the meantime I have the fun of collecting and reading them all. Approximately 1410 science fiction mags appeared in America in the 1950s (depending on exactly how you define “science fiction magazine,” an issue I’m not going to get into here). I still need about 195 of them. I’ve read maybe seven hundred, and believe me, that’s a lot of bad fiction under the bridge. But some really good fiction, too. Some great covers, also. I’ll mainly post covers from this era, though I’ll occasionally include some earlier or later covers as the whim strikes.
This one graced the second issue of OUT OF THIS WORLD ADVENTURES (December 1950), a short-lived (two issue) two-headed mutant of a magazine that had a 32 page comic book section bound in among the prose stories. One of the comic tales was “Crom the Barbarian” by Gardner F. Fox, pulp writer and long-time scripter for DC comics on (among other titles) Justice League of America, and artist John Guinta. Wonder where he got the idea for this story?
The cover is by the great James Bama, primarily known to genre fans as the man who illustrated most of the early Bantam Doc Savage paperbacks, but who was a multi-talented artist who worked in several different fields. This is one of the all-time great images from 1950s science fiction art.