Friday, August 28, 2009

Payment in Full!

A couple weeks ago we posted a story that someone at GCD claimed was by Alex Toth, when in fact it was actually revealed to be a Bernie Krigstein tale (thanks again Tamfos!), and now here’s another one for everyone to analyze, scrutinize and debate over. GCD indexer Pete Croome credits this one to Toth, and also says “If it is Toth, it is likely a reprint.” There’s no mention of it over at the Alex Toth Index site, so what’s everyone think?

From the December 1954 issue of Amazing Ghost Stories #15









PLUS: Bonus Filler



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Rue Morgue Festival of Fear
This weekend, August 28th-30th in Toronto!

14 comments:

Mark said...

Maybe George Roussos? He did Portrait of Death in Amazing Ghost Stories #16. The GCD has it as unknown but Roussos signed the lamp in the splash panel. It's a busier style than Payment in Full but there are similarities.

I really like how you make me look at things again. I had accepted the Toth attribution but now I'm not sure. It's wonderfully detailed storytelling, whoever did it.

Have fun in Toronto!

Steven said...

Definitely not Toth. The figurework and designs are nothing like his. Part of it says Mort Drucker to me, part of it doesn't. Roussos is possible, with an inker to open the work up and polish it a little. Problem is esp. on books at the level of Amazing Ghost Stories there were so many artists who passed through the business, leaving only one or two stories behind, there may be no record of them.

But it's not Toth.

prof. grewbeard said...

love that "Mardi Gras in full swing" panel!

Toth? no. some Toth would be nice though(hint!)...

Trevor M said...

I agree with the Professor. Let's get a little of the real pre-code horror Toth on THOIA!

Cliff Robinson said...

Could it be an early Dan Barry piece?

Tamfos said...

Those folks over at GCD are Toth-happy. Anybody can see this isn't Alex, from the line work to the page layout and panel compositions. Don't get me wrong, it's a great service, but their art attributions are to be taken with a grain (or a bag!) of salt.

This is beautiful work, however. Wish I could readily identify it.

As to the story itself, it's not bad, though you have to wonder why Landers needed any help if he could have just scared the life outta Wilson all along. On the other hand, you have to love that smart-ass expression on the cop's face in the last panel ("They're dead, the dumbasses!").

Joe Willy said...

Steven, Did you mean Mort MESKIN?

Whoever it was was fond of Noel Sickles because a couple of panels have faces that look a lot like Sickles or Caniff (pg 2 bottom left corner).

I'm not sure if it could be Roussos because of the men's noses (Roussos drew them a bit bulbous on the end where this artist has them very pointed).

Mykal said...

Nope. I'd only be poor guessing. The anatomy is magnificent, as are the expressions. I think the answer will eventually be revealed in the expressions. Not much is this good and this varied. Great "water" too and wonderful perspective. I can't wait to find out who. -- Mykal

Uncle Ernie said...

The first person that cane to mind on that first page was Gene Colan - especially the last panel. The down shot and the wrinkles in the yellow raincoat seemed like Colan. What did his art in the late 40's early 50's look like?

Mykal said...

For a Colan comparison check out the recent post on Ten Cent Dreams.

http://tencentdreams.blogspot.com/

I'm thinking no. -- Mykal

Tamfos said...

The more I look at this, the more I think that Dan Barry is the best guess -- although with an inker who does him no great favors in several spots. I'm not making a categorical proclamation, but just saying that it reminds me of other Barry work done for Hillman and DC at roughly the same time.

Karswell said...

All wonderful suggestions! I'm glad to see you guys chatted it up over this post while I was in Toronto for the weekend. And to those of you commenting on wanting to see examples of pre-code horror stories by Toth and Gene Colan just use the search engine at the top of the blog--- the THOIA Archives is loaded with great tales from the last few years (also Roussos and Meskin.)

I'm still pretty pooped from my trip to Rue Morgue, but be here bright and early in September for a new post. Thanks again for the comments, please keep 'em coming.

Stay Creepy...
---K

Trevor M said...

Aha! When I had searched for Toth before, I had only gotten the last couple of stories where he was only mentioned. But just now I searched his full name Alex Toth, I got bunch of great stories I'm now going to read. Simple as that. Thanks again, Karswell.

Anonymous said...

THIS ONE COULD BE ANY OF THE ARTISTS MENTIONED......... MAYBE ITS JUST A BIG MASH UP OF SWIPES FROM ALL THOSE GUYS?