Friday, April 20, 2007

Maze of Monsters #2 update: The Lost Simonson Story

Yesterday’s post on Manhunter generated quite a few responses online and offline - there sure is a lot of goodwill towards Walt Simonson.

And the junkyard is chuffed to have received an email from Walt himself some weeks ago, in relation to his story Capital Punishment which appeared in the Gredown comic Maze of Monsters #2. Walt was amused to find this story was in an Australian magazine as he informed me that the publisher collapsed before the chapter was published!

This certainly adds a new wrinkle to the “Where did Gredown get this material from…?” question!

And of course I now recant my comment to the effect that “…it’s just not what I look for in a Gredown horror comic” – I mean, if I knew then that this was a previously unpublished story, it would have been the headline!

Anyway, armed with this information, I’ve searched the internet and come up with a bit more information about the history of this story. It appears it was intended for publication in Weird Tales of the Macabre #3 from Atlas/Seaboard (note Weird Tales of the Macabre is also a title used for a number of Gredown issues), and as Walt says in an online interview:

I did complete the Monster X/Winged Terror story. It was called ‘Capital Punishment’ but was never published. Mine was the third chapter of an ongoing series written by Gabe. The first two were also completed as I remember seeing them in the office. The first chapter was drawn by Nostrand {Monster X} and the second by Enrique Romero Badia {Winged Terror}.

I don’t have the originals myself. They were lost when Seaboard/Atlas went out of business. I do have a set of photostats around somewhere, through the courtesy of Jeff Rovin who got them to me on what I think was his last day in the Seaboard offices. But I’ve no idea if they’ll ever see the light of day. I believe Jon Cooke ran a few panels in COMIC BOOK ARTIST as illustrations in a long interview I did for him.

I was going to mention this earlier, but I was scouting around to see if I could find another copy of Maze of Monsters #2 – I thought it would be a nice gesture to send a copy to Walt (before everyone was alerted to it's scarcity and the prices for ratty copies were suddenly inflated). Alas, I haven’t found a copy. But at least he has photostats, according to the above interview. And Walt, I'm happy to send you scans of my copy if you’d like them.

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