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Saturday, October 24, 2009

UNDER THE INFLUENCE – Vince Colletta and Wally Wood

Here are two cool sci-fi stories from the fifties by two great artists – Vinnie Colletta and Wally Wood. After you read them both you will see that clearly one of them was *ahem* under the influence…of the other! All you need to really know is that the Wood story came first. Wood, who likely was the greatest sci-fi comic artist from the fifties (or all time), drew the typically wonderful “The Precious Years” for EC’s WEIRD SCIENCE #19, May-June 1953.

Atlas’ UNCANNY TALES #18 hit the newsstands in March 1954, and featured a young artist named Vince Colletta, who would one day become possibly the greatest romance comic artist of all time ( and who would one day become the object of controversy). It wouldn’t be long before Colletta would find his niche, but here he seems to be under the influence of Wood’s style for sure, if not the particular story, and throughout those panels you’ll find trademark Woodisms such as the faces on the wall (in the splash panel), and faces with dual light sources (ex: page 1 panel 3), etc!

[Ironically, history has revealed that each artists trademark style was really the antithesis of the other -- Wood the master of solid blacks, bold lines and shadowed 3D-like figures, and Colletta the master of feathery cross-hatching and light, airy thin-lined ink strokes. But, although this particular Colletta story is virtually bereft of women, both could sure draw some mighty fine female forms!] -The Apocolyte speaks


  1. Both of those stories are typical of what great comic art used to be. Wally Wood and Vince Colletta sure did have opposite approaches to art but both of these worked. Too bad Vinnie didn't continue as a penciler because his stuff was outstanding. Wally, of course, left way too soon.

  2. Dear Apocolyte: Wow, what great stuff. No one could fill a panel with cool detail like Wally Wood. Also, and not for nothing, no one could ever draw women like Wood (and for this he had a ton of competition, as so many have handled the women well - Eisner for starters - but for sheer, bursting sex appeal, Make mine woody (so to speak).

    Oh, by the way, I loved your drawing over at THOIA - you get my vote! -- Mykal

  3. Mykal; I appreciate your support!...(pssst...I forgot where to send your check!)

    Woody's no. 1 with me, ever since I saw his work in MAD (and then everything else) as a lad. MAD and Wood warped my medulla oblongata (luckily straightened with the help of some heavy corrugated cardboard and duct tape)! Nobody else like him!

  4. the wally wood one is soooo good. god!
    great post. thanks!

  5. Beautiful Colletta story. Vince's considerable talents were wasted inking but that's where the money was, I guess.