EC Comics Ready to Returning with a Bang at Oni Press This Summer!

Cruel Universe EC Comics 2024
Cruel Universe (Image: Oni Press/EC Comics/PR)

A new partnership with Oni Press will see the iconic EC Comics return to the comic book world with a bang this summer 2024. Starting with Epitaphs from the Abyss issue 1 and Curel Universe issue 1, the upcoming titles mark the first official EC Comics series produced in nearly seven decades.

The current publishing program will be overseen by Oni Press President and Publisher Hunter Gorinson and Editor-in-Chief Sierra Hahn in partnership with Cathy Gaines Mifsud and Corey Mifsud, the administrators of the William M. Gaines Agent, Inc.

The EC line via Oni Press will include at least two monthly series starting from July 2024 onward. The stories will cover a range of genres including horror, science fiction, fantasy, and more. Fans can expect to read content from a rotating cast of comic book talent.

The roster features Jason Aaron (Thor, Southern Bastards), Brian Azzarello (Batman: Damned, 100 Bullets), Rodney Barnes (Killadelphia), Corinna Bechko (Invisible Republic), Cullen Bunn (The Sixth Gun), Christopher Cantwell (Briar), Cecil Castellucci (Shade the Changing Girl), Chris Condon (That Texas Blood), Joshua Hale Fialkov (The Bunker), J. Holtham (AMC’s The Handmaid’s Tale), Jeff Jensen (HBO’s Watchmen, Green River Killer), Matt Kindt (BRZRKR, Mind MGMT), Sean Lewis (King Spawn), Stephanie Phillips (Grim), Jay Stephens (Dwellings), Zac Thompson (Cemetery Kids Don’t Die), Ben H. Winters (CBS’ Tracker), and more.

The artists are Kano (Gotham Central, Immortal Iron Fist), Peter Krause (Irredeemable), Leomacs (Rogues), Malachi Ward (Black Hammer: The End), Dustin Weaver (Avengers, Paklis), and more. The designer is Rian Hughes (The Multiversity). And the covers are from Lee Bermejo (A Vicious Circle, Batman: Damned), Greg Smallwood (The Human Target), J.H. Williams III (Sandman: Overture, Promethea), and more.

Of course, more talent will continue to be revealed in the coming months.

Seventy years ago, EC Comics redefined what comics could be with shocking, confrontational and brilliantly crafted stories that challenged the existential issues at the center of American life – censorship, racism, sexism, nuclear proliferation, and more. Today, those battles continue in alarming and pernicious new ways,” shared Oni Press Editor-in-Chief, Sierra Hahn. “What better time to resurrect the undying spirit of EC Comics – one of the most entertaining, subversive, and influential publishers of all time – with an all-star cast of storytellers to examine today’s society through the lens that William Gaines and his legendary collaborators have left us.”

Epitaphs from the Abyss EC Comics 2024
Epitaphs from the Abyss (Image: Oni Press/EC Comics/PR)

EC was founded as Educational Comics by M.C. “Max” Gaines back in 1944. It was able to bring a new take on what comic books could be, with Max’s son William M. Gaines taking over after the elder Gaines’ sudden death in 1947. The name was changed to Entertaining Comics and the company went on to provide a platform to iconic talent and give the world Tales from the Crypt, Mad Magazine, Weird Science, Two-Fisted Tales, and more.

The focus was to “probe the darkness lurking beyond the edges of post-war America through tales of horror, science fiction, humor, and war”, such a take led to millions of readers. There was a period where EC eclipsed the likes of Marvel, DC, and Archie with 10 million comics per year.

However, things would drastically change in 1954 due to an anti-comics moral panic. The pro-censorship movement would create the Comics Code Authority, which aimed to remove EC books from the market. The company’s final comics were published way back in 1956, with MAD being re-formatted as a magazine to escape the Code.

According to Gorinson, Oni Press understands the responsibility of bringing back EC Comics. The partnership will look at releasing content that honors and expands EC Comics’ legacy.

The first two horror and science anthologies Epitaphs from the Abyss and Cruel Universe will debut this July and August, respectively.

Are you excited about EC Comics returning in such a manner?

Let us know.

You can read more of our comic book coverage here.

(via Press Release)

Author: Farid-ul-Haq

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.

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