Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Recycling Text into Comics--Otto Binder

Eerie 2: 'In flames I died--and in flame I live again!

Here are an excerpt below from the text story "Fiend of Fire" in Fawcett's Beware! Terror Tales 2 (July/52), and a page above from the comics story "Flame Fiend" (illustrated by Gray Morrow) in Warren's Eerie 2 (Mar/66). Both are credited to Eando (i.e. Otto) Binder. The endings are the same too, but I didn't want to present a spoiler. A few posts hence on my William Woolfolk records transcriptions, I'll have an instance of his expanding a text for one company into a comics story at another.

Beware Terror Tales 2: 'In flames I died--and in all flames I live again!

Eando Binder started as a joint pseudonym for Otto and his brother Earl in the science fiction magazines, but out of about 135 prose magazine stories published under that name, only 27 early ones were by both brothers. According to the MIT Science Fiction Society's mid-Sixties index to the SF magazines, the final Eando Binder story by Earl and Otto was published in 1941, and it had probably been in the trunk since the mid-Thirties. Out of the Eando Binder novels, only two—Lords of Creation and Enslaved Brains—use material cowritten, quite a bit earlier, by Earl. In all his comics work, it should be safe to say that Eando was solely Otto.


  1. FWIW, there are some CREEPY / EERIE stories that are direct swipes or seem to be. "One For De-Money", by Bridwell, is swiped from or influenced by an old Boris Karloff THRILLER ep. "The Building", if I'm remembering the title right, is a Goodwin / Toth story that swipes Ray Bradbury's "The Coffin", subbing an automated apartment for an automated coffin.

  2. "The Monument" from EERIE 3--yes, it may take a slightly different route to get to the ending, but that's the ending of "The Coffin."

  3. And of course, Bennett Cerf's "Try And Stop Me!" was a major source of plots for William M. Gaines' EC stories.
    Bill Schelly's Otto Binder's biography has the E and O split to be December 1935. So yes, no comics work by Earl Binder.