Horror History: William Gaines

williammgainesWilliam Gaines
Born: March 1st, 1922  Died: June 3rd, 1992

Gaines created Mad Magazine in 1955 and published and oversaw until his death in 1992. Why am I mentioning this magazine on a horror website? Because before Mad Magazine, there was E.C. Comics, which published titles like Tales from the Crypt, Vault of Horror, Haunt of Fear, and a few more interesting titles. Gaines had taken over the company that his father started when he passed away in 1947. Gaines started to delved into more serious subject matters and into scary stories. Each issue featured murder, vampires, zombies, and other strange things. But there were messages in there and those that wrong people, always got what was coming to them. Even though he lost, the fight that Gaines gave is one that all supporters of free speech should be proud of. It ended with a ratings being developed with certain restrictions, such as not being able to use certain words in your comic titles… such as Horror, or Fear, or Terror, which pretty much put an end to Gaines horror comics.

Thankfully for Gaines, in 1955 created Mad Magazine which became extremely successful, and still allowed him to put in some of his editorial comments about the world, now through humor.

But it is because of those horror comics, with amazing art by the likes of Jack Davis, Al Feldstein, Jack Kamen, and so many more,  and highly memorable tales that would inspire future talent like Stephen King and George Romero, and countless others. It because of those comics that William Gaines is to be remembered.

2 thoughts on “Horror History: William Gaines

  1. Thanks for bringing this up. I remember those comics fondly from my childhood days. Loved them. This brings a lot of old memories back and now I know a little more about the man behind them.

    Liked by 2 people

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