Historic comic imprint returns 

Historic comic imprint returns 

Seventy years after the creation of the Comics Code Authority, a controversial but influential comic brand is set to return in 2024. 

Oni Press has announced a publishing partnership with William M. Gaines Agent, Inc. that will see the return of EC Comics with a slate of all-new series.  

The resurrection of the brand begins with the first issues of Epitaphs of the Abyss in July and Cruel Universe in August – the first official EC Comics series produced in nearly seven decades. 

Oni’s EC Comics publishing program will be overseen by Oni Press President & Publisher Hunter Gorinson and Editor-in-Chief Sierra Hahn in partnership with Cathy Gaines Mifsud and Corey Mifsud, the daughter and grandson of legendary EC Publisher William M. Gaines and administrators of William M. Gaines Agent, Inc.  

Cathy Gaines Mifsud is President of William M. Gaines Agent, Inc. 

“As my father said, ‘Only in the bounds of good taste!’ and I’m so excited to exhibit EC’s good taste with Oni Press, who have distinguished themselves with both an award-winning library of comics and graphic novels and a passionate understanding of EC’s singular role in shaping comics history,” Ms Mifsude said.  

Oni’s EC titles will include at least two series on a monthly basis from July 2024 onward in the genres of horror, science fiction, fantasy, and more.

It will feature contributions from a rotating cast of high-profile comics talents includingf writers Jason Aaron (ThorSouthern Bastards), Brian Azzarello (Batman: Damned100 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 (BRZRKRMind 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; artists Kano (Gotham Central, Immortal Iron Fist), Peter Krause (Irredeemable), Leomacs (Rogues), Malachi Ward(Black Hammer: The End), Dustin Weaver (AvengersPaklis), and more; designer Rian Hughes (The Multiversity); alongside covers from Lee Bermejo (A Vicious CircleBatman: Damned), Greg Smallwood(The Human Target), J.H. Williams III (Sandman: OverturePromethea), and more to be revealed in the weeks and months ahead.  

Sierra Hahn is Oni Press’ Editor-in-Chief. 

“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,” she said. 
“Today, those battles continue in alarming and pernicious new ways,”  

Founded by M.C. Gaines as “Educational Comics” in 1944, EC spearheaded a watershed evolution in the craft, quality, and power of the comics medium under Max’s son, William M. Gaines, following the elder Gaines’ sudden death in 1947. Rechristening his father’s creation as “Entertaining Comics,” publisher, editor, and writer William M. Gaines recruited the likes of Harvey Kurtzman, Joe Orlando, John Severin, Marie Severin, Al Williamson, Wally Wood, and more. Their new series included Tales From The Crypt, Mad Magazine, Weird Science, and Two Fisted Tales, among others.   

Widely celebrated for fearlessly confrontational stories that were as creatively innovative as they were culturally subversive – confronting racial and gender inequality, militarism, and environmental degradation in ways that would anticipate both the burgeoning counterculture and Civil Rights movements. 

In 1954 as an anti-comics moral panic swept America, book burnings, police surveillance, and a Congressional investigation saw William M. Gaines’ testimony broadcast live. This pro-censorship movement soon culminated in the creation of the Comics Code Authority, a sanitizing regulatory group whose guidelines were specifically tailored to remove EC’s comics from newsstands. EC’s final comics – until now – were published in 1956, and the hugely popular Mad was re-formatted as a magazine to escape Code scrutiny.  

For more updates on Oni Press, visit them on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram. 


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