85 years old this month, Weird Tales is the magazine of the "bizarre and unusual" that sustained the career of H.P. Lovecraft and his scifi-horror pals back in the 1920s when it first launched. In its early days, Weird Tales set itself apart from other pulps by always going one step deeper into the freak zone. Stories dealt with aliens, witches, and mutants. Covers often featured devils making love to ladies, monsters menacing beleaguered ingenues, and (my personal favorite, above) devilish monster ladies making love to scantily clad lovelies. Now the venerable, perverted, brilliant magazine is celebrating its 85th birthday in style.
The magazine's creative director Stephen H. Segal writes to tell us about the anniversary issue, which among other cool stuff features 85 of the weirdest writers from the past 85 years. And it's an eclectic bunch: everyone from freaked-out filmmaker Wim Wenders and electro-musician Laurie Anderson, to cartoonist Charles Addams and scifi writer Madeleine L'Engle. Segal says:
We think the diverse range of honorees is not only awesome, but also representative of Weird Tales's 21st-century evolution — we've spent the past year assembling a new creative team, rethinking & reenergizing & revamping, and now we're doing our damnedest to make a magazine that really reflects the crazy cosmic mashup of aesthetics that can be fantasy/SF/horror today.
Every day, the magazine is doing a post on its blog about one of the 85 weirdos — we're only up to 15, so you'll have to buy the new issue to collect 'em all right away. It's terrific to see such an historically influential magazine keeping up the weirdness after all these years.
Weird Tales [85th anniversary issue]