Startling Stories’s tube girl

How sharp my regret I don’t have a higher-quality version of this cover, given how it exhibits one of my favorite visual tropes. It was painted by Walter Popp for the August 1953 issue of Startling Stories. Interior art in the issue includes this piece by Ed Emshwiller, illustrating Theodore Sturgeon’s “The Wages of Synergy,” which is about as symbolically representative of Erotic Mad Science as any piece of pulp art I have yet found.

This issue of Startling Stories is available to read and download at the Internet Archive.

Girls versus ray guns

In November 1952, Science Fiction Publications, Inc. started a short-lived magazine called Science Fiction Adventures, commissioning H.R. Van Dongen (1920-2010) to do a “girl stalked by ray-gun” theme.

Well, not bad, but not enough to keep the magazine going for more than nine issues (until May 1954).

Then when Royal Publications tried launching another magazine with the same title in 1956, they decided to push the girl-versus-ray-gun thing, and this time hired Ed Emshwiller to go all-out and really light up those nipples this time.

In spite of also having a short story (“Hadj”) by Harlan Ellison in the first issue, this one didn’t last all that long either, eleven issues folding after June 1958.

The first issues of both the first version and the second version of Science Fiction Adventures are available to read and download at the Internet Archive.

Hot Women’s Planetary Defense Corps

Fantastic Adventures published between 1939 and 1953 and rarely stinted on the sexy in its covers, as this cover by Walter Popp (1920-2002) shows, albeit perhaps a bit more subtly than many similar covers in its genre.

Interior art by Ed Emshwiller (1925-1990) illustrating Rog Phillips’s story “The Man who Lived Twice” contributes a definite Erotic Mad Science feel.

This issue of Fantastic Adventures is available to be read or downloaded at the Internet Archive.

Hat tip to Pulp Covers for bringing this issue to my attention.

Tumblr favorite #2706: Look out for the loathsome beast!


My original tumblr post was here. This image was first posted on Tumblr by UDHCMH with the following explanatory text:

Super-Science Fiction, October 1959.

Cover by EMSH.

Ed Emshwiller (1925-900 was an illustrator whose work was ubiquitous in pulp science fiction magazines and paperbacks from the early 1950s to mid 1960s.

Surprisingly, he lived and worked in tract-housing suburb Levittown on Long Island–the polar opposite of the exotic, alien worlds he depicted on his canvases. He used his family and suburban neighbors as models for his otherworldly scenes.

In later life, he was a pioneer of digital animation.

The ISFDB entry for this issue (the last one in the title, sadly) is here. The image comes to us via Two-Fisted Pulp.