Good morning everyone,
It’s been over two years since There She Grows last examined a size-themed story from EC Comics. In May 2019 we analyzed “Lost in the Microcosm,” in which a man shrunk from one plane of existence to another during a never-ending journey to ever-smaller realities. Today, let’s flip the script and examine a man with the opposite problem; he can’t stop growing!
“I Created A … Gargantua!” was first released as one of four short stories in the pages of “Weird Science” Issue #15 published in November 1950. (SIDE NOTE: Technically, this was only the fourth issue of Weird Science. EC Comics renamed “Saddle Romances” to Weird Science in May / June 1950 and kept the original numbering scheme. Accordingly, the first issue of Weird Science was listed as #12. Therefore, folks may find this issue listed as either #4 or #15.) The artist for this story was Jack Kamen and the writer’s name was not given in the original publication. However, according to the “EC Archives: Weird Science Volume One,” the writer was Al Feldstein.
I Created A … Gargantua! is centered on the plight of a young man named John Paulson who is desperate to become larger after the girl he loves, a pretty blonde named Betty, ditched him for a taller man. John learns of a scientist called Professor Kohlvarb who is famous in the field of “growth-stimulation.” John begs the professor to increase his height beyond five feet one inch. The professor agrees and does so by irradiating John’s pituitary gland:
The operation achieves its aim. Although, I did chuckle when it became apparent that John only thought to ask how his growth spurt could be stopped after the procedure had been done. Pro tip for anyone else going down this road: Best to ask such questions before you undergo a potentially irreversible operation!
In short order, John finds his wish comes true when he reunites with Betty:
(SIDE NOTE: The above panel shows an angry man glaring at John which made me think that someone should draft a tale in which two men compete for the affections of a lovely lady. Each man outgrowing the other until they are both giants towering over the lucky girl.)
Alas, when the time comes to stop Paulson’s growth after he reached a reasonable six feet the operation proves unsuccessful and the growth continues unabated and even accelerates!
Over time his never-ceasing growth causes ever-increasing problems as he loses his job and struggles to feed himself. Eventually, the U. S. Government decides that John is an existential threat.
I won’t disclose anymore details about the narrative or its ending, beyond noting that this was a tragic tale. That should come as no surprise as tragedy abounds at EC Comics with most of their works ending on sad notes. Overall though, I enjoyed I Created A … Gargantua! and recommend it to growth and male giant fans.
The story, while short and devoid of much characterization, still packed a surprising amount of detail into seven pages. For instance, the action took place in a named location, New York City, and referenced real-world items such as P-80 jet fighters and the George Washington bridge. Contrast that specificity to the many size-fetish comics these days, for example Giantess Fan’s “A Goddess of Law,” which take place in generic settings which could be England or the United States or anywhere. I assume that those settings are purposely kept nondescript to appeal to a worldwide audience. However, I argue that the bland nature robs locations of character and personality.
Additionally, I enjoyed the art for I Created A … Gargantua! Frankly, I preferred the lines penciled by Jack Kamen and found them more detailed than the lines by Harvey Kurtzman used for Lost in the Microcosm. All in all, this was a rewarding read.
That’s it for today folks. Thursday’s review will cover “Giants,” a written story created by Hugh Scott. Until then, keep growing!
This review is protected under Fair Use copyright law.
All Rights Reserved.