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Ron Barlow – RIP

Classic comics compiler, editor, and publisher Ron Barlow has passed away.


Ron Barlow
January 1, 1949 – August 9, 2022

The news broke on Ron’s Facebook page:

I just found out that an old friend has passed from cancer. This saddens me more than I thought it wouldRest in Peace Ron Barlow. He was a talented and creative man, the world is a lesser place without him.

It was Ron Barlow who gave me my first read of EC comics.

Working first with Woody Gelman and then with Bruce Hershenson Ron was part of an early effort to bring young and eager fans classic comics from a time before they began reading the funny books.

From Joel Pollack:

Ron worked as an editor at Woody Gelman’s Nostalgia Press, where he edited hardcover reprints of classic comic strips including the finest Alex Raymond Flash Gordon strips. It was at Nostalgia Press that Ron edited EC: Horror Comics of the 1950s.

In those early years Ron even managed to write a comic story, in the E.C. tradition of course.

From Bruce Hershenson:

Flash forward to the end of 1971. I was in college and hating it, and spending most of my time buying and selling comics, completely supporting myself doing so. It was at this point Ron Barlow re-entered my life in a big way. He had gone to work for Woody Gelman, the visionary who first saw a market for deluxe hardcover reprints of classic comic books.

One of those books was devoted to EC Comics, and through editing it, Ron caught the eye of Bill Gaines, and they became great friends, despite being decades apart in age.

… Ron next suggested we approach Bill with the “crazy” idea of reprinting the original EC comics as full-color comic books (the very first time fans ever did that for ANY comic book company), and to our amazement Bill agreed!

That led to … Ron and I co-publishing 12 issues of full-color reprints of EC comics over the next two years, under our “East Coast Comix” label (we were given the catchy name by longtime Ron friend, Joel Pollack!). Sadly, there just weren’t enough comic book collectors back them to fully support the project, and we folded it after 12 glorious issues!



Naturally I picked up all 12 issues of Ron’s East Coast E.C. Classic Reprint series.

As publisher Ron would give us more E.C. and Berni Wrightson E.C. tribute comix.

  

Bruce notes that Ron went far beyond comics.

After that I was partners with Ron in a vintage clothing business in Baltimore.

Ron had also discovered vintage movie posters.

In the late 1980s Ron moved to Santa Fe and started selling antiquities.

Before and during Star Trek: The Motion Picture Ron edited poster books.

 

 

And Ron didn’t just promote artists he was an artist.

 

 

Community Comments

#1 Bruce Chrislip
August/15/2022
@ 8:00 am

Ron was an important figure in the 1970s comic book scene (if maybe more of a behind-the-scenes person). Those East Coast Comics E.C. reprints were great and a big influence on a lot of us fans. I still have all of my copies!

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