As promised, Filmfax has paid tribute to Ray Bradbury by making my career-spanning interview—which originally ran in their late, lamented sister publication, Outré, in 1995—the cover story in the current issue (#131, Summer 2012). They’ve even borrowed the title and some snippets from my recent post on his passing, “Someone Wonderful This Way Came”; illustrated the piece with numerous behind-the-scenes photos, as well as movie stills and vintage magazine covers; and added a bonus interview with erstwhile managing editor James J.J. Wilson on The Martian Chronicles. Editor/publisher Michael Stein has generously chosen to run my interview in multiple parts, in order to give Ray the space he deserves, and for you lucky readers, my blather is at a minimum for just that reason.
Speaking of Ray, if you haven’t done so already, you should check out all the wonderment my esteemed Marvel University colleague, Jack Seabrook, is unleashing on a regular basis over at bare•bones. Among other things, he’s reviewing the entire canon of Alfred Hitchcock Presents and its hour-long successor, but rather than cover them in a traditional chronological format, as we are at MU, he’s grouping his posts by collaborators (e.g., Robert Bloch, William Shatner), the latest of whom is—you guessed it—Ray. Since he’s just covered the second of seven Bradbury-related episodes, “And So Died Riabouchinska,” there’s still time for you to get in on the ground floor…even if you’ll have some catching up to do on his Batman coverage with Peter Enfantino.
A friend and former GoodTimes colleague who once worked for Matheson’s agent kindly sent a copy of “The Science Fiction Issue” of The New Yorker (whose cover dates of June 4 & 11 oddly encompass both my birthday and the day of Ray’s death). Among the myriad of wonders therein is “Take Me Home,” a warm, wistful essay in which Ray writes about his boyhood in Waukegan, Illinois. Although it’s not immediately clear whether it was written specifically for this issue—the late Anthony Burgess’s piece on A Clockwork Orange certainly was not—both the tone and the title suggest that Ray had, in a sense, penned his own epitaph, which is not a bad thing to be able to do, and it should go without saying that nobody could do it more eloquently than he did.
Finally, on a non-Bradbury-related note, I wanted to express the pride I feel at the strong show of support for Alexandra’s first guest post, in which she has again surpassed even my expectations.