Sunday, September 23, 2007
Miss Purdy loves Uranus
"Queen Of Uranus" comes from Forbidden Worlds #78 (1959). It's part of the Pappy tear sheet collection; a box of hundreds of loose pages of stories cut out of old comics, given to me in the early 1980s. I reassembled what stories I could, and am slowly bringing them to you.
The story just about encapsulates everything an ACG story by writer Richard Hughes, writing under one of his numerous pen-names, was in those days. It has a person who isn't very good-looking, who's under-appreciated by her boss (whom she secretly likes), finding love from an unlikely swain. Hughes was good at this sort of underdog-makes-good tale. There were always things about Hughes' stories that bugged me, though. In this one it's that Miss Purdy, despite being smart and a very good teacher, isn't even noticed until she glams up, uses makeup, gets a new hairdo and a new dress. The word is out to you girls: work on your looks. Men don't like you for anything else.
The artwork by Ogden Whitney is excellent. This sort of story was meant for Whitney's style, which was about as matter-of-fact as it's possible to be.