Every once in a while someone writes me asking to help them identify a comic book story they remember from their past. I'm usually not much help. Sorry. There was a story from my own past I looked for, and no one could help me, either. In the early 1950s my best friend had a box of coverless comic books, and every once in a while I was allowed to look at them. I was just old enough to read, and I remember a strange story of a creature turning into a flower, and vice versa.
Thirty years later I ran into the story in Captain Science #5, from 1951. I instantly recognized it from the panels with the sequence of flower to monster, then monster to flower. I can see why no one could help me with the story, because it was in a comic book with two Wally Wood/Joe Orlando Captain Science stories, and this story didn't even register on anyone else's memory meter. The Grand Comics Database lists the artists for "The Flower of Death" as Bill Fraccio? and Vince Napoli? The question marks mean they don't know for sure. My observation is that "The Flower of Death" is the onion in the petunia patch...the pallidly drawn story you'd pass over in favor of the colorful, eye-catching Wood-Orlando bouquet.* For me it was a lesson about memory and perception. On that fun childhood day looking through a box of old comics it was this story that caught my attention.
*I'm posting the lead Captain Science story on December 14, one week from today.