Monday, May 14, 2018

Night Cry Magazine: The Covers

The only annual issue of TZ Magazine,
considered as a precursor to Night Cry.
Cover art by Terrance Lindall
Night Cry magazine began life in 1984 with an issue titled TZ Special #1: Night Cry, taking its name from a story by Katherine M. Turney originally published in the November, 1982 issue of Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone Magazine and reprinted in the initial issue of Night Cry. Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone Magazine previously released an annual issue, the only one to appear from the magazine, in 1982 with Great Stories from Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone Magazine, which in many ways can be viewed as a precursor to Night Cry. 

Intended as a companion to The Twilight Zone Magazine, Night Cry initially served to reprint stories from TZ Magazine with a focus on horror and dark fantasy fiction. Night Cry soon evolved into an influential periodical which featured original fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and artwork from the most skilled practitioners of horror and dark fantasy of the 1980s. Contributing writers included Robert Bloch, William F. Nolan, F. Paul Wilson, Orson Scott Card, Charles L. Grant, Ramsey Campbell, Dennis Etchison, Bentley Little, and many others. The magazine was also the birthing grounds of the burgeoning Splatterpunk movement as authors such as John Skipp, Craig Spector, David J. Schow, and Richard Christian Matheson all published early fiction in its pages. The magazine was notable for its arresting cover images, several of which were created by the World Fantasy Award-winning artist J.K. Potter, who also contributed dozens of interior illustrations to the magazine. An added feature of Night Cry was that new illustrations were commissioned for each story, including reprinted material, which presented an interesting array of artististic interpretations for the fiction in each issue. 

T.E.D. Klein edited the first three issues of the magazine before departing the editorship of both Night Cry and Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone Magazine to concentrate on fiction writing. Alan Rodgers assumed editorship of the magazine with the Winter, 1985 issue and saw the magazine through to its end. Night Cry endured for 11 issues (issued quarterly after the first issue) before folding with the Fall, 1987 issue, ending a short but celebrated run from one of the finest horror fiction magazines of that very rich decade. Every issue of Night Cry is available to read on the Internet Archive (, from which these cover images are taken. Time permitting, perhaps an issue-by-issue look at Night Cry will be forthcoming in the manner of our TZ Magazine read-through. -JP

Cover by Rosie Mackiewicz (1984)
Cover by Frances Jetter (Summer, 1985)
Cover by Manuel S. Morales (Fall, 1985)
Cover by J.K. Potter (Winter, 1985)
Cover by J.K. Potter (Spring, 1986)
Cover by J.K. Potter (Summer, 1986)
Cover by J.K. Potter (Fall, 1986)
Cover by J.K. Potter (Winter, 1986)
Cover by J.K. Potter (Spring, 1987)
Cover by J.K. Potter (Summer, 1987)
Cover by Harry O. Morris (Fall, 1987)


  1. I bought every issue of TZ magazine when they came out except for the annual, which was all reprints. I never bought an issue of Night Cry. I guess the lack of a connection to the TV show made it less interesting.

    1. Yeah, this one's sort of fallen in the cracks, likely due to only running 11 issues, but a glance at the table of contents of these issues reveals a very impressive array of writers and artists. I've accumulated a run of the TZ magazine just by hunting used book stores and comics shops but I've never seen an issue of Night Cry in the wild.