The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories

The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories is a 1997 poetry book written and illustrated by film director Tim Burton. The poems, which are full of black humor, tell stories of hybrid kids, spontaneous transformers, and women who have babies to win over men.

The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories
First edition US cover
AuthorTim Burton
IllustratorTim Burton
Cover artistTim Burton
CountryUnited States
Black humor
PublisherWilliam Morrow and Company
Publication date
Media typeHardcover

Some characters of the book would later appear in the flash animation series Stainboy, which was created, directed, and written by Burton.

Table of contentsEdit

  • Stick Boy and Match Girl in Love
  • Voodoo Girl
  • Robot Boy
  • Staring Girl
  • The Boy with Nails in His Eyes
  • The Girl with Many Eyes
  • Stain Boy
  • The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy
  • Stain Boy's Special Christmas
  • The Girl Who Turned into a Bed
  • Roy, the Toxic Boy
  • James
  • Stick Boy's Festive Season
  • Brie Boy
  • Mummy Boy
  • Junk Girl
  • The Pin Cushion Queen
  • Melonhead
  • Sue
  • Jimmy, the Hideous Penguin Boy
  • Char Boy
  • Anchor Baby
  • Oyster Boy Steps Out

Origin of title poemEdit

According to American comics artist and publisher Stephen R. Bissette, the title poem "The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy" was originally conceived as a project for Bissette's comics anthology Taboo and was actually written by horror novelist Michael McDowell, who had previously worked with Burton on the screenplays for Beetlejuice and The Nightmare Before Christmas. McDowell is thanked in the acknowledgements at the end of the book, but is not credited for writing the poem.[1]


The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories has been generally well received by both critics and reader. It received 5 out of 5 stars at[2] and a B+ at Entertainment Weekly.[3]


  1. ^ "Steve Bissette". Archived from the original on 29 September 2007. Retrieved 19 June 2020.
  2. ^ Burton, Tim (22 October 1997). The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy: And Other Stories. ISBN 0688156819.
  3. ^ Steffens, Daneet (5 December 1997). "The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 19 June 2020.

External linksEdit