Round the world and back again, with more covers I do cod… I mean BRILLIANT analysis of.
This is such a sad, sad cover. The Scarecrow, having searched the city, has found his former girlfriend and is now pleading his case. That’s her in the window next to the wanna be J. Jonah Jameson. Look at how she has her arms crossed (well, sort of.) She’s not having the Scarecrow’s poor excuses.
And why did they break up? Because he knocked over her parents’ farm house. Just like he’s now knocking over her apartment building.
Tragedy never came so sad
Here’s another tale of woe from the House of Ideas. Taboo here? An alcoholic. He’s been on the wagon for six months. But today happens to be the anniversary of his wife’s death in a skiing accident, and he can’t take it.
Look at him. Drunk out of his mind, staggering out of the Murky Swamp in search of another bar to hit. He’s going to fall over in the next second, splashing mire all over the place.
And Cowboy Dan there? He’s Taboo’s sponsor. He can’t believe his friend’s fallen so low, so fast, and is now desperately trying to get him to stay back from the Murky Tavern just behind him. After the fall, he’s going to carry the Thing back home and try to help make things right again.
As the title implies, we continue with more of my BRILLIANT ANANLYSIS of certain magazine covers. The girls here are scantily dressed and posed in ways NOT SAFE FOR WORK as these are from Italian comics, where tame covers are the exception, not the rule.
Once again, my friends, we have a scene that isn’t all that it appears to be on first glance.
Look at our endangered femme’s face. That’s not a fearful look, or even a startled one. That’s a woman in mid-explanation. She’s clearly giving the Werewolf orders,gesturing for him to move off further down the scene. The Werewolf, being a Werewolf, is talking back, not wanting to do what he’s been told.
Okay, okay, growling back. You know what I mean.
Where things get rather curious is not the panties on the…
Panties on the…
Whoa. For some reason I lost my place a moment.
Not the lack of proper clothes on the woman (never mind her coat, where are her boots?) but the lack of snow. She doesn’t have a bit of snow on her. Not on her feet, not on her… well, you get the idea.
Notice also that you can’t see either player’s breath. This suggests that instead of a winter scene, we are seeing something set in a warmer season. Instead of a graveyard as first implied, this is most likely a set of some kind.
Thus the true story becomes clear. This is a movie set. The woman is a low budget film director, doing various roles for money reasons. Here she’s filling in for the actor playing the fearsome Monster Hunter as well as doing a few shots as the heroine (naturally she’s playing lead.) What she’s trying to accomplish here is set up the finale, in which the Werewolf gets shot and killed.
The Werewolf (a Method actor) has been full consumed by his role. He’s arguing for more stalking scenes. He is about a half minute from being untowards his director/leading lady. Just how he’ll be untowards is perhaps best left unexplored. This is an Italian Horror story and as noted earlier they aren’t always known for taste and tacked.
Not that it matters. The director is also of the Method persuasion, wanting the most realistic shot possible. Thus her rifle is loaded with silver bullets and she’ll get a shot off just before the Werewolf strikes. Not that it matters mind, as a regular bullet through the heart’ll kill a Werewolf just as quick as anyone else.
Oh, and the movie’s title is Seven in the Eyes of the Werewolf in a Girls’ Dormitory.
All of this is, of course, quite obviously drawn from key points in this masterful work of art. I’m sure the details of which will be quite clear on further examination.
Assuming we can all move on from staring at the lady’s posterior.
Which I’m finding a wee bit hard to do, myself…
I know I did this in the previous analysis, but this vision of womanhood isn’t being threatened here. Once again we’re looking at a movie shoot, or perhaps a photo shoot judging by her ever so delightful positioning.
(Small digression: Several years ago one of the local strip clubs in my city put up a billboard of a girl not in that position but one very much like it. My immediate reaction wasn’t “Well let’s go!” but more like “Well that’s going to get someone killed.” With a week or two it was replaced with the same girl in a slightly less provocative pose.)
That for whatever reason said, the main difference between today’s offering and the last one is who’s running the show. Clearly Creature From the Pink Lagoon here is busy giving his model (or actress), directions. How he’s doing this while clearly behind the lovely lass is in question. Maybe he’s got a remote TV hook up in those pink waters, there, or perhaps I’m overthinking it and he just moves back out of the way when done with his encouragement.
While all of these covers have been well drawn, they’ve all lacked anything interesting about them beyond the sexual. For instance, this particular cover has two people who’s reactions read more bored than anything else.
If this is standard fare for Italian comics, consider me unimpressed. Gimme a good Creepy or Eerie cover any day. Hell, I’ll take an EC cover, too. Give me passion, give me horror, give me characters that are actually involved with the situation. These guys don’t do it for me.
Though I will admit, with a touch of chagrin, that I do find the stereotypical reaction of Blondie here pretty funny. With the lack of investment the two of them have over the Gieger reject, his campy expression seems to be more mocking than anything else.
I don’t just do narratives with the covers Ken Begg posts for Monster of the Day over at Jabootu. Sometimes I do analysis. Deep, sober, analysis. Always accurate. Always correct.
What follows is a sample of said analysis.
There’s a lot to unpackage with this one.
On first glance, this is clearly a war between undead factions. Mummy v. Vampire, if you will. You have the two clear Mummies, with one far behind the first. Lead Mummy isn’t content with a mere wooden shaft through the heart. No, he’s talking the whole head off.
Then you have the Staked Vampire, in such dire straights that he’s begging you the reader for help. He’s being abetted by the bat, who is clearly Vampire #2. #2 isn’t doing a great job, by the looks of things. Is that Mummy blood on Lead Mummy or Vampire?
The girl is also of great interest. It doesn’t look like she’s being stalked by the second Mummy (he seems to be observing the proceedings, actually.) Nor does she seem to have been bit by either Vampire. What is she there for?
I propose that she’s the one who staked the Staked Vampire. Granted her dress, while appreciated, isn’t the most appropriate. However, she’s the only one there who would logically come armed. After all, what does a Mummy need with weapons?
Her gaze doesn’t really go to the action in the foreground, though, does it? What could she be looking at? Seems more downward in origin.
Could it be there’s a third faction involved? Mummy v. Vampire v. Super Intelligent Spider?
I mean, look at the little fellow in the lower left corner. Those wide eyes, the shocked little O of a mouth. That’s not a spider face at all. Someone’s been doing experiments they shouldn’t have. Could there be even more crawling around on the ground.
In any case, what we have here is no mere skirmish between Undead fiends, but a full on Monster Mash. Mummy v. Vampire v. Super Intelligent Spider v. Mad Scientist. Most interesting indeed.
Of course, I might be reading a little bit into this cover. But best of week, I’d say.
Monster of the Day has been going on a long, long time over at Jabootu, and Ken Begg puts up a lot of covers. Sometimes I’m inspired to comment on them. Sometimes these form a narrative.
This isn’t one of those times.
Still, I thought these were too good (and goofy) not to share.
The series of covers which follows are in the sequence they appeared over at Jabootu.
First, to give what comes some context, this cover. The guy on the left is the noted hero, Dr. Spektor. Note the weapon in his hand. I certainly did.
From here, nothing but narrative (with context when needed)
“If only I had an oar, I could of stopped him! Or a paddle! Or a wooden spoon! Oh God! Oh God! WHY COULDN’T I HAVE BROUGHT A WOODEN SPOOOOON!“
“Thank goodness you found that large branch, Doc! We totally have half a chance! Or maybe even three fourths a chance!”
“Yeah… Thank goodness…”
“Doc! You totally can’t still be bitter about…”
“I CAN’T BELIEVE THE CHOPSTICKS FAILED TO WORK! They were perfectly placed in my hands and everything!”
“Well at least I totally was able to distract the Muck Thing with that hubcap I totally didn’t take from your vintage car. Totally.”
“How many times must I tell you that mere metal can’t hope to compare with the savage fury of wood? And when did you start using ‘totally’ so much? I’m fairly certain that’s anachronistic slang. Don’t we have enough problems without adding that to the mix?”
Meanwhile, Muck Thing continues to rub his pet alligator’s belly, totally oblivious to the approach of woody doom. Or maybe that’s completely oblivious and not totally. And I’m not certain that the term “woody doom” is quite appropriate for a Gold Key Comic. But it’s approaching. Oh yes. Step by step approaching.
“What are we gonna do, Doc? That dragon totally burned up your oar, your branch, those toothpicks you got at the restaurant, even your pencil! We’re totally weaponless!”
“You could start by untying me.”
“Oh no, I totally can’t. I’m a girl and am totally useless in crisis situations.”
“But… But this is the Seventies! Well into Women’s Lib and all that! You should be brave! Fearless! Getting me out of this spot of bother!”
“Yes, well, brave and fearless I may be, but fire proof? Totally not so much so.”
For this las cover, the following note: at one point during his career, Doc Spector was a Werewolf. So when you see a fur ball on the cover, that’s probably him.
“GAK! My efforts to defeat the Frankenstein Monster using my newly acquired ability to transform into a werewolf seem to have gone a wee bit awry. Lu-Sai, would you be a dear and search this featureless void for a pointy stick? It would be most appreciated at this juncture.”
“First you want me to untie you, now you want me to fetch things for you. Doc, I totally think our relationship has issues.”
“Could… could we have this discussion later? When my larynx isn’t in danger of being crushed?”
Meanwhile, the Monster wonders if being bit by the Werewolf Doc. Spektor would turn him into a werewolf, and if that would make his life really any worse than it already was.
Of late Ken Begg over at Jabootu has been running a series of pulp magazine covers for his Monster of the Day. Some of them have inspired words on my part. Words with, if taken in the right light, form a short story.
Below is one such offering.
“Damn it, why does he always do this? It’s not a worm, Blue, it’s my breathing tube so please don’t–”
“Okay, fine. I’ll just gently remove–”
Please do not touch [Alien Lifeform] with your ungloved hand, [Spaceman’s name here]. You might contaminate it with your germs and cause untold harm.
“Oh, for the love of… Of all the times not to wear those damn gloves!”
“Fine. This is not a prob. Just have to get back to Dome Base, get some gloves, then throttle Blue.”
That is not advised, as–
“Skip it, GLAD! How far am I from the Dome.”
[Spaceman’s name here], you are a mile out and counting.
“Wait, I didn’t walk that far. And what did you mean, and counting?”
[Spaceman’s name here] has forgotten basic space protocol and not put on the Dome Base Safety break and the Dome is now rolling down hill.
“What do you mean, I forgot? I never for–”
“Argh, look, fine, just, just drive the Dome to these co-ordinates.”
Affirmative. I will drive Dome Base to [Spaceman’s name here]‘s location.
“Great. Just peachy. Estimated time of arrival.”
Unknown. I can not begin drive procedures until the Dome Base has come to a complete stop.
Safety procedures. Something [Spaceman’s name here] seems to know nothing about.
“And she gets snarky with me. Great. Perfect.”
“Lemme think, lemme think. If I can’t touch Blue, maybe I can shake him off… like…. this! And this!”
Please do not shake [Alien Lifeform] with your ungainly thrashing about, [Spaceman’s name here]. [Alien Lifeform] has a weak stomach and it may–
Oh no. I am too late. The poor [Alien Lifeform].
“Did it just… oh God. WHY IS THAT EATING THROUGH MY HELMET!”
[Spaceman’s name here], you have been exposed to a corrosive acid as well as most of the [Alien Lifeform] last meal. To follow proper safety procedures for a change, [Spaceman’s name here], please use your anti corrosive acid spray upon contacted surface.
“WHERE IS IT?!”
It is handily placed directly on your belt towards the back of your suit.
“WHY IS THE SPRAY LOCATED ON MY B– oh, wait, I got it.”
Apply liberally to the affected area of the helmet while taking care not dosing [Alien Lifeform].
“Yeah, yeah, yeah.”
“There we go. Hey, as an added bonus, Blue’s no longer at my air hose. I might be… I might be okay.
“Now then, GLAD. What’s the ETA on Dome Base getting here?”
Unknown. Dome Base seems to be still rolling.
It was a very large hill.
“Nothing to be upset about, right? I’ll just start walking in the general direction. Just give me heads up when you can–”
“Oh great. Blue’s back.”
“And he’s brought his extended family. How nice of him. You know, GLAD, I think I’m going to start running your way.”
As you wish, [Spaceman’s name here]. Be advise that there are at least three [Alien Lifeforms] along your path that might cause further damage to your suit. And they may also eat you, as well. Which may cause the spread of germs and cause untold harm.
“I’m having… a hard time… thinking what I… hate more… You… or this… damn planet.”