17 November 2017

Movie Monster Mystifications

Halloween was always a favorite holiday, and it seems to be lingering a bit around these parts. So for today's ritual avoidance of Friday Night Fights, let's visit with Movie Monsters for today's

We've got an assortment of little quizzes, followed by a big Scream Test. In Janos Skorzeny's honor, we'll wrap up with a Werewolf Quiz.
For reference when answering, our questions are from the early 1980s.

Definitely a few oddballs in this batch.

On a barely related note - Oliver Reed always seemed to me like the name of a comic book character. No matter how many movies i've seen him in, there's always this little nag in the back of my head that thinks he's in the wrong place.
Brains is screwy things.

quiz pages from ... check back tomorrow

16 November 2017

The Movie Sucked, But The Girl Was Super

Now that Melisa Benoist's television version of Supergirl is a hit, can we just pause a moment to reflect on Helen Slater's movie version of Kara?

She may have been given a bad movie with a terrible script that had her fighting a witch over a boyfriend, but Helen Slater sure gave us a good looking Supergirl-

Heck, she even knew how to be a true DC movie hero in the important ways, too -
Product placement!

Her earnest performance and true-to-character looks were the best part of the film, by far. It's good to see she's a part of the show that follows in her footsteps. (Not to mention to see a show that treats the character with some respect)

all images from Supergirl or promotional materials for the movie (1984)

15 November 2017

Mental Deterioration?

I know i'm getting old, and i've accepted that since i was 12.
But, damn - sometimes it's hard to adjust to how much the systems one has relied upon all one's life can just start breaking down. Like memory.
Much of my memory is still very sharp, well organized, and expansive. And then there are the parts that have suffered data corruption, bit flipping, or just plain deletion. The really tricky bit, is those sectors aren't marked. So it becomes hard to rely on one's memory or judgement at times - even though you might be fairly damn sure you've got it handled, you wind up fact checking the silliest little things because you just can't be sure.
And sometimes, it's things that you'd absolutely swear by that turn out to be way off base.
Sometimes, things just seem completely different than how you remember them...

I don't know. I'm just getting old...

pages from Aphid Fantasy #15?

Grizzly Bear Escape From Savage Island Stalked By Sex-Starved Voodoo Girls!

One thing that my Comics Archeology expeditions can frequently generate is odd looks. When i start pulling out old fanzines, APAs and garage press publications, hand printed and stapled together, the looks start. Especially when the title is something like Man's Guts.

Friends, acquaintances, and strangers alike respond in the same way - "Dude! WTF?" (Yes, i spent a lot of time frequenting conventions and shops in California) "Why are you even looking at that crap? And, seriously - that title? What kind of pervo are you?"

Well, skipping past trying to categorize or classify, i'll merely acknowledge without labels and move on to the primary question. My answer is typically along the lines of "I've never seen it before, don't know what it is. It's got drawings and it's cheap."

Seriously, that's more than reason enough. Sure, plenty of it turns out to be crap - that's to be expected as per Sturgeon's Revelation. But then you mine those little gems that so vastly tip the balance and make it very worthwhile. By this point, you've probably figured that this is one of those occasions. Let's look at the table of contents and see what we've got here:

Kamikaze Nudes of the Secret Pacific Empire?  
Lesbian Mudwrestlers Behind Bars?  
Bayou Kingdom of Undead Cuties?!?
Okay, maybe the titles are a bit misleading for the intent of the zine, hm? Let's listen to what the Editor has to say for the introduction to this new publication:

 I included the North Carolina address as a point of reference, in case you were inclined to debate how heartfelt the editorial might or might not be.

As for overall quality, in these pre-computer days of xerox or mimeograph printing, options were quite limited for an amateur press. Mimeographs allows no photographs, and any images were typically hand drawn - backwards. So it's no surprise that the book's text is strictly two column type-written pages...

 So - what the frell are we doing here?

I don't know if you clicked for the bigger view of that cover above, but let's take a closer look now...

That's Bruce By God Timm's signature hiding there.
I've been a big fan of his work since a few years before this, when he and Neal Hansen (Spyder) were working together on Whisper. But you're far more likely to be familiar with him from his style setting design work on the Batman cartoons...

...sorry. I meant the Batman Animated shows...

...and the follow-up Superman animated series...

Oops. Pardon us, Lois.
Obviously, there's a Blue Monday feature on Timm down the road a piece, as likely implied on our previous peeks at his Naughty And Nice side. But today, we not only get a Bruce Timm cover, we also get a full page illustration for each story!

Kamikaze Nudes of the Secret Pacific Empire

Lesbian Mudwrestlers Behind Bars

Bayou Kingdom of Undead Cuties

Menace of the Mail Order Brides

Change from Your Dollar

And that, fellowbabies, is why i dig through those unknown piles so eagerly while others are trying to find what they already know is there.

all art by Bruce Timm, pages from Man's Guts #1 (1989)

14 November 2017

Famous Creepy Eerie FreakOut

We're running out of year pretty soon, did you notice that?

Any 50 years ago in 1967 sort of things must be tended to in the next several weeks. There was a lot happening in '67 - in fact, it was A Happening in '67. But i'm not in an overly wordy frame of mind, so let's take in something visual - I trust not too abysmal. And let's intersect with another subject i've had on the back burner for quite a while - Warren magazines.

We'll later be talking about what goes on inside the magazines, but today, let's just take a look at Warren's '67 covers. As they developed over the years, their magazines often sported some of the coolest and most interesting visuals on the magazine rack.

Their Big 3 comic magazines were Creepy, Eerie and Vampirella, with a host of other titles supporting them over the years. But back in 1967, Vampirella was still a stirring in Forry's... imagination. So, instead of Vampirella, here's his other magazine - Famous Monsters Of Filmland. Not a comic magazine, but just around the genre corner:

There's a reminder - Christmas Is Coming! That sounds somehow very different in a post Game Of Thrones world...
Meanwhile, back at Warrens premiere comic magazines... Creepy is the Big Brother of the two titles, being a whole year older. So we'll honor the elderly and let them go first-

Frank Frazetta was a frequently featured cover artist on Warren's publications. Even when re-purposing a pre-existing illustration that many had likely seen before, it was still a good draw on the newsstand. A great number of other fantasy and horror artists' paintings were used on the cover, Warren seeming to splurge on the colour covers to offset the mostly black & white inner contents.
Worked for me, though these were before my time buying the titles. I was still living in Asia at this point, and Warren was having enough troubles with distribution in the USA.
On the cover's of  Eerie's mere five issues for '67 we had Frazetta once again leading off-

I particularly like that Gray Morrow cover on #10 above. So simple & clean compared to the typical offerings of the time, and a striking design that makes good use of the white space to draw the eye to the image.

Though perhaps not up to later levels at the peak of their covers, not a bad collection for the year of 1967.
Of course, this is The Voice Of ODD!, so we'd be remiss were we not to peek at the covers of Warren's oddest publication for '67 - Freak Out U.S.A.

Yes, the second issue is actually cover dated for 1968, but it was published in '67 and it was just too damn odd to leave out. I mean - how many of you looked at that and Austin drawled "Yeah, Baby!"?
You can expect to at least see a bit of The Monkees from the first issue (16 pages they got!), as might be expected from some of my previous indications of Monkee mania.

But the question looms in my mind - which covers make you want to look inside the magazine?

all covers from Warren publications (1967)