Sunday, August 7, 2011

"The Vampire Flies" & "Head of Horror"

This post is for my pal, Professor Grewbeard, host of the terrific Magic Carpet Burn; simply because this sort of decadent, cheap pulp makes him happy as a puppy with a bone.

Continuing our evisceration of Terror Tales Vol. 5 No. 5, October 1973, we offer up two dripping stories from Oscar Fraga. First splayed fully on our stainless steel table is the gloriously named, "Vampire Flies," which really rings the bell on the crawling skin meter. Have you ever been walking in the woods on a hot day and felt flies buzzing near the moisture of your eyes? Your nose and mouth? Jesus, they won't go away! Your hands flap and slap around your face in spasms - as if your muscles were twitching violently on their own accord in some instinctive repulsion. Well . . . for a bit of the same sensation without the woods, enjoy this first story!

This is a Fraga redraw of "The Improved Kiss" (Weird Terror, 1953).

The second story is also an Oscar Fraga redraw, originally "Face of Horror" (Chamber of Chills, 1952). Table of Contents says: "A creature with a hideous face turns a forbidding mansion into a blood-spattered nightmare house." I love the lettering in this number. Everyone appears to be shouting!! like: "Good Evening, Richard!!"

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

"Weird Magic!" & "The Beast"

Let's tear into two more unwholesome offerings from Terror Tales Vol. 5 No. 5, October 1973. First is a tale of Zombie lovers, drawn by one of my favorite Eerie Pub artists, Larry Woromay. I love his elongated forms and relaxed line, and he had a real talent for depicting the melting corruption that flesh is heir to.

As for the story, what can one say about a tale where the rotting dead behave with more honor than the living? Such a shift to morality in the dead shouldn't offer much surprise, actually; free as they are of worldly temptation. Perhaps only zombies, rising in legion, can save this wicked, wicked world. (ahem) anyway . . . it would make a hell of a movie.

This next story of dueling beasties was drawn by Cirilo Muñoz and raises the question: Who among us has not wanted to be completely free and bestial, satisfying every single impulse? To completely surrender to lust, fury, hunger? Gentlemen? Ladies? Anyone? Samuel Johnson said it best for all us latent primitives: "He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man.”