Thursday, May 31, 2012
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Observed in a UK book from 1976 that is otherwise filled with comic stories is the VALIANT BOOK OF MAGIC AND MYSTERY. Labeled "A Fleetway Annual" it is from a publishing group that printed a wide variety of comics-related books, including titles such as FRANKIE STEIN, SHIVER AND SHAKE, and MONSTER FUN.
A feature inside MYSTERY AND MAGIC was "The Great Movie Monster Quiz". Instantly recognizable to any Monsterologist is the lettering style used in the title. Drawn by a fellow by the name of John Donnelly, he obviously drew his inspiration from a monster movie magazine from across the pond.
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
A couple of days ago I showed you an ad that featured Henry Daniell, character actor in many films, including a handful of horror and genre releases.
Daniell had the perfect face to portray the villain and he did so in the most convincing of ways. His terrifyingly telegenic countenance was perfect for those late-night fear fests on the tube.
Here he is on the cover of the French fan magazine, FANTAZINE. Daniel is pictured in his role of Dr.Emil Zurich in the 1959 Vogue Pictures release, THE FOUR SKULLS OF JONATHAN DRAKE. He is shown with Paul Wexler as Zutai, his undead, head-shrinking Jivaro accomplice.
[Source: MEDUSA FANZINE]
Monday, May 28, 2012
Sunday, May 27, 2012
Saturday, May 26, 2012
It was almost 40 years ago, on a warm April day in 1973, that I sat in a Hollywood theater, enthralled by the movie magic that Ray Harryhausen had once again created in the film, THE GOLDEN VOYAGE OF SINBAD. The cool John Philip Law Sinbad, the slave girl Margiana, played by the foxy Caroline Munro, and the uber evil of Koura, played by the great Tom Baker, all were combined and made into a superb fantasy film by director Gordon Hessler. I practically had the theater to myself that afternoon, and sat in the upper balcony, so captivated by the master movie alchemist's work that I stayed for a second showing.
I think you would agree, however, that GOLDEN VOYAGE would have been just another passable genre flick if it weren't for the genius of Ray Harryhausen.
What can you say about this guy? The moment I saw one of his movies, I wanted to do what he did, even going so far at one point, to build a few rudimentary armatures and storyboards. I had been way into Harryhausen before seeing this movie. I had even been fortunate enough to purchase a copy of the fan magazine FXRH (#4, 1974). Mind you, this was during the period when monster "how-to's" were scarcer than seeing an ape on top of the Empire State Building. But FXRH was a true fan's magazine, and covered lots of inside stuff about Harryhausen's unique craft.
Now, ARCHIVE EDITIONS will be releasing a compilation of all four issues of FXRH in a limited edition hardcover of these sometimes tough to find and usually pricey, 'zines. Fans of Harryhausen, rejoice!
Friday, May 25, 2012
Yesterday, you saw a black and white ad from the pages of PLAYBOY magazine that featured the fiendish countenance of sometimes-horror actor Henry Daniell. The ad appeared in the magazine in 1965, two years after his death.
The Bacardi Rum ad must have had legs because another ad, albeit with the same image, had run two years earlier -- this time in color -- in the October 1963 issue of PLAYBOY. Not to understate yet another morbid coincidence, but October 1963 was the month and year that Henry Daniell died. To make things even weirder, he died on Halloween.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
Quite at home playing the villain, actor Henry Daniell had a face made for horror films. Able to crack a wry, sinister countenance seemingly at will, Daniell played all sorts of bad guys during his long film career.
To genre fans, he is best remembered as "Toddy" MacFarlane alongside Karloff's John Gray in the film adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's THE BODY SNATCHER. He also played the ancient, head-shrinking Jivaro witch doctor in THE FOUR SKULLS OF JONATHAN DRAKE. He even had the distinction of playing Dr. Moriarity in one of his numerous film roles in the Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes series of films.
His evil-looking visage was the perfect image for a series of Bacardi Rum magazine spreads with a "devilishly smooth and fiendishly dry" ad copy theme. The examples shown here are from the March 1965 issue of PLAYBOY. A devilishly strange and fiendishly morbid fact about his appearance here is that Mr. Daniell had been already dead for two years.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
I've been a comic book fan for as long as I have been able to read, and probably even before that jus' lookin' at the pitchurs. Matter of fact, between Scholastic Book Services (thank you Sepulveda Elementary when the L.A. Unified School District was still functional as an educational institution) and the comic adventures of Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, and Jimmy Olsen (and, yes, Lois Lane, too!), and later Fantastic Four, Spider-Man and Thor, that's exactly how I learned to read after breezing through the Dick and Jane series.
I became such an adept reader that it was noticed by my elementary school teacher, who quickly put me to work tutoting other kids in my class who were lagging behind. Looking back at such a seemingly inconsequential event, I have now realized how HUGE of an accomplishment it was to be able to read so well as such an early age.
Being able to pick up the reading bug so soon also enabled me to easily read the text and captions of the first monster magazines I ever saw. Since then, it would be hard to fathom how many comics and magazine pages that I have introduced to my gray matter.
So far as comics go, I still read a few regularly, but I'm much more interested in the history of comics, especially from around the time that I was a kid. You see, when I was reading comics I had no idea that "Silver" and "Bronze"-age history was being made.
The publishers of the TwoMorrows imprint have lavished upon fandom some of the best comic magazines about comics that I've ever had the pleasure to read. Atop the heap is Roy Thomas' ALTER EGO, which not too long ago celebrated its hundreth issue.
A close runner-up is BACK ISSUE. Subtitled "The Retro Comics Experience", issue #52 was a special horror/mystery in the comics during the Bronze age issue and featured stories on many of the comics titles that are both well-known and a little more esoteric. I covered this Fall 2011 issue in a previous post.
I liked the issue so much, that I wrote them a letter to say so. I also added a bit of clarification to a section that talked about the Shock! TV package.
Well, sure enough, they've published my letter in their latest issue (#56), and it's a special AVENGERS issue, to boot!
Here is the contents and a few sample pages from BACK ISSUE #56. If you enjoy comics and comics history, I strongly recommend you check out these TwoMorrows guys!
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
These are the last few days that I'm offering the MONSTER MAGAZINE WORLD 2011 BLOG BOOK at the special introductory price of only 99-cents.
If you've been deliberating whether or not to take a chance with your hard-earned money or it you've just become aware of it with this post, I assure you you'll get your money's worth.
C'mon! Go out on a limb and order up a copy before it'll cost you more in just a few more days.
Go HERE for details.
Thanks for your support, Monster Lovers!
Monday, May 21, 2012
Sunday, May 20, 2012
Saturday, May 19, 2012
Many of the scream queens and horror hotties that we have come to know and love have not always first appeared -- fully formed, as it were -- on the horror screen. Most of them got their start in modeling and other types of film roles.
The 13 NOVEMBER 1956 issue of the bi-weekly digest TEMPO (Vol. 7 No. 10) featured an article, What's In a Face?, that included photos of two future scream queens.
Allison Hayes was pictured in a one-piece swimsuit, posing with a beach bag thrown casually over her shoulder, and described as a former "Miss Washington". As we horror fans know, Hayes went on to become one of the Atom Age cinema icons when she starred as the titular ATTACK OF THE 50 FOOT WOMAN (1958).
Valerie French, seen in the article lounging in a provocative pose and holding a cigarette after her role in JUBAL, later played the part of Alison Drake in the Vogue Pictures horror melodrama, THE FOUR SKULLS OF JONATHAN DRAKE (1959). At one time a "Miss Galaxy" and married for a few years to Thayer David (Professor Stokes and other characters in the original DARK SHADOWS), she finished off her acting career playing in soap operas such as ALL MY CHILDREN.
Friday, May 18, 2012
The movie magazine, CINEMA TEASER, appears to be much like the French counterpart of the UK 'zines EMPIRE and SFX.
In the May, 2012 issue, there is a review of DARK SHADOWS. In the spirit of this blog's title, this post is for anyone who reads French. The rest of us can be left looking at the accompanying pictures.
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Roaring down the Coast Highway in the spirit of Ed "Big Daddy" Roth, Weird-Ohs, and the Monte monster decals is a new model kit in development by "Dirty Donny", retro Kreature Kulture graphic artist -- the two-headed monster called TWO MUCH!
Round2Models is partnering with its AMT division to produce the kit. Here is the press release from the Round2Models newsletter explaining all the details:
"The Kats at AMT team up with Dirty Donny to create a Two-Headed Monster... it's TWO MUCH!
Halloween is quite a ways off, but we wanted to "spring" one of our secret projects on you modelers, especially those who love all the cool monster kits that were available back in the golden era of modeling. The Kats at AMT have an exclusive licensing deal with one of the coolest up-and-coming custom culture artists on the scene today: "Dirty Donny" Gillies! Donny has done everything from painting crazy murals and pinstriping mod guitars and pianos for Metallica, to creating mind-blowing artwork for customized pinball machines! Donny's got a funky flair for creating artwork that harkens back to those fun times of yesteryear, where everybody was cutting grass to earn money to buy their next awesome monster model kit!
The first AMT release featuring Dirty Donny's dazzling artwork is the groovy 1/25 scale Vantasy Chevy Custom Van. It's been sellin' like hodaddy hot cakes as momentum builds at an unstoppable pace behind this talented artist. For a follow up kit, we wanted to do something really wild, crazy and fun - a kit that would capture the essence of our monster-modeling youth, while totally zoning in on the current renewed interest in low-brow art and custom culture. What would be more appropriate than an insane two-headed monster? Introducing AMT's first "Kustom Kreature!"
This krazy kit will "kick off" in 2013 and here's where it's going to knock it out of the ballpark: the sculpt. Some of the old custom monster kits made by the "other guys" back in the day looked nifty on the box art, but were sadly lacking in execution on the plastic parts. AMT 's Two Much Monster kit looks as good in plastic as it does in Donny's wild box art illustration, and we'll prove it to you! We've got a sculpt of Two Much, the first Kustom Kreature, straight from Donny's secret lab and we're going to have him (or should we say "hims") on display for you to see - at WONDERFEST! Come out and marvel in the awe of the spectacular sculpt and show us your support for this exciting new initiative in totally fun model kits! It's another way AMT is expanding its product offerings to include many different types of models.
Other differences that will set AMT 's Two Much kit apart from the rest? How about loads of optional decals with artwork all created by Dirty Donny himself to match the monster perfectly! Many different demented designs will be included so you can build a Kustom Kreature that is truly your own. How about a radical display base with extra details like tombstones and a half-buried skateboard for value-added excitement? Real chain for the monster's mace ball? Eyeball jewels in multiple optional translucent colors? This pumpkin-carrying candy masher has got it ALL!
Show AMT your support for the Dirty Donny "Two Much" monster and let's build something FUN!"
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
The second issue of the acclaimed comic book title, BELA LUGOSI'S TALES FROM THE GRAVE has at long last, been released. MONSTER MAGAZINE WORLD received this press release regarding the premier of the book, as well as a companion publishing project, FLESH AND BLOOD:
(Los Angeles, CA) MONSTERVERSE (MV) premiered the second issue of its critically acclaimed "BELA LUGOSI'S TALES FROM THE GRAVE" (cover by Academy Award winner RICK BAKER) at MONSTERPALOOZA (MPZ) in advance of its general release on May 2nd in comic shops everywhere.
Monsterpalooza was host to the West Coast's major horror event held at the Burbank Airport Marriott Hotel, April 13th-15th. "BELA LUGOSI'S TALES FROM THE GRAVE" #2 was one of the highlights of MPZ for the horror creators and monster makers in Hollywood! Everyone from collector Bob Burns to director John Landis agreed the new issue was a spectacular addition to the Monsterverse line of books.
MONSTER MAN - CLEVE HALL of the hit SyFy make-up effects reality series is happy to show off his copy of "BELA LUGOSI'S TALES FROM THE GRAVE" #2 during the MPZ 2012 festivities.
The Monsterverse Table along with the adjourning the Lugosi family table was a very popular spot at MPZ 2012. Many fans and pros were able to have their Lugosi comic signed by Bela Lugosi, Jr.
MV West Coast Editor Sam F. Park with director John Landis.
MV publisher Kerry Gammill at the table.
"BELA LUGOSI'S TALES FROM THE GRAVE" #2 is a double-sized horror comic book that offers 52 "gore-geous" pages of freaky art and disturbing text and can be found at finer comic shops on Wednesday, May 2nd and for a mere $4.99. That's double the horror of other sorta-kinda-maybe scary comics (Use Diamond order # JAN121179 for back-ordering. Diamond Distribution will honor ALL re-orders.)
"BELA LUGOSI'S TALES FROM THE GRAVE" #2 includes work by Kerry Gammill, Neil Vokes, Mike Hoffman, Jack Herman, Sam Park, James Groman, Kamil (Kurt) Kochanski, Joe Freire, Mike Dubisch and more. Five new tales of freakish horror and blood-curdling terror and all twisted with black humor as delivered by the supreme horror icon, BELA LUGOSI!
Make-up artist Emma Jacobs shows off her BLTFTG #2.
GREMLINS and THE HOWLING director Joe Dante looks up from reading his BLTFTG #2 while at the TRAILERS FROM HELL table.
THE WALKING DEAD TV series's special make-up effects creator Howard Berger of KNB FX has his eyes glued to the latest issue of BLTFTG.
The beautiful Hammer horror actress Veronica Carlson of the epic terror film, DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE, shows off her FLESH AND BLOOD graphic novel at MPZ 2012.
Famed horror artist DAN BRERETON provides the monster action for the cover of Volume 2 of FLESH AND BLOOD, the acclaimed horror graphic novel series from MONSTERVERSE (MV).
Vampires! A Werewolf! And Baron Frankenstein collide in the second book of the award-winning graphic novel series from Monsterverse!
Plus two back-up features! OPERATION: SATAN by Tinnell and artist Bob Hall and the new FRANKENSTEIN by Tinnell and Adrian Salmon. No graphic novel series delivers pure unadulterated horror entertainment like FLESH AND BLOOD!
FLESH AND BLOOD VOL. 2 arrives in May but tell your comic shop to order NOW with: Diamond order # MAR121120.