Sunday, December 12, 2010

A TALE OF THREE COVERS: UNDYING MONSTERS NO. 1


Dave Davey’s “official” first issue of UNDYING MONSTERS is due around March 2011. In the meantime, he has whetted our appetite with the Limited Edition that was unveiled at this year’s CHILLER THEATRE gathering.

I received mine in the mail on Friday and had a chance to take a quick look to see what’s in store for me when I sit down and actually read it a bit later. The ‘zine has a definite retro vibe to it, and I can agree on some of the comments that I have heard that it’s more like FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND than FM’s current incarnation. What I can tell you is that UM is a pleasure to look at with its multitude of photos from films that generally don’t get much exposure, like FRANKENSTEIN 1970, REVENGE OF THE ZOMBIES, and THE UNDEAD. I guess the question is: should they be covered? My answer is: hell, yeah! While I never tire of seeing the usual Universal, Hammer, and more popular B-Movie fare, it’s refreshing to see some of the more obscure and less-covered titles being covered. For instance, I’m looking forward to the article on CURSE OF THE FACELESS MAN seen on the contents page of UM #1.


The cover of UNDYING MONSTERS has an odyssey all its own. I contacted Mr. Davey for some information about his new mag and the man was very courteous and forthcoming with his time. I must say it is hugely appreciated because that way I can share details with the readership of MONSTER MAGAZINE WORLD that you might not normally receive from other sources. Anyway, back to the cover. There have been three different versions of the cover . . . so far.

Here’s the story, straight from the monsters mouth, as it were:

“Originally, I had planned the Limited Edition to be a Chiller Theatre show version of #1 (the Ygor cover), which we hoped to release later in larger volume. Then I began to feel it wouldn't be right to expect people who bought the Ltd Ed to buy the same magazine with a different cover. But I also didn't want to start Undying Monsters at #2 with less than 500 people being able to own #1. Since I already had another issue ready (crab cover), I decided to make that #1. While I personally liked the cover (Attack Of The Crab Monsters is one of my all time favorites) what I really wanted was a Demon cover to match the film book, but all my stills of the Demon were too dark to colorize, and I also didn't want a cover that mimicked FM #38. A couple of years ago I had met with Basil Gogos to discuss buying the rights to his painting of Ygor for our first issue. The $4500 fee was higher than our print quote. Then a few weeks ago I was contacted by Mark Maddox, who has done covers for Little Shoppe Of Horrors. He was interested in doing a Demon cover, and his fee was much more affordable. So I'll be going with the Demon.”

While it’d sure be nice for all of us to keep Mr. Gogos in the chips with commissioned work, I can totally understand the business decision to pass. Besides, Mr. Maddox ain’t a half bad artist hisself. The other interesting revelation here is that Dave is planning on incorporating the “filmbook” feature into his magazine. This seemed to be always a fan favorite in the pages of FM. I know I liked it, because reading them helped my vivid imagination to “watch” the movie all over again. Those of you not alive before the age of video and DVD know from whence I speak.

Dave has considered printing up another run of the Ltd Ed, but hasn’t made a decision yet. I suggest you get on over to his website and buy a copy or ten straight from the publisher.

So, we’ll patiently wait for the first number of UNDYING MONSTERS to hit the shops (he’s landed a deal with distribution with Diamond) in March. Until then, I’ll keep you posted on any updates that Dave cares to pass along.



3 comments:

Mike Scott said...

Whew! For a second there I thought we were going to have another mag with multiple covers!

I'm also glad to see something on "Frankenstein 1970". With the DVD out, now, it's time for a rediscovery.

Luke H. said...

Looks really cool -- I'd love to read an interview with Mr. Davey! The interviews with the passionae creators behind these magazines is my favorite feature that you publish on this great blog!

John said...

I'm planning on Dave commenting on his new 'zine around the time the "real" Issue #1 comes out in March. He's in the middle of a move right now and I'm sure monster magazines are the last thing on his mind . . . well maybe a low priority. I'll try and keep the interviews comin'!

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