Saturday, March 30, 2013

I WAS A TEENAGE MONSTER MAGAZINE MAKER


You have previously read about the results of my very first hand-made, desktop (the old-fashioned wood top kind, not a PC graphics program) monster magazine. Aptly entitled MONSTERS MAGAZINE, the Vol. 1 No. 1 edition was unleashed to the world (well, to my Dad anyway) at the affordable sum of 15 cents. That's right -- one dime and one nickel.

After a time, I managed to get my claws back on it, and it has miraculously survived since 1964 until today.

Now, thanks to an unexpected package that I received on my front porch not too long ago from a certain "Hall of Flame"  guest blogger, the MONSTERS MAGAZINE legacy lives on. Upon opening said package, I extracted a parcel of monster memories of the most personal kind. Here was a substantial stack of my MONSTERS MAGAZINEs and a couple other items that were concocted when we were Monster Kids of the considerably younger kind.

Most of us on the block tried their hand on at least one issue of a home-made monster fan magazine. Even my big sister came up with two of her own.

During the assembling of our monster masterworks, untold numbers of Leaf Brand Spook Stories cards and stickers, newspaper clippings and ripped out articles from our parents' magazines, such as TIME, LIFE, LOOK, and TV GUIDE fell under our rapacious quest for content. Literally doubles, triples, quadruples were massacred under the punishment of the tools of our terrifying trade: scissors, Scotch tape and Swingline staples.

Nothing stood in the way of our monstrous, magazine-making blood lust, even going so far as to cannibalize each others  mags -- which makes it all the more amazing that any of them survived at all to the present day.

Well, several did, and following is proof. Submitted now for your viewing pleasure (no tittering from the peanut gallery, please) is MONSTERS MAGAZINE #15, undated but probably made in 1967.

[NOTE: Some pages of this issue, while numbered, were left blank. They are not included here.]
























 

Friday, March 29, 2013

EYE ON EBAY: FAMOUS (FRENCH) MONSTERS


A digest-sized magazine from France, CINEMA 57, has frequently been cited as being the first-ever monster magazine. I disagree. True, it is a magazine that has monsters in it, but it was not ever meant to be an on-going periodical, which I believe is the qualifier. Warren's test run of the soon-to-follow FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND in AFTER DARK #4, while content-heavy with monsters, can be similarly categorized.

Nope -- unless a hitherto unknown moldering tome is miraculously resurrected from the trash heaps of time, for me, FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND is the first, regularly published monster 'zine.


However, that doesn't stop dealers from fetching premium collector's dollars for CINEMA 57. Two sellers are offering the 145 page, July 1957 French publication on eBay. One copy is described in "very good" condition and is selling for $458. The other is being sold as a "good" copy for $249.


 





Wednesday, March 27, 2013

FRANKENSTEIN MET THE WOLF MAN THIS MONTH


On March 5 of this month 70 years ago, UNIVERSAL PICTURES released FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLF MAN. Lon Chaney Jr. continued his role as the tormented son of Talbot Hall and Bela Lugosi played the lumbering, dimple-chined patchwork man.

Widely panned by critics as a weak link in the Universal monster oeuvre, it still has a number of remarkable scenes in it. The Wolf Man chase scene, for instance, when he falls through the ice into the chamber where, after he turns human, discovers the Frankenstein monster embedded in a giant ice cube, is quite memorable.

Below are the first two pages from the March, 1943 issue of MOVIE STORY magazine. Serving as a promotion for the newly-released film, it includes what appears to be a filmbook-like text story that predates a similar form used in FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND.


[Photo source: MUSEUM OF MODERN MYTHOLOGY AND POP CULTURE.]

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE POSTER

No, I didn't walk with a zombie poster, this is a I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE POSTER, currently at auction.
 
"I Walked with a Zombie (RKO, 1943). One Sheet (27" X 41").
Offered here is a fantastic RKO original 1943 one sheet from the classic horror film starring James Ellison, Frances Dee, and Tom Conway, produced by Val Lewton. The striking artwork delivers a bone chilling effect for an equally frightening film. The poster has pinholes in the corners, a paper splice in the left border, a blemish in the left border, and a scratch in the top left. Older restoration has addressed some of these issues. Fine/Very Fine on Linen. Estimate: $6,000 - $10,000"

WHERE'S RONDO?


He's off getting his head measured for the latest Rondo Awards. Vote for MONSTER MAGAZINE WORLD for Best Blog!

Monday, March 25, 2013

SINISTER SIMULACRA


While not an exact copy of the pose, the Margaret Brundage pastel image on the cover of WEIRD TALES June 1936 is close enough for comparison. Miss Brundage said that she mainly came up with ideas from her imagination, but it is not out of the question that she might have had a remnant impression of this scene from Lugosi's DRACULA.


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