Saturday, July 5, 2008

Vampirella 13

A fairly good issue of Vampirella. It features one of Sanjulian's earliest covers for Warren. The frontis for this issue is "Vampi's Feary Tales: Lamiae" by Gary Kaufman.

Our Vampi story for this issue is "The Lurker in the Deep!" by Jose Gonzalez (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). Vampi joins the cruise of a famous playboy named Triton, who in actuality is luring victims to the ocean to be provided to a fish like demon that he has a pact with. Mistakenly thinking that Vampirella worships the evil god Chaos, he falls in love with her, but the jealous fish demon considers this a break of their pact and destroys his ship and him. Sandwiching this tale is short segments featuring Adam and Conrad Van Helsing. Conrad, at this point believing Vampi is responsible for his brother's death wants to kill her while Adam reveals that he's fallen in love with her. A fairly good Vampi story from early in its run.

Next is "From Death's Dark Corner" by Steve Hickman (art) and Gerry Conway (story). It features a mother and son who head to the swamp to feed a beast that lives there. The mother tells the son of how she met his father, who died shortly after his birth. It ends up however that the beast is her real son, and she gives him the boy to eat. Instead the beast, upset at her for abandoning him eats her!

Jose Bea's art debut is next, "The Silver Thief and the Pharoah's Daughter", written by Dean Latimer. The story is about a pharoah who orders a vault to be made with all his treasures. The vault architect creates a fault in it so his sons after his death can steal from it. They initially are successful, but one is trapped inside and is killed on purpose. His body is stolen to hide his identity, but the pharoah's daughter is able to uncover things. Ironically however the pharoah rewards the surviving son due to his intelligence, making him an advisor of his.

Next is "The Frog Prince" by Bill Dubay (story & art). A woman meets a talking frog who tells her he's a prince. She kisses him and he turns into a human and agrees to marry her. However it is soon revealed that as a human he can't speak, only croak!

Last is the issue's best story, "Eye of the Beholder" by Gary Kaufman (story & art). The story features an ugly countess who decides that a beautiful peasent girl is her property and hers to use to make herself beautiful. The countess has her doctors transfer the girl's body parts to her, such as her hair, teeth, etc... but each transplant is botched, making the countess even more ugly. By the end of the story she's a freakish blind hunchback, but finally does find a man in her similarly mishappen servant. Kaufman's best work out of the half a dozen or so jobs he did for Warren.

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