Sunday, July 24, 2011

Vampirella 1

Today I cover the first issue of Vampirella, which after years of failing to obtain a copy I've finally been able to check out due to Dynamite's Vampirella Archives series. Frank Frazetta provides the cover, one of my personal favorites. He also supplies a one page intro from Vampi on the inside front cover.

First is Vampirella's first ever appearance in "Vampirella of Draculon", with art by Tom Sutton and story by Forrest Ackerman, who was editor for Famous Monsters of Filmland for the majority of its run. This story's much more light hearted than the usual Vampirella story and features her on her home planet of Draculon, where blood is the equivalent of water. A spaceship of humans crashes on their planet and Vampirella sucks their blood, then finds a "smorgasblood" as she puts it inside the ship when she finds a room full of men in hibernation.

Second is "Death Boat!" by Billy Graham (art) and Don Glut (story). Six people are stranded on a life boat in the middle of the ocean after the ship they are on sinks. One night they awaken to find one of the people dead, with two holes in his throat. One of the men is convinced that it is a vampire on board the boat and attacks the man he think is the vampire, killing him. He is then killed by another man shortly afterwards. Another death occurs soon afterwards, and convinced that her companion is the vampire, being the only one left, the last person standing kills him. But then the boat itself is revealed by the the vampire and transforms in order to kill her.

Next is "Two Silver Bullets!" by Reed Crandall (art) and Don Glut (story). A man and his daughter are hunting in the woods and the daughter is attacked by a wolf that runs off unharmed after the man shoots it. Because the full moon was out, the man is convinced that it was a werewolf and procures himself two silver bullets. The daughter meanwhile has dreams about the wolf and calls it her love. The man returns to his cottage to find his daughter gone and wolf tracks in the snow. He follows them and finds two wolves this time. He shoots both of them, only realizing at the last minute that the second one was his daughter, transformed.

Fourth is "Goddess from the Sea" by Neal Adams (art) and Don Glut (story). Adams' art is pencils only, which unfortunately makes things hard to make out in some of the panels. A woman, Lanora, appears outs of the sea and tells a man who lives nearby that she's from Atlantis and is fleeing from those of her kind. Her fellow sea dwellers soon come out after her and grab ahold of her. He heads into the sea after her and ends up drowning.

Fifth is "Last Act: October!" by Mike Royer (art) and Don Glut (story). A woman is burned at the stake and curses her accuser, such that him and his descendents will die in October. The accuser dies shortly afterwards. Throughout history many of his descendents die in October. The last descendent left is an elderly woman who is babysitting on the night of Halloween. She avoids numerous accidental ways to die, but meets her end mere minutes before midnight when the child she is babysitting is revealed to be a vampire and bites her on the neck.

Next is "Spaced-Out Girls!" by Tony Williamsune (art) and Don Glut (story). Kenne Barcroft is a skilled womanizer, who one night finds a flying saucer appear from the sky and land in front of him. Out from the flying saucer walks a series of beautiful women who claim to be from another planet that has no men. Kenne anxiously agrees to head with them to ensure they don't go extinct. His advances on the women on the way there fail, as they claim he is reserved for their Queen only. Upon arriving at the planet, Kenne finds out that all the women are robots, and he is locked in a room with the Queen, who is about as beastly as you can imagine.

The issue concludes with "A Room Full of Changes" with art by Ernie Colon and story by Nicola Cuti. This story's a rather weak effort, featuring a man who buys a home featuring a room where an old man was murdered. He meets the two daughters of the man who sold him the house and starts a romantic relationship with one of them. The room where the old man was murdered seems to have a different appearance based on who enters it. The father attempts to destroy the room but a number of monsters appear and kill him.

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