Saturday, December 31, 2011

Vampirella 4

Today I'm covering issue 4 of Vampirella, published in April 1970 (the same month as yesterday's Creepy 32). The cover is a collaberative effort from Vaughn Bode and Jeff Jones. Tom Sutton provides the story and art for the frontispiece "Vampi's Feary Tales: Burned at the Stake!". As with many early issues of Vampirella, this issue doesn't feature a Vampirella
story, although she hosts each of the individual stories within.

First is "Forgotten Kingdom" by Ernie Colon (art, credited as David St. Clair) and Bill Parente (story). A woman finds an astronaut from a spaceship that lands on her planet. She brings him to their leader, who tells him that all men on their planet have died and that they need him to help restore their civilization. He refuses, and with the help of the woman that found him they escape. He brings her to his spaceship and they leave the planet. He soon reveals however that it is the exact opposite on his world, that there are no women, and he has similar plans for her as they had for him.

Second is "Closer than Sisters" by Mike Royer (art) and Nicola Cuti (story). A young girl, Olivegard, is staying with her aunt and uncle after her parents were killed in a car crash. The aunt and uncle hire a new governess, June, to take care of her, and wonder if she is Olivegard's long lost older sister. The two want to kill Olivegard so they can get her inheritance. The aunt tries to do so but is killed at the beach. The uncle plans to kill both Olivegard and June and digs a pair of graves at the beach for them. They get the better of him however and bury him up to his head in the sand, which results in him drowning. June reveals that she is not Olivegard's sister, but rather the future version of Olivegard, come back in the past to get revenge. As the story ends however it is revealed that these are actually the delusions of the present day Olivegard who has gone insane after murdering her aunt and uncle. The death of the uncle in this story is very reminiscent of a sequence from the movie Creepshow, making me wonder if this was inspiration for that part of the movie.

Third is "Moonshine!" by William Barry (art) and Don Glut (story). A salesman from the city has a flat tire in the Ozarks where he is told off by a pair of locals. The salesman is enamored with their attractive sister. While driving he comes across a black cat who hypnotizes him and he follows it, finding the sister. She convinces him to stay with her and become one of them, feeding him some moonshine. The moonshine transforms him into a monster, making him like her and her brothers who are a witch and warlocks.

Next is "For the Love of Frankenstein!" by Jack Sparling (art) and Bill Warren (story). Dr. Hedvig Krolleck, a descendent of Dr. Frankenstein continues his experiments with the help of her hunchbacked assistant, Eric. Eric is in love with her which is the only reason he continues to assist her. Eventually they succeed in their experiments, but a new brain is needed for the body. Eric has a change of heart and destroys it, so Hedvig kills him and uses his brain. In his new body, Eric kills her in revenge then blows up the entire laboratory.

Fifth is "Come into my Parlor!" by Dick Piscopo (art) and R. Michael Rosen (Story). A man is impressed by a daredevil at a circus, Miss Arachna. He convinces her to see him and wants to start a relationship, but she tries to avoid it. Eventually she submits to him and reveals that she has spider hands from an experiment on spiders she performed in the past and used herself as a test subject for. He wants to marry her and she tries to say no but gives in. When they move into their new home she reveals that she has taken on the mating habits of spiders as well and devours him.

The issue concludes with "Run for your Wife!" by Jack Sparling (art), Richard Carnell and Jack Erman (story). A mysterious Count Tsarov invites seven couples who his castle in Slovania. There, Tsavarov is revealed to be a woman in disguise and has the husbands killed by vicious dogs, snakes, aligators, ants and other creatures. One of the wives is revealed to be a man who is part of 'Investigators International' however and kills the count.

1 comment:

Khola Janala said...

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