Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Life of Riley vs. Swamp Monsters

As we begin a 4-day look at the January 1954 issue of Beware #7 in it’s entirety, Keith Smith returns to the horrifying halls of THOIA with a kick-off comparison of what happens to a pre-code Myron Fass cannibal cooker when it gets re-made 16 years later (see below) by Dick Ayers for Eerie Publishing.

*Also, be sure to check out Keith’s Index / Collector’s Guide for Eerie Publishing, now online! (More information after our first story.)










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*Keith Smith says: “I have created an index / collector's guide for Eerie Publications that may be of interest to pre-code horror fans. The guide can be viewed at: http://www.enjolrasworld.com/

For those who don't know, Eerie Publications produced black and white horror comics from 1966 to 1982. Their stories consisted almost entirely of reprinted or redrawn pre-code horror stories from a number of publishers. The index identifies the original source for the stories (where I know it) and has a cross-index that lists them by the original pre-code publisher and title. The index also has background info on the company, art credits, background info on the company, golden-age and silver-age artists and publishers, etc...”

---Keith
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Swamp Monsters
And now, from the April 1970 issue of Tales from the Tomb Vol. 2 #2, here’s the obnoxiously over-the-top, ultra violent remake of Life of Riley from Dick Ayers.








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A big thanks to Keith Smith today for putting together both sets of scans and letting us know about his great new site. I’ll be back tomorrow with the next story from Beware #7! AIEEE!
---Karswell

22 comments:

Dane said...

Hm, Mame and the Duchess have got a pretty sweet gig going. I'm in the wrong line of business. Sure, I'd have to develop a taste for human flesh, but for that kind of money and lifestyle, I'm game.

Horror pariah said...

EFFORT: IT'S A LITTLE KNOWN FACT THAT IF YOU SLAM THE BLADE DOWN HARD ENOUGH WHEN DECAPITATING SOMEONE, AN EYE WILL POP OUT TOO. SO WHAT'S TO LOSE BY NOT TRYING?.
Laughed out loud at the excesses of Dick's version. Hilariously messed up in a Gordon/Raimi/Lewis way. I love the design of the Nameless one, looks like an evil Orko. As for what people tastes like, i once babysat for an anthropology professor who had been to New Guinea who always told me he had taken part in cannibalistic rituals, in stone cold seriousness too. I always knew he was just trying to scare me but....

todd said...

If I hadn't noticed "cannibal cooker" in the intro, the first glimpse of the cleaver would've been genuinely shocking. Well, more genuinely shocking.

How 'bout that Lulu, guys?

todd said...

I want to know how Riley got so fat so fast in the remake. Blueberry pie chewing gum?

AndyDecker said...

"They robbed the bank! - Hmm, let´s interrogate the Duchess, Lulu and Bombo, they have to know something" Compared to that Riley is a everyman *g

But of course he is not the brightest, so he get´s also robbed. And eaten. Bad karma.

Those two versions are interesting. You would never know that this is a remake of an older story. But the first story was better told. While it was obvious that Riley never would make it out of country, the story build up to the ending. The new splash-page - as funny as it is - gives the ending away.

Both forms have their merit, but it says much about how much readers expectations changed in the meantime.

Anonymous said...

THATS A CRAZY REMAKE WITH SOME SHOCKING GORE, BUT I STILL LIKE THE ORIGINAL BETTER. I WILL ADD THAT I LOVE THOSE EERIE COVERS THOUGH! COOL POST, THANKS KARSWELL AND KEITH!

bzak said...

Howdy,

My brother, sister and I thought the Dick Ayers story was one of the best things we ever saw when it was originally published! To this day we quote lines from it to each other and laugh our guts out!
Thanks Mr. K.

Brian James Riedel

sfdoomed said...

Flesh for Lulu. Great names in this one. Bombo, the Duchess, the Nameless One. Excellent.

The Ayers' remake is ridiculous; everyone has an eye popping out, even the skulls in the cabinet. This comparison proves that shocking and gory does not mean scarier or better (though I like a dose of both in my horror stories, but just a dose).

And thanks for the link to the Eerie reference page; other references on that site, especially the one for the Warren magazines have been really helpful over the last couple of years letting me know which issues were all reprints and whatnot.

goblin said...

And here I thought the remake would be the tamer of the two stories… Boy, was I wrong! While I prefered Dick Ayers' art, I still liked the original better altogether. The violence in the remake was just too over-the-top for my taste.

Anonymous said...

Who would have thought that a chain smoking,cannabilistic, hottie with a nice set of headlights would also be an anthropologist.

Anonymous said...

Just how exactly does Bombo drive the car into the lake AFTER removing the tires?

The Fortress Keeper said...

I have to say I prefer the Beware version as well. Besides, who doesn't like The Nameless One?

Patrick said...

What the hell is Bombo eating in that final panel of the remake? Maybe I don't want to know.

It was cool to see both versions of this story. I think the original was the winner however!

Anonymous said...

Maybe Bombo used snakes. Them swamp snakes are tough!

And the Health Department would come down on them something fierce. Their meat isn't even properly wrapped. Talk about freezer burn.

buzz said...

Not to sound like a wine snob ('cuz I'm not), but...

When most people refer to Beuajolais wine, they're referring to Beaujolais nouveau, which, contrary to most wines, is not meant to be aged but to be drunk as soon as it's ready. Typically November is the month that year's vintage of Beaujolais is released; it's often sold out within a few months. Riley getting excited about an aged bottle of Beaujolais is kinda missing the whole point of the wine...

Beaujolais nouveau is a dark red but sweet wine, somewhat sweeter than shiraz.

todd said...

Great point about Beaujolais. Come to think of it, vintage wine would have been ruined en route to Florida swampland back then, so good thing for them they can't taste the difference.

What the hell is Bombo eating in that final panel of the remake? Maybe I don't want to know.

Again, good thing for them they can't taste the difference.

8thRay said...

I bought several of those black and white mags in the early 70's, until my Mom got a look at one. Even back then I marveled at Ayer's fondness for enucleated eyes. Another common theme in those mags were ripped open cheeks with teeth showing through. Thanks for the memories!

Karswell said...

Thanks again to everyone that stopped by today, great comments as usual gang! And thanks again to Keith Smith for everything!

todd said...

Too bad this isn't the official inspiration for Flesh for Lulu.

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Guybell said...

I much prefer the remake. I remember reading it when I was 10 and it was one of the first horror stories I'd read that really scared me. Dick Ayers was the king of horror comics.