Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Fangs of Death

Wrapping up our look at St. John's Nightmare series this week with a squirmy serpent love triangle from Nightmare #11 (February 1954) ...and hidden behind a gorgeous Norm Saunders(esque?) painted cover lurks what could possibly be an early Alex Toth tale. An indexer at GCD says, quote: "Art is uncredited, but appears to be Toth. Jerry Bails' Who's Who mentions that Toth had a reprint in this series in 1953." What's everyone think? And does anyone else get a Bernie Krigstein vibe from some of the panels like I do?










NEXT: Mummy!

++++++++++++++++++++++

Vintage AD

21 comments:

Mykal said...

Karswell: Kirgstein, absolutely – Particularly Page 5 - Panel 4; and Page 7 - Panels 4-6. -- Mykal

Joey Deadcat said...

Yup, seeing a lot of Krigstein there with just a tiny,tiny hint of Johnny Craig thrown in.

Mark said...

Yeah Karswell, I love Toth but see almost none of him in this story. Krigstein screams at me from page 1 panel two (bottom left). If anyone has B. Krigstein Vol II, maybe they could check the complete checklist of his comics work.

Anonymous said...

THE FIRST PANEL AFTER THE SPLASH ON PAGE ONE IS VERY MUCH LIKE KRIGSTEIN. TOTH WOULDNT SWIPE OR IMITATE SOMEONE ELSES STYLE AT THAT POINT IN HIS CAREER WOULD HE? WHOEVER THIS IS ITS A COOL STORY. SEEMS LIKE THERES ALOT OF GOLDEN AGE STORIES ABOUT SNAKES FALLING IN LOVE WITH MEN........TOO CREEPY!!!

Trevor M said...

My theory is that the story was penciled by Krigstein. He inked the first three pages, and then Toth inked the rest. Page three has got the Krigstein inking with the jagged slashes of brush strokes, the cross-hatching that he put in when he was doing a horror story. In page four directly following it, the inking changes completely and has the broad swoopiness, even patterning, and economy of line that Toth has. I'd guess a deadline loomed, or Krigstein had a fight with an editor or something, and the story got handed over penciled, but with only the first three pages of the inking done.

prof. grewbeard said...

in the vernacular of today's youth, that was fucked-up!

Steven said...

Almost definitely Krigstein, but I doubt Toth had anything to do with the story. This is 1954, and Toth's pencils and inks were pretty refined by then. The inking that isn't Krigstein is definitely in the Milt Caniff school, though. Could be any number of people, just not Toth, and not someone with a strong enough inking style to obliterate the pencils.

By the way, there is no Krigstein checklist in either Fantagraphics volume.

Karswell said...

Well I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one who disagrees with the Toth credit, I don't see it either. Krigstein though, most definitely... or someone aping his style closely. Thanks for the thoughts on this today, if anyone can seriously prove Toth had a hand in this though please let us know!

Okay, how about the painted cover? Any guesses on that? Best mummy cover ever!

Tamfos said...

There is a checklist of Krigstein's work in Squa Tront #6 where it lists this story. And it's all Krigstein art, by the way. He worked in different styles, after all, and occasionally would adopt a quicker, easier inking style when needed. For instance, check out his "87th Precinct" work for Dell's Four Color Comics #1309.

Karswell said...

Thank you Tamfos!!!!

Mykal said...

Tamfos: Hell Yes! And thanks. -- Mykal

Mike H said...

My wife and I "quote" this one all the time, calling one another a coquettish hamadryad from time to time! Seriously!

Mark said...

Thanks, Tamfos. And thanks Steven for the info that there is no checklist in B. Krigstein Vol. II book. It says there is on the Amazon page...
"a checklist of Krigstein's complete comic-book work is provided."
Maybe it had to be cut before publication.

Steven said...

There's a good section of notes on the stories included in Krigstein Vol 2. I suspect whoever wrote that bit on Amazon misinterpreted.

Anonymous said...

is anyone going to notify gcd about this? they should have this information too

Tamfos said...

My experiences in the past with submitting corrections in artist attributions on gcd were negative, so I've just stopped. You guys feel free, though.

BTW, the original checklist (that later was incorporated into Squa Tront #6) was done with Bernie's participation, so that should remove all doubt for anybody still on the fence about who did the work for this story (though, really, just look at it).

Lily Strange said...

Things I never thought I'd hear:
"This hamadryad is being coquettish with me,"
and
"She's singing the love song of the cobra."
I think this dude was sexually confused. After all, a snake is usually a phallic symbol. But this snake is female. Now I'm confused too!

Corpse Parade said...

I liked it.

Ralf Haring said...

Tamfos, I am on the GCD board and apologize for any past negative encounters. We saw the deficiencies in our error reporting mechanism and tried to address that earlier this year with a web-based tracking system. The intention is that it should be a much more open process, allowing anyone to see error reports at an time along with their current status. Hopefully it will also lessen the nmber of things that fall through the cracks.

http://errors.comics.org/

todd said...

I feel bad for Carol. Not so much Gordon.

Karswell said...

The Fangs of Death
(Sequence 6 - Story , 7 pages )

Credits:
? (Script), Bernie Krigstein (Pencils), Bernie Krigstein (Inks), ? (Colors), ? (Letters).

Synopsis:
Gordon Graham brings a cobra back from a jungle expedition in Burma, but it is jealous of his fiance.

Character appearances:
Gordon Graham

Reprinted: from ?

Genre: Horror

Indexer notes:
art correction via the August 15, 2009 readers of the blog "The Horrors of It All"