Monday, September 16, 2013

The Statue of Evil

Scanned this one way back in early June and meant to post it, but only just now found it buried in some unrelated hard drive file that I accidentally saved it to-- arghh! Anyway, this is an eerie twist on the Dorian Gray tale (hope that doesn't give away too much), from the February 1952 issue of Web of Mystery #7, art by Sekowsky and possibly Alascia.








8 comments:

Tim Tylor said...

"Mumbo-Jumbo-Ricki". Hmm, sounds to me like the dark and terrible art of Voen-Een-Gitin. It's a miracle the baron's soul didn't end up in a muppet.

Brian Barnes said...

Riki-cho-riki mumbo-jumbo-riki was my favorite 50s novelty song!

Mestiere said...

These kind of stories where the soul is supposed to be somewhere other than the body confuse me. What is the soul supposed to be? Isn't it supposed to leave the body at death? And yet the baron was still walking around, needed to sleep, and had the same personality. But his body wasn't hurt by bullets. Why would not having a soul make his body impervious to harm? And if it was impervious to harm, how come the statue killed him when it fell on him? His soul was destroyed when the statue broke, but it still existed, and it killed him when it reentered his body? So getting his soul back actually killed him! I believe that even fantasy and science fiction can benefit from clearly stated rules. Otherwise the arbitrariness of what happens can get in the way of the fun.

Daniel [oeconomist.com] said...

I agree with Mestiere, and would add that arbitrary rules — randomness — of any sort undermines the ability of a story to convey meaning or surprise; it all becomes a crap shoot with an unknown number of dice, each of which has an unknown number of sides, for unknown stakes.

Karswell said...

*sigh

Mr. Cavin said...

Ha ha. Well I thought it was fantastic. I don't mind a bit of mumbo-jumble when it comes to the spookie-doo. It's as if I think some degree of plausibility can somehow defuse the effect of exotic mystery. But then again, I don't read the placards in museums, either. I actually like to experience certain environments as a sequence of disconnected oddities. I take Daniel's point about meaning, I just don't place much importance in it.

I'm not sure that I would have imagined any upside to having my soul trapped in a damn statue for all that, however. Perhaps one must be an ego-eccentric Bouvinian (Francophone?), reared among the dirt roads and adobe buildings of an ersatz Balkan countryside, to cook up this particular addlepated scheme.

Loved the art. The statue's progression was quite effective, as was the final panel; and I assume those black dots were hand-made lieu of any real zipatone acetate or Ben-Day paper? It's cheap and looks way cooler, frankly.

Karswell said...

Exactly... one mans sense of what's important is another mans eye roll.

Mr. Cavin said...

Totally. And I'm very often the one getting rolled at.