Saturday, December 14, 2013

Slime World

A few years back, THOIA friend and Snark Master General, Brian Barnes, mailed me a huge pile of Warren and Skywald mags-- seriously, right from the bottom of his snarky rocker heart! It took me awhile but I believe I've finally gone through them all and found one Skywald issue in particular here that stands out among all the others I received from him-- the August 1971 issue of Nightmare Vol. 1 #5. Featuring a wide, weird range of terror tales involving werewolves, nazis, torture, and giant sea creatures (plus a cool article about Boris Karloff and a Boris Valejo cover no less!), I guess for xmas this year I will deliver unto you all this issue in its entirety, (possibly minus the pretentiously drab Doom Star sci-fi tale-- we'll see.) So let's kick things off with the nicely slimy first tale in this issue containing some wild, violent Ralph Reese art as well as truly inspired sound FX --did you know the sound of a head being ripped off is "SQUEEZRRIP!" ?!! Yeah, me either...










11 comments:

Mestiere said...

Amazing art by Ralph Reese, who would have been 22 at the time. He had already put in his 10,000 hours. You can see Wally Wood's influence, I think.

Dr. Theda said...

We enjoyed this story as a kid... from the magazine "Psycho"...

Brian Barnes said...

The "slowly becoming a monster" script is very good and well paced. His inner-thoughts still being somewhat normal really help set the mood, but that was Skywald's stiche, and it was a bit different than other magazines and could sometimes work out some real winners, like this one.

That said, it's hard to even consider the story with art like this. It's really a wonderful piece of work. The environment is incredible, the Eisner-ish title on the column, the incredible use of negative/positive space (page 7 and 8 which use the tunnel as a halo frame are great examples.)

You have to do the sea monster/dracula story, it's the goofiest thing Skywald ever did (Nightmare 19), and that's when you'll get snark!

Trevor M said...

This looks like it's going to be a good issue. Always liked Reese's work. It's always got an enthusiasm to it. Thanks for posting!

Karswell said...

I have to be honest and admit I'm not the biggest Skywald fan... I think their artwork and covers are fantastic, but the writing never seemed even half as good as the Warren mags, or even the Eerie Pub reprints-- still, this is a pretty good (though not flawless) issue... more on the way!

Thanks for the comments!

Brian Barnes said...

Hewetson, who ran the pubs, was a freelancer at Warren and did his absolute best to be different from Warren, therefore the "horror-mood", where he tried to have the stories set a mood rather than be based purely on EC-ish ending. This actually made the pubs different from pretty much all other horror work, and made them an acquired taste.

It's really a toss up sometimes. It's much harder to do, and that's why there was a real uneven feel to Skywald's stuff.

I'll give them credit for being different. One of the more loved things Skywald did was the "Saga of the Victims" which actually leaves me cold, and I like the Skywald stuff. Never know what you were getting!

Yeah, though, the covers were awesome, and they had some incredible artists in the interiors.

Karswell said...

Yeah, most of the ongoing Skywald stories like Saga of the Victims suffers from just being downright BORING... but the art is still nice to look at for sure!

Tim Whitcher said...

Holy crap! I was eleven years old when I read this issue. I don't recall a thing about the other stories, but "Slime World" traumatized me (in a good way). I was SO creeped out by this story that I wrote and illustrated my own version of "Slime World." I wish I'd have kept it.

Grant said...

It's a little like the Outer Limits episode "Feasibility Study," except that in that story the creatures try to PREVENT regular people from turning into them.

Even though these horror magazine stories aren't known for having them, I wanted a happier ending. Show me an early ' 70s horror story with a heroine in a mini-skirt (or something similar) and I definitely want her to end up all right.

Andy said...

I did not know SQUEEZRRIP! was the sound of a head being torn off but it makes perfect sense now! Fun story!

J_D_La_Rue_67 said...

Makes me think about an updated "Gkmloooms" (had to check the name to type it).
Same feeling of impending, inevitable doom, here even more oppressive and slow-paced.
Roberto