Thursday, November 27, 2014

Flaming Horror

As everyone works on adding an extra layer to their midsections and asses today, here's another story about a tubby individual with a whole other set of problems to contend with than just his weight! From the November 1952 issue of Strange Mysteries #8.

Happy Fangsgiving, fiends!









7 comments:

Trevor Markwart said...

Gave me kind of an eerie shiver towards the end. Probably because I actually cared what happened to this poor guy, and had some "investment" in the story. Liked this one.

Mr. Cavin said...

It's really kind of a shame his parents named him Tubby.

Brian Barnes said...

That ... beautiful. It's sweet, and through all the bad luck, two lost souls with lives of pain finally find happiness, and jerks like the oil company guy gets what they deserve.

The oil company guy was a macguffin to set it up so they could no longer live in the house alone, but even with some other plot trick, there wasn't a lot of horror, just sadness and a great redemption.

Mestiere said...

I found this story genuinely horrifying. It has body terror, in the sense of a body that doesn't work properly and gets worse all the time. And hopelessness, since we never thought things would get better.

I have a 550-pound cousin. He's not quite the unemployable, dateless loser shown in the story. He is a civil engineer in California, married with children. But... 550 pounds! His father, who was another huge man and a chain smoker, died of pancreatic cancer at 43. My cousin is now 48. He takes pictures of the food he eats and posts them on social media. The last one was a hamburger so huge just looking at it made me nauseous. I wish I dared tell him: "You are going to die soon, your wife will be a widow, your children will be orphans. Think how much you suffered when your dad died. You have to try and avoid this!" But, he already knows all that. Plus, unsolicited advice is not usually well received. You can't really make anyone do anything. And I can't go on a diet for him. I fear something like what happened in the story—the fire— where there will be a situation of emergency and he won't be able to save himself and others.

"I never guessed that death could be better than living." Well, that's chilling. I hope nobody depressed read that and thought: "Good idea." And the sad fact was that even as a ghost he was still fat and ugly!

Grant said...

I've heard that his movie career goes back to the ' 30s (I've even seen some of the films), but was Tor Johnson well-known in horror films when this was written? Because after the accident, Tubby looks a bit like him. Not in the face but in general - his clothing on Page 5 makes me think of that infamous "Time for go to bed" line.

J_D_La_Rue_67 said...

Reading again the comic and Mestiere's lines about his cousin suddenly made me understand why this story is so sad and touching.
It gives us a glimpse of the "everyday's horror" of this world. The complete incommunicability between the "freaks" and the "normals", the fact that everyday millions of men and women realize that diyng is actually better than living in agony. And yet... when the ghost offers him the only possible solution the man cries "please don't kill me!" This life is a mistery, we are a mistery to ourselves. This is no vampire tale, ... a very mature story.

Karswell said...

Glad to hear everyone enjoyed this one-- in fact, I'm so glad that I'm going to post another hot little number for you next-- better double check your fire extinguishers!