Saturday, January 26, 2019

The Witch of Shadow Glen!

Stickin' with the witches for another possessed post, and here's a fine example from the December 1952 - January 1953 issue of Witchcraft #5. And how about that incredible Kelly Freas cover painting? FYI I added another work of jaw dropping art for you at the very end of today's post as well-- enjoy!


Mestiere said...

Raquel Welch at the end was the best part.

I wonder how Sonya Granet sustained herself living alone in that house. And it looks like Glen just moved into Sonya's house after they got married. Sonya must have been the owner.

Sonya was four when she met the witch the first time. Then she says that she would "sneak away after school" to the witch's house suggesting that their friendship lasted for years since she probably was not yet in school at age four. Yet nobody else seemed to have caught Sonya going to the witch's "dingle". The witch seems to have received no other visitors. Was Sonya imagining the whole thing or was the witch's house in another dimension?

There is a long gap between the moment Sonya was signed over to the Devil as a little girl and the first time she ever does something bad, trying to kill her husband while sleepwalking. Did she killed her parents? We are given no information about foul play. And they died just two years ago, long after her relation with the witch.

If the witch was real the hallucinatory quality of Sonya's visions—sailing on an eggshell—might mean that the witch slipped some hallucinogen to poor Sonya. Or maybe Sonya just went crazy. The witches' gathering at the top of Bald Mountain is straight out of the Disney movie Fantasia. Sonya might have gotten those images from the movie. The gap could be explained by the fact that schizophrenia starts usually during adolescence or young adulthood. Among the symptoms are social isolation and sleepwalking. In fact everything is consistent with mental illness until the very last panel. "We all saw it, then!... Riding like a flame into the windy sky..." Otherwise it would be the story of a guy who marries a mentally ill person, abandons her to a fire until someone sees him and then pretends to want to go back to the burning house to save her.

Brian Barnes said...

If this story had a moral compass, it would be spinning so fast the damn thing would have flown through the sky, too!

I like the art on this, it's got an interesting look and I like the heavy inking. The artist forgot the devil's necklace at one point, though. I did like how they made all the monster and witch faces elongated (check out the splash for instance.)

As I said about the morality, if you can really become a puppet of satan by SOMEBODY ELSE selling you over, that's pretty much removes any free will from the equation here!

BTW "I'm not going to give you up like that, Sonya, I'm coming in, whether you like it or not!" is not something I'd try today.

Guy Callaway said...

Man, that cover is a keeper!

JBM said...

The cover is great. Is that skull rubbing his hands in anticipation while gazing at Jane Russell? The backgrounds were well done in some stretches. Page three last panel has the trifecta of broomstick, cat, and cauldron. I had never heard of the eggshell bit. The story drew me in by page 5. At page 6's end, I was wondering where the hell is this going? The writer must have wondered the same thing. What a wild unexpectedly unresolved ending. Raquel huh. I saw a little bit of Lara Parker in the photo, but I am huge "Dark Shadows" fan. Thank you Mr. K. for a wonderful post.

Mestiere said...

I was rewatching Psycho when I realized the similarity with this story. A young person living in isolation in an old house blames the problems in his/her life to an old woman nobody has seen. And at the end it is revealed that the young person—who has two personalities—is a killer.

Glowworm said...

This one's just sad if anything. The meetings with the witch as a child almost feel like a metaphor for sexual molestation with a neighbor that was friendly towards you. Sonya wasn't afraid because she was little and didn't know what was going on at the time until the witch actually took her to Bald Mountain and sold her to Satan.

In fact, because everything is mainly told through memories and dreams, it could easily be shrugged off as a psychological illness of sorts except that in the very last panel, Sonya is actually seen flying off on a broom.

Mr. Cavin said...

Seems like Sonya was doing quite well for herself, even under the yoke of demonic human trafficking, right up until she unwittingly attracted the attention of this total bozo, who, one: Would not take a hint; two: Would not stop stalking her; and three, Eventually coerced himself into her house and refused to ever leave it again. I mean, no doorway into the demimonde of homicidal malefaction is quite so tempting as meeting up with a douche like Bob. The fact that he didn't get what was coming to him at the end was just nihilism, man.

I love everything about page four--the witchy folklore and the flat coloring are all really effective. I also love the risque wedding night broomstick panel in the middle of six. It was all a dream, Sonya...