Monday, February 4, 2019

The Dead Lover Returns!

The month of February is a reminder that love is in the scare-- well, "love" as Mr. Karswell defines it-- and as Valentine's Day approaches, so will the loathsome levels of gag inducing, lusty guy / girl story shenanigans that, for example, made my Haunted Love series / book such a chilling thrill (still available HERE --makes the perfect VDAY present too!) So off we go again with a month of gentle, tender, romantic tales of woo and goo and ooooo I think I'm seriously gonna be sick... for scary starters, this one from the May 1952 issue of Worlds of Fear #4, with art by Sheldon Moldoff.


Brian Barnes said...

Aw ... how sweet.

I loved the light blue corpse/face bit, though it didn't always work out (it was either drowned out by the coloring in places or the artist hurried through it.) Still, page 7 panel 2 is awesome.

Though I'm not buying the dog running away. Heck, my dog would run towards a corpse, there's yummy bones in there!

I loved the story, it was predictable but actually surprised me as I expected a more EC ending. I really felt for Ted, and all the characters, though Bud really got the short end of the stick in this one.

Page 4, panel 3 is awesome.

Mestiere said...

Cowled skeletons always remind me of The Blind Dead. There's a more recent one, too. her love grows, you will be gradually revealed to her in the rotting decay that is yours!" Ah, but that's not what happened. Ted Femur's state is only revealed after he rejects Helen, and not gradually. Alarming when the reader remembers the premise better than the writers.

Now we need to see what happens when this kind of courtship actually works and both end up in the realm of the rotting dead. Do they live in a rotting house eating rotten food? Surely they have rotten jobs. Do they have rotting babies? Do they name their children after other major bones, Joe Fibula, Don Clavicle, Kevin Sternum, Madison Pelvis? Can children grow and decay at the same time? Let's explore the potential of a decomposing afterlife!

glowworm2 said...

I know Ted doesn't mean any harm, but there's something a bit terrifying about waking up to a rotting corpse of what used to be a man staring up at you through unblinking eye sockets. He keeps doing this too, even when he finally finds the girl he's been looking for all this time. He doesn't ring the doorbell or knock.(Then again, the undead normally have no manners.)He just saunters in and flat-out kisses her before she can get a word in edgewise. Dead or alive, that would have gotten a slap on the face out of me if someone tried to do that.
Also, Ted only saw her once--that's not love at first sight, that's merely infatuation.
I also appreciate his last name. Femur--hah!
I'm also surprised that Bud actually lives through his car crash. Usually these sorts of stories end with the undead rival killing the living one.

Mr. Cavin said...

It sure is interesting to see such a positive spin applied to the classic zombie-meets-girl yarn. I guess there are two sides to every story, and here we see how slinking out of the dank grave and stalking down some nubile prey is chuffing good sport for today's rotten young incel. That's a new one on me! But there's even some collateral romance sprinkled on golden oldies like home invasion and nonconsensual necrophelia (or at least necking). Consider those lines blurred.

But this is a solid gold classic. The art and colors are beautiful (I'm a sucker for playing process tricks with the brush lines), and holy cats but Moldoff gives good dead people. The next time you're looking for a t-shirt image, you could do a lot worse than any of half a dozen panels from this thing.

Todd said...

I couldn't remember where I read this ages ago, so I'm glad to find it here. Maybe there's a lot wrong with it, but it's great if you think of it as some seriously weird dream. I also like the fact the protagonist is good enough to realize killing his true love is uncool, even if she'll hate him for talking her out of it.

For whatever reason, this story made more of an impression on me when I started reading pre-Code horror than pretty much all the others.