Thursday, June 13, 2024

The Spider Waits!

Time now to step into THOIA's parlor for another gruesome Golden Age tale of terror-- one from the February 1952 issue of Marvel Tales #105 to be exact! Fred Kida turns over a few stones to reveal the creepy-crawly underbelly of eight-legged evil, while Russ Heath traps you, and wraps you up tight with another terrifyingly brilliant Atlas cover image. 


Grant said...

And yet, no spider type comeuppance for the parents, who "conditioned" him to be that way!

I'm sure a lot of readers here are thinking the same thing - I'm the biggest, best spider killer in the land!" has to be about the weirdest pick-up line in any bar.
Even if the story hadn't ended the way it did, I'm guessing he'd probably have left that bar alone.

Mr. Cavin said...

Yeah, spider killing is a weird flex. I mean, I assume there are better ways to pick up a stranger in a bar than intimating that one is some kind of pest control worker.

I like this one. It's a tale of ramifications, and those are my favorite kind. Honestly the story is the flashback, the lion's share of the page count here just denouement. The lesson it teaches us is about unintended consequences. Here Sven's parents punish him because they are worried his performance at school will not prepare him to be a productive member of society. But by punishing him they create a worker who is not even capable of holding down a entry-level janitorial position. Sure, because this is a horror comic he must also sweat the details of spider revenge. But in this capitalist society his story was over by that point already, anyway.

Loved every single thing about page three. Kida and this colorist were working magic. I want panel four of the last page on a tee shirt at 600%. And the cover is marvelous!

Brian Barnes said...

I have to say the moral judgement on this one leaves me a bit queasy .... Sven is a product of his vicious parents, who then pushes through their hate and is eventually consumed by it. It kind of sucks for Sven, but, at the same time, he couldn't escape his own cycle and a lot of times that is a fate all of its own.

1000 extra points to Kida -- he did his research, there's a lot of excellent spider art in this! Not all sort of weird ant like spiders, or spiders with the wrong body segments or leg counts. And he takes the time to draw a lot of different types of spiders here and there.

Awesome work. I hope his editors gave him a "5 spot" for going above and beyond!

Todd said...

I've loved this cover art for a long time. I agree with the other commenters, though: Sven doesn't deserve this outcome, although he's pretty foolish to gallivant off drunk through a maze of dark alleys with a total stranger. I wonder if there's a secondary lesson in that?

Grant said...

I know it helps with the drama, but instead of gloating about everything at the bar, he could've acted like a "draftee" when it came to him and the spiders, which he was.
Maybe it wouldn't have saved him from what happened, but it would've felt less like he was walking right into things.
But again, I know that that's kind of the point.