Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Dick Strong vs. Kurt Johnson

This scene from an old comic book romance title is Silver Age gold and stuff like this is the reason I bother getting out of bed in the morning. Let me dissect these panels for those of you who don't actually read the old comics so many bloggers take the trouble to post. Yes, you.

Take a look at this scene.
It's like if Animal Planet produced a comic book and it starred frat boys and d├ębutantes instead of Meerkats and Chimpanzees! With a minimum of posturing the Alpha Male stakes a claim on an available female of child-bearing age as his mate and stymies his challenger. Unlike in the animal world, violence is very likely if someone blocks the way to the vagina. Kurt is fortunate he backed down or he could have been seriously injured and therefore easy prey for other predators.

Now let's break the panels down even further.

Dick Strong: Obviously, his name means Mighty Penis.

Kurt Johnson: The definition of the onomatopoeic name Curt is "rudely brief" and Johnson of course refers to the slang name for penis. Dick's unsuccessful rival has a name that advertises his virility as sub-standard and alludes to finishing sexual congress prematurely. For some selfish reason, women seem to be concerned about that and find it undesirable in a male partner. Not that we care.

Private Property: That would be the females. Women belong to the Alpha Male, who keeps the girls around only for procreation and sandwich-making.

Don't ever tell me these comic book creators didn't know what they were doing.

From Romantic Story #33 (August 1956).

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Land of the Lost news: Preview picture of movie Sleestaks?

Commenter Elu-Lux directed me to a preview picture of Sleestaks from the upcoming Land of the Lost movie that is currently in production. If the image is accurate the Sleestaks look a bit more fierce and scary (given the better budget) but I don't understand the scene. If it is just a promo picture then fine, but if the image represents a scene in the movie I'm worried. The Sleestak Army looks as if if they were slumbering in alcoves in the cliff wall (the Rock people did something similar in an old Flash Gordon serial) and are waking up and attacking because someone trespassed in their hive or something.

That's kind of worrisome to me because again, it seems as if a plot of a science fiction movie is all about the protagonists causing a problem and then being forced to clean up their own mess and then being declared heroes (See: Daredevil, Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Hulk, etc. etc). I have a feeling that in the film the Sleestaks will be a cautionary legend among the denizens of the LotL until zany dad Marshall wakes them up, causing many wacky chase scenes and Jerry Lewis-like mugging for the lens.

I'll wait and see until I know more about the film but my extrapolations from what I have heard do not make me enthused about the project. I have already mentioned my misgivings and expectations due to who was cast as the lead actor.

Well, if nothing else I will be able to get cool movie tie-in toys!

Which is what the producers are counting on, darn it.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Ugly Pretty Girl

The "Ugly Pretty Girl" is an enduring cliche' used in entertainment and will probably never fade away due to the formulaic nature of what passes for popular entertainment. The Pygmalion plot is an easy way to create drama and sympathy in an audience or reader, who, truth be told, can usually identify in some way with the trials of the character. In most of these stories the female character simply gets a makeover and is suddenly transformed from ugly duckling into a swan. This is usually done with no regard in the story to those personality traits or esteem issues that led to her hiding her assets to the detriment of her own happiness in the first place. Countless men over the ages have overlooked the obvious pitfalls of caring only for the surface beauty to discover that the object of their desire is a crazy gold-digging psycho not their one, true soul-mate.

For the male gender in stories like this the usual approach is that they remain essentially the same in appearance but have a special value that makes them stand out and then become more desirable. As an example the nerdy mathematicians in the television show Numb3rs manage to land incredibly hot, complex women because of their unique abilities and talents that distract the opposite sex from their looks and Go-Bots collections, things that would normally ensure they die alone and virgins. This plays into the perception that women are valued more for their appearance and men for their skills.

The story The Missing Key in Romantic Story #33 (August 1956) is a typical example of the "Ugly Pretty Girl" tale, including the familiar ending where after the protagonist realizes she abused the power of her new found social status only to find love in the quiet dork who pined for her when she was "unattractive" prior to her transformation.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Oh, no they didn't

They did.

In 1995 Marvel published a Billy Ray Cyrus comic book.

Billy Ray Cyrus.

And he travels through time.

Now, when Marvel published a story of the rock band KISS visiting other dimensions and fighting in a war against Disco that made perfect sense and was a story that needed to be told.

Billy Ray Cyrus?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Why did he jilt me?

Maybe, just maybe, it had something to do with Ted hanging around outside waiting for you to leave.

Love Confessions #39 (October 1954).

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Red-Headed Tiger-Woman

Cavalcade -  January 1953
Open the trunk by clicking the picture!

From Cavalcade Magazine (January 1953).

Comic Book PSA: Tips for women on getting and keeping a job

Cinderella Love #13 (December 1953). These pages are so idealized and show a really professional working environment that is not really representative of many of the offices of the 50s I have heard of. I wonder if issue #14 had more tips for the career women of 1953 like, "So the boss grabbed your ass, shut up and take it." and "Wolf Whistles: Pretend you like them and avoid unemployment."

Friday, April 18, 2008

Happy Birthday, Hayley Mills!

I noticed that several of my favorite blogs were posting minimal content this week because the owners or participants were feeling under the weather.

I see that I was not alone. I actually had an entire week of Hayley Mills posts all lined up that would lead up into today and her big birthday bash. It was going to be a great week of stories, videos, pictures, appreciation and worship of the all-awesome actress Hayley Mills. But it was not to be. A flare-up of problems in my back rendered me unable to do much more than stand or lay down. Sitting for more than a few minutes at a time was out of the question as it caused excruciating pain throughout my lower back and legs. A peaceful night of sleep was an impossible dream. I was able to work, but barely, only because I stand and walk all day. The drive in and back home was a nightmare. Every minute seated in the car was worse than the one before and I was quick to scream at other drivers for going slower than the speed limit. The pain was so bad the the other day while driving that I actually dialed the phone number from off the back of a tree service truck and started shrieking at the receptionist, demanding she call her vehicle and have them drive 65 instead of 40 miles per hour so I can spend less time in the car. Oh yeah, it hurt that bad.

So in spite of the great health plan offered by the Hayley Mills Celebratory Complex and Learning Hospital I just wasn't able to sit in a chair long enough to update the site. But thanks to many unique and powerful pills I am steadily improving and should be puttering around the Hayleydome as before with no pain pretty soon.

It is in times of adversity that you learn who your friends really are. Not being one to cry and whine about things, people did notice that I was not doing so well and were pretty supportive.

This is how one of the conversations with a co-worker went:

C0-Worker: You really look like you are in pain. Anything I can do to help?

Me: Thanks, but no. Wait. Yes. Pick up that scrap of paper on the floor.

Co-Worker: Okey-doke! Are you taking anything for it? Like medicine? What are those good painkillers? Vistin? Viox? Let me think...

Me: You mean...Vatican?

Co-Worker: Yeah! That's it! Vatican. Vatican works real good if your back hurts."

Me: The Vatican is where the Pope lives, you bonehead. You mean Vicodin.

Co-Worker: Well, you don't have to be so mean.

Me: You don't have to be so stupid.
Agony makes me grouchy. The un-supportive a-holeoids I'm going to remember and will have sweet, sweet revenge on them a bit later.

But Hayley is not about Hate, so as the pills kick in the anger fades and I remember what it was that brought us all here today:



Sunday, April 13, 2008

New original art

Two new sketches from animator Arland Barron. Snagged them when he visited my work place the other day.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Tiger-Bustin' Heroes

Cowboy Sahib!

Mickey Mouse!

John Carroll!

Andy Panda!

Tiger Girl!

Malikar and Vekyra astride the Golden Tiger!


Here for your enjoyment is the little seen original opening sequence for the 1979 cinema release of what would be the Buck Rogers in the 25th Century television show. The title sequence is sexy and erotic even if the appropriately ethereal theme song doesn't quite mesh with the imagery as it seems more like an child's innocent lullaby than an ode to 500 years of continuous sex dreams.

Buck Rogers  opening sequence - Glasses

Click to play in new window

Man, I hated that show.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Show some pride, girl!

This is no way to handle a break-up! These gals are just embarrassing themselves.


Let me show you how a man does it!

That's right! It is all about the sweet, sweet revenge!

Monday, April 07, 2008

His ring on my finger!

I could swear I recognize several of these panels from classic movie stills and ad copy of the 1950s.

This cautionary tale from Secret Story Romances #17 (November 1955) doesn't take the usual approach of educating children about the threat of the Red Menace like most Atlas (nee Marvel) comic books of the time did. This title was aimed strictly at young women and the lead story undoubtedly sent pre-teens worried about their future running to Mother and Betty Crocker. After all, it is useless to prepare young men to resist and fight the threat of Stalin and fluoridated water if the women won't be at their beck and call once they come home from the front lines every day. In the 1950s only unattractive women or those that wore sensible shoes were in the workforce. Any woman getting a paycheck instead of a fresh mop head in those days may as well had the words "UNSUITABLE TO BREED" tattooed on her face.

In reality, I don't know how many marriages were actually ruined in real life because the hot, sexy, young blond wife couldn't cook or iron a shirt but what do I know? I'm from a later generation where women served as client-bait and stayed behind the reception desk only long enough to trick a wealthy customer into marriage.

Click the pictures to make a mountain out of a molehill.

Now get in the kitchen and make me a sammich!