Tag Archives: Warren Publishing

Classic Monster Magazine Final Four

Classic Monster Magazine Final Four BracketWho Will Be Champion of the Monster Magazines?

We took a break from the action with during the holidays but it’s time to pick up where we left off – the Final Four in our Classic Monster Magazine Challenge!

You may recall we kicked off the Classic Monster Magazine Challenge in October with 16 of the coolest (and corniest) monster magazines from the 1960s and 70s. Over the course of several weeks, readers chose their favorite magazine in daily head-to-head battles.  As the field of 16 became 8 and, now, four.

The four magazines still standing are certainly worthy of the honor:

Monster World

Castle of Frankenstein

Famous Monsters of Filmland

The Monster Times

 

All unique, all meaningful and important in their own way to us monster kids.  But only one can claim the brass ring — in the contrived world of championships, the contest must continue until only one remains.  The choice, dear readers, is entirely yours.

Be sure to Like CCM on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.  We will post the head-to-head contests each day on those two social networks where you can cast your vote.

 

CLASSIC MONSTER MAGAZINE: Dick Smith’s Monster Make-Up Handbook

Classic Monster Magazines

Famous-Monsters-Dick_Smith-Monster-Make-UP-HandbookDo-It-Yourself Monster Make-Up Handbook by Dick Smith (Warren Publishing, 1965)

It doesn’t get anymore classic than this!

Monster Kids were way ahead of trend and were into DIY before Pinterest was even a glimmer in the internet’s eye.  Inspired by their favorite monster movies and made aware of the master artists and creators behind these movies thanks to Famous Monsters of Filmland, Monster Kids of the 1960s were making their own Super-8 monster movies complete with homegrown monsters.

Always aware of their audience, Jim Warren engaged future -Oscar-winning make-up artist Dick Smith’s to publish this one-shot “how-to” magazine.  To use a rather obvious metaphor, it was like pouring gasoline on a campfire.  One of the definitive magazines of Monster Kid-dom, this Handbook included 100 pages of photo illustrated guides providing Monster Kids step-by-step instructions for making monsters.

In classic Famous Monsters’ style, the cover by Vic Preslo wasn’t shy in selling the awesomeness inside.  In this case, it wasn’t an over promise!

How to have fun creating your own monster make-up

Over 250 Exciting Pictures

With Simple Easy-to-Follow Instructions

by Famous Make-Up Artist Dick Smith

The mag was reissued as a paperback by Imagine Inc. in 1985 and can be found on Amazon:

Dick Smith’s Do-it-Yourself Monster Make-up Handbook

As you’ll see in the following pictorial tour, the book progresses from the relatively simple Vampire and Ghoul #1 to the movie-worthy Quasimodo, Mr. Hyde and ‘New” Frankenstein Monster.  Enjoy the tour:

Dick-Smith-Monster-make-Up-Inside-Cover-Front

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I found a copy of this magazine at a newsstand in the mid-70s that was used but in good condition.  I scoured the magazine repeatedly, drawing the images and practicing the make-up on my younger siblings.  Here’s a shot of my younger brother with the Split Face make-up I did for Halloween – not too bad, if I say so myself! (The teeth have been wiped away because he’s been eating candy!)

Dick-Smith-Make-up-Split-Face-Halloween-1977Dick-Smith_monster-make-up-split-face-2

Collectors Value:

This magazine is fairly easy to find – though finding a really high grade copy requires a bit of patience.  Reader copies are frequently available in the $15 range and recent and copies in VG condition have recently sold on eBay for $45.  While prices range rather dramatically on this magazine in high grades, VF/NM copies can be found in the $55-$75 range.  Pretty nice appreciation for a with a cover price $.60 back in 1965. With patience, you can get a collectible copy – and you SHOULD own this book if you’re a collector or a 60s Monster Kid.  At minimum,  I’d recommend a reader copy of this magazine as well – its  just so much fun to read!

Follow this link to see current copies available on eBay

Related Articles:

 

Classic Monster Magazine – Famous Monsters of Filmland #84

Classic Monster Magazines

In honor of the great Christopher Lee, this edition of the Classic Monster Magazine archives features issue 84 of Famous Monsters.

This was the second appearance of Lee as Count Dracula on the cover of FM (the first was issue #45 with great art by Ron Cobb), and  a rare photo cover at this point in the magazine’s history.   But what a photo it is, capturing the raw, animalistic spirit of Christopher Lee’s Dracula.  I dare to say that even the pantheon of  great FM cover artists could do nothing to increase the impact of this cover. The extreme close-up of those red eyes, bloody fangs and snarling expression of Christopher Lee says it all.

So, sit back and imagine the wonderful scent of the aging newsprint as I remove my copy from its  protective bag and journey story by story through this classic monster magazine.

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 1971 Christopher Lee Cover

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84

Warren Publishing , June 1971

A blood-shot eye-full of Christopher Lee, our Favorite Living (?) Vampire.

Magazine Contents

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Contents

The Monster That Conquered The World

It came from beneath the sea.

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 The Monster That Challenged the World

The Scream Test

Carradine…Rathbone…Buster Crabbe…in real brain-busters!

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Scream Test

The Hunchbacks of Notre Dame

See Them All! From LON CHANEY SR. to Charles Laughton to Anthony Quinn to James Cagney. And beyond! An Outstanding Visual Horror Feature! Part II (Conclusion).

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Hunchbacks of Notre Dame Article

House of Dracula

Great Cast- Chaney, Carradine, Atwill, Strange – in Great Filmbook bulging with Great Pix! 19 Pages!

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 House of Dracula

The Devil Commands (Does Boris Obey?)

Pictures & Plot of a Hot One of Yesteryear.

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 The Devil Commands

You Axed For It!

A Choice Selection for Your Delection of Monsterrific Pix that Approach Perfection!

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 You Axed For It pg 48

The Raven

Conclusion of the Great 1935 Universal Flick.

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 The Raven

Mystery Photo #51

A Fright Pic to Puzzle Your Brains. (Aren’t You Lucky You have Two of Them?)

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Mystery Photo page 55

Girls & Ghouls Gallery

Portrait #11: She Stayed After School to meet The Mad Ghoul. What Made the Ghoul Mad?

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 page 55 Girls And Ghouls

Graveyard Examiner

The Newspaper of the Monsters, by the Monsters, for the Monsters, shall not Perish from the Earth.

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Page 58 Graveyard Examiner

Monsters of the Month

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Page 59 Monsters of the Month

Professor Gruebeard

The Creature Question He can’t Answer Hasn’t Been Asked Yet! (Oops…)

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Page 66 Professor Gruebeard

Back Cover  – Weird World of Aurora

Ad for Aurora’s Monster Scenes model kits

Famous Monsters of Filmland #84 Back Cover Weird World of Aurora Ad

Collectors Value:

Mid-grade or reader quality copies of this issue are quite reasonable with several current eBay listings for this issue priced at under $10.  My personal copy, which you see in the scans on this post, is in Very Fine condition and valued somewhere around $30.  A Near Mint copy is listed at Nostomania for $42.

Summary

All of the FMoF covers featuring Christopher Lee are iconic but this photo cover just says it all.  Lee’s Dracula was scary and Warren did right by letting the close-up of his face tell the story.  I was too young to get my copy at the newsstand and was fortunate to buy an a large uncirculated lot off eBay several years ago.  It is interesting that there is no feature story about Christopher Lee or Dracula in the issue but that’s not too unusual since the cover needs to sell the magazine and most of the articles in this issue were reprints from previous issues.

Ironically, the only reference to Lee in the issue is in the Professor Gruebeard Questions & Answers page wherein the captions beneath the pictures of Peter Cushing and Lee are switched.  The question referring to Lee is from Grant Creeper of Torrance, CA, and reads:

Q: Does a fan club for Christopher Lee exist? If so, please give me the address, for I would very much like to become a member.

A: Not only does a Chris Lee fan club exist, it’s been thriving and growing strong for many years.  For complete details, write to the club’s president.  Mrs Gloria Lillebridge  281 Centerville Road, Warwick, R.I. 02886.

Ms Lillebridge was active in several genre fan clubs and a quick google search shows that she remains an active member of Monster Kid-dom.

I think I’m going to drop Ms. Lillebridge a modern postcard via email and see if she’s still running that fan club, because the man did more than earn it.  The ranks of Christopher Lee fans have surely swelled since this letter appeared back in 1971 given Sir Christopher’s prolific career and roles in major film franchises including Star Wars and Lord of the Rings.

Thank you, Christopher Lee, for filling my life with frights and fun! Rest well.