Wednesday, December 31, 2008


This scan is from the 1969 California State Department of Education text book Sounds Around the Clock by Bill Martin, Jr. It was illustrated by Aliki for the story All Kinds of Neighbors by Howard R. Wellesley.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


This crayon masterpiece comes from my Christmas past. It was back in the fourth grade when I colored this mimeographed Santa. If I remember correctly, this was for a coloring contest. I didn’t win, but I think I came in fourth or fifth.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Watch the video at Weird Hollow starring Vlad, Scarry Larry, Grabble, Timothy Grimm and a beloved toy from the 1970's! Spend the holidays with Vlad and pals in his first ever Christmas special!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008


Who is Zeon 8bit? The animation is based on a computer drawing that I did a couple of years ago. I always did want to see him talk. Now I'm afraid he's going to put everyone in a trance and take over the world.

This is the original drawing of Zeon.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Coming Soon - The Vlad Christmas Stake-Tacular from Todd Franklin on Vimeo.

Be sure to visit Weird Hollow next week for The Vlad Christmas Stake-Tacular!


This is what all fashionable Christmas trees wore back in the day. This Sparkl-Tex Christmas Tree Drape is probably from the 1970's.

Ooh, just look at all those square sparkles!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


From the 1960's, is this nifty Christmas record wrapper sleeve that I picked up last year at a local flea market. According to the To & From box it was a gift to Lorraine from Elaine and Henry.

Apparently Lorraine wasn’t fond of the record that Elaine and Henry picked out. When I found it, this Eddy Arnold album was inside still sealed in the original cellophane.

Monday, December 15, 2008


I'm sure many grandmothers and aunts across our fine nation thought this 1950 Rudolph Reindeer sweater was the cutest thing since bobby socks and that it would be the perfect gift for their grand kids, nieces and nephews. I bet many kid's monthers forced 'em to wear this wonderful gift and then got the stuffing beat out of 'em at school.

"With Bells That Jingle While Children Play!" This might as well been a death sentence!

Sunday, December 14, 2008


Can you believe that we only have 12 days until Christmas? Wow, I've been in a Christmas rush this year!

Today we'll start off with this wonderful calendar top from 1956.

This fun artwork is signed Nance!

Monday, December 08, 2008


I had the pleasure of meeting Forrest J Ackerman a handful of times at various conventions and once at a film festival. Every time I met the man, it was a wonderful experience and he always made the time to have a meaningful conversation or at least a quick greeting. The last time I saw Forry was at the 2006 San Diego Comic Convention and it was really sad to see the condition he was in. He had changed so much since the last time I saw him back in 2000, also at SDCC. After the 2006 meeting I had a feeling I wouldn’t see the Ackermonster again.

Like most everyone else, I was introduced to Forry back when I was eight or nine in the pages of his long running magazine Famous Monsters of Filmland. Wow, these magazines were stuffed with everything a monster lovin’ kid would want to see and I devoured every page.

I only have a couple of issues left from childhood. Most of ‘em didn't survive into adulthood. My FMs were kept, along with Cracked Magazine at my rock fort that was located in the middle of the woods. (Yeah, I had somewhat of a Huck Finn childhood.)

The issue above probably survived only because it has a Star Wars cover.

In my 20's, Famous Monsters helped what I already knew, that my girlfriend was the one for me. (She is now the first lady of Neato Coolville.) On Valentine’s Day, she surprised me with some old FM issues and one of them was issue #100. I would eventually have it signed by cover artist Basil Gogos and Forry.

When I first met the Famous Monsters ringleader, I told him the Valentine story which he got a big kick out of.

Every time I met him he was ready for a conversation and I’m sure I asked him many of the same cliche questions that most fans ask. No matter, 'cause he always answered each question with enthusiasm, just like I was the first person to ever ask it. He thoroughly enjoyed talking about his beloved imagi-movies!

Here’s an appropriate 8 X 10 photo of Forry that he signed for me. This is one of my favorite signed items in my collection.

I always get excited seeing original movie props in person, especially ones from the movies I love. Sadly, I never had the chance to visit his famous Ackermansion, but Uncle Forry did wear two important movie props - Bela Lugosi’s Dracula ring and Boris Karloff’s Mummy ring. I had the pleasure of seeing both at a film festival in Kansas City. The photo below is Forry’s hand modeling Karloff’s Mummy ring during the KC film festival.

Of all the times that I met Forry before 2006, I never thought about having my picture taken with him. I guess I thought of him as a permanent fixture in the convention circuit or maybe I was hoping to have my picture taken with him when I had a chance to visit the Ackermansion. Regardless, I never did until 2006. This would be the last time I would see him.

So long Uncle Forry and thanks for all the inspiration.

Saturday, December 06, 2008


Prince Sirki paid a visit to Forrest J Ackerman just a few minutes before midnight on Thursday. He was known as Uncle Forry to the readers of Famous Monsters of Filmland and besides being an editor and writer his most important role was a champion of sci-fi (a name that he invented) and horror movies.

He was 92 and will be missed by many.

Friday, December 05, 2008



A couple of days ago I stumbled on two 1966 Scholastic Sci-Fi paperbacks. Literally I tripped over a small table when I reached for these on the shelf at the flea market. Glad I caught myself or I might've had to purchase hundreds of dollars worth of pink depression glass that was sitting on the next shelf. If I had accidently smashed that glassware, it would've been a depressing development. Anyway, check out these two cool spaced-out covers

This first book is about a kid who lives on the planet Ganymede (sounds like some type of ointment) who has a robot pet/companion named Rex. This kid named Paul and his family are moving back to Earth, but poor Paul can't take Rex with him. Shenanigans take place as Paul tries to sneak his robot back to Earth.

The cover art was illustrated by Wayne Blickenstaff.

This book asks the question, “Are the Old Martians really a lost race - just withered mummies lying in dark caves?” You know, for years I’ve been asking myself this same question. According to the back of the book, the year is 2017 and Sally and Jim help their father discover if the Old Martians still exist.

The cover art for this book was illustrated by Leonard Kessler.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


I’ve been following Sean’s art and photography on flickr for the past few years and he always comes up with something neato and cool! For his latest venture, Sean has combined his love of toys and Polaroid photography with his new gallery show, Toys on Roids.

Using his trusty SX-70 Polaroid, he has captured old and new toys in ways you’ve never seen. The square Polaroid picture frame is a perfect match for Sean’s toys and I’m amazed how he can tell a story in one frame. His photos seem to be part pop art, part fine photography and part single panel comic strip.

In his flickr photostream, we can peek behind the scenes of his Toy ‘Roid shoots and it’s interesting to see how simple his set-up really is. Take a look at one of his ‘Roids and then check out the follow up photo.

I say that's pure genius and pretty cool! I like that a pack of Polaroid film is his tripod.

The show started on November 7 and runs all the way until December 24 at the Soo Visual Arts Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. If you can’t make it to the show, the Soo Visual Arts Center has gathered up all of Sean’s Toy ‘Roids and published ‘em in a snazzy book. You can also purchase some of the original Polaroids used in the show and the book. Act quick, as he's sold a bunch already.

Also, be sure to visit Save Polaroid.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Thanksgiving was always fun in elementary school! Ah, memories of making construction paper pilgrim hats, learning about the Mayflower and eating stringy turkey and mashed potatoes that came from an ice cream scoop and covered with yellow slime gravy. Mmm mmm mmm, those were good times!!!

Here's a newspaper clipping of the lunch room in my elementary school. I was in the first grade and my class is sitting in the back behind the second and third grades. We're all decked out in our Thanksgiving paper costumes.

I'm glad my first grade teacher Miss Fischer gave me a star for my efforts on this Thanksgiving writing assignment.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


How many of us blew up, shot up or chopped up our beloved Star Wars figures after we hit age ten? I would guess a good majority of kids participated in plastic action figure torture during those angst filled years of boredom. Sad, but true, as millions of helpless Star Wars action figures were victims from our cruelty and I was no different. I committed many heinous crimes against these 3 3/4" action figures with my pal Jeff.

This past summer the spawn of Jeff was excavating the front yard at Jeff’s childhood house looking for pieces and parts. Look what his kid found -

Threepio's leg, back of a Stormtrooper, an unknown leg and some type of sci-fi car.

I can hear the action figure police pulling up to my door with this incriminating evidence and since they’ll be knocking any moment, I better go down into the basement and pull out the rest.

For more proof of my deranged ways, take at look at these photos that I snapped back in the winter of 1980. We reenacted one of the many unseen battles of Hoth.

Ah, those were the days. . . roasting a Princess Leia in Bespin Gown over Sterno until she melted, tying poor Threepio to a oversized bottle rocket and watching Han Solo lose a battle to a Stanley heavy duty hammer. Truth be known, I was a big wimp when it came to destroying my own figures and thankfully Jeff’s figures filled that destructive void. I always kept my action figures safe at home in my toy box, natch.

Be sure to check out the flickr group Growing Up Star Wars to see more photos from the first Star Wars generation!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Read this 1982 article from Bittersweet Magazine about Russell O'Dell reminiscing about Lyric Theatre that was located in Lebanon Missouri. The theater was torn down in the 1960's.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


If you know a veteran be sure to give ‘em a hardy handshake and tell ‘em thank you as today is Veterans Day.

This page is from the 1966 Lyons and Carnahan school reading book Three Green Men and Other Stories. Artist unknown.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Back on the weekend of October 25th St. Louis, Missouri had its first horror/model show aptly named Monstrous Weekend. This monster shindig was put on by Kitbuilders Magazine and they went all out to bring a fine group of guests.

The main attraction was meeting and chatting with the cast from the 1968 film Night of the Living Dead and you can see in the photo above that I got a bit too close to one of ‘em. Actually that’s Bill Hinzman, the famous cemetery zombie at the beginning of the film.

St. Louis was the last stop for the Night of the Living Dead 40th Anniversary Tour and most of the cast was present. Unfortunately, the director and head zombie wrangler George Romero wasn’t able to make it due to his shooting schedule on his latest “dead” film. In the photo below the cast was presented with a 40th anniversary cake. From left to right - Charles Craig (Newscaster), Judith O’Dea (Barbra), George Kosana (Sheriff), stabbing the cake is Kyra Schon (Karen Cooper), Russ Streiner (Johnny) and John Russo (screenwriter).

Go check out The Horrors of it All, a pre-code horror comic book blog. Part of today’s post features my scary mug with the lovely Judith O’Dea. The Night of the Living Dead actress is pointing to my snazzy THOIA t-shirt and you can get your own pre-code tee here.

Also visit Weird Hollow for a fun zombie photo from the Monstrous Weekend