Friday, November 30, 2012

Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Masks of Famous Monsters - Issues # 40-41

Welcome to the seventeenth installment in The Masks of Famous Monsters Series. Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine was an absolute treasure trove of early mask history. By combing through the 191 issues published between 1958-1983, it's possible to gain a good understanding of the decades of evolution and history of Don Post Studios and Topstone monster masks. The eventual goal of this series is to catalog and archive each monster mask appearance in the pages Famous Monsters.

Issues 40 and 41 of FMOF where published in August and November 1966 respectively. Each issue contained a few nuggets of news that would have put a smile on the face of any self-respecting mask fiend...

Issue 40 featured a three page "Men Behind the Monsters" spread which contained news of Don Post's creation of a Peter Lorre wax head...


 Issue 40 would not directly contain any new monster mask ads, or news. However,  mask maker and part owner of Don Post Studios, Verne Langdon contributed not one, but two, articles to the issue. The first was titled "The Thin Monster Captured!" which was an interview with the great John Carradine. The second article, which is posted below,  is a "Men Behind the Monsters" featuring the work of make-up master Harry Thomas...

Finally, both issues wrapped up with the now familiar monster mask ad formats that were present for the better part of 1966...

Next up, our journey into the masks of Famous Monsters takes us to the year 1967 with feature length article on Don Post Studios, and another full length article on make-up man and monster maker John Chambers. Stay tuned creeps for the next installment... coming in December!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Too Much Horror Business: The Kirk Hammett Collection

I got home from work late Monday evening and waiting for me was a package which contained "Too Much Horror Business: The Kirk Hammett Collection". After popping open the box, I sat with the book until almost 2AM.

 It's obvious from the very first page that much love and care went into assembling the book. The volume is beautifully designed and there's so much eye candy within the photos that grace the pages. This book oozes monster goodness! It's an incredible buy for the cover price of $29.99, but it's an absolute steal for the $16 price that it sells for on Amazon

For me personally, the coolest thing about the book is learning that Kirk is really just a total monster kid that spent hours of his childhood staring at the ads in Famous Monsters just like myself and others. It's nice to see this very human and personal side to the guitarist of my favorite band growing up. I scored my first Metallica album '87, with Garage Days Re-Revisited at the age of 13, and life was never the same. Although my musical tastes have expanded greatly since those days, I still am a firm believer that from Kill 'em All through Justice, there wasn't a better band on the planet. I've seen Metallica six times in concert and would not be the person I am today without their influence on a very critical time in my life growing up. So, for me at least, It's wild to see the monsters that influenced me so strongly as a child and the the man who created the music that influenced me greatest as an adolescent be represented in the same book.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

1993 Don Post Studios Catalog

Hey creeps, it's been a while since a Don Post Studios catalog was posted here, so let's remedy that today with the 1993 Don Post Studios catalog. The '93 catalog contains quite a few new additions to the line-up compared to the '92 catalog, most notably the Bruce Spaulding Fuller sculpted "Outcasts" which includes one of my favorite late DPS designs "Beggar".  Other new additions include the  "Medical Marvels" line-up, the "Dungeon of Pain" line-up and the "Halloween Classics" line-up which would all remain staples in catalogs to come throughout the rest of the decade ...

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Hands, Feet and Headpieces

Today is the fifth and final day in a series of posts featuring the odd ball masks found within the pages of the 83-84 Morris Costumes Mask catalog. The week winds down with the ultimate accessory to any monster mask... monster hands and monster feet (with a few random headpieces thrown in for good measure too)


Friday, November 23, 2012

1983-84 Cesar Vinyl Masks

Today is the fourth day in a series of posts featuring the odd ball masks found within the pages of the 83-84 Morris Costumes Mask catalog. While these Cesar masks certainly don't qualify as "monster" masks, I thought it would be nice to post and archive these for anyone who might be in search of them. Aside from the first two pages of generic characters, there are some fun celebrity  masks including Laurel and Hardy, Charlie Chaplin, Groucho Marx, Reagan, Carter, Nixon, Princess Diana, Prince Charles,  Bob Hope, Woody Alan, and Alfred E. Newman...

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Distortions Nightmare I Mask

Today is the third day in a series of posts featuring the odd ball masks found within the pages of the 83-84 Morris Costumes Mask catalog. Page 3 featured the Distortions Nightmare #1 mask. The text on the page speaks for itself...

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

1983-84 Traveller's Monster Masks

Today is the second day in a series of posts featuring the odd ball masks found within the pages of the 83-84 Morris Costumes Mask catalog. Page 12 of the catalog was home to the 1983 Traveller's mask lineup. While these masks were widely considered by many to be low cost throwaways, I think they have a definite classic Halloween charm (that of the dime store variety). For those interested in more info and history on Travelers Co. Masks, check out this detailed post from the Crimson Ghost on the Halloween Mask Association.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Morris Fantasie Masks

Today is the first day in a series of posts featuring the odd ball masks found within the pages of the 83-84 Morris Costumes Mask catalog. The first two pages of the catalog featured Morris exclusive masks under the title of "Fantasie Masks" and "Fantasie Faces".

I haven't a clue who the artist was that created the Hollywood Fantasie Masks, but I am a big fan of the "Grim Reaper", "Howler", and "Mad Monk". They have a classic early 80's feel and a touch of Be Something Studios. If you have any information on these, please feel free to post a comment.

The Fantasie Faces are a different type of "mask" altogether. These latex prosthetics are described as a "totally new concept". While not quite made of the same material, I imagine these were very similar in concept to Imagineering's FACE masks.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Oddballs from the Morris Mask Catalog 1983-4

The 1983-84 Morris Mask catalog has a good number of pages devoted to oddball masks that are worth taking a look back at. Starting tomorrow I'll begin to post the pages from this catalog that have yet to make an appearance on the Blood Curdling Blog of Monster Masks.

The catalog pages are broken into 4 separate posts: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

Saturday, November 17, 2012

1976 House of Humor Catalog Pages

While these low res scans from the 1976 House of Humor Catalog don't show a lot of detail, they do provide a decent glimpse at the  Don Post Studios economy 150 and 300 lines...

Friday, November 16, 2012

Masks of the Movies : Mutations

This photo of Charles Parker working with the masks of The Mutations could be found in issue #22 of Castle of Frankenstein...

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Dr. Lady Boris Karloff Ad

This Super Deluxe Collector's Edition Boris Karloff was sculpted by Carol Hick, licensed by Karloff Enterprises, and offered by Dr. Lady. This ad also made an appearance in an issue of Head Hunters Quarterly


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

1988 Distortions Unlimited Catalog

These beautiful 1988 Distortions catalog scans come courtesy of the Night Owl Green Ghoul. The masks featured in this catalog represent my personal favorite era of Distortions Unlimited masks. Not because they were among Distortions' best masks (I'm of the opinion that the early 80's masks were some of the best monster masks ever made) but rather because these are among the first Distortions masks I remember seeing. Needless to say, they floored me.

Back in the late 80's, these were scary masks. The Classic Series and the Shadow Series absolutely blew my mind at the time. Each of the two series were affordable, scary, and had eyes. They actually had eyes! My young mind went spinning wondering how eyes could be incorporated into a rubber monster mask. Were they see through? Were they hard plastic? How was such a thing possible?

There are so many designs in this catalog that I'm fond of including Letcher, Ripper, Ghost, Decay, and Witch.  I still adore these masks and really feel they are wonderful examples of the genius of Ed Edmunds as a mask maker. In addition to these Distortions Classics, the Bill Malone and Steve Johnson masks have got to be among the finest masks Distortions Unlimited ever released during any era. There's not much that needs to be said for these, the masks speak for themselves.