Monday, November 23, 2009
I guess I can blame Boris Karloff.
I say this as I stare at the cover to BORIS KARLOFF TALES OF MYSTERY #33 from Gold Key Comics, which features a huge monster with glowing yellow hypnotic eyes lumbering toward the diminutive humans below who are fleeing in horror. And, as ever, looking on in a little photo at the top near the 15 cents price is a close-up of a distinguished gentleman who seems as calm as ever. As if he’s saying to the reader “I’m not afraid to read this comic book, child, why should you be?”.
I blame him because I recently learned from my older brother that it is the first comic book he ever purchased (or persuaded our mom to buy for him). You see, he wasn’t that interested in superheroes back then, it was more the scary stuff that he liked. But you see, it was his gateway drug into the world of comics. He would grow to love all kinds of comics and since most comics being made in the late 60’s through the mid 70’s were superhero based, he began collecting.
Me being his little brother, I kind of inherited the love of comics. Kind of is an understatement. You see, I’m an addict. I love sequential art. I’ve been buying regularly since I could beg some change from my mom’s purse--a little over thirty years. It’s led to a love of drawing and just plain old popular culture stuff that seems boundless. Hell, it even led to my carreer as a comic book seller.
And now I know that I can blame it all on that one issue of BORIS KARLOFF TALES OF MYSTERY. Which, in turn, means that I can blame it all on Boris’ show THRILLER which was what this comic book series was originally titled and based on.
In a very real way, Karloff shaped my life. Just that one little comic is all it took. I guess it’s too late to thank him for it.