My Young Life: Vampirella #12 – July 1971 – Part 2

It was a Sunday in July, 1971. I was 8 years old about to turn 9 in August. Back then we lived in Northeast Philadelphia in a neighborhood called Lawndale. On Sunday my father would take me and my sister Janice to a bookstore called Brad Allen’s in the next town over. I don’t really remember why we went to that particular bookstore, but the main reason was so my father could get the New York Times. My dad read the Sunday times for as long as I can remember. Without fail he would get that paper every Sunday.

So sometimes he’d take me and Janice with him. Maybe it was just to spend some time with us and give my mother a break.

My parent’s would probably turn you down if you wanted a toy, but they’d normally say yes to a book. When we would go to Brad Allen’s my dad would usually let us each get a comic book or something.

For the life of me I can’t remember a single other comic book that my dad got me at that store. I kind of remember him letting me get some little digest sized books about insects and mammals, but other than that, zip.

But Vampirella #12 holds a very significant, almost watershed moment in my life for me. Technically it wasn’t a comic book. It was the size of a magazine. It cost fifty cents.(Comics at that time cost fifteen cents) The comics inside this magazine were in black and white and for a little older reader.

I just thought the cover looked cool with the creepy looking vampire dude, holding the lady. This is a classic scene in any old horror movie.

When we got home, I started reading it. The first story was about Vampirella. The artwork was solid but I wasn’t thrilled with the story. But the next one was ‘the one’. It was entitled, “The Eye of Ozirios.” It was about this warrior queen named Amazonia from a land called Karkassone, who after this evil Baron and his minions kill a bunch of villagers and kidnap their women, she takes it upon herself to stop him. Armed only with a magical sword she leaves her palace to get some payback.

She’s a hot blonde queen this Amazonia. She goes to the bad guy’s palace and starts shredding the scenery. Slicing limbs, chopping off heads, stabbing hordes of bad dudes. Her steel blade drinks deep from many a man’s flesh.

The interesting thing that lends itself to this story, is that over the course of three pages and all of this violence, Amazonia’s clothes are starting to shred and come off. The metal breast plates and mail tunic are gone and she’s naked from the waist up.

She fights hard and kills many of them, but alas is eventually disarmed and captured.

By this time she’s just down to a white rag hanging around her waist that barely covers her buttocks and pubis. She’s shackled and then tied to an X shaped wooden cross. She’s to be sacrificed to The Eye of Ozirios.

Eventually Amazonia escapes and destroys the eye by throwing a sword into it. Once it’s destroyed whatever comes out of it kills all of the bad guys and then turns them to dust. Our girl, still wearing only what could be compared to a torn handkerchief for a bottom, walks bare breasted back to her city.

So let’s review: Hot blonde queen. Great body. Loads of violence. Clothes being torn off. Nudity. Domination. Humiliation. Bondage and Sacrifice.

That’s a lot of sexual imagery for an 8 year old boy. But he doesn’t know that. It’s just a crazy barbarian story and he loves reading stuff about barbarians, broadswords and monsters.

But while reading this particular story I got an erection.

First of all, let’s look at the science.

Boys get erections all the time. According to specialists erections in kids is not uncommon and is not a cause for concern.

The causes? Often early erections come for no reason at all. According to specialists, they are most probably just uncontrolled reactions, like startling or gripping, and simply indicate that the child’s nervous system is working properly. Erection could also mean that the boy’s bladder is full and he “needs to urinate”. In younger boys mild constipation can cause intermittent erections that are not painful and the problem resolves immediately.

How to handle child erections? We all know that babies are curious, eager to learn more about themselves and the world. Child erections are part of his attempts to get to know his own body. Although they may make you feel embarrassed, it’s important to handle these situations with utmost attentiveness and tact.
You mustn’t make the boy feel ashamed, as if he is doing something dirty. Keep in mind that your behavior at these first stages will influence his sexual outlook and behavior in later years.
Try not to panic and don’t let the boy get over excited. You can put him in a cool bath and try to distract him until thing return to normal.

How kids are likely to react: Erections are very common in most young kids. They usually start in early childhood. Some kids find them pleasurable, but many feel uncomfortable when the erections are strong and last for a while. In such cases, as they are not accustomed to this kind of feeling, they sense something abnormal, so they complain or cry out in pain.

Basically boys get erections all of the time for no reason at all. It may just be the body running diagnostics on a part of the vessel that will need to work properly in the future.

I remember getting erections all of the time as a kid, and to be honest with you I remember it was just a physically uncomfortable feeling. Not stressful, or cause for alarm just something your body did occasionally. It didn’t last long and you forget all about it.

Because there’s nothing to sexually tie to it. You’re prepubescent. Your penis’ only function is liquid waste elimination.

But… I noticed that every time I read this comic magazine, (which contained other stories with naked women in them) I got an erection. So after a while getting an erection for me became a sense of arousal. I don’t think I had all of the facts of life yet, but my body was automatically responding to the visual stimuli.

Nudity wasn’t taboo in my house growing up as children. My parents weren’t hung up on all of the nonsense tied up in how the human body is dirty. I remember us all being cool with being naked when we were little kids. It was an honest healthy environment. But once puberty hits, the doors close and privacy is respected. It was just a natural transition.

So if anybody ever tells you some garbage about sexuality being a choice, walk away from that moron. It’s just biology and science and how you’re wired. I was predisposed to like girls more than boys. My brain and body were already wired to enjoy the sight of the female form.

So thank you Dad, for buying me Vampirella #12 back in ’71. It was the first glimpse of  understanding my own developing sexuality as a boy.

In a closing note, I will tell you I have a copy of the original Vampirella #12 framed in the hallway in my house. No one knows why that particular comic is framed, but now they do.

The lovely Vampirella! Her magnificent legs!

If you’d like to see what made me horny forty-five years ago, I found a link to an archive so you can take a look!

https://archive.org/details/warren-vampirella-012

Enjoy!

 

And finally, here’s a little video I found online. This girl’s a cute cosplay Vampirella. If she ever showed up at my house, I’d happily let her sink her fangs into my neck!

 

 

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My Young Life: Vampirella #12 – July 1971 – Part 1

Vampirella is a fictional character, a comic book vampire superheroine created by Forrest J Ackerman and comic book artist Trina Robbins in Warren Publishing’s black-and-white horror comics magazine Vampirella #1 (September 1969). Writer-editor Archie Goodwin later developed the character from horror-story hostess, in which capacity she remained through issue #8 (November 1970), to a horror-drama leading character. Vampirella was ranked 35th in Comics Buyer’s Guide’s “100 Sexiest Women in Comics” list.

Vampirella initially appeared in Warren Publishing’s black-and-white horror-comics magazine Vampirella #1 (Sept. 1969), running to issue #112 (March 1983). The title was a sister magazine of Warren’s horror anthologies Creepy and Eerie. Like those magazines’ respective mascots, Uncle Creepy and Cousin Eerie, Vampirella hosted horror stories, though unlike them, she would also star in her own story, which would headline each issue. Vampirella was initially edited by Bill Parente. It would later be edited by Archie Goodwin (issues #7–12, 34–35), Billy Graham (#13–16), Bill DuBay (#21–50, 87–95, 101–102) and Louise Jones (#51–86).

As comics historian Richard J. Arndt describes, “Forrest Ackerman created, or at least had a strong hand in creating, Vampirella and he clearly had a major influence in shaping the lighthearted bad-girl story style of this issue as well.” Her costume and hair style were designed by comics artist Trina Robbins. The character’s first story artist was Tom Sutton. Artist Frank Frazetta’s first-issue cover “was a substitute for the original cover by European artist Aslan.”

José González became the character’s primary artist starting with issue #12. Other artists who would draw Vampirella during her magazine’s original run included Gonzalo Mayo, Leopold Sanchez, Esteban Maroto, José Ortiz, Escolano, Rudy Nebres, Ramon Torrents, Pablo Marcos, Jim Janes, John Lakey, Val Lakey, and Louis Small, Jr.

Jose Gonzalez is the greatest Vampirella artist in my opinion. He just really captured the beauty and sensuality of this character.

This image is my favorite and was available in the early 70’s as a six foot tall poster. As a leg man it’s a wonderful painting. I own one of the original prints of this masterpiece and it formerly hung on the back of my bedroom for many years. Vamiprella is simply spectacular to me and you’ll soon find out why.

Backup features appearing in Vampirella included “Tomb of the Gods”, “Pantha” and “Fleur”. Vampirella herself also appeared in a story with fellow Warren characters Pantha and the Rook in Eerie #94–95, and with most of the Warren characters in a company crossover special in Eerie #130. The final issue of the original Vampirella was cover-dated March 1983.

Read the conclusion tomorrow!

 

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My Young Life: The Amazing Spider-Man #252

I knew that whenever something major happened in an issue in regard to a very popular character, that book would always become more valuable in the future.

Back in May of 1984 something wonderful happened. Marvel comics introduced the “New” Spider-Man. It was the same Spider-Man as before except they introduced the black costume. The cover was beautiful and harkened back to the cover of Amazing Fantasy #15, which was the first appearance of Spider-Man back in 1962. It was actually released the day after I was born.

I collected comic books my entire childhood into my early twenties. So in 1984 I was twenty-two years old and still into comics. I saw that the black costume was happening and told my dad about it. I knew that whenever something major happened in an issue in regard to a very popular character, that book would always become more valuable in the future. The death of Spider-Man’s girlfriend, Gwen Stacy (Spidey #121–122 June–July 1973) are very valuable books. Google Detective Comics #27 and you’ll really see what I mean.

I run all of this information by my father and being the man he is gets on the case. We also enlist the help of my brother-in-law. As my dad always said: “Anything worth doing is worth overdoing.”

We all go out and find as many copies of that issue as possible. By the end of the month we have collected 200 mint condition copies of the book. The cover price sixty cents. So I have spent $120 on 200 copies of the same comic book. Sounds ridiculous.

I put every one in a plastic comic book bag and place the lot in the bottom drawer of a black filing cabinet I have in my bedroom that houses my comic book collection.

That’s where they remained for three decades.

Thirty years later in 2014, I decided to see what they were worth and began selling off the comics on EBay. Each one sold for between $75 – $120 per book.

In 1984 a twenty-two year old kid invested $120 in 200 copies of the same comic book. In 2014 a fifty-two year old man redeemed that investment to the tune of over $17,000.

There’s comics you buy and save because they bring you great joy, and there those that you know that if you hold on to them long enough, you’ll make a pile of cash on. But which ones do you buy today?

 

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Duncan – 1997 to Present – Blind Ambition And The Sin of Avarice

I have known Duncan for a long time. Nearly 20 years. He is originally from Northeast Philly like myself. I met him back when I was in retail banking. I was selling mutual funds at a branch in South Philly. He was my underwriter. So I would procure the clients, and sell to them, and Duncan would put together the hypotheticals and make recommendations. So he was my back office support person assigned to me. He had followed a girlfriend to Charlotte, North Carolina a few years before. Our headquarters were there.

We became friends shortly after he saw that I had written, “The Green Manalishi with the Two Pronged Crown”, on the auto reply on my internal email. It’s a Judas Priest reference and he got it. We started talking and got to know each other and our mutual of all things heavy metal.

He had family in Pennsylvania and would come up and visit occasionally.

Over the years he would come and stay at my house and we would plan his visits around heavy metal concerts. We’ve seen AC/DC, Motorhead, Ronnie James Dio, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Cinderella, Iron Maiden, and many other bands on several occasions.

When I got divorced he dumped his girlfriend who had gotten heavier and lazy. I bounced around the banking industry for a few years, and dated a few women. Some crazy, some not so crazy. I don’t remember if he dated much after he split with his girlfriend. Here’s the thing, Duncan is a good-looking, fit guy, but he has absolutely no game whatsoever. He works out, but doesn’t eat all that well. The boy needs more fruit and vegetables.

He always had around five dogs. They were his buddies. He lived on a remote road and had a big yard for the dogs to run around in. Always the dogs. So while I’m working in and out of banking and consulting, Duncan is taking all of these courses to become a CFA. (Certified Financial Analyst) He meets a woman in one of the courses he takes at night and they get to know each other. I think she was married before or in the process of getting a divorce.

So they hook up because they are both sporty and good looking. They eventually get married.

One thing about Ducan that is his biggest flaw is that he has no coping mechanisms in place. He has to control everything, and everything has to be about him and meeting his needs. Kind of like my dad. So after two days with the guy you’re ready to escort him off the property. You have to do the activities he wants to do, and eat the food he likes to eat. That shit doesn’t work long-term with any relationship. But he only visited a couple of times a year so I didn’t mind. We had good times for years.

Duncan was driven to be what he wanted to become and put off family until he felt he had reached a certain level in his career. “When I pass this test, or when I get that license, we’ll try to have kids.” Well, he put it off for too long and the window was closing on his wife’s ability to reproduce. They tried for a while but nothing was happening.  She finally did get pregnant but at some point lost it. It was painful physically and emotionally for her. She didn’t want to go through it again, and that was it.

Duncan’s wife came from money and had no real concept of it. I remember him telling me she had over one hundred thousand dollars in revolving debt. She kept promising to pay it down, but I don’t think she ever did. He only found out about it when they were doing a refinance on the house and she couldn’t be on the loan because she was so upside down with her credit card debt. Duncan always kept all of their finances separate. She liked to blow money on frivolous things, and Duncan was always frugal.

With any hope of gestation off the table, she started going out on the weekends with her soccer buddies. Many of them were younger and she would stay out late and party at the bars and clubs. Duncan used to smoke a bunch of weed when he was cool, but was never really a drinker. He doesn’t go out anywhere. He’s not social at all. He doesn’t really have any friends. I think I was his best friend for many, many years.

He did cut me off for about two years once when I first returned to Philly from New York. I don’t remember why. Some trivial shit. But out of nowhere he started texting me again. When I asked him why he cut me off, he literally said he had no recollection of doing it. I remember exactly where I was when he cut me off. Saying, “we had a good run, but it’s over.” But I was just happy we were back. Even if he lived fifteen hundred miles away.

Duncan is telling me he’s getting fed up with his wife going out all of the time. But she probably was bored with him by then. I know if I were a woman I wouldn’t stick around. He’s got to be 48 years old by now and he still acts the same way he did back in his late twenties when I first met him. He hasn’t evolved as a man at all. Still the same guy. But he gave up weed years ago.

So after about a year of her going out he finally says he’s going to divorce her. They were married for eight years. He worked his ass off for the bank. They own him. Scooter is married to his ambition. He spends so much time working that he has amassed a small fortune. But of course his loser family all have their hands in his pockets. He had to go on their mortgage or they would lose their house and have to go bankrupt because of their reckless spending.

They split up. He’s on his own with his house full of dogs again. He tries to date some woman at his office and she’s not interested. He has to go to therapy for his divorce. Not because he’s sad that it ended but because he’s so angry that he failed. He started dating some older Asian woman at his tennis club. He says he’s never getting married again. But he bought her $5000 earrings last Christmas. He makes killer bank now. They have been together for a few years now. I refer to her as Yoko because I hardly ever hear from him anymore. They’ve come up to the area twice, but the first time I really didn’t feel like hanging out with them. Then around last 4th of July, they were supposed to stay in the city but ended up staying out by his parents and I never saw him.

One of the last conversations I had with him this year was him telling me that when he sells his house in the Spring 2017, he will be worth a million dollars. Maybe then he’ll finally be happy.

But I doubt it.

UPDATE: Duncan text me over the holidays that he was on the train with his girlfriend on their way to Warminster to see his family. He sent me a photo of a 1.75 bottle of Grey Goose being held by her in a liquor store. He said it was for me. No warning. No planning. Just has a bottle for me and am I available in the city tonight. I already had really important plans with a lady, and I wasn’t going to be around. I told him I’d be available Saturday night and Sunday. I got a text later from him saying he was on South Street, and where could he take his girlfriend for dinner. I told him Serpico or Ella. I never got a thank you or another word from him. He said later that maybe on Sunday he could see me because he was visiting his cousins. At this point, I wished he just left the bottle on my front steps and left. Because it’s all about “Mr. I have no coping skills.” So I think I’m done. (Still love him though) Too much has gone by and he’s so locked into his old Asian granny of a girlfriend that I won’t hear from him for a long time. I liked him better when he was a pot smoking clerk. At least he was fun back then.

Bitter?

Yeah. Table for one.

(But… Stay tuned. There is more to come in the future and will be glorious.)

 

 

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