Monday, 7 July 2014


"Come in, I've been waiting for you! I've been waiting for you to fix my squeaking door!... What?... You say you're not the carpenter?... You have come to hear a story?... Very well!"

During the course of Muck Monster Monday, I'm not generally going to be looking at the one-off bog monsters that have wandered through the four colour pages, such as those that appeared in the early Marvel monster titles like Tales Of Suspense. There will be a couple of exceptions however, such as this one.
In 1952 EC Comics launched a new humour comic book onto the market. Written primarily by it's editor Harvey Kurtzman, Mad became one of the longest running humour titles, still running today, and certainly one of the most influential with it's groundbreaking parodies.
In the comic's fifth issue - and it was still a traditional comic book, not yet having adopted its more familiar magazine format - Kurtzman and artist Bill Elder parodied the long-running radio show "Inner Sanctum Mystery" which ran from 1941 to 1952. The show, more commonly known simply just as "Inner Sanctum" was an anthology show featuring tales of mystery, suspense and horror, featuring tongue-in-cheek introductions by "your host, Raymond".
But if satirizing the radio show wasn't enough, Kurtzman and Elder also chose to parody comics most famous (at the time) swamp creature "The Heap".
Another Heap is born!!
I have no idea if "Inner Sanctum" ever did an adaptation Of Theodore Sturgeon's story "It!", or indeed any stories featuring swamp monsters of that ilk, but the combination works perfectly. Although occasionally I do wonder what "Ghastly" Graham Ingles would have done with it, Elder's art is perfect for the story, cramming more sight gags into one panel than some comics manage in an entire issue.  Kurtzman's story is great fun, and it's interesting to note that when our walking garbage Heap is born, Kurtzman describes it as "a horrible glob of standing swamp thing".
Hmmm! Two other swamp creatures to be, mentioned in one caption!
The story can be found in numerous reprints, and can be seen in various places on the old interweb including here Outer Sanctum! Check it out.
Next time on Muck Monster Monday, I glob about The Blog. Er... I blog about the Glob!
See you then

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