Saturday, October 27, 2007

Halloween Countdown: October 28 Part 1!

OK, yesterday was quite the Godzilla-fest, wasn't it? Let's see what I have for today's massive 28 picture posting, eh?


For a chance of pace from yesterday, here's a movie poster with the word "Frankenstein" that actually is a Frankenstein movie... namely, "Son of Frankenstein", French edition! But you already figured that out, didn't you?

And now, some 8mm box art:





Note that "Horror of Dracula" above comes with a record to play somehow in synch with the silent 8mm print... I can't imagine getting those synched up was very easy!



And we wrap up part one with the above Frankenstein puzzle, sold in what's often referred to as an "Oil Can" box, because it's about the same size as the old oil cans. This would've been an early to mid 70s release, and I know someone else posted a pic of this puzzle on their own Countdown already, okay?

Halloween Countdown: October 28 Part 2!


If there's ever been a magazine truly worthy of being reprinted in Archive/Masterworks format, or in a CD or DVD format, I think Famous Monsters is definitely it! Back issues of this mag go for prices I definitely can't afford, and it was a wealth of info and photos in every issue!


These most excellent Universal Monsters drinking glasses came out during the 1960s!


I believe these day-glo plastic monsters were originally sold in gumball machines, but I could well be wrong!


This Frankenstein bank is just excellent... the seller says it's a bank, anyway, but I could've sworn I saw this on sale at Walgreen's lately... or at least, something similar...


This is the Imperial Toys' Mummy figure... And you know, it's a shame there's no current joined monster action figure in the toy stores these days, isn't it?


I may have shown the Jaymar Wolf Man puzzle earlier in the countdown, but this is a much larger photo of it!


This Frankenstein jiggler is from the 1970s, one of the best eras for monster toys!

Halloween Countdown: October 28 Part 3!


OK, so we couldn't go Godzilla-free today... above is the German poster for Godzilla Vs. The Thing, believe it or not! Yep, the word "Frankenstein" isn't there at all, and there's all those snakes... bizarre, isn't it?


Ah, that's more like it! German editon of "Godzilla Vs. The Sea Monster" there... and doesn't this poster make it look like Godzilla's got the hots for some native babe?


Above is the 8mm box art for the Japanese 8mm release of Godzilla! Nice, eh?

And now, some Godzilla toys!


The above creature is Angilas, also known by many other names...


This giant mantis is Kamakiras, and it's another of those Toho monsters whose name was messed up bigtime in US translations more often than not!


Behold, the awesome majesty of... MECHANI-KONG! If nothing else King Kong Escapes! was worth watching just for this awesomely goofy robot!


From Godzilla 2000, this is Orgag (I think)!

Halloween Countdown: October 28 Part 4!

More Godzilla toys...


This is a very excellent likeness of Gigan!


Here's Mothra, or Mosera as she's known originally in Japan. I think much like Gojira/Godzilla, the American name has become popular in Japan for her, too!


Nope, that's not just any plastic spider above... it's Kumonga, as seen in Godzilla on Monster Island, I believe! Not a great likeness, though!


Destroyah, above, has only been in one Godzilla film, the much more recent "Godzilla Vs. Destroyah!"


I presume I need not spell out that the above figure is of King Ghidorah, Godzilla's greatest enemy? Oh, wait, I just did!


Obviously, there's another Famous Monsters yearbook above!


I really have to start collecting the Sideshow Toys Universal Monsters figures one of these days! They're all excellent likenesses!


8mm Movies, Give-A-Show Projectors, View-Master, Etc.

So, sometime during the Halloween countdown, I promised that I'd write sometime about why 8mm and Super 8mm movies have such appeal to me today, even when you can find so many movies, complete, on DVD.

Well, like so many things, it goes back to childhood.

On television, Saturday morning cartoons had so many commercials for toys, but chief among them -- at least that I recall -- was for Kenner's Give-A-Show projector, which was something I could never get my parents to buy for me or for my siblings.

If you're not familiar with these devices, they were basically a cheap slide projector that came with sets of seven slides mounted in a cardboard frame. The other day, I posted the images for one of these, and there'll be more than them.

Now, if you're 30 or younger, you might wonder what the appeal there'd be for these... or, for that matter, for View-Masters (which are still available for sale these days, although they're nowhere near as popular as they used to be). But you'd have to remember what things were like in the late 1960s and early 1970s. So let me take you back, if I may.

Back then, if you wanted to watch cartoons, you couldn't just turn on the TV to Cartoon Network or any of the other cable channels that run a lot of cartoons these days. During the week, at least in the Seattle area, there'd be in the mornings on the local CBS affiliate J.P. Patches, who'd show some older cartoons between bits. And then after school, there'd be Brakeman Bill on channel 11 (which didn't have a network connection), who'd show other cartoons between his segments... and episodes of Speed Racer, Gigantor, and Marine Boy would be shown during his block, too.

On the weekends, it was Saturday morning cartoons on CBS, NBC and ABC... but after 11 or 12, that was it! On Sunday, I recall that the ABC and CBS affiliates would have some limited cartoons on, too.

If you wanted to watch monster movies, there'd rarely be anything on Saturdays, but on Sundays, there'd be Sci-Fi Theater on Channel 11 at noon... and if you were allowed to stay up late on Fridays and Saturdays, the CBS affiliate had Nightmare Theater, hosted by The Count. And one never knew what was going to be shown for either program!

But when my mom would take us shopping with her at Kmart, for whatever reason, we'd end up spending a few extra minutes near the photography department... and that's where I'd see the display for Castle Films' 8mm and Super 8mm releases. Most of these would be monster movies or cartoons (I recall seeing a number of Spiderman cartoons from the 60s on sale - and yes, I left the hyphen out on purpose, as it as missing on those cartoons).

Naturally, we didn't own an 8mm projector, nor would we ever buy one.

We did have a View-Master, however. They must've been pretty cheap even then.

So, we couldn't get 8mm movies and projectors, or a Kenner Give-A-Show Projector.

Now, as the 70s went on, there were other items on the market that, for the kids, gave us as close to home videos as we would get for a while... Kenner was the leader here, too, with movie viewers that had a loop of film you could watch (I recall the Six Million Dollar Man on the shelves). You could hand-crank this while you watched it.

Oh, there were also these really cheap movie viewers that you'd insert a strip of film into and then turn a knob to advance the frames, but that was like a View-Master or Give-A-Show, too. And there were other Kenner items, too.

In the mid-70s or so, the local library started carrying 8mm projectors and films that you could actually check out, and they were very, very popular. I recall one Saturday afternoon checking out a projector and a bunch of movies and watching them with some of the neighbor kids.

Of course, the home video market was just beginning in the late 70s and very early 80s... but during that time, the library system actually went from 8mm to 16mm... one could check out movies such as the Beatles' Yellow Submarine (which I did many times), many other full-length movies, plus "The Frankenstein Saga," which appeared to be a compilation of all the 8mm versions of all the various Universal movies.

And that was as close as you'd be able to get to seeing monster movies and cartoons until the home video market really went underway in the mid 80s and beyond... and of course, today, you can get DVDs for a buck!

Anyway, I hope all this helps you understand why I've got a nostalgia for that stuff.


Friday, October 26, 2007

Halloween Countdown: October 27 Part 1!


Starting off tonight's post with this Japan poster for Son of Godzilla -- wow, those Japanese Godzilla posters really look different from their US counterparts, eh?


As mentioned in yesterday's post, German translations of giant monster movies tended to throw the word "Frankenstein" into the title... here's the German poster for Gappa, The Triphibian Monster, proving that point!


This is the Japanese poster for Destroy All Monsters -- or at least, that's what the seller claims, although it could easily be for Godzilla on Monster Island.


This Japanese poster is for Godzilla Vs. Megalon -- much better than the US version, eh?


Speaking of Godzilla Vs. Megalon, here's the Spanish version of the poster... I'm guessing that, translated literally, it's "Gorgo and Superman," with Gorgo being the reference to Godzilla, and Superman the reference to Jet Jaguar. But then, I'm not good with the Spanish language, so it could well be much different!


These lobby cards (or something like that) are from Yugoslavia!


OK, here's a half sheet or lobby card for Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein so that you'll have a chance to cleanse your palatte between courses of Godzilla-related stuff!

Halloween Countdown: October 27 Part 3!


I have three Godzilla movies in my DVD collection at this time... Godzilla, King of the Monsters, Godzilla Vs. the Sea Monster... and Godzilla 2000, poster above! I wish I'd been able to see Godzilla 2000 in the theaters, but I don't think it was ever shown in my area on the big screen...


When my Godzilla movie collection was much more voluminus (and all on VHS), I had two copies of this one!


And here's the German poster for "Destroy All Monsters" -- of course, you knew it was a German poster because of the word "Frankenstein" on it, eh?


You should know which movie the above poster is from... your guess as to which country it's from! I'm guessing Yugoslavia...


...because I know this "Terror of Mechagodzilla" poster is from the Yugoslavian release, and the "Japanski" thing is a giveaway!


From Czechoslovakia comes this very pop-part Godzilla Vs. Monster Zero poster! Groovy, eh?


This German poster for "War of the Gargantuas" actually has a right to use the word "Frankenstein" on it... because War of the Gargantuas is actually a sequel to "Frankenstein Conquers the World"!

Halloween Countdown: October 27 Part 2!

More Godzilla-related stuff here!


This is the Yugoslav poster for Terror of Mechagodzilla -- man, all the foreign Godzilla posters make the US ones look lame, doesn't it seem?


I have no idea which country this Godzilla Vs. MechaGodzilla poster was published in...


OK... "Godzilla on Monster Island" appears to be, in reality, "Godzilla Vs. Gigan," because at least that's the only Godzilla movie I'm aware of which features an amusement park in it (not that there's a roller coaster or ferris wheel in that movie).


OK, enough Godzilla stuff for a bit... is this really the first House of Dracula image I've posted in the Halloween Countdown?

And now, more Godzilla!


Here's the Thai version of the poster for Godzilla Versus Monster Zero, or just plain Monster Zero, as it's also called. Monster Zero, of course, being Ghidrah (or Ghidorah, to go with the proper spelling).


The seller of the above poster claims it's from "Godzilla Vs. Mothra," but given the presence of Ebirah in that poster, I'd say it's from "Godzilla Vs. The Sea Monster"!


And this lobby card is from the German version of Godzilla Vs. The Thing!

Halloween Countdown: October 27 Part 4!


Another Yugoslavian poster here... "Godzilla Vs. Mechagodzilla", to be exact!


Not sure which country this poster is from... I believe it's for "Ghidrah, the Three-Headed Monster"!


And it's time to throw in a random non-Godzilla poster here, just for the heck of it!


Remember how I was saying how misleading the US "Godzilla Vs. The Thing" posters were? This one properly illustrates that!


And yes, it's another random non-Godzilla image! This is Random Acts of Geekery, right?


And finally, this last Godzilla poster is the French version of Godzilla Vs. MechaGodzilla or Terror of Mechagodzilla!