Comic Relief: Double De-Satanized!

Welcome to Comic Relief #9. To see the previous installments of Comic Relief, check out the Comic Relief Index.

Remember back when Lady Satan’s third appearance in Red Seal Comics #17 was reprinted, but with her name changed and other major alterations to the story? Well, it happened again to her following appearance! This time, it occurred in Authentic Police Cases #5 in 1948, which shows just how much of a fuck publishers gave about comic titles back then, seeing as this story contains no police and the presence of a ghost makes its authenticity dubious at best.

In my previous post I speculated that her name was changed from Lady Satan due to prudishness about having a hero named Satan, but in this case there appears to be a more pragmatic motivation. Lady Satan’s original non-magical-ass Nazi-Fighter appearance was reprinted in Authentic Police Cases #2 (again, why did this comic have that title?). Having Lady Satan appear as a normal human fighting Nazis and then, 3 issues later, as a sorceress fighting a ghost would be just a teensy bit disorienting, so that’s the most likely cause of the change.

So, let’s see what they changed.

Oh god. All the color ran out of her dress onto the floor!

Oh god. All the color ran out of her dress onto the floor!

That caption clearly establishes this story as “authentic”. Obviously. When I read a badly written single sentence that tells me that this story is utterly dubious, I know this must be an authentic police case. And the fact that “Marco’s Villa” sounds more like a flower shop than a Gothic European estate doesn’t make me suspicious at all.

There’s also one very subtle little change that you probably haven’t noticed yet. Take a look at the original then come back to this one. See it?

There’s a signature on this one.  Down on the bottom right where that skeleton’s ball sack used to be. Specifically, the signature of Ralph Mayo. Who the hell is Ralph Mayo? I don’t have the foggiest. All I could find on him was that he created a villain called Big Eye for DC. Who is Big Eye?

Eye want you for the US Army! ...And to have nightmares for the next month.

Eye want you for the US Army! …And to have nightmares for the next month.

We have learned something important here. Ralph Mayo has a better (if more literal) understanding of how names work than the publishers of Authentic Police Cases.

(And seriously, they couldn’t bother to fix her legs?)

See that! The word "police"! The title is accurate! (Actually, it is pretty authentic to portray the police as mostly useless and absent. Maybe the Viscount was black.)

See that! The word “police”! The title is accurate! (Actually, it is pretty authentic to portray the police as mostly useless and absent. Maybe the Viscount was black.)

So she’s Marietta now. And apparently she and Nancy are friends. And the printer ran out of every color of ink except red.

Having them be friends is actually a good change, as it corrects an aspect of the original story that was so nonsensical that I strongly suspect it was the love child of creationism and Un Chien Andalou. How the fuck did Nancy know where to send the letter to Lady Satan? Why is Lady Satan taking requests via mail?

In this version, that’s not a problem.

The rest of the story proceeds almost exactly like the original, except with the name Marietta instead of Lady Satan, and with her dress in green rather than red, and EVERYTHING ELSE in red red red red red. Seriously, the comic Red isn’t this red. Grendel: Black, White and Red isn’t this red. If there were a comic called Everything is Fucking Red, it wouldn’t be this red. The colorist must have been in a serious hurry to meet a deadline.

However, he did get one thing right. After Lady Sa– errr, Marietta says she’ll slip into Nancy’s clothes, she is clearly seen to be wearing Nancy’s blue dress instead of her own green dress. So that’s two points where this version improves on the original.

But coloring aside, the comic is pretty much identical to the original, with even the exact same dialogue in almost every panel. The few exceptions are when they change dialogue in order to make the story make more sense. Observe:

My auto suggestion would be to drive a Honda. Good gas mileage.

My auto suggestion would be to drive a Honda. Good gas mileage.

There. Isn’t it so much simpler to say that the chains were old and corroded, rather than to have her display super strength immediately after showing her getting knocked the fuck out by an old man?

And then there’s this:

And you can't have a trial without an arrest. And you can't have an arrest without...police!

And you can’t have a trial without an arrest. And you can’t have an arrest without…police!

See? It’s easy. You don’t just leave the husband’s fate completely unresolved, like in the original. A single line of dialogue corrects the problem.

All in all, the de-satanized version is actually slightly better than the original, in that it at least corrects a few of its flaws.

But we’re not done! Believe it or not, the Red Seal 18 story was de-satanized AGAIN in 1952, this time in Strange Terrors #1. (To read up more on this, check here and here.) Yes, this same story was re-written and published again twice. Anything to just keep churning out those fucking comics, amiright?

And has any character ever been reworked into a new character with a new name this many times? Poor Lady Satan…

WHY DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING TO MEEEE????

WHY DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING TO MEEEE????

What’s even weirder is that they seem to be copying from the Authentic Police Cases version, not the Red Seal version, as indicated by the fact that this is again set in post-war Europe, whereas the original didn’t give a location.

And dig that stilted opening sentence. What the hell does it even mean? (And they still haven’t fixed her fucking legs. They even forgot to color in her shoe straps, so now her already gimpy-looking foot looks like it’s really veiny.)

They also still have Mayo’s name on it. I don’t know if he really drew it, or just put his name on it to claim it as his, seeing as the original had no credits at all, as was common in the Golden Age when creators were treated like property. Either the original publisher removed the signature, or Mayo put his name on artwork that wasn’t his. Either way, there’s probably something nefarious going on here. Another possibility, though, is that he drew it, didn’t originally sign it, then signed it later when it was re-printed.

Unlike our previous de-satanization, this one drastically alters the source material. Every line of dialogue is changed. But again, most of the changes are an improvement. But not all…

Yeah, 'cause I'm sure Berlin immediately after the war was a great place to be...

Yeah, ’cause I’m sure Berlin immediately after the war was a great place to be…

That last panel is a zoom-in of the original, removing the spooky house from the image. I guess this is because it was more of a mansion than a castle, and Castle Karloff (an obvious reference to the actor) is a better name than Marco’s Villa. But the effect is to reduce the horror aesthetic of the overall comic, so they sacrificed a bit there.

Anyways, so now rather than Lady Satan, and rather than Marietta, she’s Celeste. To be precise, Celeste Karloff (the name just rolls off the tongue), as we now see the victim’s name is Olga and she and Celeste are sisters. Lady Satan and Nancy started as strangers, then became friends, and now they’re sisters. If this comic had been de-satanized one more time, they would have been Siamese twins.

That first panel also seals the deal for me–this was copied from Authentic Police, not Red Seal, seeing as it the original didn’t actually show the letter or mention any military police. The comics publishers were playing hot potato with the original artwork for this story.

There’s no need to go over the rest of the story in detail, since it’s the same story, but with completely new dialogue that in most cases makes the story less fucking nonsensical. For instance, in the new version they explain that Celeste spat out the poison drink she tasted. The ghost doesn’t make creaking footsteps. She doesn’t put on Nancy’s/Olga’s clothes and she’s not mistaken for Nancy/Olga by the housekeepers.

The de-satanization of Red Seal 17 was a hacky shitstain on the world of comics, but these two of Red Seal 18 are actually a slight improvement on a story that had serious issues (get it?). It still sucks that they couldn’t call her “Lady Satan” though. So fuck these comics anyway!

The comics are, of course, available for free at the Digital Comic Museum. Check ’em out! And see you next time.

Comic Relief: Lady Satan vs. Aunt May

Welcome to Comic Relief #8. To see the earlier installments of Comic Relief (including earlier installments about Lady Satan) click here.

After a brief detour back into Lady Satan’s wartime non-powered Nazi-fighting days, today we return to the later incarnation of Lady Satan, in which she’s a supernaturally powered demon fighter.

But first, a few preliminary matters. In my post on Lady Satan’s last appearance in Red Seal Comics #17, I mistakenly said that that issue came out in 1945. The correct date is July 1946. Today’s issue, #18, hit stands in October, 1946. This comic apparently had a rather erratic publishing schedule. And, in fact, this is the last issue published by Chesler Comics. The later issues were published by a completely different company altogether. The Golden age was confusing.

Speaking of confusing, let us say something about the cover. The glorious, glorious cover.

Bllaaarrrgh!!! This what happen when George not let me pet the rabbits!

Bllaaarrrgh!!! This what happen when George not let me pet the rabbits!

I don’t have the foggiest idea what’s happening here, but that giant caveman fucking cracks me the fuck up. I love how he can’t be bothered to use a more advanced weapon or wear proper pants, but he takes the time to neatly braid his beard. I also love how those eye-beams from the Mullet Master seem to provide little more than illumination. What’s this superhero’s name, Lamp Face Man? The Living Bat Signal? My-Powers-are-Lamer-Than-Aquaman Man?

And the best part: We aren’t just rescuing a damsel in distress. No! This guy’s captured almost a dozen hot chicks! It’s like he wanted the whole cheerleading team to himself. And people thought the 90s were excessive. But what the shit is he going to do with them? There’s no way his giganto-cock is gonna fit in even the sluttiest of them, so rape is out of the question. Is he gonna eat them? Dress them up like dolls and play tea-party? Force them to teach him how to make better sartorial decisions? I must know, damn it!

Lady Satan shows up on page 17, in a pretty eye-catching introductory panel.

Whoops. I seem to have stumbled into a Wonder Woman comic.

Whoops. I seem to have stumbled into a Wonder Woman comic.

It’s not bad. Definitely the kind of thing that will sell comics. And while Lady Satan is a horror comic now, the last issue didn’t fully commit to the horror aesthetic. This one, however, wants absolutely everything about the mis-en-scene to scream “HORROR!” Bats, bones, basements, broken boards and bondage–it’s all there. There’s just one little thing that bugs me, though…

WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH HER LEGS???

Her left leg seems to have been amputated at the knee. I get that it’s supposed to be folded under her, but that’s not what a god damn folded leg looks like.  Unless her leg has suffered a Joe Theismann in at least two places, it wouldn’t completely fold under her body like that. And her right leg starts out all right, until we get to what I presume is supposed to be a foot. This isn’t quite a Liefeldian level of Foot Failure, but it’s pretty bad. Are those the straps of her high heels going around it? If so, then where in the holy mothercuntfuck are her toes? She’s not wearing panty hose, because the skin on her legs looks just like the skin on her arms–unless she’s wearing panty hose on her arms, in which case, what the fuck, Lady Satan? That’s just weird.

Let’s get into the story.

Because it's a horror story, duh!

Because it’s a horror story, duh! You expect her to stay in an upscale suburban condominium?

Our comic here is following the time honored Golden Age tradition of introducing new story or character elements without the slightest explanation for where they came from or why they were never seen before. Yes, Lady Satan is now receiving letters begging for help. Apparently, she’s a celebrity now. How do people know where to send the letters? Is there an Ask Lady Satan column in the local paper? Why? How? When? Silly reader. Exposition is for bad Christopher Nolan dialogue!

We’re introduced to Nancy Strong, who coincidentally looks a lot like Lady Satan. You might think this is because the artist has a limited range when drawing women (too many in the industry do), but it actually becomes relevant to the plot later on. We also, sadly, learn that one of my favorite comic book supporting characters has fallen on hard times!

And by "very faithfully" I mean "wheatcakes".

And by “very faithfully” I mean “wheatcakes”.

Oh my non-existent god! Aunt May is so broke, she had to change her name and take a job cleaning up some scary haunted mansion.

Yup. The mansion is haunted. Nancy claims that she hears weird sounds at night. And, in classic human fashion, when we hear hoof beats we think zebras, not horses. The noises couldn’t be a raccoon or a bird or a rogue jellyfish. Nope, gotta be a ghost. Her father disappeared a while back along with a large sum of money, so that’s probably connected. Because these things always are.

This story has a total of 5 characters in it: The titular (*heh*) Lady Satan, Nancy Strong (the victim), the ghost of a murdered man, and two BUTLERS. I hope I don’t have to provide a spoiler warning before saying Rebecca and her husband are the killers.

And, of course, the tea Rebecca is serving them is roofied (because like any good housekeeper, she keeps date-rape drugs around).

No, I won't make a gay joke about "queer taste". But I will say that seeing this panel in a horror comic made me think of this.

No, I won’t make a gay joke about “queer taste”. But I will say that seeing this panel in a horror comic made me think of this.

Wait. How did she know the tea had a “queer taste”, unless she actually drank some of it? This reminds me of a sequence in the recent Hawkeye Annual #1 (which I just read today). But that’s another story.*

Nancy becomes sleepy, obviously, and Lady Satan pretends to also be sleepy, naturally. That’s how these things ALWAYS go. I’ll give them a pass since this cliche wasn’t quite so worn out in 1946 as it is today (although it still appeared in quite a few contemporary films noirs).

After Nancy’s announced genuine sleepiness and Lady Satan’s faked sleepiness, we get the following page, which has a number of…issues.

The Golden Age, when everyone thinks out loud, and even if you're just a few yards away you can't hear a damn thing they're saying.

The Golden Age, when everyone thinks out loud, and even if you’re just a few yards away you can’t hear a damn thing they’re saying.

I’ll make a list of all the things that are off here.

  1. That first panel comes immediately after Nancy announcing she’s sleepy. And yet, she looks fired up.
  2. We’ve already established that she believes there’s a ghost in the house. No need to repeat ourselves.
  3. They’re in this huge mansion, and yet they sleep in the same room? Why, other than to titillate the reader with potential lesbian fingerbanging and nipple suckage and clit licking and…okay, I’m getting carried away here. I’ll stop.
  4. Lady Satan’s pose in the first panel seems to confirm my lesbian fantasies…
  5. She sleeps in her mask?
  6. Why put on Nancy’s clothes? And on that note…
  7. Why, two panels later, are you clearly wearing the same clothes you were already wearing rather than Nancy’s clothes? (This is likely due to lack of communication between writer and artist.)
  8. Why does a ghost make the floor creak?
  9. Nobody has untrustworthy parents! He’s her father, so you can totally trust him for realz yo!
  10. Just what exactly is the housekeepers’ plan here?
  11. Why would they think it’s Nancy walking in her sleep? Why would them thinking that be a bad thing?

So Nancy follows the ghost into a creepy barn/dungeon thing, and discovers that he was leading her to the location of the hidden money. Lady Satan divines that the ghost wants her to give it to Nancy. Evil Aunt May and her husband follow as well…

"I'm gonna stuff this wheatcake so far up her ass she'll shit whole grain for a month!"

“I’m gonna stuff this wheatcake so far up her ass she’ll shit whole grain for a month!”

Wait, you knew she would? So your plan was to drug Nancy and wait for her to sleepwalk to where the money is? HUH? How the fuck is that supposed to work? What makes you think she would ever do that? Why choose the night that Lady Satan arrived to do it?

Judging by Aunt May's gesticulation, that must have been a very stinky punch to the face.

Judging by Aunt May’s gesticulation, that must have been a very stinky punch to the face.

Lady Satan, I have just one thing to say to you.

Yup, the old bald guy just punches the fuck out of her, and they chain her up and take the money. And, yes, they still think she’s Nancy, even though she’s wearing her Lady Satan mask (and still in her own clothes, no matter what she says). How fucking dumb are these crooks? At least they finally wise up…

I can only imagine her delivering that line like this.

I can only imagine her delivering that line like this.

Interestingly, other than her ability to see ghosts when others can’t, this is the first time she’s used her Deus ex machina magic spells in this story. Previously, pretty much every time they needed to move the plot forward she’d pull some kind of spell out of her ass that does exactly what the plot needs at that moment. Props to the writer of this week’s installment (whomever he/she is) for finding other ways to tell the story.

Anyways, so now Lady Satan has sicced the ghost of Abner Strong on them. That will distract Aunt Doom and Bald Bastard Ben for a while. But what about getting out of those chains?

Strong enough for 20 men, pH balanced for a Satanic woman.

Strong enough for 20 men, pH balanced for a Satanic woman.

Oh, come on! Just when I’m praising the comic for avoiding the Solution-Was-In-My-Ass-The-Whole-Time plot devices, it pulls out two in a row. Bad! Bad Lady Satan comic!

And wouldn’t that super strength have been useful when you were getting clocked in the face on the previous page?

Whatever. Aunt Evil and Not-Uncle-Ben realize that Phantom Abner can’t actually physically harm them (him being incorporeal and all), just in time to meet up with a now free Lady Satan. She knocks Baldy Magoo aside, and then we get one of the most confusing action sequences I’ve ever seen in a comic book.

Sequential art. Usually it helps when it's sequential. And art.

Sequential art. Usually it helps for it to be sequential. And art.

Uhhhh….huh? I honestly can’t make out what the fuck is happening here. In the first panel Lady Satan is apparently swinging her chains at Aunt Slay, but judging by the motion lines they go way over her head. Aunt Slay is cowering, but apparently unharmed. In the next panel, she’s flying through the air, perpendicular to a pitchfork. Next, she’s face down on the ground, totally forked in the ass–from the opposite direction than what she was traveling. It makes no sense. And somehow the dialogue manages to make it all even more confusing and non sequitur. I can’t think of any way that what’s happening in one panel could be followed by what’s in the next. We seem to have been transported into some brainfuckingly bizarre universe where cause and effect no longer have any meaning. Where up is down, black is white, good is evil, and Kid Rock is talented.

And the worst part is, this is all we get. There are only two panels left in the comic…

Wait. So the huge fortune that we've all been fighting for...can fit in a fucking lunch bag? What a gyp!

Wait. So the huge fortune that we’ve all been fighting for…can fit in a fucking lunch bag? What a gyp!

There are a lot of things that come to mind when I look at that last panel, such as… Why are those books facing the wrong way, with their spines to the wall? No, just kidding. It actually makes me think about fisting.

How did Abner get his revenge? Was he the one who forked Aunt Slay in the ass? When? What was going on between those wonky panels? I guess he might have done it, since the black and yellow color scheme seems to be his leitmotif. But we’d already established that he can’t affect corporeal things. If he could impale someone with a pitchfork, why not just grab the money and give it to Nancy himself, instead of getting Lady Satan to do it? She said Aunt Slay could “feel but not see” the ghost–is this what she meant? But she saw the ghost, and felt the fucking pitchfork? And how is his revenge complete when Not-Uncle Ben is still alive and kicking? WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON???

As a final kicker–Nancy seems to have overcome her grief pretty fucking quickly!

Anyways, I didn’t like this story as much as the last one, and that mainly has to do with the fact that the artist clearly struggled with how to portray action on a static page, and the writer clearly struggled with condensing his story into the small number of pages required for an anthology comic, as was common in the golden age. With their incompetence powers combined, this story seems to leap from one image to the next, often with little rhyme or reason or coherent flow. It’s still not bad, though. It has all the cheesiness and absurdity that’s typical of a Golden Age superhero story. And it’s in the public domain and available for free at The Digital Comics Museum. If you like that kind of stuff, check it out! If not, then fuck off!!!

______________________________

* Okay, let me get this straight. Madame Mask pulls the older-than-dirt cliche of a drug in her ring being dumped in Kate Bishop’s drink. Kate does a “fake sip” (how exactly does that work?) then pulls the slightly-less-older-than-dirt cliche of pouring the drink out in a plant, because no one will notice when the drink instantly goes from full to empty (writers, please stop doing this). The drug IMMEDIATELY WILTS THE PLANT. Then Kate Bishop fakes being…sleepy? And Madame Mask goes along as if this were exactly what she expected. In fact, we know it’s what she expected because she wanted to keep Envaginated Hawkeye alive to torture her later. So the drug she intended to put her to sleep with is so powerful it kills plants on contact. What the fuck???

Oh, and “unknown unknown” is NOT a tautology.

Comic Relief: Satan’s back, bitches!

Welcome to Comic Relief #7. To see the earlier installments of Comic Relief, go to the Comic Relief Index.

I said in Part 3a of my Lady Satan series that Lady Satan appeared only in reprints in 1943 and 1944. However, as it turns out, I was wrong! There was at least one other original appearance of Lady Satan, in her old non-powered, Nazi-fighting persona, in 1943. This appearance was in Hello Pal Comics #1, in January 1943. (Are we serious with that fucking title?)

The cover is…interesting…

My creepy green eyes and child molester smile are sure to sell a lot of comics!

My creepy green eyes and child molester smile are sure to sell a lot of comics!

As I keep reading Gold Age comic books, I’m continually reminded of just how different comics were back in the day. As far as I can tell, Mickey Rooney has nothing to do with this comic. They just put his big goofy mug on the cover because…He’s motherfucking Mickey Rooney, that’s why.

Anyways, yes, this comic has another Lady Satan story in it! And here it is, in its entirety.

I better shoot that guy as he falls off the building. Just in case.

I better shoot that guy as he falls to his death. Just in case.

Yup. It’s a text story. Take a moment and read it. You can click on it to embiggen it. I’ll play Angry Birds while I wait.

Done? So, yes. A text story. And not really a very good one, either. Lady Satan is never in any real danger, it seems. She does everything right and everyone loves her. She just comes across as the Boring Invincible Hero. *Yawn.* Jacques is the only thing that even approaches being interesting. If not for him, this would just be a story of “Lady Satan is awesome and now the French are slightly less pussified.”  Although I do like that we can now add Motivational Speaker, Expert Knife Thrower and Alan Moore Themed Sky Writer to Lady Satan’s already impressive repertoire of amazing abilities.

And clearly this story was written by someone who knew little of the previous two stories. In the originals, Lady Satan worked in the shadows and was not a public figure. In this one, everyone knows who she is. She’s some kind of Frog Superman who inspires people with speeches about how great the French are. Like Joan of Arc with a chlorine gun and a domino mask. But it should be noted that continuity was never much of an issue in any Golden Age comic.

(And why the fuck does Jacques commit suicide? Seriously, dude, just run.)

It’s pretty clear that the artist was given minimal information on how to make the illustration to accompany this story. I’d wager he was some poor schmuck working for pennies at Harvey Comics, and an editor just walked in and said, “Lady Satan. Wears a red cape. Shoots guys. Dude falls off building. Have it on my desk by tomorrow morning.” “Oh, OK, I’ll just draw Nurse Jackie shooting a guy in the penis as he falls from a red brick school building.” Art! I mean, Jesus, he obviously wasn’t even shown the story he was supposed to be illustrating. The story describes Lady Satan as hooded and masked (as in the earlier comics), and she doesn’t shoot Jacques in his frogballs when he falls from the building. (Plus, I have to ask: Why does the burst of smoke appear 2 feet away from the gun’s barrel?)

This is one of those times where I realize how many frogballs it must have sucked to work in comics in those days. The artists and writers back then were basically treated like slaves. The poor writer and artist who worked on this might never have even met each other, and were probably just assigned to do this story without being told anything about the character that they were writing/drawing. And they probably got paid in peanut shells and gum wrappers.

It does, however, illustrate one aspect of Golden Age comics that was better than today’s comics. Hello Pal Comics #1 was 68 pages long and contained numerous stories with a variety of characters, all for just 10 cents. These days, you pay 3 or 4 bucks for 22 measly pages and just one story. Admittedly, it’s worth it when it’s a good story, like Matt Fraction on Hawkeye or Bryan Azzarello on Wonder Woman, but still. Sometimes I wish comics were more substantial, and a single issue could provide a more diverse and engrossing reading experience.

Anyways, that’s it for today, but I shall be back soon!

Comic Relief: The Girl Who Loved Stupidity (part 2)

Welcome to installment #6 of Comic Relief. To see the earlier installments, go to the Comic Relief Index.

To see Part 1 of my review of Hansi: The Girl Who Loved the Swastika, click here.

So, let’s recap where we left off. Hansi, the dumbest bitch in Czechoslovakia, has become a devoted Hitler Youth follower and blindly regurgitates Nazi propaganda without any thought or reflection whatsoever. She’s so blinded by Nazism that she decides to stay in Prague even when the Russians are invading, complete with their borscht and vodka and communism and all. Her boyfriend, Rudy, says he hopes she gets raped to teach her a lesson, and this is exactly what happens. Except that everyone except her gets raped, because that’s how the plot wants things to be.  She and her friend Hair Helmet easily escape the Russian concentration camp they were in, and now they’re on the run.

What to do?

"Because there's no rape in the American military. Besides, we'll probably be taken prisoner, and I've heard there's even less rape in American prisons! USA #1!!!"

“Because there’s no rape in the American military. Besides, we’ll probably be taken prisoner, and I’ve heard there’s even less rape in American prisons! USA #1!!!”

Okay, I get the gangsters part. But “gum-chewing”? Why would Czechoslovakians hate our mastication-based freedoms?

Hansi and Hair Helmet keep moving west in search of Glorious Wonderful Americans, and along the way they have a pseudo-philosophical debate about peace and love, which causes Hansi to recall her mother’s advice about not forgetting Jesus, because all the pain and suffering she’s witnessed (and that this supposedly omnipotent being must have just stood by and watched) still hasn’t sunk in. Gang rape? Jesus loves me!

After joining up with a group of refugees trying to make a clandestine run for the border into West Germany, they are spotted by Russian soldiers.

The "miracle" of hiding and being quiet, you fucking moron. It was just two panels ago.

The “miracle” of hiding and being quiet, you fucking moron. It was just two panels ago.

Hansi has now very suddenly started aping certain Christian platitudes, such as attributing events to “miracles” even when the actual, mundane cause is really fucking bloody obvious. Don’t expect the comic to be consistent with this, though. But it is notable that the Christian boilerplate re-entered her patois only after the Instructional Rape that Rudy wished upon her. Written by a woman, folks.

Look in the background in that top panel. I’m pretty sure Hair Helmet is dead. At least, I think. She appears to take a bullet. We don’t see her any more after this panel. Hansi apparently doesn’t give a shit about her, because poor Hair Helmet doesn’t have any more of a role in the rest of the story than Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru. Hansi never mentions her again. Hansi: Stupid, and selfish.

"I remember hearing about gum-chewing gangsters from somebody...who was it? Ah well, she was probably a twat anyways."

“I remember hearing about gum-chewing gangsters from somebody…who was it? Ah well, she was probably a twat anyways.”

Is gum-chewing gonna be some kind of weird leitmotif in this comic from now on?

Anyways, Hansi and the child she rescued are taken in by American soldiers (who are living in barracks much nicer than anything any real soldiers ever lived in).

Of course Spire Christian Comics felt the need to plug Archie and all his Christian wholesomeness in this scene, but this scene is a bit anachronistic. In 1945, the title would have been Archie Comics. It wasn’t shortened to just Archie until the 50s. Get it right, assholes! Besides, if I know anything about the American military, if that guy’s reading an anachronistic Archie comic, it’s this one.

Would you like a Freedom Foot Massage? A Liberty manicure?  Perhaps a Jesus facial?

Would you like a Freedom Foot Massage? A Liberty manicure? Perhaps a Jesus facial?

Rape you? What do you think we are? Russian?

This comic sure knows its audience. Fundamentalists suck at subtlety and nuance, and this comic makes sure to state its point so bluntly that even the dullest godhumper mind can grasp it. Russians bad. Americans good. Breakfast!

Were the American soldiers quilting in their free time?

The Americans give Hansi the royal treatment for a couple pages, then she’s taken in by the Red Cross, where Rudy’s sister finds her and informs her that Rudy’s U-boat was sunk, and he’s presumed dead. Good fucking riddance, I say. Sleep with the rapist fishes, Rudy.

By this comic's logic, that means Rudy's mom got raped.

Ugh. By this comic’s logic, that means Rudy’s mom got raped, too.

Why does everyone love Hansi so much? For a comic about the cruelties of WWII, Hansi seems to get off horse-fuckingly easy in every single situation. Horrible things are happening all around her, but she’s always just fine. Even the Russian rapists spare her. The Americans treat her like she’s the fucking Queen of Free Blowjobs. Rudy’s sister seems to love her more than her own mother. Hair Helmet took a fucking bullet for her.

And yet, all she does is just fucking stare stupidly into the distance and puke up stereotypes and propaganda she absorbed from others. Other than the fact that she’s got a pretty face (clearly modeled on Betty Cooper–go back to that gang rape scene and imagine it in an issue of Betty and Veronica), what appealing qualities does she have? She even hates gum!

She gets a job as a teacher in Bavaria, and her life is fucking wonderful and perfect. As lives in war-torn nations are, naturally.

The hills are alive with the sound of white privilege!

The hills are alive with the sound of privilege!

Hansi, you selfish bitch! You’re surrounded by people who survived the Holocaust, the families of those who didn’t, soldiers who were traumatized by the most destructive war ever fought, families devastated by all the fucking carnage and horror attendant to worldwide warfare, and you learn that your ex didn’t die a horrible death in a sunken U-boat along with all his comrades, and your very first thought is whether you should date him again?

Fuck. You.

Wait. Is that Hair Helmet? Is she a redhead now? I honestly can’t tell. The comic never tells us who this redheaded chick is, and we never see her again. I don’t think she’s Hair Helmet, as she appeared to be quite dead earlier. Unless… Oh my god, she’s a ginger zombie! She’s going to eat our brains! (Don’t worry, Hansi, you’re safe.)

The ginger zombie apocalypse might go some way in explaining the Dutch angles on those last two panels. Every now and then the artist tilts a couple panels, but there usually seems to be little rhyme or reason to it. Maybe he/she just got bored drawing Jesus crap for a hack publisher and decided to mix things up for shits and giggles.

So, anyways, yeah. Rudy’s back. Turns out he escaped in an inflatable raft. How the fuck he pulled that off in a submarine is anybody’s guess. He and Hansi get married. Because that’s what you do when you’re a girl. You marry the guy who said he hopes you get raped. But the marriage is unfulfilling. What could be missing?

Get out the Q-Tips, bitch, 'cause you're about to get ear-fucked by scripture!

Get out the Q-Tips, bitch, ’cause you’re about to get ear-fucked by scripture!

Hansi is reluctant at first (for, like, a single panel). But before long…

How fucking big is the print on that Bible?

How fucking big is the print on that Bible?

She and Rudy just start mindlessly regurgitating one Christian trope after another. All it takes is a few Bible verses and their little pea-brains are immediately won over.

Let’s note something important here. Hansi has not changed. She just as much of a blind follower as ever. She’s just as spoiled and myopic as ever. She’s the same person she was from page 1, but with a layer of Jesus smeared over her. That’s it.

And when has she ever been disappointed? Almost everything has gone her way, and every hardship she’s faced has been easily circumvented. Every shit-eatingly stupid decision she’s made has only resulted in harm coming to other people, like Rudy (sunken U-Boat) and Hair Helmet (raped, shot, and zombified).

The shallowness and gullibility of her character of course would be lost on this comic’s target audience. You can see why in the second panel above. “Do we DARE to believe?” As if gullible belief in a bunch of old fables is somehow a brave act. As if joining the Christian majority in the West is somehow courageous. “Dare to be a blind follower!” Because if your beliefs are petty, childish, and simpleminded, you can console yourself with the lie that you’re actually a hero.

Anyways, Rudy and Hansi take their new found faith and move to America. But they’re shocked when they arrive.

Go back to Czechoslovakia, you ungrateful whore!

Go back to Czechoslovakia, you ungrateful whore!

Oh my god! America has hippies and litter and black people! Maybe we should go to that Real America Sarah Palin keeps yammering about.

God hates TAB.

God hates TAB.

So diet food is evil now? Is there anything fundamentalists won’t complain about? (That HEALTH AIDS sign is a bit unfortunate, but not unprecedented.)

Hansi decides that America is too materialistic and hedonistic and needs more Jesus. I would inform her that America’s rampant materialism is a direct product of that capitalism thing that the fundamentalists are so fond of, but since she’s shown no sign of being able to connect two ideas that some authoritarian belief system didn’t already connect for her, it would be a waste of time. Hansi blames the problems she sees in her students on their lack of stupidity, and realizes what the world needs is for her to spread her idiocy far and wide. We then get the most revealing series of panels in the whole comic.

Am I the only one who can't help but think she's having an orgasm during this?

Am I the only one who can’t help but think she’s having an orgasm during this? (And for someone who apparently loves America so much, how did the author manage to get the Pledge of Allegiance wrong? How do you fuck that up?)

Remember when I said she hadn’t changed a bit from when she was a Nazi? Well, that is actually the entire message of this comic. Be like the Nazis, but replace Hitler and Victory with Jesus and America. It’s good to be God’s little fascist robot!

There is no other way to interpret this. Hansi’s flaw wasn’t in her bigotry, her ignorance, her blind jingoism, her sheep-like devotion to an authority figure, her inability to think for herself, or her rah-rah attitude towards the destruction of other nations. Those things are all just fine. She just didn’t include Jesus in the mixture. That’s the only shortcoming that this book ever points out in her.

Hansi goes on to create a ministry where she saves people from horrible fates like being a hippie or not being a God-Nazi. She goes to prisons to preach “the word” (presumably she still thinks there’s no rape in this country, or she might focus on more pressing matters in our prisons). When I think about all the resources people waste on spreading nonsensical beliefs, and think about how many starving people those resources might have fed, I get pretty pissed off. But not as pissed off as these two panels make me.

I'm pretty sure that "Hitler taught me many things" isn't the best way to start a speech.

I’m pretty sure that “Hitler taught me many things” isn’t the best way to start a speech.

Hmmmm. Look at the faces in that crowd. I wonder whom he meant by “militants”…

Hell, that’s just what this comic needed. More fucking racism. Yup. Let’s pile even more of it on for good measure!

"But I have this weird feeling that a white woman is putting words in my mouth."

“But I have this weird feeling that a white woman is putting words in my mouth.”

So Hansi speaks at the prison, inspiring all those black militants to love America for this first time ever.

You know all those accusations against Barack and Michelle Obama that they don’t really love America and are always apologizing for it and they’re also somehow simultaneously atheist and Muslim and communist and terrorist? That shit ain’t new. The right wing has been otherizing blacks as America-hating militants for generations. Kinda like how somebody I’ve heard of would portray the Jews. There was this group–I forget what they’re called–but they always portrayed Jews as rats who were feeding off of society and didn’t sufficiently love some western European country… Hmmmm.

And this is the note on which the comic ends. No shit. There’s just one more panel of Hansi in front of the American flag saying she loves Jesus, and we’re done.

What have we learned from Hansi? Well, the name “Hansi” looks like a diminutive for “Hansel”, which is a boy’s name. So I conclude she must be a cross-dressing homo-Nazi who hates dieting. Makes about as much sense as anything else in this comic.

Comic Relief: The Girl Who Loved Stupidity (part 1)

Welcome to Comic Relief #5. To see the previous installments, go to the Comic Relief Index. 🙂

This time we’re going to take a brief detour. There are several more Lady Satan comics to talk about, but I’ll get to those later. For now, I want to talk about another, rather different comic. There are times when you come across a comic, and as you read it you can’t help but giggle like a school girl at the thought that this comic actually exists and was written unironically. This is one of those times.

Today’s comic was published in 1973 by Spire Christian Comics. That right there should be a clue about how fucking ludicrous it’s going to be. It was intended to convert readers to Christianity. But like most Christian propaganda, it actually couldn’t possibly appeal to anyone who hadn’t already swallowed the Bible pill whole. While it purports to be converting non-Christians, it actually could do nothing more than simply reinforce what Christians already believe. And, unintentionally, be a perfect crystalization of everything that is absurd, appalling, authoritarian, ignorant and simpleminded about conservative Christian beliefs.

You wonder why I would divert myself from Lady Satan, a character I love, to talk about some other comic? Well, you will wonder no more once you see the cover of today’s unholy clusterfuck of a comic.

Buffy went DARK.

Buffy went DARK.

Hansi: The Girl Who Loved the Swastika. It just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?

Bear in mind, this comic is nothing but unreflective pro-American and anti-German (and anti-Russian) propaganda. It came out almost 30 years after the war ended. And yet, that cover looks like it could have easily been seen on news stands in Berlin in 1942. We’ve got a beautiful young Aryan-looking girl with (count ’em) eleven swastikas forming a fucking halo around her head as proud German soldiers stand behind her adoring Adolf Hitler, who is right in the line of her blissful, enraptured sight. This comic will attempt (and, disturbingly, fail) to convince us of how evil the Nazis were, but you would never guess that from the cover.

And if you think that this must have been produced by some lonely hack making insane comics with crayons and used toilet paper in his mother’s basement, please allow the advert on the next page to disabuse you of this notion.

If your idea of an exciting comic is something called God is... or Noah's Ark, then you should probably just give up. On everything.

If your idea of an exciting comic is something called “God is…” or “The Gospel Blimp”, then you should probably just give up. On everything.

Do any of those titles stand out to you? And, no, I’m not talking about The Gospel Blimp. Of course I’m referring to all the Archie titles on the list. These were in fact licensed by Archie Comics, as the creator of Spire Christian Comics was a writer at Archie and had enough power and influence that he could actually convince the company to let him publish his own Archie Comics under his own company’s name. Imagine Marvel or DC letting some other company publish Spider-Man or Superman comics under their own imprint, and for an explicitly ideological purpose. How much influence would you have to have to convince them to do that?

Fucking. Scary.

Our story follows Hansi, an adorable little pug-nosed teenage girl who lives in rural Czechoslovakia during the period where the Germans invaded and overran the country. In the very first panel we get a taste of just what kind of character we’re gonna be following.

This is the kind of thing that fish think when they see strings.

This is the kind of thing that fish think when they see strings.

Yep. She’s a fucking moron. And her stupidity only increases as the comic progresses.

But don’t hold that against her. Stupidity is her virtue. This is a Christian comic, after all.

"Well, that and father's porn stash. What's a 'blumpkin'?"

“Well, that and father’s porn stash. What’s a ‘blumpkin’?”

Books are eeeeeevil. Note that this comic at no point mentions the fact that the Nazis banned and destroyed numerous books, including works on Darwinism. That fact is just a wee bit inconvenient for Spire Christian Comics.

Hansi, though, has found her dream. Reading her Nazi books, she hopes to ascend up the Nazi ranks and become a Hitler-endorsed Nazi youth leader. Hey, it worked for Pope Palpatine. (Until he pulled a Sarah Palin and quit his job, that is.) Eventually, her dream is realized, and she is awarded a place in a prestigious Nazi school in Prague, an event which alarms her know-nothing mother.

Maybe if you'd let your daughter read something other than the fucking Bible, she wouldn't have grown up to be such a gullible nitwit.

Maybe if you’d let your daughter read something other than the fucking Bible, she wouldn’t have grown up to be such a gullible nitwit.

Nope. I’m gonna say this right now. The best thing you can do is forget Jesus. Failure to do so might result in you producing something like this comic, and we just can’t have that.

Hansi goes off to her new Nazi school, which is in a large estate near Prague. On the doorstep, she meets another student, and we get one of the few acknowledgements of the Holocaust that this comic ever makes.

The juxtaposition of Mein Kampf and the Bible actually does make sense, but not for the reasons the author intended.

The juxtaposition of Mein Kampf and the Bible actually does make sense, but not for the reasons the author intended.

Please, allow me to quote directly from Hitler’s Mein Kampf:

“Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.”

“His [the Jewish person’s] life is only of this world, and his spirit is inwardly as alien to true Christianity as his nature two thousand years previous was to the great founder of the new doctrine. Of course, the latter made no secret of his attitude toward the Jewish people, and when necessary he even took to the whip to drive from the temple of the Lord this adversary of all humanity, who then as always saw in religion nothing but an instrument for his business existence. In retum, Christ was nailed to the cross, while our present-day party Christians debase themselves to begging for Jewish votes at elections and later try to arrange political swindles with atheistic Jewish parties — and this against their own nation.”

Hitler was Christian. He claimed killing Jews was what Jeebus wanted. It’s right there in the quotes.

But that doesn’t stop certain fundamentalists in America from constantly haranguing us with the false notion that he was an atheist. This is part of a broader pattern of their behavior in which everyone they dislike is associated with everything that’s bad, and everything they like is associated with everything that’s good. Atheists are child-molesting immoral Nazi Muslims while Christians are wholesome, virtuous American patriots. (Oh, and science is evil.) This comic will not provide any counterexamples to this frequently observed fundamentalist prejudice. Throughout the whole thing it’s America good, Other Countries bad. Jesus good, science and learning bad. Christians good, hippies bad. (Yes, we’ll encounter hippies later.)

Hansi joins the Hitler Youth, and page 5 gives us this image:

The Germany of tomorrow is...Czeckoslovakia?

The Germany of tomorrow is…Czechoslovakia?

That’s 22 swastikas in one panel. In fact, counting the cover, there have been 58 swastikas in this comic so far, and we’re only on page 5! We’re averaging over 11 swastikas per page. Just in case you ever forget that this story is set in Nazi-occupied territory, the artist will smear swastikas all over every nook and orifice of every god damn page to remind you. Leni Riefenstahl would think they’re overdoing it with all the swastikas.

This is the comic that loved the swastika.

Our swasti-comic continues with Hansi relishing her new life as a little Nazi Barbie. Basically it consists of people complaining about how conditions are deteriorating under German rule, and Hansi countering by regurgitating something about how much she loves Hitler and Nazis and Germany. Wash, rinse, repeat. She has completely drunk the Nazi Kool Aid, and can think of nothing other than how much she loves Hitler. Seriously, I would think she just wants to fuck Hitler, except for the fact that quite suddenly she apparently has a boyfriend. He comes out of nowhere, his name is Rudy, and he’s serving on a German submarine. Hansi communicates with him via letters.

Rudy proposes, she accepts, but his parents refuse to allow it because they are rich and Hansi is just a peasant girl. This is some real Romeo and Juliet shit going on here…if Romeo and Juliet were badly written Christian propaganda. Hansi decides she doesn’t want to tear Rudy’s family apart, so she leaves him and joins back up with the hair-helmeted girl from the Hitler Youth, who’s boyfriend is still away on duty.

Rrrraaaarrrrr!!!

Rrrraaaarrrrr!!!

That’s Hansi, just regurgitating what this author would have us believe is what the Nazis believed. No thought. No reflection. Just angry reaction. Fucking idiot.

And really? All the soldiers want is Bibles? Food or medicine or, for that matter, porn aren’t on the list, too? This is the kind of cheesy glurge that some fundamentalists just gobble up. It’s the kind of stuff that gets passed around in viral emails full of apocryphal stories that people who rarely engage their brains like to get all mushy about. And this comic is more than happy to keep shoveling it up.

"Fuck. All I got was a bunch of 'begats'." "Me too. This Bible shit sucks." "Same here. Hey, Fritz, got any more Playboys that don't have the pages stuck together?"

“Fuck. All I got was a bunch of ‘begats’.”
“Me too. This Bible shit sucks.”
“Same here. Hey, Fritz, got any more Playboys that don’t have the pages stuck together?”

Note how when they want to portray Christian soldiers in the Nazi army, suddenly those ubiquitous swastikas are nowhere to be seen.

The war is drawing to a close, and the Russians are advancing on Czechoslovakia. Rudy tries to convince Hansi to flee the country with him, but our cute-as-a-button-on-a-kitten-snuggling-with-a-baby little moron protagonist won’t hear of it. She insists on staying in Prague and supporting the Nazis to the end. This brings us to my favorite single panel in the whole comic.

Bwahahahahahahaha!

Bwahahahahahahaha!I

It’s about time someone pointed out what a fucking imbecile she is. This was starting to turn into one of those comics where one character is completely fucktarded in every way imaginable and yet somehow no one seems to notice. Good for you, Rudy. I’m on your side now. But please don’t make me regret saying that in the very next panel…

He's like the Czech Mel Gibson.

He’s like the Czech Mel Gibson.

What the fuck??? God fucking damn it, Rudy. Yeah, she’s an idiot, but rape threats are a bit of an overreaction, dontcha think?

And when the hell did this comic get so dark? Yeah, it’s about Nazis and all. But for ten pages up to this point, it’s just been about a blonde girl who mindlessly parrots Nazi gibberish and hates the Bible. You know, fun light-hearted stuff. Now all the sudden we’ve got her boyfriend saying he hopes she gets raped by Russians!

What fucking weirdo shit is next?

You just know one of those Russian rapist guys was Vladmir Putin. Would that even surprise you in the slightest?

You just know one of those Russian rapist guys was Vladmir Putin. Would that even surprise you in the slightest?

She actually gets fucking raped??? Rudy, you have the most heinous fucking jinx-powers in the universe. Remind me never, ever to have a beer with you if I’m ever in Prague.

So, yeah, gang rape. That’s where we are right now. Hansi boards a train, gets captured by Russians, taken to a labor camp, and is subject to nightly gang rapes.

Except for one thing. After the scene above, we see all the women crying, and one of them says, “You’re lucky you’re skinny, Hansi! They don’t want you!” That’s right, the comic immediately pusses out and assures us she wasn’t actually raped, because she’s…skinny? Since when did that ever stop a rapist? I guess Russian rapists like big girls. Because they are from Russia! Where the men are Men! And the women are Men!

Well, no. The actual reason they don’t have her get raped is because they just didn’t want their protagonist to get raped right after her boyfriend told her to go get raped to teach her a lesson. Hey, writers, can I give you a hint? If you don’t want your main character to get raped, don’t write your story this way!

Oh, and this might also be a good time to mention that, if Wikipedia is correct, this story was written by a fucking woman. Un-fucking-believable.

All the rape and mayhem makes our protagonist decide that she and Hair Helmet need to escape. And so they do. It’s just that easy. They crawl under the barbed wire and GTFO.

For now, we’ll leave it at that. This post is getting long, and I’m not even halfway through the comic yet. It’s just that there’s so much insane and disturbing shit in this comic that I feel the need to comment on almost every single panel in detail. For now let’s sum up the first 12 pages like this: Nazis were Christian whether this comic likes it or not; Hansi’s a nincompoop; Rudy’s a fucking asshole; Russians are rapists; and this comic blows my fucking cock like no other.

I’ll be back in a few days with part 2! 🙂

UPDATE (7/10/13): For Part 2, click here.

Comic Relief Index

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This page is just an index of all the Comic Relief entries so far. I’ll update it whenever I add more.

1. Sexy Satanic Golden Age Goodness (Lady Satan, part 1)

2. More Satan! (Lady Satan, part 2)

3. Satan Returns! (Lady Satan, part 3a)

4. De-Satanized! (Lady Satan, part 3b)

5. The Girl Who Loved Stupidity (Part 1)

6. The Girl Who Loved Stupidity (Part 2)

7. Satan’s Back, Bitches! (Lady Satan, part 4)

8. Lady Satan vs. Aunt May (Lady Satan, part 5)

9. Double De-Satanized! (Lady Satan, part 5b)

Comic Relief: De-Satanized!

Welcome to part 4 of Comic Relief. To see the full series, go to the Comic Relief Index.

I mentioned in the previous installment of Comic Relief that the third appearance of Lady Satan (in Red Seal Comics #17 in 1945) was reprinted in Weird Horrors #1 in 1952. But I must admit, at the time I had only casually glanced at Weird Horrors #1, and had not read it. But now, having read it, I realize that it wasn’t merely reprinted, but actually drastically reworked into a very different story, with completely new dialogue and whole panels removed or added. So the question becomes, is it an improvement? Another way to phrase this might be, would you ever expect the kind of hack writer who takes a seven year old story and pastes his own new dialogue over it to improve anything?

Let’s take a look and find out!

It's deja vu all over again!

It’s deja vu all over again!

Well, it’s mostly like the original. They removed Lady Satan’s domino mask, and changed Underbite’s hair to white and pants to brown, but other than that it’s the same image…except….

Wait! “The Werewolves Howl”? It’s called Lady Fucking Satan, not The Werewolves Howl! What the fuck?

If someone is a nurse, then they can't be ignorant. That's a...strange epistemology.

If someone is a nurse, then they can’t be ignorant. That’s a…strange epistemology.

“Josephine LeBlanc”? That’s bullshit! Her name is motherfucking Lady Satan.

And she lives in New Orleans now? If that were the case, then the animal in question wouldn’t be called a “werewolf”. It’d be called a Loup-garou or Rougarou. Get your Cajun lycanthropy facts right! Just talk to someone from New Orleans. It’s not that hard.

Anyways, like the original story, this one begins with Lady Sa—-errrm, Josephine LeBlanc driving through the middle of nowhere and stumbling upon some lost children. The dialogue is changed to offer additional (and unnecessary) exposition, but it’s pretty similar to what we got in the original story, with one glaring exception. The children automatically know who “Nurse LeBlanc” is. In fact, everyone in this story seems to know who she is. Do nurses ever gain that level of celebrity and/or notoriety?

Are you gonna do this "ye" and "shall" thing through the whole comic? Yes? Fuck.

Are you gonna do this “ye” and “shall” thing through the whole comic? Yes? Fuck.

This is something you come across often if you read Golden Age comics: Captions that explain what you’re looking at in the panel. It’s annoying, but it’s something you get used to. The practice continued into the Silver Age, and even some modern day writers of the hackier persuasion do it.

But, please, comic book writers, don’t do this. Let your artist’s images speak for themselves. If you feel like you must offer additional explanation, then either A) the art sucks and lacks clarity, or B) you’re just pasting unnecessary verbiage on the page.

Also, I can’t help but notice those trees in the background. This is supposed to be New Orleans, right? Well, I lived in New Orleans for a while, and most of the trees have Spanish moss growing on them, so I can’t help but notice its absence in the background. This story is set in New Orleans in name only, isn’t it? Yes, indeed, as later there’s a scene set in the “bayou”, and yet not a single Cypress knee is visible. This is what happens when you take a story set in a generic setting and shoehorn it into a specific setting.

Anyways, the story proceeds mostly like the original, except that Josephine LeBlanc lacks the magical powers that Lady Satan suddenly obtained in the original, meaning that everything that happens is more boring. For instance, in the original Lady Satan repels the werewolves with Xanda Power. I have no idea what Xanda Power is, but it sounds cool. In this one?

I hope you also brought your Shark Repellant Bat-Spray.

I hope you also brought your Shark Repellent Bat-Spray.

*Yawn.* It would’ve been more interesting if she had actually gotten rabies.

And of course the Creepiest Panel Ever makes a reappearance, but with more dialogue than in the original.

Aaaaugh! Not again!

Aaaaugh! Not again!

How the fuck does everyone just know who Nurse LeBlanc is? And why would a nurse be dressed with a red cape?

And why does the author of this piece of shit think you can improve a story simply by throwing in more dialogue? In almost every panel of the reprint, the gross amount of dialogue has been increased. This is not how good writing works.

Anyways, so Not-Titty Satan follows the car again, it goes over the bridge again, and she has to rescue the children again, and she tracks him back to his lair again. Only with no magic involved. Boring.

But wait, you ask. In the original, Lady Satan vanquished Master Werewolf with magical finger fire. How will non-powered Josephine LeBlanc accomplish this? Well, see for yourself…

The comic repeated refers to him kidnapping 3 children, but they only ever show 2. I guess math is just yet another thing this comic utterly fails at.

The comic repeatedly refers to him kidnapping 3 children, but they only ever show 2. I guess math is just yet another thing this comic utterly fails at.

Um, what? Is it ether, or Vapor of the Vampires? Is it both? Why does it kill him? Why does it come in that weird looking flask? And why does it completely annihilate his corpse? Why is the complete lack of evidence a running theme in this story? Why does he think she drowned, when earlier on an inserted panel showed him clearly see her with her head above water? How does she know that werewolves are allergic to ether? Is this just common knowledge among nurses in New Orleans? How does she know to go to the old plantation? Why the fuck was it so important to set all this shit in New Orleans?

Ugh. I’m wasting my time asking all these questions. The ultimate answer to all of it is, “Because they took a Lady Satan comic and sucked all the life out of it.” The original was campy good fun, the remake was just plain dull. Kinda like the relationship between the original Total Recall and its shitty remake. And I can’t help but wonder if they didn’t change her name because in 1952 they were afraid to call a hero “Satan”.

Fuck you, 1952.