Wednesday, 9 March 2016

TOMB OF THE TRUMPS #21 - Dracula Pack V


Welcome once again dear friends to the mysterious world of the Tomb of the Trumps! This week, we are looking at two of the most enigmatic cards in either of the decks, although they are mysterious for very different reasons! 


Now then, this porridge faced fellow presents something of a puzzle. To start with he resembles neither titular terrors found in the two horror movies of the same title - looking not a bit like Boris Karloff in the 1933 British horror thriller The Ghoul, nor the diseased and crazed Don Henderson in the Tyburn movie of the same name from 1975. However we do have the source image: quite clearly the card is based on this still...



However here is where the mystery lies - for although this still is often credited as being from the 1944 mad science flick The Monster Maker, this fellow doesn't actually appear in the movie. A publicity still from something cut out of the finished film? Well, it is possible... 

...But our whey-faced fellow bears a close resemblance to a character in another vintage fright flick - George Sawaya as Sailor in The Black Sleep (1956), seen here in a behind-the-scenes shot enjoying a smoke! 


Although in the movie Sailor sports a distinctive scar or wound across his melty bonce, I think it's safe to assume that the fella on the card and in the still is the same mutated miscreant! So that's one mystery solved.. let's move on swiftly to the next more troubling one... 

Now the monster featured in our next card surely needs no introduction.... but by the power of Greyskull, his appearance needs one helluva explanation! 


Yes, that's Godzilla! Dressed as Jason King apparently! And, no I haven't a freaking clue why! All I can think is that the Unknown Artist responsible for this cavalcade of lurid imagery really had something against the Big G. Perhaps he felt the original series of Godzilla movies (which had just drawn to close when these cards were made) had descended too far into camp and silliness, and therefore he chose to dress the big fella accordingly.

...Or maybe, there was some really, really hallucinogenic fumes from those paints and felt tips he was using...

We will probably never know... And frankly that might be for the best! 

However what I can tell you, with some degree of certainty, is that actually ain't Godzilla! Now the Big G has had several face-lifts and makeovers during his six decades on the screen, and this lizard just isn't one of 'em! But that scaly fizzog always seemed strangely familiar to me... And so I started looking through pictures of other screen dinosaurs and monstrous reptiles, and I think I got a match! 


Yes, I think this 'Godzilla' - technically another Gino (Godzilla In Name Only) like that tuna-guzzling chump in the botched 1998 Hollywood version - is actually the plesiosaur from The Land The Time Forgot (1975), seen here trying to take a chunk out of Doug McClure's woolly jumper. Sadly I can't find a matching still but those heavily lidded eyes and slightly wonky teeth are uncannily close... 

I'm not 100% on this, but I am certain that this card was taken from another movie dinosaur - if you have any better candidates, do get in touch! 

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I've always suspected the dinosaur wearing a period suit comes from "Amazon Women On The Moon"(197?), where Jack The Ripper is revealed to be the Loch Ness Monster. Sorry I don't have a photo, but the most common one in circulation is of the Monster, in smart evening dress looming over a lady of the night.
Now, I must know who Zetan Warlord was based on in return..
ST.CLAIRE

Anonymous said...

ST CLAIRE- I can see where you're coming from but the well dressed plesiosaur / AWOTM did not appear til 1990. Our knowledgeable blogger is nailing these every time -,including The Ghoul from the mysterious still from '44.
I've been obsessed with these cards since '82.

Anonymous said...

Correction : it was 1987. The film was so bad I had to erase 3 years of my life just to blot out the memory of it.

Anonymous said...

I stand corrected Sir, AWOTM is partly made up of clips from older films and I fervently hoped that the still was taken from one of these parts. Unfortunately, it appears to be a particularly execrable original "comedy" sequence. I did as much research as I could short of physically watching it.
And I agree at the deductive prowess of our blogger, excellent work as always and looking forward to the next instalment.
ST.CLAIRE Out

solar penguin said...

Am I the only one wondering why the headline in George Sawaya's paper is in Orwellian Newspeak?

Matt Sharp said...

Godzilla is the plesiosaur from the Doctor Who story Carnival of Monsters, IMO. And he gets shrunk down to human size and is cunningly disguised in a trench coat and fedora when he appears in Marvel Comics, that being the fashion of the time. And it appears the Unknown Artist started out drawing Christopher Lee's costume from the Hammer version of Jekyll and Hyde before he started on the monster head.