Saturday, November 17, 2012
Monsters Of Monarch!
Monarch Books was an imprint of the defunct Charlton publishing firm. As Charlton would take licensed material and create fascinating comics out of them, Monarch Books would do likewise in the realm of pulp fiction. The adaptations written by Dean Owen and others for Brides of Dracula, Konga, Reptilicus, and Gorgo are highly collectable. I've seen them from time to time, but always at prices I won't pay for a book likely too fragile to actually read. What I'd love to see is a reprint program for some of these vintage items, to get them into the hands of fans for the sheer enjoyment of what appear to be quite unusual takes on some monsters we're quite familiar with.
The reverse cover of Gorgo for instance offers up a brief description of the book with a few tantalizing details.
What is added is sex. The movies while sometimes with a sexual subtext (if you look really really hard) never had any on the surface, or at not any that would be considered offensive. That's apparently not the case with these novels which seem to be quite steamy. Charlton or Monarch seemed quite adept of taking projects which came to them and targeting a specific audience, whether it be kids looking for four-color fun or adults seeking fun of a different sort.