Thursday, October 23, 2014


This isn't true. The strangest vampire of all is Inside-Out-Dracula. 
As a horror character, the primary problem with Atlas-Seaboard’s “Son of Dracula” was mostly that they didn’t give him any sort of unique name just for his-own-bad-self, like “Fangy” or “Bitey” or “Dracula Jr.” Or “Chocula.”

A product of the collaboration between Gary Friedrich and Frank Thorne, Son of Dracula debuted in the sole issue of one of Atlas’ broad-swinging umbrella titles, Fright, in the mouthful of a story “And Unto Dracula Was Born A Son” (August 1975). Which frankly sounds like a sequel to Marillion’s “Script for a Jester’s Tear,” I’m gonna look it up on Wikipedia.

"So you, uh, kinda OWE me, if you know what I mean"
The story opens on a seemingly innocent woman being burned at the stake for witchcraft, persecuted by enraged townspeople and possibly also some out-of-townspeople. Not everyone is always a local, you know? They mighta driven in just for the witch-burning. Maybe there’s a shuttle service.

Luckily for the almost-flambeed filly, infamous vampire and notorious pussy-hound Count Dracula is some sort of infernal pick-up artist, and can’t resist the opportunity to swoop in on a mega-negging of this intensity. Telling a girl she’s fat pales incomparison to actually sentencing her to be burned alive for witchcraft, I tell you what. Seeking to add the young lady to his stable of undead babymamas, Dracula rescues the girl only to discover – GASP – she’s his cousin! A bat-shaped birthmark on her neck keeps Dracula’s dentures at safe distance, although it doesn’t provide any protection against getting vampire boned.

Frustrated that he can’t – for whatever reason, it’s not really made clear – just murder or vampirize this lady, Dracula instead marries her with the hopes of gaining a male heir. Which he does, mazel tov Dracula! Mom has a weird plan, though, which is to confront the lord of the night and inform him that she and the baby are gonna r-u-n-n-o-f-t, at which point he kills and vampirizes her, which I thought they said he wasn’t allowed to do but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

"Scat, Son of Dracula" now playing
in a theater near you!
Still, the boy manages to escape his father’s wrath, taken by loyal peasants overseas to relative safety in the mountains of Appalachia. Just imagine what this guy’s accent is gonna end up being like, from Transylvania by way of Blue Ridge. “Ah these here chilluns of th’naght, that there’s some right durn lovely music they done makin’, git a boy so he wantsta HOOT and HOLLLA!” Please don’t write in.

Anyway, to speed this meandering origin along, Dracula eventually finds his wayward son, despite a caption in a previous panel explaining to us that he couldn’t.  “Not even the occult powers of the evil Count,” it explains, “Can span the vast Atlantic Ocean” and then literally two panels later Dracula shows up on the kid’s doorstep. Same rules that applied to Vlad not being allowed to vampire his wife, I guess. Heckuva double standard in the vampire community.

To save the boy, he’s hustled into a hillside hollow which is subsequently buried in a deliberately-set explosion. He emerges in 1975 as a professor of occult studies which is, as I understand it, how you get tenure.  Masquerading as Dr.Adam Lucard (uggggggh), the handsome young-looking academic lives a Jekyll-and-Hyde existence, keeping his vampire self at bay with the help of a V-shaped disco medallion. His additional nighttime urges to excurse and exsanguinate requires the help of a room full of occult geegaws and a heavy crucifix he balances on his chest while he sleeps. I would’ve given him a holy waterbed myself, but not like this character would have been improved by puns.

When a love-hungry female student breaks into Dr.Lucard’s (UGGGGGH) apartment in what appears to be either a Penthouse Letter gone wrong or at least a grim example of what life was like before Tinder, she manages to upset his Catholic steering wheel lock and unleashes the vampire side he’s kept at bay lo these many years. Quickly acquiring a cape, the now savage Dr.Lucard (UGGGGGGGGGGH) does what all recently unleashed bestial personas and no small number of career politicians on a Vegas retreat do – murders a few prostitutes!

Confronted with the horror of his now-liberated vampire self dominating his nighttime hours (although why he can’t just get back under the crucifix and get a more-girl-proof lock for his front door, I dunno), the Son of Dracula is left after his singular appearance in the midst of a terrible existential dilemma. Of course, he’s also one of at least three characters at Atlas-Seaboard who eats
people for a living, so at least he could probably form a support group.

It's the end.

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