Vintage Pulp Aug 7 2013
VAMPIR'S KUSS
Oh, don’t be silly, my dear—there’s no such thing as the undead.

Here’s the basic idea of Der Kuss des Vampir: “Well, it’s too bad our newfangled horseless carriage broke down in the middle of this creepy moor, but at least we found an inn, though it’s oddly vacant—well, except for that one guest we never see—but in any case things are looking up, because the mysterious gentleman who lives in the hilltop manor has invited us for dinner tonight.”

If you were to accept this invitation and your host Dr. Ravna soon explained, “I like to be surrounded only by beautiful…”—very long pause as he looks at your new bride—“…things,” it would be an indication that he’s ravna for your wife’s neck. But you can’t pick up on these clues. You’re so rational you’re irrational. “Oh, don’t be silly, darling, Dr. Ravna is just a little odd is all. Well, I don’t know why we only see him at night—perhaps days he’s part of the crew trying to repair that washed out bridge that keeps us stuck in this Godforsaken hamlet.”

Okay, we made up the washed out bridge bit, but only to indicate that Der Kuss der Vampir is old-fashioned, late night, bats on strings style vamp horror, courtesy of Hammer Studios. We’ll stop there because amateur movie reviews are boring and we really only comment on the films so we can say something more than “isn’t this poster amazing?”

Incidentally, isn’t this poster amazing? It was designed by Klaus Dill, and it's a lot better than the movie. Not to say the movie is bad. It’s adequate, at the very least. But we like to spend our time on more entertaining…—very long pause as we think of better ways to use ninety minutes—…activities. Der Kuss des Vampir, aka Kiss of the Vampire premiered in West Germany today in 1963.

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History Rewind
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
November 24
1963—Ruby Shoots Oswald
Nightclub owner and mafia associate Jack Ruby fatally shoots alleged JFK assassin Lee Harvey Oswald in the basement of Dallas police department headquarters. The shooting is broadcast live on television and silences the only person known for certain to have had some connection to the Kennedy killing.
1971—D.B. Cooper Escapes from Airplane
In the U.S., during a thunderstorm over Washington state, a hijacker calling himself Dan Cooper, aka D. B. Cooper, parachutes from a Northwest Orient Airlines flight with $200,000 in ransom money. Neither he nor the money are ever found.
November 23
1936—First Edition of Life Published
Henry Luce launches Life, a weekly magazine with an emphasis on photo-journalism. Life dominates the U.S. market for more than forty years, publishing scores of iconic photographs that remain some of the most recognizable ever shot, and peaking at one point with a circulation of more than 13.5 million copies a week.
1963—Doctor Who Debuts on BBC
The BBC broadcasts the first episode of Doctor Who, starring William Hartnell as a mysterious alien who time travels in his spaceship, the TARDIS. With his companions, he explores time and space while facing a variety of foes and righting wrongs. The show would become the longest-running science fiction series ever broadcast.
November 22
1963—John F. Kennedy Is Assassinated
In Dallas, Texas, U.S. President John F. Kennedy is killed and Texas Governor John B. Connally is seriously wounded as they ride in a motorcade through Dealy Plaza. Lee Harvey Oswald, an employee of the schoolbook depository from which the shots were suspected to have been fired, was arrested on charges of the murder of a local police officer and was subsequently charged with the Kennedy killing. He denied shooting anyone, claiming he was a patsy, but was killed by Jack Ruby on November 24, before he could be indicted or tried. Today, Americans who believe JFK was killed as the result of a conspiracy are routinely dismissed in the press, yet the vast majority of them believe Oswald did not act alone.
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