|Vintage Pulp||Jul 17 2012|
Sometimes when we stumble across vintage magazines they’re in bad condition. Such is the case with this July 1964 issue of Man To Man, which has had all the pictorials were scissored from it and is so brittle it fell apart as we scanned it. But it is readable, and read it we did. We were titillated by C. H. Cash’s “Nude Crossing of East Germany’s Death Strip,” and fascinated by Bill Austeen’s “Sex on the Straw Hat Circuit,” but the prize winner here is “I Suffered the Electric Snake Torture” by Connie Edison. The title character is a woman framed by a British drug dealer named Harry Lasker and tortured at the hands of Chinese secret police. Not satisfied with a simple cattle prod, the cops attach a snake to the end of it, so that each jolt of current causes the snake to strike. We’d think that would simply kill a snake, but maybe they adjusted the voltage to just the right level to cause the snake to, er, well anyway, we really enjoyed the villain’s explanation for using this baroque device: “We do not like to borrow from the capitalists, but sometimes it is to our advantage.” He goes on to explain that, while various capitalist dictatorships in Latin America used the cattle prod alone, he and his cohorts added a snake because, “being Chinese, we are naturally more creative.” In the end she’s tortured and vows revenge against the man who set her up. With all the electricity flying around, the humor in the pseudonym Connie Edison becomes clear. This was our first Man To Man, but we liked it. And yes, we’re aware of how that sounds—nearly all the names of these vintage hero magazines sound sexual today, although this one perhaps more so than most. In any case, we’ll keep our eyes out, and hopefully the next issue of this we locate will be intact.