Thursday, July 30, 2015

Soft Brides For The Beast Of Blood

Soft Brides For The Beast Of Blood, edited by Pep Pentangeli
No month stated, 2015  Deicide Press

It’s a good time to be a fan of men's adventure magazines. Over the past few years anthologies of actual men’s mag stories have been published; previously the only books out there focused on the lurid covers and interior art, usually ignoring the stories entirely.

But that’s finally changing. Bob Deis at has published Weasels Ripped My Flesh! and the Walter Kaylin-focused He-Men, Bag Men, & Nymphos, and someone by the awesome name of Pep Pentangeli (any relation to Frankie Five Angels?) has published three anthologies, this being the most recent of them.

All men’s mag fans owe Pentangeli a debt of gratitude, for he has focused on “the sweats,” aka the sleazy and sick men’s mags that focused on torture, violence, and eroticism…usually all three at once. These were the mags that featured covers with busty, half-nude women being tortured in innovative ways by lecherous Nazi sadists. And these are the mags that go for big bucks today – likely because the originals were either thrown away or ripped to shreds by mothers who caught their sons with them, back in the day.

And speaking of eras, Pentangeli only appears interested in the genre up to the mid-‘60s; the stories collected within Soft Brides For The Beast Of Blood are mostly all from 1963, as you can see in this cheapjack photo I took of the table of contents (which also shows author/artist attributions for each story, as well as which magazines the stories originally appeared in):

The book is a feast for the eyes, printed on glossy paper, with the original black and white splash pages for each story faithfully reproduced. I’ve seen some online complaints that this book and the previous two Pentangeli anthologies feature b&w artwork, but this is true of the original magazines. However, as with the previous two anthologies, Pentangeli does include a color section in the back of the book, featuring reproductions of the garish cover art of several sweat mags. Thumbing through the book is a great experience, transporting you back to a long-forgotten era.

An interesting point is that, while they’re all very lurid and exploitative, none of the stories here are truly pornographic or overly explicit. The copious sex scenes are all in the “fade to black” mold, or at the very least are quite vague when it comes to the juicy details. And yet, these stories still bridle with a dangerous air, even in today’s era – likely because they’re just so unabashedly “un-P.C.” In our modern watered-down era, these savage, bloody tales, in which women are constantly abused and ravished, in which square-jawed, white American men are the constant and only heroes, still pack a punch, perhaps even more of a punch than they did when they were brand new.

I have all three of Pentangeli’s books but started with this most recent one due to the amount of Nazi She-Devil stories in it; as should be obvious, I friggin’ love Nazi She-Devil stories. And the ones in this book are great – in fact, Pentangeli has scored a major victory because all of the stories in this anthology are pretty good, which is really a major coup. I’m sure I’m not the only person to be unsatisfied with many of the sweat mag stories I’ve read, many of which often fail to live up to the lurid artwork or the crazy title. That’s not true here. All of these stories are sick little works of art.

As you can see from the table of contents photo, this book features 35 stories. Here are reviews of most of them, with a little more detail about the Nazi She-Devil stories:

“I Was A Call-Girl’s Boy Friend” – August 1961, and our narrator is hired to figure out where corruption is stemming from in NYC. He picks up a whore named Lucy, who “joy-pops” cocaine. Next night she takes him “behind the Bearded Curtain,” ie the second floor of her bordello, where everyone lays around smoking high-grade grass. Turns out the main importer is her boss, Menotti. But our narrator falls in love with Lucy, who snidely asks, “What do you think you are, my boyfriend?” He slowly realizes he does think of himself as so.

It ends with the narrator and Menotti in a fight, during which Menotti suffers a heart attack; Lucy kicks his pills out of his hand so that he dies. Then she gets in a shootout with a few guards, allowing the narrator to escape! Now he’s on the run, hoping for the day he can evade the syndicate’s wrath and return to Lucy, “to claim my right as her boyfriend.” Goofy but fun, with a nice hardboiled vibe. 

“Cool Broads, Hot Rods!” – This one’s about a “new breed” of teenaged hot-rodders, or as a cop in a “Midwestern city” says they should be called, “Hell-rodders!” Taking on a pseudo-factual approach, as if it were an article in a real magazine, the story’s all about the latest rash of teenaged atrocities. We’re informed of such Hell-rodder practices as “choo-choo,” in which they race trains (usually dying in spectacular crashes), or also “Trail 2,” in which they speed through city traffic without brakes.

And after all of these events there will be a “post-race sex-party.” Indeed, these coke-sniffing teens sometimes have sex while racing, usually dying in spectacular crashes. “If no plan is put into action – and put into action immediately – then more and more lives are gone to be taken by the deadly highway ‘games’ and ‘tests.’ The Hell-rodders will live up to their name – and turn our thruways, highways and city streets into blood-drenched, corpse-littered hells!”

“I Was Eaten Down To The Bone” – The narrator tells us how he and his buddy went on a long-planned trip to Polynesia in 1951. Buying a sloop, they plied around the paradisiacal islands. Vague mentions of how they enjoyed the local native gals. But the narrator’s buddy wanted to visit a remote island one day, and so they went, meeting up with a local chief who bridled at the French Jesuit rule and spoke in a strange hipster patois.

Drunk on the man’s local brew ani, our heroes were so out of it that they walked the wrong way back to the sloop and ended up sleeping on an atoll – only to awake into hell, being eaten alive by white ants, ie “cannibal ants.” The author goes to town here, with horror fiction descriptions of the ants eating them down to the bone, the narrator’s buddy losing his head and arms. The narrator himself loses both hands and most of his legs. The end! I related to this one because ten years ago I was attacked by about twenty fire ants; like an idiot I was walking barefoot in my yard one night. My right foot swelled up to the size of a football!

“Nude Virgins For The Serpent Of Lust” – It’s 1669 and beautiful, blonde, Norweigan Hortense Cerlabaud acts as the Goddess of Set in “the jungle citadel of Iztopolopo,” in Ecaudor. This pseudo-factual piece reports the story of how Hortense went from being a bloodthirsty pirate wench to ruling over the natives; her boyfriend, the depraved Chevalier, worked a white slavery angle into the scheme, with Hortense tossing the women who refused to have sex with her to the massive anaconda in a pit below her citadel.

“A Soft White Throat For The Devil’s Hangman” – This first-person narrative is a bit longer than most of the others in the collection, and it’s pretty entertaining “Nazi Horror” that the sweats excelled in. Our hero relates how he became involved with the French resistance near Limoge in ’44, after his plane was shot down. Hiding in the attic of beautiful resistance fighter Simone, he soon finds himself living the dream life: “My adventure was the kind that recruiting posters are made of.” The two engage in a months-long affair, our hero helping out the cause while engaging Simone in undescribed sexual shenanigans up in the attic.

But when the sadists of the Das Reich Division show up, aka “the chief interrogators of the Panzer Division,” things go to hell – these bastards enjoy stripping down young French women, beating and raping them, and then hanging them. Unspurprisingly, they capture Simone. Going in disguised as a German soldier along with his French companion Henrique, our hero watches as Simone is tied to a chair and strangled a bit – the act illustrated by Norm Eastman’s artwork – before he swoops in and carries her off to safety.

“The Orgiastic Gates Of Hell” – It’s 1945 and our narrator is a prisoner on an island off Singapore controlled by “the Japs.” His two fellow prisoners are Fran McKendrick, a gorgeous redhead chemist who is only kept from being raped and killed due to her work in the island’s rubber plantation lab, where she turns out latex for the Japanese war effort, and another woman, Maya, “the Malay girl, beautiful as a bird, with tiny upturned breasts that trembled when she walked.” This story’s unusual because it’s more about the horrific torture of the male protagonist rather than of the women.

When the fat major who runs the prison hears on the radio that Japan has surrendered, he goes nuts – he bashes our hero’s balls with his boots, grinding into them, and then he chops one of his eyeballs out! As the major takes away the two women to hurl them into a watery abyss, our hero staggers to his feet, picks up a samurai sword, and Pulp Fiction style gains his bloody revenge, gutting the fat major. After a “spell of surgery” he awakens to find the two women waiting worshipfully at the foot of his bed…

“Prison Break Massacre From Chawcagee Hell Hole” – It’s 1960 and the narrator is a former soldier who has worked as a guard at the titular women’s prison since 1953. The story opens with an unforgettable image: a gang of gorgeous female prisoners running half-nude through the darkened woods, their leader a stunning blonde wielding a machete, the severed head of the prison’s sadistic matron cradled in her arm.

Backtrack to the beginning, which has it that the matron, a “bull” with the body of a “tank,” would demand lesbian favors from the female prisoners. When one of them, the gorgeous blonde, rebuffed her, it led to a prisonbreak, in which the narrator was unwittingly caught up. The story ends with all of the culprits dead save for the narrator, whose story no one believes; he ends his tale begging someone to believe him, as they’re planning to hang him!

“A Crypt Of Agony For The Screaming Beauties Of Belgium” – Another longish piece of Nazi Horror written in third-person. Going for a slow-burn approach, it also doesn’t begin at the ending, like most every other men’s mag story does. Instead we meet young Beatrix, a Belgian resistance fighter, as she’s riding her bike to the nearby college, where she plans to secretly broadcast news of British victory in the air.

But the Gestapo closes down the college and takes all the girls captive, in vengeance for a raid some Belgian fighters made the previous night on Nazi forces. Beatrix is taken to a furnace-heated crypt in which women are stripped to undergarments and chained up, roasted over a fire. She watches as one girl is tortured, then the eunuch sadist in charge jams a hot poker into Beatrix’s belly – right before his head explodes, Beatrix’s hotstuff rebel boyfriend showing up at the last moment to save the day.

“Blast Out Of Hell With The She-Beast Of Ploesti” – The first Nazi She-Devil in the book is also one of the best I’ve ever read. Martha Zent, female commander of Stalag 606 in Romania, “the sadistic Nazi bitch…beauteous assassin of 133 American and British plane guys,” is trying to escape her camp as it’s being bombed when we meet her, our narrator holding a gun to her back. He’s only been here for a few weeks, but he’s seen the lady’s sadism. She enjoys stripping down to her underwear and parading before the male prisoners. “First they made love to her, then she killed them.” Here’s the splash page – is it just me or does the dude look like Adrien Brody??

Stalag 606 we’re informed is “noted for its unspeakale depravity and oversexed guards. All Nazi SS women.” Save for the chief commander, Paul Koch (brother, we’re informed, of the infamous Ilse Koch), “a hermaphrodite maniac who not only devised the system of making lampshades of human skin, but also, as a matter of policy, executed at least three prisoners a day – one with every meal.” The sick imaginations of these sweats authors is a joy to behold – on his first day at the stalag our narrator watches in shock as a prisoner is gutted and Martha orders three other prisoners to piss on his dying form! When they refuse they’re gutted by bayonets wielded by “blonde and bosomy” Nazi She-Devils.

Our narrator isn’t one of the lucky hundreds who gets to pleasure Martha Zent, though she comes on strong to him as a ploy when the Americans strike; instead he blows away Koch and then shoots Martha in the face – “I pulled the trigger till the gun clicked empty.”

“Hideous Secrets Of Hitler’s Mad Doctor Of Agony” – Another longish tale of “Nazi Horror,” courtesy Jim McDonald, who was very prolific in the sweats. Like “A Crypt Of Agony” above, this one’s in third-person and takes its time, but it’s even better – and it’s definitely more twisted. Norm Eastman’s art shows lovely young women being frozen by Nazi sadists, and that’s exactly the tale McDonald delivers. Odette, a pretty young Maquis (ie French rebel), is captured by the “traveling circus” of Karl Brandt, Hitler’s personal physician, who now goes about France capturing women for his sick medical experiments.

He takes Odette to a building with a freezing-cold vault in which other pretty young French girls are encased in blocks of ice. For spurning the obese freak’s advances, Odette will suffer the slowest of deaths, forced to watch as one of the girls is frozen in a block of ice. McDonald excelled at torture-porn, thus this story is quite unsettling as the poor girl is crushed to death by the pressure. Odette’s turn comes up, but she’s saved, just like the heroine in “Crypt Of Agony,” by the last-second appearance of her commando Maquis boyfriend.

“Writhe, My Lovely, In The Tent Of Torture” – It’s Cairo, 1957, and a gorgeous, well-built young Frenchwoman named Suzanne is our main protagonist for this long if slightly tepid slice of Nazi Horror, which is also written in third-person. An orphan of the war, Suzanne now makes her living as as a sort of bar girl at the Kit Kat Club, overseen by a lecherous Arab. Suzanne pines for a handsome American named Gary Larkin whom she bedded down with a few weeks before; Larkin is consumed with vengeance, hunting around Africa for Kurt Eisle, a Nazi fiend who tortured Larkin in the war and killed Larkin’s girlfriend through some vile torture.

But Larkin’s gone now, and besides the Arab is pushing Suzanne to become friendly with a VIP at the club – who of course turns out to be none other than Eisle. He drugs her and takes her away to a tent in the middle of the desert, where he strips her down and plays a massive spider over her, taunting her with horrifying death. Then he burns her feet with a flaming brand, all to find out what she knows about Larkin. But then the man himself appears, unsurprisingly, blowing Eisle and his Neo-Nazi goons away with a submachine gun and making off with Suzanne…we’re informed the two go on to spend a full two days in Larkin’s bedroom.

“Torture Of 1,000 Cuts” – This one’s unusual in that it’s set in the early days of the Vietnam War. It’s also told in convoluted fashion, the entire first half nothing but backstory. It is however redolent with gore; our narrator informs us how two escaped Vietcong mutilated a few Vietnamese soldiers in their escape from the narrator’s US Army base. But the two cong are themselves horribly killed, as a monstrous-sized Asian dude tracks them down, bashing one’s brains out with his bare hands and then crushing the other’s head into a pulp, again with his hands. The author gives copious detail of the juicy brain matter and gore.

This monstrous dude proclaims himself a “samurai wrestler” and has the strength of ten men. He hangs out on the base for a while, but then disappears – turns out it was all a ruse, and he’s really a Japanese Communist, dedicated to killing Americans for the loss of his wife in WWII. He captures the pretty nurses at the base and vows to slice them all up with the titular thousand cuts, but our plucky narrator chases after him and engages him in a brawl, drowning the heavier man in a lake. 

“Fettered Nudes For The Monster’s Collar Of Agony” – Another pseudo-history piece, this one takes place in 15th century Spain and is about Lucrezia Mantua, a sadistic beauty who rides into battle with her lover, rebel leader Ugo Sorcate: “Clad in black armor, scarlet velvet and leopard skin, her shimmering auburn hair cascading about her shoulders like living flames, Lucrezia Mantua was the incarnation of the warrior female…” Does she also have sapphic tendencies and enjoy stripping down nubile young women and torturing them? You bet!

The majority of the tale is given over to Lucrezia’s torturing of the wife and daughters of the Viceroy, ie the Spanish ruler who has just been defeated by Lucrezia and Ugo in battle. While Ugo wears pantaloons and a mask, Lucrezia wears a revealing costume of black satin; they put the Viceroy’s wife in a garrotte and laugh as she slowly dies. The two daughters follow. We learn that Lucrezia was born in Naples, and her parents killed during the Spanish invasion, which was led by the Viceroy. We’re further informed that Ugo eventually became enamored with a teenaged girl, who compelled him to have Lucrezia condemed to death for being a witch.

“Secret Nude Weapons Of St. Belvedere” – June of 1944, and our narrator is in a rifle company that’s just come into St. Belvedere, a small town in France. The German tanks must come through here and it’s up to his company to stop them, but the only problem is the squad with their anti-tank weaponry is two days away. The townspeople rally to the cause, in particular four beautiful young women; their leader, a knockout named Marie Delmot, claims that she and her fellow women have “secret weapons” to stop the Germans long enough for the weaponry to arrive. Grabbing her own breasts, she proclaims, “These are our secret weapons!”

The four head on over to the nearby town in which the Germans are camped out, and from here the story switches into third person. The girls invite themselves into German lines for a party and soon whore themselves out to the entire regiment, four lines of men standing outside each door. But their treachery is soon discovered, and the German commander has the women, still nude, tied to the front of their tanks! Now as the German tanks invade St. Belvedere the Americans are unable to employ their just-arrived anti-tank weapons lest they kill the women.

But it’s back to first person now, and our narrator tells us how he figures out that when the tank commanders open up their hatchways to look out at the destruction they’ve caused, he can drop a grenade right down in there with them. The Germans all killed, Marie and her three friends declare another party – this one for the Americans, who split right up into four lines and wait their turns… 

“The Ordeal At Jap Camp Agony” – This longish, third-person piece is like a “Yellow Peril” variant of the Nazi She-Devil subgenre. But as is typical with these Japanese-themed tales, the women are a lot more sadistic and lack the pulpish charm of their Nazi She-Devil counterparts. Rather, the evil Japanese women, at least in the sweat mag stories like this I’ve read, are just plain scary. It’s Formosa, January of 1945, and an American B-24 is shot down.  The crew of ten is taken prisoner, led to Akasaki Prison Camp, which is overseen by female guards.

In control of the camp is a busty Japanese beauty named Okatsu. She and her fellow guards, particularly her two junior commanders, despise the Americans. This is proved posthaste as Okatsu cuts out the tongue of a crewman who dares to speak to her out of turn. Okatsu and her second in command, Yuka, run roughshod over the men of their camp over the next months, gutting them, jabbing out their eyes with their thumbs, the works.  Sgt. Richard Moss gradually becomes the hero of the captured crew; the other male prisoners are bedraggled by constant starvation and horrible treatment.

Thus it’s Moss and friends who get to play horsey as Okatsu and Yuka hop on their backs and whip at each other, tearing up their human mounts with the barbs on their boots. Finally Moss can take no more and storms into Okatsu’s room, planning to “sexually assault” her, but finds himself unable to do it, such is his hatred for the woman (meanwhile he’s already gotten lucky – even here in this hellhole – with a geisha conscripted into duty at the prison). He beats Okatsu instead, after which he’s taken into custody and thrown into a pit filled with leeches. But just then news arrives at camp that Japan has surrendered; Okatsu and her sister guards walk off, and later we’re informed they each commit ritual suicide.

“Blood-Soaked Queen Of Buchenwald” – Technically a Nazi She-Devil tale, this one’s about Gerta Holland, a hot tramp who is really more so just a prostitute, but one that caters to SS sadists; so it’s a fine line, you see. Indeed, the tale opens with Gerta laughing as rabid dogs tear apart a prisoner in the camp. Gerta is mistress of an SS bigwig at Buchenwald concentration camp, but when he’s sent to the front lines she’s cast adrift, seeking a new sugar daddy. A new SS goon named Ludwig uses her but quickly grows sick of her – after all, he says, there’s a love camp just down the road, where nubile German gals are throwing themselves at SS men for free! But Ludwig comes up with a money-making scheme for Gerta: she can prostitute herself to the prisoners!

In what is the most darkly comic story in the collection (and likely also in the poorest taste), Gerta now services prisoners in the basement of the crematorium; the author (this being another third-person story, by the way) informing us how the fires rage during the day, immolating prisoners, but at night Gerta lies down in the eerie darkness and waits for her clients. And the prisoners beat and kill each other to find money to pay her; Ludwig knows that prisoners can always find a way to smuggle in money. Things go along swimmingly until Patton’s forces arrive, and in the mass exodus Gerta meets her just end – run to ground by the same rabid dogs she found so delightfully vicious in the opening of the story.

“Trapped By The Nazis’ Kissing She-Devil Of Agony” – This is the best Nazi She-Devil tale I’ve yet had the pleasure to read, and due to that it’s my favorite story in the book. It’s a work of sleazy art. Our narrator is an American soldier who is captured in 1943 and, since he’s half Jewish, the Nazis send him to Aschenwald concentration camp, in Germany. Here he gets his first glimpse of the Nazi She-Devil who runs the place:

I saw the red leather whip she gripped in her black-gloved hand. She wore polished jackboots and black jodhpurs that molded her powerfully-curved hips like rubber…Inga Hein was as sadistic a bitch as ever cracked a whip for the glory of Der Fuhrer.  She was one of Adolf Hitlers favorite officers of the SS-Totenkopfverbande Madel (Womens Deaths-Head SS Units), a distinction she undoubtedly owed to her singularly German predilection for flogging human beings to death.

Beautiful Inga, “the Blonde Bitch of Aschenwald,” with her “incredible, upthrusting breasts,” lives in a palatial room with a “Hollywood bed,” attended by Angel, her “pert little lesbian maid.” After nude massages courtesy Angel, Inga likes to put on “sheer, Paris-made lingerie…tight black jodhpurs, stiletto-heeled boots, and a smartly tailored SS jacket lined with leopard skin” and entertain male guests. Our narrator is one such guest. He’s tossed scraps of food by the merciless woman; he’s so starved he drops to his knees as ordered and scoops the morsels off the floor. All as illustrated in the awesome splashpage:

The story is filled with sadism, full-on torture porn as various POWs are beaten and whipped to death in brutal ways, all for Inga’s enjoyment. The narrator himself is frequently beaten by her, in between lots of taunting. One evening Inga strips and offers herself to him, but he snatches her gun, puts it in her face, and pulls the trigger. It jams. “Again,” Inga demands, getting off on it. He pulls the trigger again, but the gun jams again, so he punches her, and this gets her off even more – cue a vague but sleazy sex scene, with our narrator beating Inga during the act.

Afterwards he’s her “love slave,” chained up in her private quarters and used by Inga whenever she wills it.  Months later the US Army liberates the camp. The freed prisoners drown the male camp commander in the latrine while the narrator chases down Inga.  He beats her to a pulp and then hangs her from the fence that surrounds the camp, fashioning a noose out of the barbed wire. He smokes one of her cigarettes as he watches her die, realizing that Inga was right all along: sometimes there is joy in the suffering of another.

“Fantastic Lust Plot Of The Nazi Harlot Spy” – One of the longer stories in the book, this third-person tale with an awesome title is only a Nazi She-Devil yarn by default. It’s the end of the war in Europe and Else Streit, beautiful young “personal prostitute” of Stauffer, a high-ranking general in the Reich Chancellery in Berlin, is planning her escape route. The Russians are on the outskirts of Berlin and time is limited. After a bit of vague lovin’ with Stauffer, Else, who enjoys the obese lecher’s obvious fear, waits until the big man is asleep and roots through his secret office, looking for some intel to sell to the Reds as barter for safety. But Stauffer finds her and Else blows him away with his “Lugar.” Else is not a Nazi She-Devil – she isn’t even a Nazi, just a hooker – but she has the same kind of sadistic streak.

After getting a ride from a horny young chaffeur she’s allowed to screw her before (so as to ensure his loyalty), she blows him away, too. But the story turns out to be the sweat mag variant of an O. Henry morality story – after giving herself to the Red commander in Berlin, Else is slapped around and called a whore; the intel she stole is already known to the Russians, because Stauffer gave it to them: he was an undercover agent! Hence his promises to Else that he was her only chance of escape were true. The story has a memorable if bleak ending where our heroine gets her comeuppance – tossed into a house filled with lust-crazed Russian soldiers, whom we’re told will carry out Stauffer’s dying promise: “You deserve the Reds. They will grind you into mincemeat.”

“Blood Beast Of The Third Reich” – The author claims to have been a Luftwaffe pilot who came down with “a mild case of TB” and was thus removed from air duties. Due to his skill with the camera he was soon given a plush new assignment – cameraman for Herman Goering’s porno films! It all starts in 1936, before the war, and the narrator informs us it lasts on until 1940 as Goering’s film crew travels around Germany and newly-conquered territory, scoping out hot chicks for porno flicks. 

Goering demands realism and when he takes the porn into darker realms of torture he gets attractive female prisoners from the camps. Vague details of a lesbian shoot, another with a German dude and two women, and another strange bit where Goering himself appears in a film where he screws three generations of women – a grandmother, daughter, and granddaughter!!  We’re informed that the “actors” were always dipped in acid afterwards, so there could be no survivors to tell of it. This is one of those stories where you can tell the author was chortling to himself as he wrote it:

American readers may be interested to know that we used many American men and women in our films. Some of them were excellent in their parts, so good that they would have undoubtedly become Hollywood stars if we hadn’t been under the unfortunate necessity of liquefying them in acid.

I remember one girl, from California I believe… She was a delightful creature. After Goering finished with her – in this case he personally went through a bondage-rape scene with her – we all made use of her fine figure and soft, yielding flesh. She was a very interesting girl. We permitted her to live an extra forty-eight hours and then, because she had been so sweet to have around, we knocked her unconscious before plunging her into the acid, instead of dropping her in alive and fully awake as was customary.

The fun and games come to an end with the official start of WWII, and our narrator – who informs us he himself occasionally stepped before the cameras, to “act” with some newly-captured maiden in yet another of Goering’s films – has to say goodbye to the movie life. As for what happened to Goering’s stock of porn, the narrator has no idea.

“Torture Trap Of The Nympho Schoolgirls” – This goofy piece of teensploitation is narrated by a “hygeine” teacher who is taken captive, along with a history teacher and a school cheerleader, by a sadistic pack of sweater-and-skirt wearing teen girls. But these “ponytail punks” are vicious. One evening at school our protagonist hears a girl screaming, only to find a half-nude cheerleader strung up to the school gate, the beginning of a letter “B” carved on her chest. Her name is Doris and she claims the cut was made by Millie, mad-dog boss of a group of tough girls; Doris hooked up with Millie’s old boyfriend, and Millie got vengeance by starting to carve “Busted” on her chest – only the narrator showed up in time to stop it.

Instead of telling Doris to call the cops, the narrator tells her to forget about it!! Soon enough Millie and gang swoops in for more revenge, tying the two teachers up in a room, stripping them, whipping them. They strip Doris and go to work on her, finishing out the word “Busted.” But one of the gals gets horny over the scene and implores the narrator to take her; she drops her .38 and he gets the upper hand. When Millie tries to run, he body tackles her, smashing her head into the marble floor! Not dead, but suffering from a severe concussion, Millie is sent with the rest of her gang to the state pen for three to five years.

“Screaming Virgins For The Nazi Rites Of Agony” – The final story in the collection is another piece of Nazi Horror, which really is what these sweat mags were known for. Like most other such tales it opens with an unfortunate young woman, Gerta, being thrown into a dungeon. Her “crime” is that she dismissed the advances of a game-legged Nazi lech named Heinrich Brauer. But what she doesn’t know is that Brauer is one of Hitler’s favorite people, a sadist who puts on pagan-themed occult shows of bondage, torture, and murder for a Nazi elite audience. Gerta is stripped to lingerie and chained in a small amphitheater, to watch as six tall, nude, oil-covered blondes carry out another attractive young woman. This one they tie to a bed, and soon Brauer appears, with a ceremonial blade; he carves up the girl for the audiences’ delight. Now it’s Gerta’s turn.

From here it’s a history lesson, as we’re informed how Brauer came from nothing in 1923 to being Hitler’s go-to guy for pagan-bondage-torture scenes, eventually opening up a “health club” in Munich that was really just a Nazi bordello. Brauer, we’re told, disappeared after the war – and this is one of the few torture/horror stories in the book in which the female, Gerta, is not saved at the last moment by her commando boyfriend/invading Americans/some other lucky twist of fate; she dies, just like “thousands of other women.”


Kurt said...

I just got my copy of this book a few weeks ago. It's on our living room coffee table, in all its glory!

Zwolf said...

Great review! I'm hoping for more volumes of these, because one can never get enough sleaze. (Besides, after I read enough of these the guilt motivates me to read some Hemingway or Faulkner or something as penance, so, in a way, they're good for ya).

I've only read a couple of the stories in this one so far -- I tend to skip around a lot. The "Ordeal at Jap Camp Agony" was total SM porn disguised as an adventure story (not that there's anything wrong with that), and I agree on "Trapped by the Nazis Kissing She-Devil of Agony" being a real standout. I think that author must've been reading up on real-life she-devil Imra Grese and went a little nuts fictionalizing her. I'm pretty sure when they were writing the script for Ilsa She-Wolf Of The SS, they had a stack of sweat mags for reference.

And, of course, who doesn't like an eaten-alive-by-ants story? I had a bit of personal experience with that, too, according to my mom. When I was about two we were on a picnic and I had a banana. I decided I didn't want it, so I threw it down. Later, I wanted it back so I picked it up... and the fire ants that had gotten all over it ate me down to the bone! Or, bit me a few times, at least... gotta use artistic license to make toddler stories more interesting. :)

The art in these things is amazing, and the titles alone make them must-reads. Nobody does titles like those anymore... they're a hold-over from the old shudder-pulps ("The Mole Men Want Your Eyes!") and I think their last gasp was in the True Detective magazines. I bought a lot of Pinnacle paperbacks reprinting stories from those (The Mutilators, Torture Killers, Predators, Bizarre Murderers, etc.) and they have the same kind of "He Ate The Call-Girl's Brain And Threw The Rest In A Wood-Chipper!" kind of titles.

Joe Kenney said...

"He Ate The Call-Girl's Brain And Threw The Rest In A Wood-Chipper!" -- that made me laugh out loud. Thanks for the comments, guys. I'll eventually move on to the other two anthologies, and I too hope they come out with more. When I was reading these stories I thought it would be pretty funny if you gave them to some high school kid or whatever and he used them to write his term paper on WWII. And Zwolf thanks for mentioning those Pinnacle paperbacks; I'd seen those titles and wondered if they were just anthologies of true detective magazines. Thanks for the confirmation!

Evagrius said...

Look forward to reviews of the other two volumes. Great review.

Joe. Have you watched season 1 of TV show, "Danger 5" on Netflix.

It'sa half hour Australian produced parody low budget action comedy riffing on 1960s' Mens Adventure Magazines crossed with Thunderbirds by way of James Bond and sixties Eurospy (mainly Italian) cinema. Glorious, and one of the funniest things I've ever seen. It's as if World War 2 had happened in the 1960s. With spies. And Nazis.

Episode titles include "Fresh Meat for Hitler's Sex Kitchen" and "Lizard Soldiers of the Third Reich"

The producers admitted they used 1960's men's adventure magazines as the inspiration.

Joe Kenney said...

Michael, thanks a lot for letting me know about Danger 5. I'd never heard of it before. Since your post I've gotten to watch the first two episodes of season one and I love it! Yes, they very clearly have taken men's mags as their inspiration -- I noticed the American member of the team is always reading a fake men's mag (ie "Fist For Men"). The first episode, "The Diamond Girls," even had Nazi She-Devils of sorts. Also the bizarre humor is right up my alley. I think the way I'd describe this show would be a '60s men's mag story as written by Conan O'Brien. The show even has the feel of an O'Brien skit from the '90s, with the talking dog and everything. Anyway I look forward to watching the rest of these -- thanks again for the recommendation!

Joe Kenney said...

FYI everyone, looks like Mr. Pentangeli has another men's mag anthology coming out; now listed on Amazon is Soft Blondes In The Claws Of Torture Hell. Not available for pre-order yet, but it says the publication date will be May 31, 2016. Well, I guess that isn't too far off...