Saturday, October 8, 2011

THE MISFITS: Walk Among Them

When The Misfits released the album Walk Among Us do you think they realized just how obscure some of their film/B-culture would be? Some punk bands have political agendas a la carte. Some punk bands sing about sniffing their fingers after… well, you know. Some punk bands are closer to 60’s bubble gum rock than safety pins. The Misfits, one of the founding members of the Deathrock, Horror punk experience really out did themselves with their first full length. Each song is about 2 minutes but feels like a full length drive in movie. Even the cover art is a combo Angry Red Planet/Earth vs. The Flying Saucers amalgam.

My early musical experience was born and raised on this band. I would have been about one and half when Walk Among Us was released in 1982. It wouldn’t be until quite some time later that my mind would be blown. At the beginning of the seventh grade I was listening to Nirvana and Guns N Roses wearing my flannel shirt and white wash bleach jeans. By the end of that year I was wearing … well the same thing, but I was listening to the Misfits thanks to a buddy in math class. I suppose he also taught me what an “anarchy” symbol was and then proceeded to carve it into our desks each day. Probably sounds more like prison than elementary school and I suppose math class can definitely be just that, a prison.

Glenn Danzig, Jerry Only, Doyle and Arthur Googy played this song into the history books. Total running time is just under twenty five minutes. That’s thirteen songs in twenty five minutes. All of them written and composed by Danzig himself. Was this a case of significant untreated ADD that was not as of yet recognized? Thinking back on it now, learning twenty five minutes of songs really ain’t that hard even if playing them all is quite a lot of fun. You never turn down the opportunity to play in a Misfits cover band in New Jersey.

So you listen to an album over and over again and watch a bunch of classic 50’s and 60’s horror/sci-fi cinema and you expect to know all of the Misfits’ references. Now I’m keen to a few but have learned more even just this year. I think it’s about time that we explore these together. I’ll post trailers or scenes from movies when available or pictures if more appropriate to the origin. Remember, the Misfits got their name from the Marilyn Monroe picture of the same name. Ever seen it? I didn’t really find any redeeming qualities in myself. Also, we’re not talking about the song “Walk Among Us” by the newer line up of the Misfits. They’re music is fine. Let’s leave it at that and forget the capitalization effort I can’t help but feel… I prefer to live in denial on this one.

Alternate Red Cover... ooooooo.

I assure you that this is not 100% accurate. There is not bible that acts as a tell all. Some of it is fairly obvious others songs must be inferred. Take notes. There will be a test, and of course there will be guts (because we had brains for breakfast, brains for lunch, brains for brunch and brains for dinner).


The Fly Trailer:

Horror of the Eye Creature Trailer:

We’re all pretty sure he’s singing about the Fly. It wouldn’t be the only time. Return of the Fly is basically the band reading off the poster notes. It also could be about Horror of the Eye Creature. You make your own determination and if anyone knows better than me… post or forever hold… well, whatever it is you’re holding.


For the origin to this catchy bop along tune you have to go back to the September 1960 issue of Journey into Mystery #60 (thanks The Horrors of it all for posting the image).

From the Marvel database:

“Synopsis for "I Turned Into a... Martian!”

A man on Mars encounters a hostile Martian who follows him back into his ship for the purpose of taking over Earth with his superior mental abilities. He has the ability to swap bodies with the man, is telepathic, and even though he is in disguise as the man's body he can prevent the stronger Martian form from attacking him. The man in the Martian's body is helpless to do anything to challenge the Martian, but when the ship is about to land, he looks over the crowd and thinks of them all unarmed so that the Martian rush them with his pistol and defeat them. The Martian reads his mind, and when he attempts this, is shot to death by guards. In death, the Martian's power over the man fades, and his human body is returned. “


The Urban Dictionary defines this phrase as “Bad things start to happen”. Yeah, I’ll take that. It’s sourced from John Milton’s Paradise Lost which we can tie to Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon. Exact phrase: “Wherefore with thee / Came not all hell broke loose?” Catchy. Is this where Danzig and the boys took the line from to use it in yet another anthemic song of chaos? Don’t think so.


Does the opening credit music sound familiar? You have to love the micro waist on this one. The original horror hostess and inspiration to everyone from Elvira on down the line. Let’s forget about the lawsuit. Vampira!


This is one of the songs of whose origin I only learned this year. I guess the lyrics about Nike’s “long white face” and “she’s a missle girl”… yea well it should be obvious right? I always figured that Nike was the name of a female member of royalty from another planet… it’s a sexy name and sexy song.


The Misfits were just an angry bunch of young men. Nothing to report.


The story of an angry youth who asks permission to get revenge on other kids. A tale for the super liberal agenda that is currently so anti-bullying that you have to report on your kids if they sneeze on another student. Between this and Unity by Leftover Crack do you think the new generation is worse or better than our kids? Yo Gabba Gabba definitely seems less violent than He-Man.


Nuff said. If you were born after 1968 and like horror movies you better not try to discount NOTLD. Mr. Romero gets some due respect from Glenn and the gang.


Every band in New Jersey has covered this song at least once. It’s got some of the most ravenous lyrics out there. No real origin, but Mr. Danzig, my hat tips to you.


Seems like a general condemnation of the attorcities of war and humanity’s disregard for human life. Most likely a nod to the Ilsa films if you ask me.


Again, another one without an exact story, but it’s another A plus for fun, catchy lyrics. Raunchy guitars definitely want to make you chose this whorehouse over the one in Texas.


It’s got a great movie poster, but I’m pretty sure this is one of the movies that defined “B”.


More classic B movie lovin’. Strange creatures. Inundating… being dissected. Another great poster, but the actual theme of the song doesn’t quite match the film and is most likely a reference to zombie movies of the time with title lifted from the film. The song is clearly a death rock anthem.

Post anything you might know about concerning the origins of these song. “Safety first, Shaun.“ – Barbara.

-Dr. A Go Go

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