Elvira’s House Of Mystery #11, 1986, DC Comics, Cover by Dave Stevens.
The POP Retro Cover Of The Week continues its celebration and examination of iconic comic covers from the 1970s through the 2000s, this week returning to the Eighties, the Bronze Age of Comics, when DC was no longer publishing its line horror comics, but briefly revamped (!) its long-running House Of Mystery with the popular Elvira as headliner.
Sadly, the title only lasted 11 issues (plus a special), with the final issue being somewhat notorious for the editorial change demanded of artist Dave (The Rocketeer) Stevens.
Dave Stevens was well-known as a master cheesecake artist, and was the perfect choice to illustrate Elvira riding her broomstick for the Halloween issue. His depiction of the horror movie host was spot-on, with his signature level of eroticism and detail. The coloring was also appropriately in night shades, with her figure rimmed by the light of the full moon behind her.
However, his choice to show Elvira’s skirt naturally blowing in the wind behind her exposed the underside of her thighs, and the sight of the broomstick depicted between her upper thighs was just too erotic for DC’s editors to stand. Nevermind that’s HOW a witch actually rides her broom. Stevens was asked to make Elvira appear to be riding the broomstick sidesaddle, instead of straddling it. Sheesh.
But, even that controversial editorial eyeroll of a decision doesn’t prevent this Dave Stevens masterpiece from being chosen as a Halloween-y POP Retro Cover Of The Week.
Next week: A cover from the image-over-substance, cross-hatchy Nineties!