THANK YOU FOR THE LOVE!
Because I struck up a new friendship with Jeff Baham, Dark Webmaster Chef Mayhem at the impressive and gorgeous doombuggies.com, and the author of the equally impressive and gorgeous The Unauthorized story of Walt Disney’s Haunted Mansion, a single note on Jeff’s Facebook page has led to more than 1600 hits–in about 19 hours!–on my most recent blogpost about the Haunted Mansion (which is here). Thanks to Jeff for the mention, and thank you readers and fans of the Haunted Mansion.
In that post, I suggested that Imagineers had looked at the EC Comics horror titles from the ’50s for inspiration for the Haunted Mansion, and Jeff pointed me to the Long-Forgotten website, where blogger HBG2 conducts
EXPLORATIONS OF DISNEY’S HAUNTED MANSION. RUMINATIONS AND REVELATIONS CONCERNING THE HISTORY AND ARTISTRY OF THE DISNEY PARKS’ RICHEST AND MOST ECCENTRIC MASTERPIECE. BASED ON THE MICECHAT DISCUSSION BOARD PHENOMENON, “LONG-FORGOTTEN HAUNTED MANSION EFFECT.”
Late in 2010, HBG2 posted about a LOT of possible inspirations, including one I caught myself, and one I didn’t. Here’s the one I didn’t, and HBG2’s explanation.
One inspiration that we have previously pointed out is “The Old Witch,” an EC comics “host” character who graced the covers of Tales from the Crypt, Vault of Horror, and Haunt of Fear comics in the early 1950’s. “The Old Witch” obviously served as the model for Marc Davis’s Hatchet Man:
But once we know that Davis was flipping through these old comics, one can’t help wondering about other items that come up…
Well, we know that the hanging-man gag goes back to Ken Anderson (’57-’58), and the stretching portrait gallery goes back to Yale and Rolly (’59-’61), all of this being before Marc Davis came on board (’64), so even if you’re suspicious, it’s hard to know where this one fits in. It’s old enough (1954) to have been an influence on Anderson, theoretically.
So, that at least answers my questions. Yes, EC’s terror tomes certainly did inspire elements inside the Haunted Mansion, and probably a few created by Marc Davis and Ken Anderson, if not others.
Thanks to Jeff and HBG2 for the research!