Tales Of Dark Imagination
♦ Tripwire’s contributing writer Scott Braden gives us his latest in his series of features on comic stories or series that never happened. This week it’s the turn of Nicola Cuti’s The Creeps: If The Shoe Fits… …
Nicola Cuti’s The Creeps: If The Shoe Fits…
On 21 February 2020, a true sequential storyteller’s light burned out. But the wealth of stories he told were not his last.
Legendary comics creator Nicola “Nick” Cuti, whose career in the four-color medium spanned over five decades, died in his home in Tampa, FL – but not without crafting previously unreleased stories originally designed for the popular horror comics magazine, The Creeps. Created as a tribute to the late, great Warren horror magazines of yesteryear, The Creeps enlisted the late Cuti as not only a contributor, but also as an associate editor.
Although he dreamed up many memorable characters, Cuti is best known for his and artist Joe Staton’s comic book cult fave, E-Man. During his storied career, Cuti worked alongside legends such as Stan Lee and Wally Wood, among others. His work was also published in titles produced by Charlton, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, and Warren. At the fan-favourite magazine publisher, his dark tales could be found within the pages of Creepy and Vampirella.
Although Cuti considered my “Lost Tales” column as “a strange concept for an interview . . . but I like it because such stories exist,” he granted me the privilege of reading a couple of his chilling tales, including the ironic “If the Shoe Fits . . .” In this story, Cuti introduced readers to the fictitious Moira, a beautiful young woman with a severe shoe fetish. Having lost her husband to suicide because of her unhealthy interest in shoes and the debt it caused, she kills in an effort to add on to her collection – all the while acquiring an eye-catching shoe-shaped sign for her dream: a museum showcasing all her pretties. But when she directs the raising of her new sign on her museum, karma takes control and the heavy sign comes down on her legs with a crash. At the end of the story, she finds her museum offering shoes and boots for every occasion – except none of them for her. You see, the crashing sign not only crushed her legs – it caused them to be amputated.
For readers who enjoyed this nightmare in shoe wear, they might also be interested in discovering Cuti’s last published work: his “Captain Cosmos” novels (including Spin a Web of Death and Halloween Hollow) and his many “Starflake” novels (including Starflake Rides with the Galactic Bikers and Dark Constellation). These gems can be found online via Amazon.com.
Lost Tales©2020 Scott Braden. All Rights Reserved