Survivors of a shipwreck, including an heiress and an explorer, land on an island inhabited by strange creatures and an ex-Nazi mad scientist who keeps women in bamboo cages and allows his men to whip them.
“Horrific Nazi Experiments Gone Awry!”
When I took a trip to Orlando, Florida, a few years back, I somehow wound up in an interesting shop owned and run by a local artist. He was an older gentleman, who regaled his customers with stories of his experiences restoring attractions at Disney World and his former career as a circus clown. His store was full of interesting stuff that really appealed to me.
In fact, my travelling companion and innamorata – knowing my taste and keen eye for quality art – crossed the street to tell me about it.
“There’s a Sorority Sluts clock in there, ” she said to me, as I carefully continued to sift through a bin of records. “I was going to but it for you as a surprise, but then I noticed that there were a whole bunch of other interesting clocks. I couldn’t decide which one to buy, so I thought I’d better just come and get you so you could pick out the one you want.”
I finished up and made my purchases in the record store, then I stepped out into the bright afternoon light and looked at the store across the street for the first time…
Boom-Art, it seemed to be called. I walked across the street and went in.
My memory is a little hazy, but the place seemed to full of art pieces that were made from old movie posters and book covers. I’m sure there were other things as well, but my eyes zeroes right in on the sleazy pop-culture treasures on display.
“The Sorority Sluts are right over here…”
I looked up and there it was; a clock made out of an old book cover from a pulp novel called Sorority Sluts. There were a bunch of other, similar clocks as well, but Sorority Sluts was the one that had called to my special lady and made her think of me, so why would I want to second guess that?
For those who don’t know, the most popular play I ever wrote was called Sorority Girls Slumber Party Massacre: The Musical – and my other half, Stefanie, had starred in it – so that’s why this particular clock resonated so strongly with both of us.
We bought that Sorority Sluts clock, and it’s on my office wall – right above the desk where I am currently writing this blog post. We also bought a couple of mini-metal signs made out of poster art from B-movies. I had a hard time picking only two, because they were all cooler than cool. I decided that for my first choice I had to go with Plan 9 From Outer Space, because it’s such a timeless classic. For my second choice… I couldn’t resist the siren call of She Demons.
She Demons (1958) is a B-movie of roughly the same vintage as Plan 9 From Outer Space, and I was positive that I had seen it, but unlike Plan 9... I couldn’t remember a thing about it. Still, the artwork and the title were right up my alley, so I pointed at it and said “That one.”
When I got back home, I made a point of watching She Demons and, believe it or not, I still couldn’t remember anything about it when I looked up at the poster a year or two later. What is it about this movie that I find so forgettable?
Last Friday, I decided it was time to find out.
She Demons is a charmingly bad movie. it stars Irish McCalla, a blonde bombshell best remembered for playing Sheena on the television series Sheena: Queen of the Jungle (1955-56). She was also a Vargas Girl, which means she was a model who posed for famed pin-up artist Alberto Vargas.
Perhaps the highlight of the movie, at least for me, is an elaborate dance number performed by The Diane Nellis Dancers. I can’t find out anything about The Diane Nellis Dancers, but they must of been a dance troupe of some sort, and their only claim to fame seems to be that they appear in She Demons. They play the titular She Demons, but they are really kidnapped jungle girls who are being held prisoner and experimented on by a Nazi mad doctor war criminal (or something like that). The experiments turn them, at least temporarily, into hideous monsters (or She Demons). They are also whipped mercilessly for no apparent reason.
In case you can’t tell from my description, this is #NotQuiteClassicCinema of the highest order. How I could not have remembered She Demons (1958) for all these years is beyond me. I am proud to have their metal poster artwork thingy hanging in my library. And I will undoubtedly be visiting them again on another #FridayNightAtTheHomeDriveIn.
Survivors of a shipwreck land on an island inhabited by strange creatures.
— Angus Kohm (@AngusKohm) September 10, 2022