Astonishing #18: "Sweet Old Ladies!"

Astonishing #18
"Sweet Old Ladies!"
October, 1952

Script: Stan Lee
Art: Unknown

He had been hiding in the sewers for the past three days, and couldn't
stand another second of it.  Believing that the authorities had lost
track of him, he had to get out of the hole in a hurry.  After peering up
from the manhole cover, he sees that there were no police in sight, and
made his way to the train yard.  With a couple of murders on his head, he
had to leave town before they found him.

There was only one more murder standing between him and his ride.  This
made no difference to him, and he hoped that the next town would have
fewer police in number.  The next stop was Slowfalls, a sleepy little
town with no police in sight.  On Main Street, the only policeman in
sight was one who looked old enough to have served in the Roman Empire.
With no money on him, he had to pull a job somewhere.  He watched as two
little old ladies were entering their nice pink and white cottage.

After watching the place for a while, he saw that four more elderly women
entered the cottage.  Figuring them to be members of a club, the escaped
murderer had planned to rob them, and leave town on the next freight.
After knocking on the door, he asks the old lady for a bite to eat, and
is allowed in.  No sooner does he get inside, that he draws his gun on
the group of elderly ladies.  One minute later, he was now in possession
of their valuables, and two hundred and thirty-six dollars in cash.  As
he is about to leave, one of them asks him to stay a while longer.

He agrees, especially since it's almost time for dinner.  Waving his gun
at them, he tells them to get him something to eat.  For the first time
today, the escaped murderer is able to relax in the comfortable chair,
and plans to make his living by robbing people in small towns.  The voice
from the kitchen tells him that supper is ready.  Once inside, he sees
nothing but a vat filled with boiling water, and sees that it's large
enough for a guy to drown in.  It is now their time for dinner.  SPLASH
HISSSSSS  Usually, the witches had to go out to find their meal, but this
is the first time that one had dropped in on them.

This story was reprinted in Giant-Size Dracula #2 (September, 1974).

The escaped murderer came in from the cold, and landed in some hot water.

Not only did he hop a freight, but he also hopped a fright, too.

The victim at the freight yards looked like Buster Keaton.

Steve Chung
"Sweet Old Review!"