“Good evening Madame, I’m coming to get your child!”
Issue N°70 of Métal Hurlant, published as a Christmas special in 1981, has a cover featuring C-3PO as a very sinister Santa Claus ‘looking’ for children. However, one glance at C-3PO’s bloody axe and the grisly contents of his basket, tells us that his motives are far from festive! Interestingly, C-3PO doesn’t figure in any of the storylines inside this issue. His presence on the cover (drawn by artist Yves Chaland) is probably more in keeping with the spirit of subversion and horror that is typical of Métal Hurlant.
Métal Hurlant (translated as: Howling Metal) was a French comic anthology of sci-fi and horror stories published between 1974 – 1987. The title is considered one of the forerunners of the adult comic scene. Many of its storylines are dark, surreal and executed with stylish graphics. The comic also featured articles and reviews on music, cinema and science-fiction books.
The comic was reprinted in the US under the title Heavy Metal, and in 2012/2014 was made into a two-season English-language Belgian-Franco TV series called Métal Hurlant Chronicles.
Issue N°70 also featured a cool advert for Transfert Express, a company offering mail order sweat-shirt and tee-shirt prints. The advert shows one Star Wars design and two (less sinister) C-3POs!
Finally, I’ve included a scan showing the Métal Hurlant logo and ‘mascot’ who, alas, I haven’t been able to research namewise.