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In One Ear: ‘She’s still haunting us’

Huffington Post takes on Vampira

Published on October 31, 2014 12:01AM

Halloween must not pass without mention of Astoria’s very own home-grown glamour ghoul with a 17-inch waist, VAMPIRA, pictured, aka Astoria High School grad MAILA NURMI, who was recently featured in a Huffington Post blog posting by W. Scott Poole, author of “Vampira: Dark Goddess of Horror” (2014).

The author describes her as “the most famous person you’ve never heard of,” who “transformed American culture” (

In 1954, in Los Angeles, Vampira was the first late night horror movie mistress on Saturday nights, introducing painfully bad movies wearing talon-length fingernails, long black hair, a vampy black dress and ghoulish makeup. She would start the show by walking straight up to the camera and belting out a glass-shattering scream. Then, smiling coyly, she would say, “Screaming relaxes me so.” Hear it here: (

As a side note: Maila/Vampira sued Cassandra Peterson for her Elvira persona, claiming unauthorized use of her likeness, but lost. The court documents are at

The article is essentially about Vampira’s influence on horror movies and culture, but there’s also a link to an excerpt from his book (, which provides a minibiography of her career.

As Pool so eloquently summarized, “She’s still haunting us. It’s a haunting we need.”

— Elleda Wilson


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