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Welcome to the two-hundred and sixty-fifth in a series of examinations of comic book legends and whether they are true or false. Click here for an archive of the previous two hundred and sixty-four.
Comic Book Legends Revealed is part of the larger Legends Revealed series, where I look into legends about the worlds of entertainment and sports, which you can check out here, at legendsrevealed.com. I’d especially recommend you check out this installment of Football/Soccer Legends Revealed where you can find out if the Italian National Team was threatened to be killed by Benito Mussolini if they did not win the 1938 FIFA World Cup!
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COMIC LEGEND: Warren Publishing dedicated an entire one-shot to photos of a 14-year-old model.
Reader Cary wrote in to ask if it was true that Warren had a one-shot devoted just to swimsuit shots of a 14-year-old girl. And his specific question is not really true, but it is close enough to being true.
This brings us to the strange case of Heidi Saha.
Art Saha was a science-fiction author and editor who was a major part of early fandom. He is credited with coining the term “Trekkies” to describe Star Trek fans. In any event, Saha also had a close relationship with Jim Warren, head of Warren Publishing.
Likely as a result of this relationship, Saha’s daughter, Heidi, would appear at some conventions dressed as Vampirella to promote Warren’s comic of the same name.
Heidi and her mother, Taimi, and her father attended conventions frequently, and Heidi was known by pretty much all the big names in science fiction and fantasy. She also dressed up in costumes frequently.
In any event, in 1973, when Heidi was 14 (going on 15), Warren Publishing actually devoted a short print one-shot to her. I don’t know WHY they did it, but most likely it was done as some sort of favor to the Sahas for Heidi doing publicity work for Warren.
The one-shot was called An Illustrated History of Heidi Saha: Fantasy Fandom’s Famous Femme.
Here are some samples from the magazine…
Most of the pictures are along the lines of this picture of 10-year-old Heidi getting an autograph from Arthur Clarke….
or this one of Heidi just hanging out…
And a lot of the jokes are just silly innocuous puns like this one…
but there are some odd jokes in the book, like this one of 7-year-old Heidi…
and this one of Heidi dressed as Sheena…
At one point in the book she is referred to as Lilith, Lolita and Lorelei combined, so, well, yeah…
And the book ends with this as the back cover…
By 1974, Heidi was finished with costumes at conventions.
Richard Arndt has a nice interview up with Angelique Trouvere, who is a legend of fandom herself (when Heidi’s Vampirella picture showed up in a Warren article in 1971, it was along with a picture of Trouvere, as well). Trouvere has her own particular insights on Heidi – I can’t say whether they’re true or not, but I think they’re worth linking to simply as Trouvere’s take on things. I’m sure all of you have your own particular take on things, as well. Some, like Trouvere, posit that Taimi Saha was a stage mom pushing for her daughter to be a model or an actress, which is why she wanted a magazine devote to her. I don’t know. Sounds plausible, but I presume only the Sahas know for sure.
Saha has mostly been out of the limelight since the mid-70s, although she did do a nice tribute to her father in 2000 in the pages of Locus after her father died (he died in 1999).
Thanks to reader Jeff P. for the scans of the very rare collectible book. And thanks to Cary for the question! Thanks also to Richard Arndt and Angelique Trouvere for their informative interview!
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