thornehill-carla-vamptales-murder CARLA THORNEHILL

Real Name: Carla Thornehill

Identity/Class: Human vampire;
    active in pre-modern era (apparently slain in 1964-1974 A.D.)

Occupation: Unrevealed

Group Membership: Vampires of Earth;

Affiliations: Presumably the faculty at Churchill Prep

EnemiesMartin Cunningham

Known Relatives: Gerry Thornehill (husband; presumably vampirized), Jason Thornehill (son)

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Unrevealed;
    presumably at least formerly a grave in a graveyard somewhere in New England;
    formerly a home somewhere in New England (see comments)

First AppearanceVampire Tales#8/3 (December, 1974)

Powers/Abilities: Carla demonstrated no particular skills in her limited appearances.

    She and her husband apparently owned their own house and had the financial means to send their son to a prep school.

    As a vampire, Carla would have had superhuman strength (likely lifting around 1000 lbs.) and required regular blood meals to survive, while fatally draining a victim would typically have turned that victim into a vampire as well. She would likely have been vulnerable to sunlight, religious icons, garlic, and silver, and a wooden stake through the heart. She may or may not have been able to transform into a bat, wolf, or mist; and/or to mesmerize others with a gaze.

Height: Unrevealed (she looked close to Martin Cunningham in height, so perhaps 5'8"-5'11")
Weight: Unrevealed (perhaps 130-140 lbs. at the estimated height)
Eyes: Unrevealed (black and white story, too far distant in her only shot showing her eyes)
Hair: Blonde or brown
(black and white story)

History:

grave(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Living in a home somewhere in New England, Carla and Gerry Thornehill had a son, Jason, who was a student at Churchill Prep (presumably short for Preparatory Academy or School).

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Having sought to adopt a young man with whom to share his life and wealth, the vampire Martin Cunningham decided that Jason was the one he wanted after observing him for a short time.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb)) - Traveling to the Thornehill place, Martin Cunningham fatally drained and drank the blood of Gerry and then Carla. Hearing Carla's scream, an unidentified neighbor returning from a party rushed to see what was wrong and observed Martin's actions. 

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - The witness escaped unharmed, and he apparently told others what he had seen but no one believed him. Haunted by the events, the man eventually descended into alcoholism. 

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - The next day, Kit -- informed and accompanied by Mr. Peterson -- awakened Jason and told him of his parents' death.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Believing his parents to have died (perhaps accidentally, rather than having been killed), Jason spent the next two days in a fog. As he did not have any other relatives, friends of his father made the arrangements for the funeral and the burial.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Even standing over his parents' graves, Jason still could not believe they were dead. He saw Martin waiting for him, and Martin comforted Jason, telling him he would see about adopting him.thornehill-carla-vamptales-headline

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Jason came across a 10-year-old Daily Bugle headline article describing his parents as having been slain in a "bizarre blood ritual."

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb)) - Jason located the witness to his parents' murder and pressured him to tell heard his story. Knowing the man had been an artist, Jason asked him to draw the killer's face.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Jason bought the witness a pint (presumably of beer, but possibly some other form of alcohol), and the witness drew the picture. Seeing the image and recognizing it as Martin, Jason resolved what he had to do. Armed with a wooden stake, he headed back home and destroyed Martin with a stake.



Comments: Created by Carla & Gerry Conway and Alfredo Alcala. 

    The first names of Carla and Gerry Thornehill were revealed in Vampires: The Marvel Undead.
    More detail was provided here, as there wasn't room for all of the information in the printed book (additionally, Carla & Gerry's information came in after all of the space for headshots was filled):
http://www.marvunapp.com/ohotmu/appendixes/vaapp.htm

    The first names of Jason's parents were obviously in homage to writers Gerry & Carla Conway.

    Being fatally drained by a vampire is the most consistent means by which a person is transformed into a vampire, so Jason's parents would most likely have become vampires. They were buried two days after their deaths, and most vampires revive three days after their mortal deaths. However, perhaps Martin wished to prevent this, and either killed them before drinking their blood (although the fact that Carla was still somewhat standing argues somewhat against this), or he visited their graves and staked them or something.
    Further, the Vampires profile in Vampires: The Marvel Undead confirmed that they were vampirized.
    If they were staked in their graves or something like that, they would have been revived by the prophecy fulfilled in Blade III#12 that brought back every vampire that had ever perished. 

    The Thornehills' home was presumably in relative proximity to Churchill Prep, as Cunningham traveled there and back in an evening, presumably under his own bat-flight power. Additionally, the man who witnessed their deaths presumably remained in that area, and he was located by Jason Thornehill and visited from Cunningham's estate, which boarded Churchill Prep.

    Stories that occur without any direct ties to the modern Marvel Universe are typically considered to have occurred at the time of publication and outside of the sliding timescale. As this story covered a 10 year flashback and was printed in 1974, I would think the earliest portions of the story would have taken place in 1964. The end point of the story was considered the present time of the narrator, Jason Thornehill. Regardless, Jason's sideburns and the style of the clothing fits for the 70s for me. thornehill-carla-vamptales-newspic-closeup

    I really dislike dual profiles, so I chose to profile Carla with Gerry as a sub-profile. I couldn't see profiling each of them separately since the information is pretty much identical.

    I included a larger image of the Thornehills from the Daily Bugle article primarily to show that it doesn't offer any more detail on their appearances.

Profile by Snood.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Carla Thornehill
should be distinguished from:




Gerry Thornehill
thornehill-carla-vamptales-gerry-supineA New England resident, the husband of Carla, and the father of Jason, Gerry Thornehill was fatally drained alongside Carla by vampire Martin Cunningham, who then adopted and raised Jason.

--Vampire Tales#8/3

Note: Like Carla, Gerry was vampirized by being fatally drained by Cunningham.



witness

witness-fullseatedthornehill-carla-vamptales-witness-face(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - An artist, the man lived somewhere in New England, in the vicinity of the Thornehill home, and he had a reputation for being eccentric.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb)) - Returning from a party, the man heard a scream as he walked past the Thornehill place. Rushing inside the house to see what was wrong, the man observed the vampire Martin Cunningham (although he didn't know Cunningham's identity) drinking the blood from Carla, with Gerry lying on the ground, presumably already dead.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - The witness escaped unharmed, and he apparently told others what he had seen but no one believed him. Haunted by the events, the man eventually descended into alcoholism; however, the appearance of the vampire remained fresh in his mind.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Ten years later, the Thornehills' son, Jason, came across a 10-year-old Daily Bugle headline article describing his parents as having been slain in a "bizarre blood ritual." Via investigating the coroner's inquest/report, Jason learned that there was a eye-witness to his parents' murder.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb)) - Jason located the witness in the slum, and he pressured him to tell heard his story. Knowing the man had been an artist, Jason asked him to draw the killer's face.

(Vampire Tales#8/3 (fb) - BTS) - Noting that his hands had "gone soft," the witness asked Jason to buy him a pint (of some form of alcohol), and the witness drew the picture. Seeing the image and recognizing it as Martin, Jason headed back home and destroyed Martin with a wooden stake.

--Vampire Tales#8/3



home
thornehill-carla-vamptales-home-scream.
.
.
.Home to Carla and Gerry Thornehill, it was here that Martin Cunningham fatally drained them. An unidentified neighbor and artist was coming home from a party, heard the scream, rushed into the murder scene, and then escaped.

--Vampire Tales#8/3


images
: (without ads)

Vampire Tales#8/3
        pg. 6, panel 1 (funeral);
        pg. 7, panel 9 (headline);
        pg. 8, panel 3 (witness; seated; full);
        pg. 9, panel 3 (Cunningham biting Carla; Gerry on the ground; witness at the door);
            panel 5 (witness; face)


Appearances:
Vampire Tales#8/3: "The Inheritance" (December, 1974) - Carla & Gerry Conway (writers), Alfredo Alcala (artist), Marv Wolfman (editor), Tony Isabella (consulting editor)


First posted07/31/2022
Last updated: 07/31/2022

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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