Issac Asimov (who totally rules over Ray Bradbury, so there) once raised an interesting question about witches: why were they always shown as ugly old women? He wondered, if a female were in committed service to Satan, why would she allow herself to become wrinkled and old? The first thing she would ask for would be sexual allure, and lots of it. In a patriarchy it would give her power and influence over the village elders; she would also be a constant thorn in the side of her fellow (Christian) women, whose husbands and sons would pant like hounds in her presence. There's a counter-argument, of course, but he makes a good point, and your picture of the sloe-eyed seductress (Mrs. Robinson) illustrates it perfectly. Wonderful work! What's that...? I'm seeing something phallic in the picture again...time to go take my medicine.
Well I think trying to compare Asimov and Bradbury is like trying to compare apples and oranges. Two VERY different authors who are both very interesting for totally different reasons. I enjoy both authors but they are at opposite end of the literary spectrum.
As for the pretty witch concept. I think we have indeed seen that many times in pop culture...Samatha, Sabrina, Charmed, the Veronica Lake film "I Married a Witch" which is more or less what the TV series BEWITCHED was based upon. Numerous comic book tales etc, all featuring beautiful witches. As fro phallic, any time you have a broom in a picture, it's phallic.
Just kidding about those two. Asimov greatly admired Bradbury's writing style, which he said was poetic and had a 19-Century charm. You're right about the "pretty witch" concept. It has replaced the "withered crone" image of earlier centuries, and happily so. Today's vampires, for that matter, look more like pouting underwear models than Nosferatu.
LOL! Yeah I am so sick and tired of the gay-boy vampires of today. I wanna see a nasty ugly vampire for a change! And not that BUFFY-I'm-a-pretty-vampire-but-I-can-turn-SCARY-really-fast!!!!! shit! Tired of all that crap. I want SALEM"S LOT vampires!
Har! Sounds like the classic "grampa" rant: "Why, in my day, vampires was vampires! They didn't use hair gel, didn't give a damn about their carbon footprint, and they wasn't politically correct, neither! No wonder this country's goin' to Hell!"
Ha ha! And MY grandpa probably had no idea what a vampire even was! "Vampire? you mean umpire...that fella who stands behind home plate." My grandfather never watched anything on Tv except sports, the news, Lawrence Welk and HEE-HAW. My brother and I started watching the Karloff MUMMY one night and my grandfather freaked out when the Mummy came to life. My grandmother made us change the channel! He couldn't handle anything even marginally dramatic.
I understand. My step-father hated Star Trek, wouldn't watch a minute of it. One, it was set in the future, which he couldn't wrap his mind around. Two, it didn't involve cops, cowboys or soldiers fighting Hitler. Three, teenage boys liked it, so it had to be pornographic or stupid. Yeah. Like he ever read a word of Twain or Shakespeare. It's funny just how parochial one's tastes can become with age. Just the same, I'm still not watching that "Twilight" crap.
Ha Ha! Sounds familiar. I recall one night my brother and I were watching a circus program on TV at my Grandparents' house. A circus program...pretty tame stuff...right? Even something my Grandfather could handle...right? WRONG! This slack pole acrobat came on and did this amazing routine on this slack pole. At times it looked like he would fall from the pole and be killed, but of course everyone watching knew that would never actually happen. Now this program was not live. It on film or tape. This guy was NOT going to fall and be hurt on network television. But my Grandfather could NOT watch it! He had to leave the room! It was just too scary for him. A freakin' circus TV program! Lucky thing that tiny car filled with dozens of clowns did not turn up! We probably would have had Grandpa committed..."How the Hell can all those clowns fit in one car? It goes against the laws of nature! It's crazy! Crazy I tell you!!!" He was a bit messed up.