Doug: With apologies to our readers for the lack of a comic review today. I remarked to today's guest writer, the ever-helpful Martinex1 that at some point the speed of life was going to decrease. Not sure when that will be, but I'm looking forward to it whenever that does happen. So, until next Monday when Karen and I hope to have a partner review of the first appearance of the New Teen Titans, you're going to have to get your comics fix by discussing not nine but an even dozen books. And I think it's going to be a fun discussion, as ol' Mike S. has a good topic for us.
Mike S.: It is not Halloween, but it is time to consider the great horror titles of the past. Enter the ever evolving virtual store for another $1.00 challenge of “If I Had A Buck”. This time around we’ve got vampires, and werewolves, and ghouls, and monsters.
Back in my youth, the comic rack seemed to be tipping with twisted tales. Some were macabre anthologies of fear and suspense. Others focused on creatures from the unknown. There was quite a catalog of comics with misunderstood and tragic malcontents lurking about. Many titles starred classic fiends that were repurposed as super heroes.
What did you think about the horror heyday of the Bronze Age? Did you lean toward the archetypal villains, the eerie heroes, or the hair raising tales? Were any of these series dreadfully executed, or were they shockingly frightful? Vile? Ghastly? Or Horrible? Were there artists and writers you preferred for these types of tales? Did the genre leave you cold or did you find balance in the heroic interplay? How did you spend your dollar and what influenced the choice?
You have quite a selection today, and like the strikes of midnight there are twelve choices this time around. In creating the offerings, there were many titles to choose from, so if your favorite is not listed let us know what that is and why. So if DC’s “House of Secrets” or “Haunted Tank” or Charlton’s “Ghostly Haunts” or “Ghostly Tales” float your boat, share your thoughts. Heck, if you decide to segue into a discussion of the “Groovy Ghoulies” so be it.
As always, have fun and spend wisely. Here are the considerations; just pay the ferryman:
- Creatures On The Loose featuring Man Wolf (Marvel) No. 33; $0.25. 1975. Cover by Gil Kane and Klaus Janson. “Deathgame” by David Anthony Kraft and George Perez. John Jameson does his modern take on the werewolf tale with great early art by Perez. I’m howling at the moon!
- Adventure Into Fear with The Man Called Morbius The Living Vampire (Marvel) No. 29; $0.25 (Yeesh! I’m afraid that cover has more words on it than the entirety of any current issue’s 32 pages from Marvel!) 1975. Cover by Ron Wilson and Mike Esposito. “Through a Helleye Darkly” by Bill Mantlo and Don Heck. Another Spider Man villain gets a shot at a solo career. Terrifying!
- The Frankenstein Monster (Marvel) No. 6; $0.20 1973. Cover by Mike Ploog. “In Search of the Last Frankenstein” by Gary Friedrich and Mike Ploog. I like the corner circle but hate the sweater vest. Chilling!
- Ghost Rider (Marvel) No. 28; $0.35 1977. Cover by Ernie Chan. “Evil is the Orb” by Roger McKenzie and Don Perlin. Keep your eyes open, the Orb is back!
- The House of Mystery (DC) No. 236; $0.25 1975. Cover by Bernie Wrightson. “Death Played a Sideshow” by Coram Nobis and Steve Ditko, and “Deep Sleep” by Jack Oleck and Paul Kirchner. Much scarier than when Death uses Powerpoint!
- Man Thing (Marvel) No. 5; $0.25 1974. Cover by Mike Ploog. “Night of the Laughing Dead” by Steve Gerber and Mike Ploog. I’m not laughing… I’m screaming!
- Planet of Vampires (Atlas/Seaboard) No. 2; $0.25 1975. Cover by Neal Adams and Dick Giordano. “Quest for Blood” but John Albano and Pat Broderick. The publisher and title were short lived. So are the characters! Fiendish!
- Supernatural Thrillers featuring The Living Mummy (Marvel) No. 9; $0.25 1974. Cover by Gil Kane and Allen Milgrom. “Pyramid of Peril” by Tony Isabella and Val Mayerik. Cover proves my point that most plumbing problems are caused by too much toilet paper! Bloodcurdling!
- Saga of Swamp Thing (DC) No.35; $0.75 1985. Cover by Steve Bissette and John Totleben. “The Nuke Face Papers” by Alan Moore and Steve Bissette. Intimidating! Daunting! Petrifying! And I’m not talking about the writer!
- Tomb of Dracula (Marvel) No. 68; $0.35 1978. Cover by Gene Colan and Tom Palmer. “The Return to… Transylvania” by Marv Wolfman (wolfman heh, heh) and Gene Colan with inks by Palmer. All I have to say is wear dark pants when you read this one!
- Werewolf By Night (Marvel) No. 34; $0.25 1975. Cover by Gil Kane and Tom Palmer. “Not All of the Shades of Death, Nor Evil’s Majesty” by Doug Moench and Don Perlin. Just the cover gave me sleepless nights!
- Where Monsters Dwell (Marvel) No. 4; $0.15 1970. Cover by Marie Severin and Tom Palmer. Four tales of monsters and the macabre. All reprints, but some fine work from Steve Ditko and Don Heck. Don’t go in the basement!