Friday, May 29, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics CHAMBER OF CHILLS "Nightmare of Doom!" / TALES OF VOODOO "Flesh Eaters!"

A disease that turns sentient...

...a true nightmare, courtesy of Harvey's Chamber of Chills #15 (1953)
This tale of bacteria and betrayal, illustrated by Al Avison, wasn't reprinted by Harvey, (as many of the stories of the period were) probably because redrawing it to conform to the Comics Code would require too much work!
A couple of decades later, after Harvey stopped doing horror (or sci-fi, or romance, or anything non-Richie Rich or Casper-related) Eerie Publications took the script and had the story redrawn for b/w publication (since the Code didn't cover magazines) by Ruben Marchionne for Tales of Voodoo V5N5 (1972)...
Eerie reprinted this reworked version at least once a year in their various titles until the company left the horror business.
The original version finally saw the light of day again after 65 years in IDW's Haunted Horror!
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Volume 6
Nightmare of Doom and Much More
(which reprints "Nightmare of Doom"!)

Thursday, April 30, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics PSYCHO "Masque of Red Death"

Though the cover from the 1988 Eternity Comics reprint is appropriately-colorful and kool...
...it really doesn't match the ghoulish weirdness of the Ricardo Villamonte artwork from the story that originally-appeared in Skywald's Psycho #20 (1974)...
Editor Al Hewetson adapted and condensed the Edgar Allan Poe story, leaving out some elements that he felt slowed the story.
I consider it one of the better graphic versions, solidly-utilizing the basic tale, plus specific quotes, and some wonderfully-moody art by the highly-underrated Villamonte!
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Monday, April 13, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics ADVENTURES INTO WEIRD WORLDS "Face of Death!"

Due to a lethal epidemic, a well-off guy named "Donald" quarantines in his home...
...but it's not 2020!
It's "present day" in this never-reprinted story from Atlas' Adventures into Weird Worlds #4 (1952)!
If the story seems a bit...familiar...it's because it's an unattributed retelling of Edgar Allen Poe's classic chiller "Masque of the Red Death"!
Can we blame artist Bill Everett whose beautifully-rendered art depicts the tale?
There's no attribution to the writer...who could be Everett himself!
He occasionally wrote his own stories.
Or was it one of the other writers who worked for Atlas, usually without credit!
We'll never know...
Note: After Atlas became Marvel, they revived horror comics at the end of the Silver Age.
Writer Roy Thomas and artist Don Heck did their own "present day" version of Poe's scary short story (with attribution) as you can see HERE!
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Tuesday, March 31, 2020

CoronaVirus Comics CHAMBER OF DARKNESS "Day of the Red Death!"

Here's another "adaptation" of Edgar Allan Poe's classic tale of disease...
...which, for a change, freely admits the source material!
In fact, out of the mouth of Stan (the Man) Lee himself...
A rich, uncaring guy who has the power to destroy the entire world and wouldn't hesitate to allow a plague to do so...as long as he was safe!
Now who does that remind us of?
Writer Roy Thomas had been a teacher before turning to writing/editing comics, and he loved utilizing classic literature in his work!
Don Heck, whose Marvel work was usually inked by others, apparently relished the opportunity to do both penciling and inking, as he had done in his 1950s horror and war comics work!
In addition, John Romita Sr turned in a wonderfully-rendered cover which was somewhat obscured by the black tints used to create "mood".
Look at the original art to see the detail you might've missed on the printed version...
Kool, eh?
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Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Countdown to Halloween 2019 SIR LEO "Closed Room"

We celebrate the final adventure of the psychedelic Victorian monster-hunter...
...with the never-reprinted-in-America artwork from his sole cover appearance on NEL's Dracula #10 (1971)!
And now...on with the tale of terror...
So, Sir Leo's final opponent was...himself!
Appropriate, eh?
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(from 1971, featuring the first six issues of the translated-from-Spanish Dracula magazine)

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Countdown to Halloween 2019 SIR LEO "Mark of Death"

There's something inhuman lurking in London...
...and only psychedelic Victorian monster-hunter Sir Leo can deal with it!
Written and illustrated by Jose Bea and co-written by Luis Vigil, this tale from from Dracula #9 (1971) is a kool take on the "transforming human" trope popular in horror and sci-fi literature.
Even though it'll be after Halloween, we're presenting the remaining, never-published in the US, story of Sir Leo the first Tuesday of November!
Don't miss it!
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(from 1971, featuring the first six issues of the translated-from-Spanish Dracula magazine)