Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Vampirella 31

This issue was publicized as Frank Frazetta's return to Warren, although in actuality it was simply a reprinting of a cover that had been used for the movie "Luana", which is adapted inside. I've seen images on the web before of what was supposedly the original cover for this issue (see below), which is by Enrich and features Vampi by the Eiffel Tower. For whatever reason that cover was never used, although Vampi's face from that cover was used in the top left hand corner of the cover for Vampi's portrait for the next half a dozen issues or so starting with issue 32.

First is "The Betrothed of the Sun-God!" by Jose Gonzalez (art) and Mike Butterworth (story, as Flaxman Loew). This story continues from the prior one, where Vampi is the lover of a Sun God that can only appear once a month, but kills anyone who even appears to be attracted to Vampirella. At the same time Pendragon receives a message from a long lost relative and the two of them travel to Paris. The 'relative' is actually a con artist who cons people into putting her in their will, killing them soon afterwards. When a handsome poet writes a poem for Vampi the Sun God desires to burn the entire city of Paris to the ground, but Vampi convinces him instead to simply strike the con artist's house with lightning, which kills her and her entire group of henchmen. Vampi then decides to break things off with the Sun God. A very good story to start off the issue with. Gonzalez's art is very impressive.

Next is Pantha in her second story, "Family Ties" by Auraleon (art) and Steve Skeates (story). In this story Pantha goes home to see her boyfriend but he could care less what she has to say and after slapping her she turns into a panther and kills him. She then goes home to see her 'parents', asking them who her real parents are so she can find out what is happening to her. They instead beat her, so she once again turns into her panther form and kills the both of them.

Third is "The Truth!" by Fernando Fernandez (art & story). In Spain a captain in the military is brought before a group of judges, accused of Satanism and the murder of his wife and her lover. The captain tells of how he returned from the war to find his wife acting strangely, his sons sent away and only two mysterious servants there. That night while sleeping with his wife he is drugged, but wakes up hours later to find her gone. He heads to the basement where he thinks he'll find her with a lover, but instead finds her and her two servants eating a corpse. Shocked by what he sees, he kills the two servants and chases his wife through the woods, but she escapes in a flying saucer which flies away. None of the judges believe him and sentence him to death in the bonfire. The strongest story of the issue, with amazing art by Fernandez and a very spooky atmosphere. Whether the story the captain is telling is the truth or not is unknown. The inclusion of the alien aspect on the second to last page is quite odd though, something Fernandez would do again in the story 'The Whitfield Contract' in issue 42.

Fourth is "The Woodlik Inheritance!" by Richard Corben (art & story). A woman returns to the home she grew up in in Maine, where she finds that her mother has passed away. Her brother is acting very strange, telling her that the father they never knew is alive and that he has been eating only raw meat the last few weeks. They head to the basement, where they find their father, a horrific monster, who is eating the corpse of their mother. The brother battles the father and they both end up dying. The sister departs the house, which burns to the ground, eating what is left of her brother. A pretty good, odd, story, although the color is a little too dark at times.

Yet another solo story is up next, this time by Jose Bea, with "The Strange, Incurable Phobia of Mad Pierre Langlois!". 'Mad' Pierre is a man who is both afraid of and absolutely despises flowers. This is due to his youth, where his step mother showed him no love, instead paying all attention to her flowers. She then told him that her flowers would curse him until the day he dies. The curse finally comes to fruition when his son is born and ends up being a half human, half plant freak.

Last is "Luana" by Esteban Maroto (art) and Doug Moench (story), an adaption of the film of the same name. A group of archeologists in Africa are attacked by a group of African tribesmen. Only one of the men, named George, survives, when Luana, a beautiful woman living in the jungle comes and saves him, healing him from the poison arrows that struck him. Returning to civilization, he meets a woman, Isabelle Saxon who is searching for her father, who crashed in the jungle years before with his wife and Isabelle's half-sister (who is actually Luana). An old friend of her fathers, who is involved in drugs with the tribesmen becomes involved, and seeks to kill them, but is outsmarted by Luana, who leads George and Isabelle to the plane crash, where they find a diary that tells the truth about her father's friend, who ends up dying when he struggles with the tribe leader he was allied with.

Eerie 107

This issue of Eerie starts with a cover by Romas Kukalis featuring Spider Andromeda from Mac Tavish for the second consecutive (non-reprint) issue. Not much here in this issue, only four stories.

First is the conclusion of the Horizon Seekers in "The Last Horizon" by Leo Duranona (art) and Duranona & Cary Bates (story). Jesse, Allison and Merlin continue through the ravished landscape and are abducted by bizarre looking alien creatures that reveal that they have experimented on Earth for millions of years, responsible for the death of the dinosaurs and the apocalypse that caused the Earth to become its current state. The aliens reveal that our three heroes in particular have been observed by the aliens all this time. Merlin sacrifices himelf, resulting in the entire ship blowing up. At that point we break the fourth wall in the story, showing Leo Duranona at his home drawing the story, meeting some friends of his wife who look like cleaned up versions of Allison and Jesse. A bizarre, but very good final part to this fairly good and long running series.

Second is the third "Beastworld" story by Pablo Marcos (art) and Bruce Jones (story). Tyler and Ruth continue to progress in their relationship while the pathetic Thomas rapes Monica. The two pairs continue to battle some giant bugs. Monica eventually knocks out Thomas only to have a flood rapidly approaching. This series continues to dissappoint tremendously from both a story and art standpoint.

Third is Mac Tavish in "Bad Company" by Pepe Moreno Casares (art) and Jim Stenstrum & Alex Southern (story). Rara Avis governor Lazard plots with the evil Gorgo to throw the election to him in exchange for a big payoff. Unknown to him, Gorgo plans to have him killed once the election is over. Spider recovers and says goodbye to Mac Tavish and Ida, trying to warn Lazard of what will happen on election day. Lazard ignores him and is promptly killed by Gorgo's forces seconds after he leaves. Gorgo is now elected governor of Rara Avis as this part ends.

Last is "The Prophecy" by Nestor De Leon (art) and Bill Kelly (story). This story features a girl who is prophesized to rescue the poor people from the tyrants. She eventually marries the prince, becomes queen, and rules the country after he dies in his only battle. She does nothing to rescue the poor from the tyranny, instead having rival lords fight over her. Eventually a large blob like creature arrives, killing the lords, and eventually the queen herself, as the blob was actually the prophecy come to life.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Creepy 43

Ken Kelly provides the cover for this issue of Creepy.

First is "Three Way Split" by Jorge Galvez (art) and Dennis P. Junot (story). This story features two businessmen who are enemies of each other. A doctor who was fired by one of them goes to the other, with a way to get revenge on the rival by becoming him through a brain transplant. The operations is successful, although the rival convinces the doctor to help him as well. By the end of the story all three have switched bodies with each other, and all three end up dying.

Next is the cover story, "The Mark of Satan's Claw" by Jaime Brocal (art) and Fred Ott (story). A man comes to a small town, curious of some murders of children that are occuring. Law enforcement is unwilling to help him, but a man there admits to him that the town is full of Satan worshippers and that he left them when they started sacrificing children. Satan himself kills the man, but our protagonist is led to his girlfriend, who also left the Satan worshippers. Our protagonist is revealed to be Satan himself, and kills her too for betraying him.

Third is "The Men Who Called Him Monster" by Luis Garcia (art) and Don McGregor (story). This story was Luis Garcia's Creepy debut. An extremely nice art job, with the werewolf being obviously influenced by the original Wolfman movie starring Lon Chaney Jr. The main character, a black detective, who is hired to find the boy that is the werewolf, was based on Sidney Poitier. This story featured the first inter racial kiss in mainstream comics, although it only occured because Garcia misunderstood McGregor's line "This is the clincher" in his script. As usual, the story features McGregor's nonscensical political ramblings.

Fourth is "Quest of the Bigfoot" by Jerry Grandenetti (art) and R. Michael Rosen (story). This story features a pair of scientists investigating bigfoot. They eventually come across an Eden occupied by the bigfoots. One of the scientists morphs into bigfoot and attacks the other scientist. But that scientist reveals that he is the abominable snowman and kills him, wanting to take over the bigfoot's realm for his species.

Last is "Mirage" by Felix Mas (art) and Gerry Conway (story). A man and a young boy wander the desert after a plane crash. They eventually come across a group of women that end up eating him. At the end of the story it is revealed that the whole experience was a mirage, caused by the boy because he was upset at the man for hitting him.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

1994 18

This issue of 1994 features a cover by H.R. Giger, most well known for his designs on the Alien movies. Unfortunately this was his sole work for Warren.

First is "The Lost Loves of Cranfranz P. Thitwacker" by Alex Nino (art) and Bill Dubay (story, as Will Richardson). 'Cranfranz' has been a name that I've seen excessively in Alex Nino drawn stories in this issue for a while now. Anyway, Cranfranz is a forty seven year old virgin who buys a 'make your own woman' kit, which he promptly screws up, creating a horrific creature that immediately falls dead. He later tries to creatue another woman, and screws up her even more. By trying to dispose of the remains, he is caught and brought to jail. His neighbor meanwhile decides that she'd like to look into such a kit herself to create a man for her.

Second is "Lone Wolf" by Delando Nino (art) and John Ellis Sech (story). This story takes place in the future, where much of humanity has moved underground, leaving above ground to mutants. People underground known as Seekers head above ground to kill them. One such Seeker is Lone Wolf, who is generally disliked by all. He goes above ground where he meets a woman taking care of some deformed children. When they are attacked by fellow seekers, he fights them off, and decides to stay above ground for good.

Third is "The Mad Planet" by Vic Catan (art) and Gerry Boudreau & Bill Dubay (story, Dubay is creited as Will Richardson). A prisoner is on a planet that is hit with a plaugue, killing all but him and a guard, a monster whom he falls in love with. Due to the plague, he is quarantined on the planet. Eventually his lover passes away of a heart attack and soon after astronauts arrive with a cure for the plague, wanting to use him to help a candidate be elected president. The prisoner wishes not to leave however, and kills them all. Some pretty good art here by Catan in the best story of the issue.

Fourth is the latest "Ghita of Alizarr" story by Frank Thorne (story & art). Ghita and friends meet an old friend of her, Sartan. They take part in a performance, but trolls interrupt it and they head after them. Along the way they encounter Noads, tiny troll like creatures that take Ghita capture. Ghita is able to escape due to a unicorn.

Last is thankfully the final part of "The Starfire Saga" by Rudy Nebres (art) and Bill Dubay (story, as Will Richardson). Chris heads back to the base from the first part, but is attacked due to being a suspect in the murder of a character from the first part (about half this story is a recap of the first part of this series). Instead it is revealed that a pedophile man stationed there killed the man, and Chris has a happy reunion with her father. In the end this series ends dissappointing, but then again this entire series has been a poor dissappointment. I can't believe they wasted eight appearances on this boring drivel.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Eerie 105

Jordi Penalva provides the cover for this issue of Eerie, featuring Mac Tavish and Spider Andromeda.

First is the Rook in "Robot Fighters" by Jim Janes & Alfredo Alcala (art) and Bill Dubay (story). The Rook, Dane and Manners help defeat a robot that is a descendent of one the Rook built in different times. The best part of this story is that its a lot shorter than the usual Rook fare, getting it over with quickly. Thankfully the Rook exited the magazine for quite a while after this issue, due to having his own magazine.

Second is the finale for The Trespasser, in "Ruins" by Paul Gulacy (art) and Don McGregor (story). A rather short finale to this series at only 6 pages. Dr. Cavanaugh defeats the Cope's last guard, then fights Harris Cope, who shoots his wife Rebecca. Harris falls out the window to his death and Cavanaugh is finally able to leave with Rebecca in his arms.

Third is "Beastworld" by Pablo Marcos (art) and Bruce Jones (story). Thomas and Monica find some giant bugs attacking them and Thomas is saved from a deadly spider only when a giant wasp arrives and fights it. Tyler and Ruth meanwhile have some more success and Tyler starts making out with her. The usual extemely dependable Bruce Jones hasn't impressed that much so far with this series.

Fourth is "Demons of the Zodiac", the return of Mac Tavish, unseen for a while. Art is by Pepe Moreno Casares and story is by Jim Stenstrum & Bob Toomey, under their pseudonyms Alabaster Redzone and Gary Null. A so-so continuation of this Star Wars ripoff, featuring Mac Tavish summarizing the history of Spider Andromeda while he sleeps.

Fifth is "Hunger Strike", the latest segment in the Horizon Seekers. Although the prior issue said this would be the conclusion, the story doesn't end here, and ends rather abrubtly. Art is by Leo Duranona and story is by Duranona and Cary Bates. In this story our heroes are confronted by a group of giant bugs but get them to eat each other, similar to the prior story. Also, the cannibal girl who was with them starts her cannibal ways again but is killed by the bugs before she can eat our heroes.

Last is "Lair of the Assassins", the latest story in the Samurai series. Art is by Val Mayerik and story is by Larry Hama. Samurai goes to the castle of Yagyu Ninjas and inside is forced to battle old man Yagyu's son, who has the niece of their lord strapped to him. Samurai easily defeats him and after Yagyu has his minions shoot arrows at him, Samurai grabs them and throws them back, striking him in the eye. Samurai escapes with the niece, who has been blinded, and she helps him escape after his own eyesight is affected by an attack.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Creepy 54

This issue's cover features excerpts from various interior stories by Richard Corben, Reed Crandall and Esteban Maroto. A similar style cover was done on Vampirella 26, which came out around the same time.

First is "The Slipped Mickey Click Flip" by Richard Corben (art) and Doug Moench (story). This is one of the most bizarre and nonscensical stories in Warren's history, but is very good. It features Diment, a crazy old man taking over hosting duties from Uncle Creepy and telling some bizarre tales about a pyschologist and his family. The psychologist is attacked by butterflies, a TV eats his wife, and a bone buries his dog. Very, very bizarre.

Second is "This Graveyard is Not Deserted" by Reed Crandall (art) and Don McGregor (story). A rather poor, drawn out western story featuring an outlaw that shoots out a native american boy's eyes; later boy's ghost gets his revenge and tears the outlaw's eyes out.

Third is "Descent into Hell" by Esteban Maroto (art) and Kevin Pagan (story). Warren starts their trend of printing color stories regularly here, in a manner that started off quite bad. Some very, very poor coloring here. It is either too bright, or barely colored at all. Luckily Warren had things fixed by the next color story in Creepy in issue 56. Not much of a story either, featuring a God that goes to hell to find a mortal woman he had loved. Finding she is gone forever, he spurns Zeus and becomes Atlas, cursed to hold Earth on his back. This story was previewed as "Descent into Tartarus" in previous issues.

Fourth is "Dead Man's Race" by Martin Salvador (art) and Jack Butterworth (story). A wealth man's brother passes away and is set to be buried on the same day as his lover, who also died. The brother fears that if his dead brother is the last buried in the graveyard (it has only two graves remaining) he will be cursed, so he races the hearse as fast as possible to beat the hearse of his brother's lover. He doesn't win, so he kills his driver and has him buried instead of his brother. But the driver comes back from the dead and has him buried, resulting in the man becoming the cursed ghost.

Fifth is "Little Nippers" by Tom Sutton (art) and R. Michael Rosen (story). A pair of men come across Liliput, the city of miniature people from Gulliver's Travels. They find a book where one of the little people tells how some of them traveled with Gulliver, but became vampires. The last one was possessed and was able to bring the vampires back to Liliput, getting them all killed. In the present day, the explorers leave the island after miniature vampires attack only to come to another island with vampires, giant ones.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Vampirella 15

Sanjulian provides the cover to this issue of Vampirella. Richard Corben (art) and Bill Dubay (story) provide the frontis story, "Vampi's Feary Tales: Metifa!".

First is "The Resurrection of Papa Voudou!" by Jose Gonzalez (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). Vampi and friends are in Cote de Soleil, where they meet Paul Giraud, who warns them of a secret police who worked for the former ruler, known as Papa Voudou. Working to bring back Papa Voudou is Madame Dominique and Colonel Ramm, who have kidnapped Conrad. They bring back Papa Voudou, but he is a rotting corpse, so they seek to restore his body by using spells of Chaos. Vampi and friends interfere and Adam and Giraud are heavily wounded. Vampirella saves Adam's life through a blood transfusion of her own blood, but are unable to stop Dominique and Ramm from blackmailing Conrad into casting their spell. However, it ends up restoring Giraud's wounds rather than Voudou's body, so he kills the both of them then is burned to his final death by Vampirella.

Second is "Quavering Shadows" by Jose Bea (art) and Doug Moench (story). While a serial killer plauges a town, a man, Andrew, visits his friend Jason, who has purchased a castle deep in the woods. Andrew eventually makes it there and finds his friend barely sane, telling him of ghosts in the castle and showing him mysterious shadows on the wall. Things get even stranger as Jason appears in different parts of the castle at the same time, then attacking Andrew with a club. Andrew returns home where he finds that his wife had been attacked by the serial killer, who was Jason! A very odd story.

Third is "A House is Not a Home" by Nebot (art) and Dave Mitchell (story). A young woman who witnessed her fathers death as a girl when he was summoning demons gets marries and has to travel to a strange house when the two are stranded in their car in a storm. Inside the husband reveals that he is a demon, getting revenge on her for her father's success battling them when she was a kid.

Last is "Welcome to the Witches Coven" by Luis Garcia (art, his Warren premiere) and Don McGregor (story). Some extremely good art kicks off Garcia's short lived Warren career, appearing to have been done in pencil only here. The story ain't that great though, featuring a woman in the modern era joining a witch's cult with disastrous results as they sacrifice a business friend of her husband's, then kill her when she tries to escape and alert the authorities.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Eerie 104

Kirk Reinert provides the cover for this issue of Eerie, featuring the new serial Beastworld.

First is the Rook in "The Trouble With Tin Men". Art is by Jim Janes & Alfredo Alcala while story is from Bill Dubay. Think of the usual cliches in the Rook storyline and this story has it. Rook going into the future for another adventure, telling Dane to stay there, and Dane heading off on another adventure with Manners yet again. Yawn. After the same storyline 15 times this is getting rather dull. Notable is that the Time Castle is destroyed, apparantely stranding Dane and Manners in the time they have gone to.

Second is the second part of "The Trespasser", in "Dusk" by Paul Gulacy (art) and Don McGregor (story). Dr. Cavanaugh is thrown in a prison in the basement where he finds Kelsey, the man he had seen captured before. Kelsey reveals that the Cope's house is built on a site where nuclear waste had been kept, the reason for the family's illness. Rebecca soon arrives and lets them out. As they are crossing a bridge one of the Cope family's guard finds them and a fight ensues in which the bridge is destroyed. Luckily Cavanaugh is able to throw the man into crocodile infested waters, saving himself and Rebecca. A good continuation to this story with some fine art by Gulacy and shockingly enough a good story from McGregor that doesn't go overboard with his usual polical ramblings.

Third is "City of Shadows" by Leo Duranona (art) and Jean Michel Martin (story). This story is told mostly through photographs of clay figures and toys. It features a group of people traveling through a post apocalyptic landscape looking for a mysterious city, which ends up being Manhatten.

Fourth is "Beastworld", a new series from Pablo Marcos (art) and Bruce Jones (story). A man, Tyler, and his friend Monica come across a giant beetle while flying in a ship. They meet Peter Thomas and his wife, Ruth. Peter has an inferiority complex with Tyler from their time in school together. He drugs our two heroes, but then without any explanation Tyler ends up with Ruth and Thomas ends up with Monica, seperated from each other. They fight off some giant bugs while arguing with each other. A rather poor start to a long running serial with Marcos art, an guy whose style I've never been too fond of. A poor site in a mostly good issue.

Fifth is the second part of The Open Sky, "Vladimir" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Bob Toomey (story). Moonshadow and Arianne come across a two headed man who had a hot air balloon stolen from him by Francois, the head assassin that Moonshadow is after. After convincing the two headed man to let them use their hot air balloon, they head through the sky, and are eventually seized by the winged people from the previous story, who drop Moonshadow and Arianne into the ocean.

Last is "Temple of the Ravengers" the latest story in the Horizon Seekers series. Art is by Leo Duranona, while story is by Duranona & Cary Bates. Allison and Jesse travel through the desert with Merlin and find some ruins of a mansion, leaving Merlin behind to rest while they explore. Inside they find a group of women cannibals that capture them. By convincing the cannibals that she is ill, Allison is able to start some infighting, and she and Jesse are able to escape.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Creepy 9

Posting another issue today to make up for missing yesterday.

This classic issue of Creepy features a cover by Frank Frazetta featuring a swordsman fighting off 3 vampire creatures. The frontis is "Creepy's Loathsome Lore" by Roy Krenkel.

First is "Dark Kingdom!" by Gray Morrow (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). A Spartan, Argo, finds himself in hell, battling various winged creatures, snakes and others. He's able to escape from Hades and live, with a scar on his back as a souvenier. As usual, great art from Morrow.

Second is "The Castle on the Moor" by Johnny Craig (story & art, credited to Jay Taycee). A group of tourists in a castle find themselves under attack by a werewolf, the son of the castle's owner. Soon only two are left, but are able to kill the werewolf with a silver bullet. One of the survivors reveals himself a ghoul however, and kills the last remaining person so he can eat her.

Third is "Adam Link's Vengeance" by Joe Orlando (art) and Otto Binder (story). This story continues from the prior one, where Adam was thrown off a cliff by Eve, who was possessed by a helmet she was wearing. Adam makes it to civilization, gets repaired, then takes on Eve in a new robot body. He defeats her, but ends up killing her. The man possessing her falls off a cliff soon afterwards.

Fourth is "Overworked" by Wally Wood & Dan Adkins (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). This story, which was Wood and Adkin's Creepy debut is about a comic book artist who is finds himself plauged by the monsters from the stories he creates. He tries to stop, but keeps getting more jobs and finds himself in horrific situations. Eventually he becomes trapped within his own strip.

Fifth is the second part of "The Coffin of Dracula" by Reed Crandall (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). This is a continuation from a story started in the prior issue. A man who had sat in Dracula's grave becomes Dracula himself. The story surrounds a number of men pursuing him, who eventually are successful in destroying him.

Sixth is "Out of Time" by Alex Toth (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). A mugger kills his victim, and is under pursuit from the police. He manages to escape using a portal which brings him to the 1700's. A man there tells him that he created the portal and wants to switch places with him. They do so, but our protagonist finds himself in just as bad a position as he's burned at the stake for witchcraft, which the person he replaced had been performing.

Last is "The Spirit of the Thing" by Steve Ditko (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). It features a professor who hypnotizes a student of his, resulting in his spirit leaving his body. The professor then steals the student's body, as his is about to die. The student's spirit, now bodiless, steals the professor's corpse from the graveyard and uses it to brutally beat to death his own body (with the professor's spirit) until the professor is forced to leave. Outside of Collectors Edition from the next issue, Ditko's best story for Warren.

1994 17

Jim Stenstrum is responsible for the cover for this issue of 1994, with Bill Dubay providing the color.

First is "Asshole of the Universe" by Alex Nino (art) and Bill Dubay (story, as Will Richardson). Nino's art is very good here, resembling his brother Delando's art throughout much of the story. This story is about a astronaut who reaches the edge of the universe, destroying his ship, but somehow leaving him alive. He finds himself in a landscape where other living beings start appearing. He gains the power of a God, but alas, all doesn't go well.

Second is "Mad Amy" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Kevin Duane & Bill Dubay (story, as Will Richardson). This story tells of the future where robots have run amok, resulting in the destruction of most of the world. This story surrounds Mad Amy of the title and her programming friend who encounter a number of robots and eventually are able to outsmart them into being friendly to humans once again.

Third is "Ghita of Alizarr", returning after a two issue absense. Art and story is by Frank Thorne. Ghita and Thenef and Dahib are invited to a neighboring land of Urd. Along the way Ghita and Thenef tell Dahib a story of years before when they were recruited to obtain a cup from the queen's bedroom. Naturally there's lots of nudity and sex involved.

Fourth is this issue's color story, "Kid Rust" by Jose Ortiz (art). The writer is uncredited. This story is about a robot boxer and his manager. The manager refuses to work with a gambler and fix a fight so the gambler has him killed. The manager is able to resurrect himself in the robot's body however, ensuring he stays alive.

Fifth is "The Big Celebration" by Abel Laxamana (art) and Jim Stenstrum (story). This story, which I would probably rank as the best of the issue tells of aliens asking Earth to send a representative, which ends up being a has been quarterback who had one big game a few years ago. No one is able to figure out why they're asking for him, even the quarterback himself. He heads to the stars where he meets the aliens, who are a few years behind on their TV which is why they like him so much, the last they saw of him he was a star.

Last is "Man is God!" by Alex Nino (art) and John Ellis Sech (story). This is a very quick 2 page story about a pair of astronauts arguing over the universe while a giant sneezing interferes with their flight.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Eerie 103

Terrance Lindall provides the cover for this issue of Eerie, featuring the series "The Horizon Seekers".

First is the Rook in "Terror of the Spaceways!" part 2 by Lee Elias (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story continues from the previous issue and contains some reprinted artwork from that story. The Rook saves the woman from the destroyed ship, then heads out despite the danger due to the battles occuring. Despite the danger he is able to make it out okay. Some very good art by Elias but not that great a story.

Second is a new series, The Open Sky, which is a prequel to the series Moonshadow. The first story is titled "Arianne", with art by Jose Ortiz and story by Bob Toomey. Arianne is a girl living in a cave whose family has been plauged by winged monsters. Moonshadow, a skilled assassin arrives and helps awaken her to the outside world. He defeats the head monster and she decides to head off with him.

Third is another new series, "The Trespasser" by Paul Gulacy (art, his Warren debut) and Don McGregor (story, his first Warren appearance in quite a while). A doctor is summoned to the home of a rich family, the Copes. There he encounters a man on the run from the Cope's guards, the Averdine brothers. The doctor meets Rebecca Cope, the woman who summoned him. Soon afterwards however her husband arrives and ignoring the doctor's warnings about having skin cancer, has his guards take him away to lock him up.

Fourth is "Credentials", from a new series called Samurai. Art is by Val Mayerik and story is by Larry Hama. This series started in Creepy 106 and moved here for the rest of its run. Samurai is revealed to have been recruited by his lord as an assassin. He goes to the priest Do-Shin who trains him by locking him up for 3 years during which he trains his mind and body. When he's finally released he kills Do-Shin.

Last is the latest Horizon Seekers story, "The Damned & The Dead" by Leo Duranona (art) and Duranona & Cary Bates (story). Millions of small creatures run towards the castle that Allison and Jesse are in. They are able to hide themselves from them by covering themselves with the blood of one of the creatures. Realizing that the creatures are carrying their queen with them, Jesse manages to kill it, and the creatures mindlessly run themselves off a cliff to their death.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Creepy 128

This cover features a reprint of Frank Frazetta's classic Frankenstein monster cover from issue 10. Rudy Nebres provides a one page Uncle Creepy intro. This issue is actually slightly better than the garbage that came out around this period, although there's no really good stories here.

First is "Whatever Happened to Orem?" by Martin Salvador (art) and Bill Dubay (story, as Will Richardson). This story is a sequel to "Orem Ain't God No Head Cheese" from Creepy 85. It featured a cannibal old man and his young female companion who were attacked by a blob creature that was originally a cancer in one of their victims. In this story the cancer continues to plague the woods and when Orem and the Sheriff of the town end up getting killed, their deaths are mistakenly blamed on it. Orem's companion tricks law enforcement into 'killing' a pile of guts that they think is the creature; in actuality she is in love with the real one.

Second is "Outcast of Euthanasia" by Bill Draut (art) and Bill Dubay (story, as Will Richardson). This story features a reporter talking to a woman about her dead son. Her dead son worked in a lab that brought dead people back to life from cloning. The son ended up being one of them too and went on a rampage, killing them all.

Third is "Old Man at the Morgue" by Fred Carillo (art) and Mark Lasky (story). This story features an old man who works at a morgue at night who talks only to the corpses. Heading home one night, he is murdered by some gang members. That's it. A complete waste of a story.

Fourth is "Frankenstein Invades the Universe" by Romeo Tanghal & Alfredo Alcala (art) and Budd Lewis (story). Scientists work in a satellite to create energy to transmit to the Earth. When they do so, they reveal a lab under ground where a Frankenstein monster (based on the cover) is found. One of the men becomes convinced that the creature is an advanced being that he must release and he does so. The monster goes on a rampage and is eventually killed. But carnivores eat its corpse, transmitting its evil to them. And when our protagonist eats one of them, he too becomes a monster.

Last is Abelmar Jones in "Lord of the Flies". This series originally ran in Eerie, with its last part appearing in Eerie 95. Its last story appears here, with Luis Bermejo replacing Alex Nino on the art. Bill Dubay (credited here as Will Richardson) continues to write the story. In this story two people in the city pour chemicals on Abelmar by mistake. This results in a blob growing on his head. Initially he wants to get it off but can't, but when it is revealed that the blob makes him irresistable to women, some other people tear it off of him to use themselves.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Date Correction

The last few daily posts have incorrectly all had the date of December 13th. I had the date wrong on my computer which is probably why these appeared this way. Things should be fixed starting with tomorrow's entry (today's, Vampi 62 has just been put up).

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Vampirella 62

Enrich provides the cover for this issue of Vampirella.

First is "Starpatch, Quark & Mother Blitz" by Jose Gonzalez (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story continues from the previous issue's story, where Vampirella had her eyes stolen by the Blood Red Queen of Hearts. Suddenly a group of aliens arrive, those listed in the title, and save her, giving her her eyes back. They also restore Pendragon's heart, which had been stolen by the Queen.

Next is "U.F.O." by Ramon Torrents (art) and Josep Toutain (story). Toutain was the head of Seleciones Illustrada, the art agency that managed the majority of the spanish artists that worked for Warren. This story was meant to appear in the magazine "Yesterday, Today... Tomorrow" but since that magazine was never published, it ended up here. This story is about a man who searches for U.F.O.s with a newspaper reporter and finds them in a winter landscape. They go to the Air Force, which doesn't believe them, discreding them. In the epilogue it ends up that the aliens are real, as they attack humanity.

Third is "Beautiful Screamer" by Leopold Sanchez (art) and Bruce Jones (story). Some very nice art by Sanchez on this story. It features a handyman and a maid who are after an old man's money, trying to get put in his will. They convince him to do so by tricking him into thinking he's dreaming when he actually is drugged. When it is revealed that the old man has a nephew, they rush to poison him before they are removed from the will. The handyman however only dreams that he switched the old man's wine with poison, and both him and the maid end up drinking the poison by mistake instead of the old man.

Fourth is "Time Ticket" by Esteban Maroto (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). This story features a sorceress who is able to grant anyone's wish as long as they give her 7 minutes of her life. Multiple people in this story ask her for the wish, but each time disastrous results happen. An interesting concept, although not the strongest ending.

Fifth is "Fog" by Carmine Infantino & Dick Giordano (art) and Nicola Cuti (story). This story features a dangerous fog that chases a couple. They are able to escape from it, but it adapts by turning into a liquid, and getting at them that way.

Last is "By Treason's Knife", written by Gerry Boudreau. While the art is credited to Leopold Sanchez, this art looks to me to be done by Jose Ortiz. The story takes place in World War 2, where a soldier is recruited by his commanding officer to go on a secret mission to kill Rommel, getting close to him by betraying his allies. He betrays his allies, but the commanding officer set him up, as the gun he's been given has no bullets and he fails to kill Rommel, dying instead.

Eerie 102

Sanjulian provides an odd cover for this issue. Most of it is okay, but there is no background whatsoever, just white space. A different style for this issue only, featuring mostly stand alone stories.

First is the Rook in "Terror of the Spaceways" by Lee Elias (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story was Elias's Warren debut and its quite impressive, a large improvement over the art in prior Rook stories. Elias would for a while do the Rook's stories once the character got its own magazine. This story, which is continued in the next issue, was originally part of a large story that had been split in two after Jim Warren (thankfully) demanded that Dubay reduce the size of the Rook stories. In this story the Rook, upset over the government cutting funding for NASA heads into the future to find something to impress the government. A battle is occuring however, and at the end of the story he comes across a partially destroyed ship, looking for survivors. Ironically enough Joe Brancatelli's 'The Comic Books 'column discusses this very story (clearly before the decision to publish it had occured), with Bill Dubay talking about how he does not want to split the story in two parts for publication.

Second is "Siege", the latest "Horizon Seekers" story. Art is by Leo Duranona and story is by Duranona & Cary Bates. In this story Allison and Jesse are pursued by the giant throughout the castle. It eventually gets its hand stuck in a tower within the castle. Unfortunately for them, an even larger menace, a huge army of creatures seems to be coming from the horizon.

Third is "The Earthquake Stick" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Budd Lewis (story). This story tells of a young boy in an orphanage who is abused by the head of the place as well as his fellow orphans. He has a secret friend however, an alien creature that he is able to summon with a small device he has. Eventually he finds that he can use his fellow orphans as food for the creature.

Fourth is "Ophiophobia" by Martin Salvador (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story features a man who is deathly afraid of snakes. The story flashes back to his childhood and how his fear in snakes got started. Eventually he gets sent to war in Vietnam, where is he is captured by the enemy and thrown into a pit filled with snakes.

Fifth is "Tracks" by Pepe Moreno Casares (art) and Roger McKenzie (story). This story takes place around a winter cabin where a man's wife dies and her corpse is eaten by some unknown menace. He goes outside trying to hunt it and eventually passes out in the snow.

Last is "Neatness Counts" by Joe Vaultz (art) and Jean Michel Martin (story). This short story with no dialogue features aliens coming to the moon, finding what the astronauts left there, and cleaning it all up, thinking it is trash.

Creepy 100

Creepy's 100th issue contains a whopping 8 stories. It starts with a cover by Bob Larkin.

First is "The Pit at the Center of the Earth" by Pablo Marcos (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). A very poor story with some ugly as usual art from Pablo Marcos about a battle taking place on an oil ring. Yawn.

Second is "Professor Duffer and the Insuperable Myron Meek!" by John Severin (art) and Bill Dubay (story). Duffer of the title introduces Myron Meek to a top Hollywood agent and he makes it in Hollywood as a comedic actor, although he never speaks. It ends up that Meek is a robot. Meek has fallen in love with the robot from Metropolis, so they are able to find her for him, and he heads off for good with her. A nice comedic story with some good art from Severin.

Third is "Tale of a Fox" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Nicola Cuti (story). This story is about a Chinese princess, Ming Toi, who has the ability to transform herself into a fox. She is captured by her evil uncle Quang, who plans to replace her on the throne with his daughter Sun Li, who looks just like her. Ming Toi transforms into a fox however, and the guards mistake Sun Li for her, leading to her execution. This story would become a series in Vampirella a few years later.

Fourth is "Nobody's Home" by Joe Vaultz (art) and Cary Bates (story). As usual for Vaultz this story features alien creatures, this time creatures that live on the moon in an enforced enclosure. One alien tries to escape and succeeds, only to crumble to dust when he gets out.

Fifth is this issue's color story, "Winner Take All!" by Luis Bermejo (art) and Len Wein (story). A soldier plays cards with an old man and beats him so much that all the man has to offer is his beautiful female slave. The soldier heads through the desert with the slave, who never says a word. Various monsters start appearing and attacking him. Eventually it is revealed that she is the one summoning them, and that she has magic powers. She transforms him into an old man who is soon gambling her away as well.

Sixth is "Hell Hound" by Russ Heath (art) and Bruce Jones (story). A man finds an injured hound near his house and nurses it back to health. Soon he finds his enemies, such as his ex-wife and a man who fought him in a bar dead. It ends up that the hound is killing any enemies from his past. He goes to see a psychologist who wrote him a bad check in the past, but it ends up that this man has his own 'Hell Hound' too.

Seventh is "Wisper of Dark Eyes" by Auraleon (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). A meteor crashes into the sea near a small fishing town. A woman watching it is given special powers which she uses to get her husband to kill the woman she's having an affair with. The special powers go away however when the meteor goes away, and the husband tears her eyes out. She jumps off a cliff to her death and he goes crazy.

Last is "They're Going to Be Turning Out the Lights" by Alex Nino (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story tells of the panic that occurs when there is a massive blackout in a big city and the steps the government takes to keep things under control.

Vampirella 56

Enrich provides the cover for this issue of Vampirella, featuring Vampi being grasped by two imp like creatures. Jose Gonzalez provides a one page intro from Vampirella in the frontis.

First is "The Headless Horseman of All-Hallow's Eve!" by Jose Gonzalez (art) and Bill Dubay (story). Some extremely good art by Gonzalez here, one of his best Vampirella stories ever. Vampirella and Adam try to solve the mystery of a headless horsemen who is kidnapping young woman. Using Vampi as bait they find the truth, it is actually some men who are trying to sell the women into slavery. Vampi and Adam are able to stop their operations.

Second is "Mute" by Luis Bermejo (art) and Bruce Jones (story). This story tells of a mute boy seeing a psychiatrist, who tries to get him to speak again. He finally does after three years and reveals his past, where he was in love with a girl but too nervous to talk to her. When she drowned in an accident, he kissed her but was caught by some other people, who brought him to a graveyard to find a rotted corpse of a woman, forced him to have sex with it... and he liked it! In the present day his psychiatrist lets him have sex with her but he freaks out and kills her since only dead things are attractive to him.

Third is "Skruffy's Gargoyle!" by Leopold Sanchez (art) and Bill Dubay (story). Skruffy is a young boy who passes away due to illness. His father tells his other son of how gargoyles were created to protect the souls of the dead that they watch over. A demon comes for real to take Skruffy's soul, but the gargoyle along with his family save him.

Fourth is "Cavalcade of Monsters" by Ramon Torrents (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). This story is a murder mystery surrounding a movie starring a vampire, Frankenstein and werewolf. When the actor starring as the vampire dissappears, the film's leading lady hires a private eye on behalf of the producer. In the end the private eye finds that the producer himself is behind the murders and solves the case.

Last is "The Free Lancer" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Bruce Jones (story). This story takes place on the planet Deimos and surrounds a TV show where people can sign their life away to a TV show that airs executions. The person will be paid $10,000 per week until they are randomly drawed as being the person to die on that week's show. The wife of one of the people who dies on the show comes up with a complicated scheme using robots to get revenge on the show's owner.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Eerie 101

Jim Laurier provides the cover for this issue, featuring a robot in a futuristic city.

First is The Rook in "The Martians Are Coming, The Martians Are Coming!" by Jim Starlin & Alfredo Alcala (art) and Bill Dubay (story). The art in this story looks markingly different than the usual art for Starlin and Alcala, an odd combination. Like most of the recent Rook stories, this features a dual storyline of the Rook in the past and Bishop Dane & Manners on an adventure. The Rook goes about a hundred years in the past where he encounters a robot inventor and a rival of his, who ends up being Adolf Hitler's father. In the present Dane and Manners help stop a revolt by members of the US's own government. Somewhat better than the last few Rook stories for the simple fact that its considerably shorter and simpler.

Second is the second part of "Gotterdammerung!" by Isidro Mones (art) and Budd Lewis (story). Our heroes battle the aliens, trying to retake the Earth from them. During the fight Jericho is severly injured, then transported to another human ship where one of our hero's father is aboard. They fight off the aliens and are reunited as the story ends.

Third is the third part of "The Horizon Seekers" by Leo Duranona (art) and Leo Duranona & Cary Bates (story). Our heroes depart the mountain and arrive in a warmer landscape where they are pursued by a group of tribesman. They are chased to a castle filled with knights and a wizard named Merlin. Upon entering its revealed that it is actually just a museum and Merlin is just an old man who like them has lost his memories and is merely hypnotizing people into believing that they are actually in the middle ages. As the story ends the tribesman arrive once more to attack the castle.

The issue concludes with Hunter II in "Three Flames of the Phoenix" by Pepe Moreno Casares (art) and Budd Lewis (story). Ten years have passed since the conclusion of the Hunter II saga. Karas is set to be married, but an old wizard arrives and tells him that she has been kidnapped by an evil wizard. Karas, the wizard and the Exterminator head off the fight the evil wizard. During their trip the allied wizard is killed and the Exterminator is trapped under a rock. Karas finally faces the evil wizard, who ends up being Mandragora (who ended up being the main villain in the series) himself. Browne Loe, the wizard who led him there arrives, and reveals that the entire scenario was a set up so he could kill Mandragora himself once and for all, which he does by sacrificing himself. This actually is a pretty good story from both an art and story standpoint, but its quite puzzling why this stand alone Hunter II story appears out of nowhere. It had been nearly 30 issues since the series concluded, and this didn't kick off a new series, but rather ended immediately after this single story. Its also dissappointing to see them use someone other than Paul Neary for the art, who did both the Hunter and Hunter II series.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Creepy 107

This issue is an all sci-fi special issue of Creepy. The cover is by Romas Kukalis. All the stories in this issue are uncredited, although the creators would be revealed in later issues.

First is "The Rubicon" by Pepe Moreno Casares (art) and Budd Lewis (story). The issue's best story, a legitimately scary one (a rarity for this part of Creepy's life), it features a group of astronauts sent to some ruins where a number of astronauts have dissappeared. There they make a major discovery regarding the origin of mankind.

Second is "Family Ties" by Val Mayerik (art) and Bruce Jones (story). Another very good story, with some really good art from Mayerik, it takes place in a world where animals are able to talk through mental powers. The story stars a dog, who is to be the representation for the animals when humans arrive. He travels around, meeting various animals and creatures, and finally meets the humans, who are astronauts. They are unable to understand his mental communication however, and plan to blow up the whole place due to the radiation that gave the animals these powers.

Third is "The World from Rough Stones" by Joe Vaultz (art) and Jean Michel Martin (story). A group of radioactive aliens arrive at Earth only to be destroyed due to the oxygen there. They leave behind ruins, what we know as Stonehedge. A very short story at only 4 pages long.

Fourth is "Stainless Steel Savior" by Leo Duranona (art) and Len Wein (story). A robot is dumped in the trash by the family that owns him when a newer model comes out. The robot initially stays with some homeless drunks but he has a vision of god and becomes a famous prophet who gets many followers. He is about to broker peace in the middle east when he is shot by one of his friends, who just wants to get drunk. The robot is dumped in the trash, his teachings are forgotten, and everything goes back to normal.

Fifth is "Quirks" by Walt Simonson & Terry Austin (art) and Bob Toomey (story). A group of astronauts come to a planet with a lot of dangerous creatures. They find one small monkey like creature who sleeps through everything, making them wonder how he is able to do this. They are surprised to hear that its not due to any special mental powers that he is able to ignore predators, but because he's inedible. This story would have a sequel in issue 112.

Last is "Mindquake" by Garcia Pizarro (art) and Jim Stenstrum (story). This issue's poorest effort, it is about a spaceship that has a man on it who has mental powers which cause harm to come to the ship. It is later revealed that the harm is actually from spies who have infiltrated the ship who are defeated. A dissappointing story from the usually dependable Stenstrum.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Vampirella 60

This issue of Vampirella starts off with a cover by Enrich, featuring the Blood Red Queen of Hearts versus Vampirella.

First up is "The Return of the Blood Red Queen of Hearts" by Jose Gonzalez (art) and Bill Dubay (story). The Blood Red Queen of Hearts, who lost her eyes to a demon in her first appearance (issue 49) tries once again to gather hearts so she can become Chaos's bride. She also seeks revenge on Vampirella by taking her eyes from her. Pendragon meanwhile meets a beautiful woman who steals his book on Chaos from him after knocking him out.

Second is "He Who Laughs Last... Laughs Best" by Carmine Infantino & Gonzalo Mayo (art) and Bruce Jones (story). Two men who are very competitive with playing practical jokes on one another are given money by an old man in a club they are a part of the more over the top their joke is. One of the men gets the other to kill himself after he is caused to believe that he caused a woman he is with to be hit by a car. But his death is faked, as she was working with him all along.

Third is "Riding Shotgun" by Luis Bermejo (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). A trucker encounters a very beautiful young woman, 'Shotgun' at a truck stop. It is soon revealed that she is a succubus, as she preys on two other truckers while sleeping with them. Knowing full well who she is, our protagonist sleeps with her, but avoids kissing her and is able to keep himself alive. Some very attractive art by Bermejo here; Shotgun is probably the most beautiful woman in any of his Warren stories.

Fourth is "Wish You Were Here" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Bill Dubay (story). A pair of old men who used to write sci-fi stories long for the old days where they had been transported to another planet by a transportation beam used by a beautiful alien woman. Now old, they are unable to go there due to pollution in the sky. One of the men is about to kill himself, but is at that moment transported back to the alien world, presumably for good. Not a bad story, but with so much good stuff around it, the clear low point of the issue.

The issue concludes with "Fallen Angels" by Esteban Maroto (art) and Bill Dubay (story). The art for this story is sideways. Some very good, exotic art from Maroto on this story, which comes off as a Warren version of the Little Mermaid. A mermaid princess lives in an ocean paradise. She rescues a human man from a shipwreck and falls in love with him. She begs her father, who always taught her that humans were evil, to turn her into a human so she can be with him and he reluctantly permits it. She reunites with the man who treats her kindly at first, but she soon finds him with another woman. Realizing that men are evil, as her father taught her, she tries to return to the sea, but now a human, she drowns.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Eerie 100

Jordi Penalva paints the cover for this issue of Eerie, featuring a number of different Eerie heroes including Hunter, the Spook, Darklon, Dax and others.

First is "Master of Ti Chi" by Jim Janes & Alfredo Alcala (art) and Bill Dubay (story). The Rook serial continues to spiral downward in quality while the story length and complexity continues to increase to absurd degrees. This story features the Rook going to a place known as Ti Chi which is nothing like what he expected. This story's sole bright spot is a storyline involving Bishop Dane where an alien comes to Earth peacefully but ends up getting killed by the government.

Second is "Gotterdammerung" by Isidro Mones (art) and Budd Lewis (story). This story takes place in a devastated future. Two slave boys meet Jericho, a robot man, and another man, Juda. The four of them get on a spaceship and escape from the Earth.

Third is the next story of the Horizon Seekers, "In a Strange Land" by Leo Duranona (art) and Leo Duranona & Cary Bates (story). Our heroes try to escape in a hot air balloon, but their enemy, the Sheexa arrives and ends up destroying it. They crash to the Earth and hide in the mountains.

Last is "Duel", the final story in the Darklon saga. Story and art is by Jim Starlin. Darklon and his father have their final conclusive duel. Darklon's father reveals why he was trying to have him assassinated. The two decide to use a device that will kill one of them. Darklon's father ends up being he one dying. The Nameless One arrives, demanding that he will now rule the planet due to his deal with Darklon. Darklon responds by blowing up the entire planet, and narrowly escaping. Throughout the story a parallel story of a father and son in the hospital (representing Darklon and his father) is also told. An interesting and exciting way to end this rather poor issue.
Aside from the Darklon story, a very poor issue, and quite a dissappointment for a 100th issue.

Creepy 87

This issue is a special issue dedicated to the planet Mars. Nicola Cuti is credited as an editor (below Louise Jones and Bill Dubay) for this issue only. The cover is by Berni Wrightson; it is not an original cover but rather colored reprinted panels from art he did within the magazine. Wrightson was reportedly rather upset when he found Warren had done this; its a practice they used occasionally throughout the years, although mostly on reprint issues such as Creepy 82 and Eerie 78. An excellent issue, with only one poor story.

First is a one page feature titled "Four Classic Martians", drawn by Berni Wrightson. It features four panels of various martians. Two of these panels would be used on the cover.

Next is "A Warped Tale" by Gray Morrow (art) and Al Sirois (story). This was Morrow's first Warren appearance since the cover of Eerie 10 in 1967, and his first interior story since Creepy 10 in 1966. Unfortunately it would also be his final Warren appearance. The story features two astronauts who end up going through a timewarp, and find themselves on Mars, thousands of years ago. Mars at this time is a beautiful planet, very similar to Earth. From two of its inhabitants who they meet, they find that Mars is battling a planet that exists between Mars and Jupiter. The aliens from that planet can't breathe on Mars, and vice versa. Eventually these aliens attack, pumping their atmosphere into Mars. When our heroes retaliate, its sets the entire planet on fire. The enemy's planet is destroyed, creating, the asteroid belt that exists today. A very interesting and well drawn story to start the issue.

Third is "A Martian Saga" by Berni Wrightson (art) and Nicola Cuti (story). Rather than an actual story, this is a 6 page poem, told with three panels per page. It features a man coming to Mars who meets a tribe there, confronts a monster, and meets a beautiful woman. Alas, its not a happy ending for him as he suffocated when he takes off his oxygen mask while with the woman.

Fourth is "Those 'Orrible Passions of '78" by Carmine Infantino & Dick Giordano (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This issue's best story, it features a retiring detective being interviewed about the most mysterious case of his career. It involved multiple events occuring within a short period of time where parents murdered their children, then died themselves shortly after. At the same time an old man off in the wilderness just lied down in his yard during a snowstorm and died. Throughout the story we are shown similar events occuring on Mars involving a martian and its dead children. The detective wonders if the death of an alien race somewhere in the universe occuring at the same time as these murders influenced them in some way. As an epilogue we are shown the mysterious face on Mars. A very interesting story.

Fifth is "The Last" by John Severin (art) and Roger McKenzie (story). This story features a humanoid Martin who lives on Mars all alone with a robot. The martian is very depressed over the fact that the humans that used to be there are now all dead. The robot starts playing a movie for him, but the martian, trying to get him to stop, electrocutes himself. Ironically, the movie reveals that he wasn't a martian at all, but a mutated human, effected by radiation from the war on Earth that forced humanity to flee to Mars. All alone, the robot kills himself.

Sixth is "They Come Out at Night" by Martin Salvador (art) and Bruce Jones (story). Some astronauts arrive at Mars and find a prior expedition wiped out, with just corpses there. The story then flashes back to the past where one of the astronauts arrives at Mars, finding that his wife is sleeping with another man. When learning of her infidelity he tries to leave her, but it ends up that she is actually possessed by roach like creatures who infect the other crew members when she kisses them. He kills her, but her corpse still comes after him as its still possessed by the roaches. In the present time, our protagonists are confronted by her corpse, which is still possessed by them!

Last is "Warmonger of Mars" by Ralph Reese (art) and Wally Wood (story). This story was reportedly created a long time before this issue, but not printed until now. The issue's sole poor story, it is a comedic effort featuring a man and creature on Mars. Yawn. Reese's art appears heavily inspired by Wood here.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Vampirella 30

This issue starts off with one of my favorite Vampirella covers, by Enrich.

First is "The God of Blood" by Jose Gonzalez (art) and Mike Butterworth (story, as Flaxman Loew). In this story Vampirella meets a fellow illusionist who wears a mask and was actually given power from Chaos, which he chooses to abuse. The illusionist captures Vampirella and dresses as the sun god, but the actual sun god shows up and kills him, then kisses Vampirella as the story ends. This story would be continued in the next issue.

Second is Pantha's first appearance in "Re-Birth!" by Auraleon (art) and Steve Skeates (story). I've covered Pantha's later adventures with Vampirella extensively already on this blog, now I finally have a chance to review her original series. Her original series is a stark contrast to the appearances I've already covered; it is much darker and she kills many innocent people. In this intro story we meet Pantha, a young woman at a strip club who mysteriously turns into a panther multiple times with no knowledge of doing so.

Third is this issue's color feature, "As Though They Were Living" by Richard Corben (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). This story takes place in Salem in the late 1700's. A witch, who is spurned by a man she likes gathers her allies and summons a demon known as a Sidhe. Seconds later however the town ministers arrive and kill her and all her allies. The Sidhe transforms into a human and seeks out the man she liked and kills him. He then goes after the man's girlfriend, but she realizes who he is and manages to burn him alive in her wine cellar.

Fourth is "Memoirs" by Fernando Fernandez (story & art). This story is told from the perspective of a serial killer, who has written his memoirs in a book written with his cell mate's blood. His horrific murders are detailed and the entire city fears him. Eventually he is caught and after writing his memoirs himself on fire since anything else that can happen in his life will be a dissappointment after what he's accomplished. Terrific story and art from Fernandez, the best story in the issue.

The issue concludes with "Captain Death" by Isidro Mones (art, miscredited as Munes) and Carl Wessler (story). A comic strip artist lives with his sister, who controls all the wealth given to them by their parents. Secretly housing his girlfriend and her brother, the artist asks for money from his sister then kills her when she won't give him any. He finds soon after however that his girlfriend and brother have disappeared, and stolen comic strips he had drawn that need to be handed in. He goes to the police in order to help find them and confesses to his sister's murder. Digging her up, they uncover her months old corpse with the comic strips in hand. It appears that the girlfriend and brother never existed and were merely part of the artist's imagination.

Eerie 99

The Rook is cover featured for the first time in quite a while in this issue, a cover by Jordi Penalva.

First is the Rook in "Hickey and the Pirates" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Bill Dubay (story). Bishop Dane is shocked to find out that the Rook has to pay income taxes when he meets the Rook's accountant. Longing for adventure, Dane heads to the past where pirates reigned, and he encounters the accountant's ancestor. Like the last story, a tad long and overcomplicated, although Ortiz fills in nicely with the art.

Second is "The Horizon Seekers", a new series from Leo Duranona (art) and Duranona & Cary Bates (story). This long series was a pretty good one, although this is a weak first story. It takes place in the desert where a woman, Allison, takes a man, Jessie, prisoner. They are then captured themselves and brought to a city which they eventually escape from.

Third is the second and final story in the "The Shining Sea" by Alfredo Alcala (art) and Nicola Cuti (story). Humans arrive from Earth, but they are quite cruel, murdering many of the fish-people in order to take their gold. Our hero is able to fight them off, but at the cost of our hero's lover. Later more friendly humans arrive as well. Some very odd concepts with this series, but it ended up being an okay series.

Fourth is the second and final part of "Harrow House" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Bruce Jones (story). Our protagonist discovers that Gretchen is alive after all. Gretchen tells him her aunt has been drugging him and others who have come to the house, and taking their blood because she is a vampire. The aunt arrives and Gretchen runs off outside. The aunt reveals that Gretchen is the actual vampire, and that she has been gathering blood for her. Having made it outside in the sunlight however, Gretchen is killed. A very good conclusion, the strongest story here.

Last is "A Crack in Time" by Pablo Marcos (art) and Louise Jones (story). A couple goes back in time in order to study Cro-Magnon man. There they are confronted by Neanderthals who capture them, and eventually escape. Their time machine is destroyed, stranding them there, making them realize that they themselves are the Cro-Magnons who were the ancestors of modern humanity.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Creepy 2

This classic issue of Creepy was from when the magazine was top notch across the board, great artists, great stories, very few flaws in these early issues. This cover is by Frank Frazetta, his first for Warren. Angelo Torres provides a one page Uncle Creepy intro for the frontis.

First is "Fun and Games!" by Joe Orlando (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). This story surrounds a middle aged couple who hate each others guts. At a carnival the husband participates in a game where he fires upon a model of his wife. When he gets home, he finds that she is dead. He heads back to the carnival, where the carnival barker he met before leads him through a door, where his wife is, who shoots him. A rather confusing ending to this story.

Next is the one page "Creepy's Loathsome Lore" by Bob Lubbers (art), in his sole Warren apperance. This feature focuses on vampires.

Next is "Spawn of the Cat People", the cover story, by Reed Crandall (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). A hunter comes across a panther that has murdered a man in the woods. He comes across some other men that have tied up a young woman. He frees her and runs off with her, despite their warnings that she's not like them. The hunter soon suspects that she has the ability to turn into a panther and shoots her. But when he finds the men he met before they reveal the truth, that in their town she was the only one who could not tranform. They then transform into panthers and kill him.

Third is "Wardrobe of Monsters" by Gray Morrow (art) and Otto Binder (story). For some unknown reason Angelo Torres handles the final page. Five men find a number of sacrophoguses in a pharoah's Egyptian tomb that house various monsters including a vampire, wolf man, devil and Frankenstein monster. One of the men, a translator finds the ability to transfer himself into these monsters. He does so, killing his various partners in monster form so he can get all the credit. He also destroys the mummy of the pharoah, fearing that he also has the ability to transfer into the bodies. However when he occupies a monster to kill his last partner, the pharoah's spirit, released by the destruction of his physical body, seizes the man's own body, trapping him in monster form for good.

Next is the one page "Creepy's Loathsome Lore" by Frank Frazetta (art). This feature focuses on werewolves. It was one of Frazetta's very few interior art jobs for Warren.

Fourth is "Welcome Stranger" by Al Williamson (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). Two men from Hollywood that work in the movie industry come across a town where they find some strange events occuring. They soon encounter some ghosts. It ends up all being fake, an act by the townfolk who want a movie filmed there, but their work had resulted in frightening the two men to death

Fifth is "I, Robot" by Joe Orlando (art) and Otto Binder (story). This is the first story in the Adam Link series that ran throughout many of the early issues of Creepy. The story was originally written by Binder and his brother, and had actually been partially adapted before in EC comic's Weird Science Fantasy 27 - 29, which incidently enough was also drawn by Joe Orlando. This story introduces Adam, who is a robot created by the kindly scientist Dr. Link. Throughout the early part of the story we watch Adam's development from a blank slate to an intelligent creature. Unfortunately one day Dr. Link is killed accidently and Adam is seen there by the housekeeper, causing his death to be blamed on him. Adam is forced to go on the run and hide from the humans pursuing him.

The issue concludes with "Ogre's Castle" by Angelo Torres (art) and Archie Goodwin (story). An extremely good art job from Torres here, arguably his best job for Warren. A knight heads to a castle that is rumored to be where his younger brother dissappeared. Inside he finds an ogre who has captured a beautiful young woman. He fights off the ogre's various minions, then saves the woman. On his way out the ogre confronts him, and the knight kills the ogre. The ogre's corpse transforms into his younger brother as soon as he is killed however. The woman, now revealed to be a sorceress, transforms the knight into an ogre, to be used to guard the castle like his brother had before.

Of special note is the subscription ad at the end of the issue, drawn by Jack Davis. This ad would eventually be transformed into the cover for Eerie #1 about a year or so later.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

1994 16

Jordi Penalva contributes a very good dinosaur themed cover for this issue of 1994.

First is "Sci-Fi Writer" by Alex Nino (art) and Kevin Duane (story). This story is about a sci-fi writer at a convention who is captured by some aliens that want to use him to take over humanity. He escapes from them and then manages to kill them, or so he thought. They are able to switch themselves with kids wearing costumes at the last second, getting him sent to jail.

Second is "Dog Star" by Delando Nino (art) and Bill Dubay (story, credited as Will Richardson). This story is about a prospector on a planet all alone, except for his dog Nebbie. Thanks to Nebbie's help he is able to fight the dangerous monsters off. But when other prospectors arrive, they tell him that Nebbie is actually a monster, which is true, as the man had deluded himself into thinking it was a dog.

Third is "Agony" by Carlos Giminez (story & art). Like his story in the previous issue, this is a reprint of a story originally published in Europe. A man and a priest traveling arrive at a town and hear horrific screams. They find them coming from a man who is being completely mutiliated by a machine. The machine then oddly enough reconstructs the man, who instructs it to mutilate him all over again. It ends up that the pain the man feels is transfered to ecstacy which is why he is repeating the process.

Fourth is "The Day After Doomsday" by Luis Bermejo (art) and John Ellis Sech (story). Bermejo's art here is absolutely horrific, easily the worst of his Warren career. This story takes place in the future, where pollution has caused devastating results to the Earth, causing most of the populace to have cancer. A space shuttle is presented to the public as a way of calming them down, but its all a ruse and one of the astonauts reveals that fact by blowing it up.

Fifth is the latest story in "The Starfire Saga" by Rudy Nebres (art) and Bill Dubay (story, credited as Will Richardson). Kris and Cassie find a number of victims killed by the space pirates who have plagued them before. Kris realises that she can communicate with the spirits of Snuffy and others killed by them. They soon encounter the pirates and kill them, and meet the small creature introduced in the prior part, who tells them that Kris's father has already left.

Sixth is the final story in "Baby Makes Three" by Abel Laxamana (art) and Kevin Duane (story). Our hero continues his investigation of the murders taking place on the space station. The murders are the result of a man named McCann who is defeated during a battle taking place next to 'Baby', a giant black hole. At four stories long, this series was quite poor and a waste of a lot of space in this magazine.

Last is "Fruit of the Grape" by Alex Nino (art) and Kevin Duane (story). This story takes place at a party where as part of a bet the host discusses a case he was involved with where a man was brought to court for selling a wine that was announced as being aged many years despite the company only being in existence a few years. Our protagonist announces that he has created a device which can age things, winning the case. The big company that brough the lawsuit to court buys the device from him and uses it to age the wine in their warehouse, but this ages the bottles and the building as well, causing the house warehouse to come crashing down.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Eerie 98

This issue features a cover by Patrick Woodroffe of a skull faced cop. Due to an elongated Rook story, there's only three stories in this issue.

First is the Rook in "Quarb and the Warball" by Luis Bermejo (art) and Bill Dubay (story). At 31 pages, this is tied for the longest story in Warren history. This story features multiple creations from a fan contest held in Eerie where fans submitted story ideas. This story features a man named Quarb, who was born millions of years ago when the Earth was populated by apes due to alien interference. Quarb is not only super smart, he also is immortal. When the Rook finds out about his home he desires to go back in time to see the first intelligent man. Dane meanwhile goes in the past to meet his ancestors. In the past Rook is captured by apes and goes through a long ordeal where he is unable to meet Quarb, gets abducted by the aliens who were looking for Quarb, and finally does meet him in his home, but Quarb acts unintelligent and the Rook leaves. Dane encounters his ancestors, who are fighting a man named McQuarb who just happens to be both Quarb, and Dane's ancestor. Finally, Quarb himself arrives in the present to look at the Rook's creations and laboratory. A rather too complicated story and too long story, with way too much words.

Second is "Got You On My Mind" by Russ Heath (art) and Bruce Jones (story). This story features a man with a skull birthmark on his cheek that has dreams of people who has caused violence. He goes to them in real life and kills them. However he has a dream of a murderous woman who is actually just an actress and is killed by cops when he tries to strangle her. One of the cops there has the skull birthmark appear on him as well afterwards.

Last is the conclusion to the "Honor and Blood" series, with art by Leo Duranona and story by Nicola Cuti. This story brings us to the present time, where Sean Vrykola (who has changed his name to Varly) goes to Romania to meet his cousin Mara and learn of the family history. Mara lives all by herself except for a pair of vicious dogs. Sean learns of his family's vampire history, while at the same time there have been vampire related murders occuring. Sean meets Mara's father, who is crazy, and returning home finds out that she is a vampire after all. She runs and gets killed by her dogs, but it ends up it is actually his wife Peggy who was the killer. Sean and Mara are normal after all, and get married, ending this series on a more pleasant note than usual. A top notch series throughout, its a shame that it ends here after only three stories.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Creepy 90

Enrich provides the cover for this issue of Creepy, one of his few Creepy covers.

First is "Warrior on the Edge of Forever" by Jose Ortiz (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story was originally intended for the war special of the prior issue. Its about a man who has dreams of prior lives as a soldier in important wars and conflicts. This story features photos of Warren production assistant Bill Mohalley as a dictator.

Second is "The Wash Out" by Leo Duranona (art) and Bruce Jones (story). A man and an android head out to a planet to find a woman. The man has a lot of disrespect for the android, although they do end up having sex with each other. Eventually they find the woman, who ends up being an android trying to pose as a human, and she's killed by them. Our protagonist ends up being an android after all, the android companion was actually a human all along, and he ends up shorting out his circuits when he drinks some coffee.

Third is "The Search" by Carmine Infantino & Gonzalo Mayo (art) and Roger McKenzie (story). This story is about a town's search for a vampire that has been killing many of its occupants. The story is told from a person who lost his lover to a vampire. It ends up that our narrator is the vampire, and he ends up getting killed by his own father.

Fourth is "Please... Save the Children" by Martin Salvador (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story tells of a child killer whose daughter ended up dying after she ran away after being spanked. This causes him to go out and start killing children of parents who he perceives as treating them badly. Even though his father is the President of the US, this doesn't stop the prison from executing him.

Fifth is "The Sacrifice" by Auraleon (art) and Jose Toutain (story). This story tells of a tribe which feels the need to sacrifice its most beautiful virgin each year to its God. Even though the sacrifice this time is the chief's daughter, they go ahead with it anyway. The God they worship ends up being a giant computer. A short story at only four pages long.

Last is "Dollie" by Leopold Sanchez (art) and Roger McKenzie (story). This story was originally intended for the previous Christmas special. It features children being given horrific gifts by Santa Claus that cause havoc, such as a rifle that a boy uses to shoot his parents, not knowing it was real and a chemistry set that blows up the entire house. Another girl is given a doll that acts like a vampire. When the mother tears off its head, her daughter's head falls off. It ends up that it isn't Santa, but rather Satan that is giving out these gifts.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Vampirella 51

Enrich provides the cover for this issue of Vampirella, which is miscredited to Sanjulian.

First is "Rise of the Undead" by Howard Chaykin & Gonzalo Mayo (art) and Mike Butterworth (story, credited as Flaxman Loew). In this story Vampirella and Pendragon visit a town where each year corpses start plauging the town. It incidently ends up being the night that they are there. It ends up that the corpses have come out due to a curse a man placed on the town. Vampi tries to get the man's descendant to end the curse. While he refuses, eventually things work out okay. This was Chaykin's sole Vampirella story, but his artwork is barely noticable here.

Second is "The Edge of Tomorrow" by Zesar (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). This story takes place in a future where the communists have taken away and stripped humans of pretty much all their rights. Children are manufactured in a facility run by humanoid robots. A man and woman try to have a baby the natural way, which is now outlawed. They try to steal a drug that will cease them from being sterilized so they can have a kid, but the robots there simply activate a device implanted in their head that kills them instantly. Years later all humans revolt against the robot government until all of humanity is wiped out.

Third is "Uncle Wiggly's Magic Box" by Leopold Sanchez (art) and Bill Dubay (story). This story features a kid's book author nicknamed Uncle Wiggly who passes away. At his funeral he comes out of his coffin awake. While he has died, he refuses to be dead and through will alone keeps himself alive. Since he's really dead however he starts to decompose, and is eventually required to spend all his time in bed, dictating his book to his assistant.

Fourth is "Whitechapel" by Auraleon (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). In a town where a jack the ripper style killer is running amok, a man is hired by a woman to find her sister. The man investigates a local doctor, thinking he's a lead, and finds the sister, dead. When he goes to tell this to the woman who hired him however, the dead sister suddenly turns up alive again. Our protagonist eventually finds out that the doctor is bringing dead people back to life, but is forced to kill them since the experiment isn't perfected yet. Our protagonist is killed by the doctor, and brought back to life, hoping for him to be the first successful experiment.

Fifth is "The Castle, the Dungeon and All by Vicente Alcazar (art) and Gerry Boudreau (story). This story features some knights and magicians battling each other in the woods. One ends up being victorious and continues on, finding a modern looking building. An odd ending, but some extremely good art by Alcazar, channeling Luis Garcia's style here.