Graphic Novel Friday: Comics with October Bite

As has become an annual tradition here on GNF, the month of October makes for a great pairing with horror comics. There is a plethora of anthologies and collections primed for release this month, when such stories are free to crawl out from under the bed and basement stairs and into the dark hearts of readers.

Once again there is a new Creepy Archive from Dark Horse to celebrate this month.  As regular collectors of both the Creepy and Eerie Archives will probably admit, the series grew a bit repetitive in the middle volumes, which is what makes the new Creepy Vol. 11 so noteworthy.  Here, the series enters the early 1970s under the editorial watch of Bill DuBay, and the book flourishes anew with a heavy influence from European artists--plus, early work from artist Richard Corben (more on him in a bit).  A standout story for me is "A Most Private Terror," where the stark panels and lack of backgrounds serve to draw further attention to artist Esteban Maroto's contributions (story by Doug Moench). "The cold thing walked as man by day and stalked by night a beast! Damned by the moon!"  The windswept struggles and open-mouthed anguish are rich in detail and realism.  It's gorgeous.

Dark Horse also recently released a comprehensive look at all of artist Bernie Wrightson's contributions to Creepy and Eerie Comics--it's full of ghoulish creatures, stooped-over henchmen, and lavish storytelling.  The twelve stories therein lend unnecessary (but welcome) proof as to why he is considered a master in horror illustration.

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