In two days Halloween will sweep the nation, but that doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate a little early! This week’s Comic Book Preview contains artwork we find to be the most terrifying to ever grace a cover. We’ll also pick those that bother us in a “what the hell were they thinking?” kind of way. And of course, we’ll still supply a full list of all the comics being released this Wednesday right at the bottom. Enjoy.
Dave’s Favorite Creepy/Scary/Halloween Cover
Rebel Blood #1
Dave: Rossmo was the master of the creepy on his work with Green Wake and this series is much the same. Most of my picks this week are either gory or creepy, because really how can you make a cover scary? It’s a flat image that requires your imagination for it to come to life.
This cover creeps the hell out of me in a couple different ways. The use of color on the body is royally messed up, especially considering all the whites and blacks surrounding this beast. The people screaming in the intestines gives this thing power, otherwise you might think it was some drunk dude wearing a deer skull. The whole thing is unnerving and if I saw this coming my way I’d probably shit myself before I could take a step in the opposite direction.
Brendan: The colors give off a great sense of rot on the body and the blood is perfectly executed without going over the top. I love how the birch trees are so simple in design yet so detailed at the same time. As far as horror-factor goes, I don’t know why deer skulls creep our culture out so much, but I am full on that bandwagon. Super creepy.
Brendan’s Favorite Creepy/Scary/Halloween Cover
Animal Man #5
Brendan: Hey, you know what’s terrifying about this cover? Everything. From the soulless black eyes of the once adorable [insert daughter’s name] to the half-consumed face of our good ol’ dad, Buddy, this cover gives me the creeps. We’ve had a few works from Foreman on our list in the past, and we have always mentioned how he has an amazing talent for the grotesque. This cover, while simple enough, really encapsulates the perfect “do not want” scenario.
Dave: I love how that face is a plate of eggs to this girl. A yummy meal for our little bubby. I also like how the gore is only on their faces, not taking up the whole cover, so it puts extra emphasis on his face and hers. God her face is disgusting. The mouth is impossibly large surrounded by rotting flesh. Ew. I’m not sure if the dot matrix behind them is scary or just a way to fill in the stuff the artists didn’t complete, but that’s the only detriment to this cover. Not sure what that means.
Dave’s Honorable Mentions
Dead Space #1-6
Dave: If you’re talking scary or creepy comic book covers and don’t mention Templesmith you probably have never stepped into a comic shop. Okay so I’m cheating by showing all 6, but I couldn’t pick just one. They aren’t so much creepy as gory as hell and the use of color, as smeared on the canvas as it appears to be, evokes thoughts of a demon from hell itself’s art class project. Good stuff.
Brendan: Know how much of the first Dead Space I played? About 15 minutes. That’s all I could handle. These covers shine a brilliant light (I wish I had more light in that stupid game) on the horrific monstrosities that kept me from even starting the race, let alone getting to the finish line.
Hellboy: The Wolves of Saint August
Dave: Mignola is another artist who immediately comes to mind when you think ghouls, monstrosities and demons. I chose this cover because, frankly werewolves don’t get enough credit. The moon is dirty, the leaves are kicked up and Hellboy does not look confident. Nice layering of images as well. Spooky stuff here.
Brendan: Mignola is just amazing. That is a scientific fact. This cover is a great example of how he shines as an artist. The design behind it is simply brilliant for all the reasons Dave mentioned. While it isn’t what I consider to be his scariest work, I will say that this one has Hellboy looking his best.
Panorama of Hell
Dave: This is a one shot Japanese horror manga from 1984 that was published in America in 2004 that is as scary on the cover as it is inside. It’s actually online for (NSFW link) free here. So, um, wtf is going on man?! That is some sick skin tearing going on, by severed hands that are bleeding out! Those heads are creepy as sin and they’re crying maggots! Talk about an insane cover.
Brendan: The Japanese are absolutely the most twisted group of people on this planet. I have incredibly disturbing images burned into my memories from some of the horror mangas that have been produced. I’ve never read Panorama, and I don’t plan to. They’ve already done enough to scar my psyche.
Dave: This is the first Scarecrow appearance in the Silver Age and boy does he look silly with all that hay.
What’s scary about this cover is Batman’s lifeless limp body. Look how his right leg is bent awkwardly as he’s about to fall to his death. I don’t know what Scarecrow did, but it worked and Batman is royally screwed.
Brendan: I’ve always felt bad for Scarecrow. There has always been this attempt to present him as this terrifying creature yet he always ends up laughable at best. This cover doesn’t prove me wrong, not to mention that the placement of both ‘Crow and Bat’s bodies require that ledge to either be just a little bit longer or for scarecrow to possess superhuman strength.
Spectacular Spider-Man (Vol. 2) #19
Dave: Spider-Man has toyed with the utter disgusting nature of having the powers of a spider. There have been times where he’s cocooned himself in a web womb, grown extra arms etc. This time a bad guy named the Queen wants to mate with the wall-crawler, gets a smooch in and turns him into this abomination. What would happen if they copulated pray tell? I don’t want to know, because he’s already disgusting with the drooling mouth and toothy gum job.
Brendan: This was a great series. If I recall correctly this was the story arc that gifted Parker with organic web shooters so he would parallel the feature film that had just been released. If I recall correctly he also obtained the ability to “talk” to spiders and stick random things to his back, or was that the JMS spider totem arc? Anyhow, It’s all been long forgotten in the world of continuity so I must digress. This is a great example of what could have been for everyone’s favorite wall crawler, although the “man-spider” spin has been spun so many times that I feel like this cover appeared right around the point of flavorlessness.
“Oh, spider-man is a spider again? I wonder how he’s going to solve it this time.”
Brendan’s Honorable Mentions
Crossed #1 (Variant Rap-around)
Brendan: Hey, fuck Crossed, amirite? I have never respected this comic, since it seems to have been birthed straight from the pits of shock value. However, you have to admit that the entire concept of a neurological plague that causes the infected to perform the most evil and devious acts (that is what it’s about, yeah?) is pretty horrific. Then, when you create a scenario such as the above depiction, it really drives the point home. I like absolutely nothing about this cover, but then again that is the point, isn’t it?
Dave: Crossed very much deserves a place on this list. The freaking book has been more than disgusting and horrific nearly every month. I’ve literally not chosen some covers that have made me say, “What the fuck” for our WTF section because they were too gross to share. And yet… this cover is horrendously great! Talk about a situation people dream about in their nightmares. That dude getting beat to death in the background probably would do better going out the door. Disturbing stuff.
Walking Dead # 16
Brendan: It can be argued that Walking Dead is the current frontrunner of the horror genre, and it has attained that position in part by the haunting covers of Mr. Cliff Rathburn. Now, while a lot of the cover art for Walking Dead is somewhat “in the know”, there are other, broader concepts that tend to give you an ample sense of doom. The above example is a nice mixture of both. While the chain link fence does allude to the lore-famous prison, this image is a fine stand alone view of the sad, vicious state of 99% of the planet.
Dave: Rathburn is an expert at making a festering wound look disgusting enough to force a bit of the upchuck reflux. I haven’t looked at all the covers yet to pick out the absolute scariest, but this is probably up there with the gruesome gross out stuff he’s an expert at.
Fall of Cthulu #12
Brendan: What horror article would be complete without a little Cthulu love? Nothing about this cover looks fun. If there is one thing worse than unholy tentacles traveling through your fleshy bits, it’s when those tentacles decide they need some air and start ripping through your flesh and/or orifices.
Dave: The guy is getting choked and wounded by these tentacles! Ahhhh! This is just awful! What a horror to think about an insect/monster in our bodies. Just imagine the sounds of that thing writhing in your head. The sound itself would give you a heart attack.
Buffy: Season 8 #37
Brendan: I’m not wrong in assuming that this guy is one of the Gentlemen from the TV show, am I? Because I chose this cover entirely on the basis of that being fact. Those guys gave me one serious case of the nopes back when Buffy was on TV, and this cover caused all those deep, guarded feelings to bubble back to the surface.
Dave: These dudes sort of remind of the bad guys from Dark City and good lord are they the kings of creepy. This is a nice painted cover with incredible detail in the bad guys face. The way he’s stroking her hair and neck is also creepy as sin. And she still doesn’t know he’s there! Turn around Buffy!
Where we don’t understand, are insulted by or would rather stab our eyes with acid pops than look at these covers for various reasons.
What If? Wolverine: Father
Dave: Babies freak me out. If you know me, you’ll know touching, holding and being near a baby is scary for me. Either I think I’m going to break it or it’s going to break out into spasms and it’ll explode in my hands turning my arms into stumps.
So yeah, this cover is scary to me, and the claws don’t help much. But what’s up with that facial expression on Logan? I know Yu isn’t the best when it comes to facial expressions, but it looks like he’s confused; like he doesn’t know what a baby is or he can’t figure out why he just burnt his third set of waffles in the toaster.
Brendan: That facial expression is Logan saying “What the fuck am I going to do with a baby?” I actually really enjoy this cover, It is well drawn and well colored and it gives us a great glimpse into what could have been an awesome Lone Wolf and Bub storyline.
Captain America #69
Dave: Somebody explain to me what the fuck a “Wee Male” is, then tell me why they have a giant hand as a leader… that gropes passed out dudes. These little rape apologists appear to be dragging Cap to his bum virginity doom. What the hell is going on in this cover?! It’s freaking me out man!
Brendan: Man, the 40’s, amirite? Such a simpler time. I bet no one even thought about the rapey undertones that Dave seems to obsess about on a near-weekly basis. And Wee Males are just little dudes, Dave. Duh. Haven’t you ever watched Jackass?
Black Cat Mystery #50
Dave: Why did you eat Radium?! Why?! The Black Cat Mystery comics are nearly 100% scary/creepy throughout their run. Don’t believe me, look here. Just imagine if you were this person. You’re still cognizant as your hands and mouth deteriorate before your very eyes. The way the lips seem to almost be there, the teeth are falling out, the drool in between those teeth and the rotting-off flesh like those times you stayed in the bath too long as a kid. Gah-ross. On top of that, I’m pretty sure skin isn’t supposed to be purple!
Brendan: As far as I’m concerned, this guy deserves his face-melty fate. This cover is super gross and I’m glad it made the list. My only gripe is that I had to see it. Yuck.
Comics Being Released This Week
This is a cleaned up list via ComicList.com. Prices in USD. “AR” = Ask Retailer. Comic availability subject to change.
- BOOM! STUDIOS
- Higher Earth #6, $3.99
- Steed And Mrs Peel #2 , $3.99
- DARK HORSE COMICS
- Angel And Faith #15, $2.99
- B.P.R.D. Hell On Earth #100 (The Return Of The Master Part 3 Of 5), $3.50
- Star Wars Darth Maul Death Sentence #4 (Of 4), $2.99
- DC COMICS
- Action Comics Annual #1 , $4.99
- American Vampire #32, $2.99
- Aquaman #13, $2.99
- Batgirl Annual #1 , $4.99
- Batman Beyond Unlimited #9 , $3.99
- Ghosts #1 (One Shot), $7.99
- Joe Kubert Presents #1 (Of 6) , $4.99
- Justice League Dark Annual #1 , $4.99
- Looney Tunes #209 , $2.99
- Lot 13 #1 (Of 5) , $2.99
- Masters Of The Universe The Origin Of Skeletor #1 (One Shot), $2.99
- New Deadwardians #8 (Of 8) , $2.99
- Phantom Lady #3 (Of 4) , $2.99
- Superman Earth One Volume 2 HC, $22.99
- Superman Family Adventures #6 , $2.99
- Swamp Thing Annual #1 , $4.99
- DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT
- Army Of Darkness #6, $3.99
- Dark Shadows #9 , $3.99
- Green Hornet #30 , $3.99
- Green Hornet Strikes #10 (Of 10), $3.99
- Red Sonja Atlantis Rises #3, $3.99
- Vampirella #24, $3.99
- Vampirella Vs Fluffy (One Shot), $4.99
- IDW PUBLISHING
- 30 Days Of Night #11, $3.99
- Doctor Who #2, $3.99
- Ghostbusters #14, $3.99
- Godzilla #6, $3.99
- Mars Attacks The Holidays (One Shot), $7.99
- Rocketeer Cargo Of Doom #3 (Of 4), $3.99
- Star Trek #14, $3.99
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #15, $3.99
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Annual 2012, $8.99
- Transformers More Than Meets The Eye #10, $3.99
- True Blood #6, $3.99
- IMAGE COMICS
- Bedlam #1, $3.50
- Bloodstrike #32, $3.99
- CBLDF Liberty Annual #5 (2012), $4.99
- Fatale #9, $3.50
- Happy #2 (Of 4), $2.99
- Haunt #27, $2.99
- Whispers #4, $2.99
- Witchblade #161, $2.99
- MARVEL COMICS
- A+X #1, $3.99
- Avenging Spider-Man Annual #1, $4.99
- AvX Consequences #4 (Of 5), $3.99
- Captain Marvel #6, $2.99
- Hit-Girl #4 (Of 5), $2.99
- Mighty Thor #22 (Pasqual Ferry Regular Cover)(Final Issue), $3.99
- New Mutants #50 (Final Issue), $2.99
- Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #16.1, $2.99
- Ultimate Comics X-Men #18, $3.99
- Winter Soldier #12, $2.99
- Wolverine And The X-Men #19, $3.99
- X-Men Legacy #275 (Mark Brooks Regular Cover)(Final Issue), $2.99
- ZENESCOPE ENTERTAINMENT
- Grimm Fairy Tales Myths And Legends #22, $2.99
- Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Robyn Hood #2 (Of 5), $2.99
- Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Wonderland #4, $2.99