Monday, February 12, 2018

Revenge

Here's a really spooky kooky one from the April 1954 issue of Mysterious Adventures #19 (to say much of anything else about it might spoil the fun) --highlighted by terrific art from Ross Andru on pencils, and (possibly) Mike Esposito on inks-- plus one seriously hellarious ending! Ahhhh, before digging in, can we just sit here for a spell and stare at that superbly sinister splash? Perfection.













9 comments:

Mestiere said...

Is Spirit X the first sympathetic gay character we see in these stories?
Interesting that even after death they stay gay. It's like they can't help it!

From what happened to Gloria Moore we learn that people can continue to sin after they're dead, and can even get sent to Hell for it after being in "Ghoul Heaven", whatever that is. Can the opposite happen and people in Hell reform and go to Heaven? That would make the afterlife's rewards and punishments much less eternal but perhaps fairer. If people after death can still be dumb, have personality flaws and make mistakes then eternal punishments and rewards would be a little too much. They still have a lot to learn.

Very nice little story.

Brian Barnes said...

I love this one. Everything about it is awesome. Our "gay" (I'm going to assume, and if that was the writer's idea, than he gets a huge gold star for doing that in the 50s) Spirit X is the best narrator, and how he frets on about things is maybe a little stereotypical but different from your normal crackling ghoul.

The evil spirit is actually clever, if the artist meant it. Spirit X is tall and thin, the evil spirit is short and fat!

Gloria's descent into madness (as a spirit, you'd think that would be a problem of the flesh) is also well executed and believable.

This one is a real winner!

Liz D-M said...

Be careful of what you wish for, Gloria!

Morbid said...

That's got to be one of the greatest miss-matches of a splash and a story I've seen! It is indeed an awesome splash and I was all geared up for a ride through hell with all the trimmings... but it was nothing like that. Instead it's like a lite episode of the Twilight Zone starring Paul Lynde! Ending was fun and predictable in hindsight, but I hadn't predicted it.

Mr. Karswell said...

Well they did go to Hell... the splash was just a bit of forshadowing

Morbid said...

True they do go to hell, but I'd call that more like post-foreshadowing. We see what happens to them after the end of the story!

JMR777 said...

While this was a neat little story with a timid and or gay narrator (a first in horror tales) it brings up a problem-

If a ghost murders their murderer, does that mean all of the vengeful wraiths we have read about in horror comics doom themselves to damnation afterward in the afterlife? If so, that kind of takes the fun out of revenge for those seeking it in the spirit world.

Maybe the spirit of a murder victim needs permission to seek punishment beyond the grave in order to avoid 'the zip code nobody wants'.

Last unsettling thing in this story, there is bureaucracy in the afterlife (transportation office, admissions officer, uniforms worn by the spirits in charge, etc.) are we sure Gloria ended up in heaven or is ghoul heaven another name for purgatory?

Last detail- the other messenger from down below looks a bit like Abel from House of Secrets with his hair combed down.

Los O fun with this one, Thanks Karswell.

Grant said...

I think Spirit X is meant to be "ambiguous" instead of definitely gay. When he calls Paul attractive but refuses to use the word "gorgeous," he COULD be hiding something, or it could be one of those cases of being straight but "not secure enough" to use a word like that.

It's interesting that Lydia is a "loose end" at the end of the story, since she's what I guess you'd call an accomplice before the fact (or whatever the term is), and definitely after.

Guy Callaway said...

What a rip-off if you can't exact terrible revenge from beyond the grave without consequences. I'm not having any part of Ghoul Heaven!
This was a GREAT one - I really liked the ghost-host.