Saturday, April 6, 2024

The House!

If the penthouse a few posts ago wasn't haunted enough for ya, then try this place on for shiverin' size! I'm sure you'll definitely find it to be much more in the spirit of things from the great, ghostly beyond! And from the July 1953 issue of Chamber of Chills #18, with an atmospherically attractive art team-up by John Giunta and Manny Stallman too!


Brian Barnes said...

My only complaint: The pacing is overly fast. Could have used an extra couple pages.

Now all the praise. I love the artwork in this. It's full of nice camera angles -- page 1, panel 2, page 2, panel 5. I love the witch-y ghosts and then I love the face of Emma the ghost during the murder and after, especially the dark, shadowed eyes and vengeful grin. There's some great old house art and I love the top 3 panels on page 3.

Poor Bates, what the hell did he do to deserve this fate? That's kind of the most horrible part of this story. The guys tormented constantly by ghosts, force to murder, and for sure another family is going to move in and start the whole thing over again!

Mr. Karswell said...

And when that occurs— THOIA will be there to report on it!

Grant said...

Even though I find PLENTY of things depressing, I like any given story with a "George and Martha" from WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF? type couple.
It's also interesting when the story doesn't even TRY to make the wife look bad (the way that film "kind of" tried with Elizabeth Taylor).

The best unintentionally (?) funny moment is Bates telling Arnold he's been ordered to kill him, and Arnold telling him to ignore that so he can go back to sleep.

Maybe the most original thing is that the ghosts who are "doomed" to keep wandering the earth - at least that's how the story seems to set things up - turn out to be perfectly okay with that.

Mr. Cavin said...

It doesn't seem like an age of medieval castle lords who write their own regional laws, and yet the servant straight up murders a woman and doesn't seem to suffer any kind of legal comeuppance for it. I get that by acting as Arnold's pawn in this crime has probably kept his boss from ratting him out--but that's only abetting after the fact in the eyes of the law. Seems like both of them would be in jail. But maybe the rest of the story plays out very rapidly. Overnight or something.

I'm not going to debate the pros and cons of "standing one's ground," but once I've been given a perfectly direct warning to leave a place, on pain of death, by no fewer than three ghosts and their blood-soaked henchman, well, I'd probably pack up and go. Call me a quitter if you must.

I like the splash. I can't decide it it's a negative photostat or some kind of scratch-board collage, but it certainly is effective. The combo of Giunta and Stallman has impressed me before, and I like it here--nice faces, a lot of "high horizon" angles, good mood. The various things they pitch into the storytelling, the contrasting styles for the ghosts, chiaroscuro foregrounds here and crosshatching there, swirly atmosphere lines--make it feel a little uneven. But all of it looks nice. Of course I especially love the kill panel at the top of page three. Phantom color-coded faces are the bomb!